I am the last person to be giving unsolicited financial advice. I am terrible with my money. I’m trying to save for an apartment in Seattle but instead of saving money this weekend, I went on a spontaneous shopping spree to the Avenue and Lane Bryant with my step-grandmother. Now my free teenage banking account - I’m 21 - is overcharged. Fun!
Why do I tell you all that? Shouldn't I be convincing you that I’m an expert in everything I discuss? Well, my hope is that you learn from my mistakes, and then you give me some actually helpful advice in return (and comment to boost my engagement).
So if you also struggle with financial responsibility, don’t worry Keep reading to laugh at someone who's worse than you, and learn by doing the opposite.
First mistake: A Tight Budget. I’m horrible whenever I feel imprisoned by burden and pressure. If I don’t want to do something, I literally cannot force myself to do it. And I don’t want to live on a tight budget.
I don’t know why I keep expecting myself to plan out my spending to every cent. I can’t do it. If you want to plan a budget, leave yourself some pointless spending money. Maybe 5 - 10% of your paycheck. Even if you don’t use it - which, how?! - you won’t feel pressure to live your life controlled by the Benjamins. Leave yourself room to be spontaneous.
Third mistake: Self-Control. This is the worst mistake I make in my financial endeavors. I have excellent self-control in every other aspect of my life. So why am I so bad with my money? We’re not gonna go down that rabbit hole because that’s a deep dive we may not come back from.
But I will say that I’ve gotten into the habit of saying the words “self-control” whenever I’m about to buy something unnecessary. For example, I struggle with buying and eating too much fast and junk food. So whenever I’m about to walk into McDonalds, I say, “self-control.” This makes me remember that I shouldn’t be investing in this when I’m not even hungry.