Sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m an adult. I dance and sing along to boy bands fairly regularly, my eyes get big and I squeal “OH MY GOSH (S)HE’S SO CUTE!!!!” when I see a cute animal, and I “pin” all the time. But here I am, almost 25 and I am an adult. I lived abroad for nine months, I’ve been with my company for three and a half years, I live with my boyfriend, and I manage my money (pretty well anyway…I am still a 24-year-old millennial with a–slightly lessening–addiction to Amazon and Target!). Within the last month or two, I have gone from having zero savings accounts to two with pretty good balances, which are funded by my paychecks and various apps (I CANNOT recommend Qapital enough!!!), and remain untouched by me except for when I manually add more to them. I spent my entire tax refund on paying off a chunk of my student loans instead of hitting up the mall. It’s not easy–I’m so used to spending anything and everything in my bank account on clothes and makeup and stuff that I honestly don’t need. I spent one of my days off watching money management videos on YouTube and found a few things that I’ve implemented.
One video introduced me to the app Qapital, which basically has you hook up a card or two and the you set up savings “rules” to work towards as many goals as you want. These “rules” can be anything from setting a social media status to meeting your step goal on a Fitbit to rounding up whatever you purchase with the card to “pinning” to a board or all of them (mine is hooked up to one that’s relating to my goal). This is my favorite way to save because it’s mindless in the best possible way. You set the values of the rules (however much is saved for each rule) and it’s so easy to save towards the goals. It also shows you how much of the goal you’ve met, which for me is a really nice motivator and makes me feel more accomplished.
Another video had the female host break down all of her spending for a year into four categories: bills, stuff, food, and experiences. I added income as another category to get the full picture. It took a while to go through all of my online statements for my primary card for each month for 2017, but it was so worth it! I realized how much I spent on Starbucks (spoiler: I told Adam beforehand it would be probably $1,500 on Starbucks alone and it was less than a hundred dollars from that 😬😩🤭😮) and other silly purchases. 💸💸💸 It also seems to be a miracle I ended up in the black instead of red for the year. I put it all into Numbers (my iPads version of Excel) and added it up then put it into a pie chart so I could actually see the breakdown. It was so enlightening! Definitely recommend this! Now I just want to do this with Adam’s (he isn’t great with money so I’m working on getting us both in check).
Don’t get me wrong: I still get Starbucks every now and then (thanks to the Keurig I got for Christmas, I only get it once a month or so instead of once or twice a day) and I still get impulse purchases from Amazon and Target, but I do try to be more conscious of where my money is going. Having real goals is helping with this for sure!
Hope you’re proud, dad! Your little girl is trying to get a handle on money!