This is a good point that people miss out on. I remember the whole big thing was the "Latte factor", with the implication that if you save a few dollars a day, somehow that will turn out to a nest egg of a million. Meanwhile, living expenses are increasing, or you've cut to the bone and not getting anywhere. At that point you're viewed as a spendthrift and it's your fault for not getting out of the hole.While I was saving a few pennies a day by cutting out those expenses, the cost of living was going up by multiples of what I was saving.
The only positive idea is that it does make a person refocus on what's important and worth spending on.