I’m in the midst of wedding planning — which doesn’t exactly sound like financial responsibility. However, we’re doing our best to budget for a beautiful wedding that is an investment in our love.
This article (A Story of a Fuck Off Fund) got me thinking and made me hugely disappointed in Americans and our spending habits. It’s as if we have to “keep up with the Joneses” who may have wealth or may just be pretending. The only positive thing out of this article was that the author pulled it together and has this fund.
How many people are struggling to pay their bills — rent/student loans/groceries/health/car/etc. — but are walking around going to parties, drinking Starbucks daily, ordering out lunch or dinner daily? It makes me wonder if Americans are even serious about their own financial struggles.
I was lucky to have been raised in a less than middle income family — both of my parents worked to make ends meet. From this experience, I learned a lot about saving money. I have one friend who always likes to call me a “tight wad” bc I don’t pick up the check every time a group goes out to dinner (but he doesn’t have a problem if I’m kind enough to pickup his bill). Granted, my income is higher than most of my friends, it shouldn’t be an assumption. I didn’t win the lottery and have just buttloads of money bestowed upon me. It was decades of schooling, decades of lost time, massive amounts of student debt (yes, that I chose to pay off early!). Everyone makes choices in life, and I feel that if my non-American, English-as-a-second-language speaking parents could provide me with all the tools to succeed…. then other people could also succeed.
But that seems to be where it stops short. Fun is way easier to experience than work. I had friends who were out partying nightly in college — and now they say I’m “lucky”. Luck isn’t synonymous with hard work. It’s almost like they think it was handed to me. The luck is that I believed in hard work. I learned that hard work would lead to financial stability…I just had to put the hard work in first.
Now, my thinking seems to be in line with this article (No You Cannot Have A Few Minutes of My Time). And going one step further… I evolved into what this article is all about (Why Most People Will Never Be Successful). The article may sound elitist, but I don’t think it is. I think it’s true in life that as you start to specialize and hon your craft, some things in life will have to give. I used to love going out with friends or acquaintances to “hang out”. But over the years, I found that nurturing the special relationships are way more important.
So here is where I am now (How I Learned to Love Investing , How to Choose Investments for Retirement , Why you need to start saving for retirement now!). And some point along the way, this (What I Learned About Money After My Parents Died) happened to me but with only one parent.
I commend this couple who realized how important it is to take care of debt: Interview with a person who paid off $48,000 in student loans in 4 years. But sadly, some people continue to live like this girl (but I hope they’re learning and figure it out like she did): What I learned about money in my 20s. And this guy… nailed it in What it Means to Save: A Year in the Life.