Now that I’m older
– a mostly functional 31-year-old – I realize that although my mom wouldn’t be considered a financially-minded person, the pediatric ER nurse taught me the most important skills in money management and life when I was just a kid: Think critically + remember that life is meant to be lived, not saved away for a time when it’s too late to enjoy it. This is what that process looks like in my brain:
1. I see it, i like it, i want it...
I ask myself if I need it.
2. don't need it?
I ask myself if I’m simply looking for instant gratification and if I’ll be happy about this decision tomorrow.
2. don't need it, but still want it?
As long as my bills are paid, and my saving goals are on track, I get it.
What I wish someone had told me earlier:
You can’t take your money to the grave. Being mindful and setting priorities for saving and spending is crucial, but you also have to enjoy life while you’re living it. If your friends invite you on a spontaneous snowy weekend trip to Flagstaff, go. If you want to ask that girl out to dinner and a movie, do it. Don’t let the fear of spending money prevent you from experiencing what it means to be alive.