Being young is all about having fun. This is the philosophy that many people I’ve met in my travels subscribe to. I totally support the idea of having a good time while maintaining some decent balance. The problem comes in finding that balance.
Whenever I go out or go away somewhere it usually involves having a really good time. This pretty much means that for that time period, the responsibility levels of everyone involved will decrease. Simply put, personal finance doesn’t become so important any more. I find that once in a while we need to throw out better judgment and have some fun. There’s nothing wrong with buying that $8 drink if you know that your bills are paid for and that you likely won’t be going out in this fashion all of the time. There’s nothing wrong with letting loose.
The problem is that it’s extremely easy to get caught in a cycle of being irresponsible in your 20s with your money and your life. I’m going to avoid getting into your behavior in your personal life as that’s none of my business. I want to talk about your financial life and how it becomes easy to blow money since you’re making real money for the first the first time in your life as a young professional.
I’m not here to judge you or act like a parent. I want to share a few suggestions on how to be responsible with your finances as you have fun in your 20s and try to save a little bit of money:
How will this fun impact your future?
I’ve woken up too many times in the morning with a major feeling of shame because of what I did the night before. Thankfully, it’s usually a matter of saying something stupid or calling a friend in the middle of the night (drunk dial) to bother them. I find that by putting things into perspective you can better manage your financial life while having fun. Sure that party will be wild, but how much is it worth to you? Is it worth going into debt? Do you really need expensive clothing or can you just work on your personality?
I’ve gone through many periods in my young life. When I first started working out at 18 years old, it was all I wanted to do. I didn’t want to go out and I didn’t feel like hanging out with anyone that didn’t share my passion for the gym. Then I realized there was more to life. Then I went through the period where I just wanted to work all of the time and save all of my money. I’ve also gone through periods during summer months where I want to go out every single night. I found that you won’t enjoy yourself until you find that right balance. The right balance of saving money and having fun. The right balance of being wild and being responsible. When you find the right balance you will know. You will have more money than ever and yet you won’t be missing out on what you enjoy in life.
Take care of everything first.
I’m not here to judge you if you want to get wasted through bottle service at a night club. I’ve done it many times. Enjoy. I’m just saying that you need to care of everything else first. This means that your expenses should be covered and you should have some sort of savings account brewing. If you want to let loose, then I strongly urge that you take care of your finance life first. You will feel so much better knowing that your debt is under control, your savings are growing, and your career is on the right track when you do decide to have those irresponsible nights.
How do/did you stay financially responsible in your 20s? How did you save money while trying to be responsible?
Check out the rest of the Little Savings Series:
(photo credit: photo extremist)