“I’m way too hungover.” — said by me way too many times.
We all enjoy having a great time. We all also happen to be interested in saving money and getting out of debt. That’s why you’re here. You want to be financially free by 30, right?
I already wrote all about drinking without going broke. It’s possible. Getting wasted and hanging out with friends is okay.
Well, sort of!
It’s easy to go through life hoping that things will get better one day. The problem is that there’s one mistake that you could be making right now with your money. It’s a huge mistake.
But first, a story…
I was talking to a friend about weekend plans. He was all excited about a weekend getaway. I’m always interested in hearing stories of past or future trouble-making. He shared all of his grandiose plans. He was super pumped. I was pretty impressed by the plans, as they seemed pretty elaborate. It was definitely going to be more fun than what I had planned (not much).
Then it kind of hit me. This was going to be an expensive weekend. I can’t help but think about the financial side of everything since I’ve been writing about money for so long.
I was surprised with these elaborate/expensive plans for the weekend. He had recently failed at a few of his career-related goals. I don’t want to get into it because he may read this. But, the point is that he recently had failed at a few key goals and he was now rewarding himself with a whole weekend getaway.
This leads to the point of this article.
What’s a huge mistake that many of us make with our finances?
The desire to feel instant gratification and the need to constantly be treating ourselves.
We feel that we’re owed something and that we “deserve” certain things. It becomes really easy to justify poor purchases. Bad spending gets chalked up to “YOLO” or “life is too short.” I get that. Life is very short. So why would you want to spend your one life stuck in debt and working until you’re 70?
I write about paying yourself first because you have to save your money first. Then, you can get wasted, get silly, make a scene, and do whatever tickles your fancy.
If you always want to party first and reward yourself for poor results, it’s going to be very difficult to get ahead. And that’s cool if you’re happy with where you are. I just don’t know why you’re here still. I expect more from my students.
The problem that many of us struggle with is the failure to launch. It’s easy to keep on keeping on. It’s easy to run away. It takes real guts to confront our problems and work towards better results.
Don’t worry though.
How can we fix this?
If you want financial freedom by 30, you have to suck it up sometimes and just work. You can have anything that you want, just not everything all at once.
There are three steps that I need to share with you so that you stop making this colossal mistake.
Step #1: Stop being so damn entitled!
The world doesn’t owe you any favors. You don’t deserve anything. Work is normal. You’re not special if you worked a full workweek. You need to accept that nothing is owed to you.
You have to work for everything. If you’re savings aren’t there and your debt is high, you might have to suck it up and work more/party less.
Please, stop being so entitled if you ever want to get ahead.
Step #2: Get your savings in and your work done.
Pay yourself first. Do this first.
Get your work done. Hit your goals.
Then you plan elaborate weekends and time off.
Before my Argentina trip, I ensured that my savings were high, my rental property was sold, and that I had everything under control.
You can’t be mad about the results you didn’t get, with the work you didn’t do.
Step #3: Have a rough plan.
I’m all for randomly getting wasted and last-minute road trips. Those are the stories that we will remember forever. It’s what makes life worth living.
Just remember, that we still need a plan. There’s the five year plan and the rough plan for the next few months.
Without a rough plan, you won’t know if you’re on track. So as you close this article and move on with your day I want you to think of a few questions:
- Where do I want to be in a year?
- How much money do I want to have saved in 6 months?
- Where do I want to be working for the rest of my life? Is my current job making me happy?
Yes, I want you to keep on having fun. No, I don’t want you to be in debt forever or stuck in the same crappy lifestyle.
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain