I remember when I was young my parents would always tell me that I didn’t need 99 % of what I wanted and asked for. I nodded and was quiet for a while then next time I saw something else it was the same deal.. Over .. and Over again..
UNTIL when I was 14 I got a job working for a bowling alley / banquet hall. I worked before the banquets setting up tables and chairs for hundreds of people by my self. I then worked in the kitchen running food, washing dishes as well as worked as a barback. I got this sweet gig because my mom and sister worked here part-time and were friends with the owner. Anyway back on track here – I wanted to start working so I could afford all of those amazing material objects that I yearned for so badly because I thought that it what would make me feel happy and cool. So ever since my first teenage years I was teaching my self bad financial habits regardless of how hard my parents tried to push me to save and understand what it means to make and save money.
Fast forward 16 years and.. I failed. For years and years I’ve spent so much of my hard-earned money on useless shit like cars, motorcycles, TVs, watches, cell phones, vacations (which are one of the few exceptions to splurging), eating out all the time at restaurants and I don’t want to try and come up with any more because it’s pathetic enough already that I’ve wasted so much on these materialistic things that at the time I thought brought me happiness, but boy was I mistaken. I can honestly say that thanks to my parents and finding Mr. Money Moustache’s blog about financial independence a couple years ago I am finally on the right path to financial freedom. Which I think will naturally lead to a happier and healthier life.
Do I have debt ? Yes. But I am paying more than 50% of my income on this debt while still getting my companies full 401k match. After my debt is done I will be putting the same amount towards my investment accounts.
Do my wife and I still go out to eat and drink beer? Hell yeah we do but not nearly as much as we did. Not only does it save money but it’s more special then too! Although we find our selves cooking a lot more meals at home and not even using our allotted restaurant money.
Are we going to retire in 3 to 5 years like a lot of other people who have financial independence blogs who make a hundred grand a year would be able to? Absolutely not. I pride my self on being a tradesman and knowing that it will be a shit ton earlier than the age of 60 is something to get really frickin excited about.
I once was a teen, who had a dream of owning everything. Pushed by my parents to save but instead I chose to ignore advice that is worth more than any material thing. I ignored advice that gives me FREEDOM. I’m no expert at making or saving money.. but I know the basic fundamentals and I am excited to say that I am on my way to putting those into practice.