1. Read at least one new book a month
This month has been filled with mostly class time so my reading has been used up on reading my textbook. My book for the month has been Adobe Illustrator CS6 Classroom in a Book. It comes with a cd that includes files to work on that are labeled per chapter to help you along with each of the lessons in the book. It has been a great help in gaining my skills in Illustrator and I would recommend it to anyone interested in learning to use the program.
2. Make $800 in side hustle income by May 1st
I have a feeling I’m going to have to extend the deadline for this one. I have started earning some additional income and been able to tuck it away in savings but not at the rate I was hoping for. My earnings have come from tutoring, blog consulting and affiliate income. I’m hoping to be up and selling on eBay or Craigslist soon as well. I have a storage unit full of things that I could probably do without.
3. Work out at least 3 days a week
I haven’t been able to get in 3 workouts at the gym but I have been doing some workouts throughout my day to keep me in decent shape and not put on any weight. School is finally over this week so I will be going back full force starting this weekend into next week. I’ve found a routine that I’m going to try out on Bodybuilding.com.
4. Eat breakfast at home and bring my lunch to work every day
I have finally had some success in this goal. I was sick quite a bit last week and missed some work so I was able to eat at home for my lunch and breakfast thanks to that but I also remembered to prepare a few lunches and took my breakfast most mornings. My waistline appreciates the diligent efforts
5. Blog at least 4 days a week
This has been a pretty sad week for 20 Something Syndrome. I’ve been overwhelmed with school and some personal issues and haven’t been much in the mood to talk to people much less blog. I’m getting in better sorts though and hope with the coming weeks things will just continue to get better.
No Spend Challenge
As far as going out to eat goes I’ve been doing pretty great. Not shopping has proven to be the challenge though. I’ve had some events and car troubles come up that have had me dipping into savings, noooo!
Years ago when I graduated high school and started to earn a substantial income I had no concept of savings. I spent money as I earned it and lived paycheck to paycheck. It wasn’t until I read Dave Ramsey’s book Total Money Makeover that I learned my mentality on money was foolish. I was only 21 years old and had drowned myself in credit card debt and a terrible credit score to boot. I felt overwhelmed, like I had dug my own financial grave. It’s scary to feel as if you have no control and can’t get ahead. It is these obstacles that help us grow though. I knew I had to come up with a solution and Dave Ramsey’s book proved to be the key to my salvation.
Dave Ramsey has seven baby steps to financial freedom in his book and the first and most important in my opinion is to start building an emergency fund. The amount you should shoot for is dependent on your personal expenses but he recommends at least $1000. I found this goal to be fairly easy to reach in a short period of time and it has proven to be a good amount for my circumstances. Once you have that money saved away your emergencies won’t feel like emergencies. They will merely feel like a small bump in the road.
Why is it important?
For starters, if you get fired or “let go” you’re screwed without it. You can always resort to charging up all your credit cards, but that’s just going to get you into a sea of financial trouble. Don’t be a dummy.
You get socked in the face at a bar. Insurance only goes so far, beyond that you’re going to need to cough up some money to cover the extra expense to get your teeth fixed.
Your tire blows going down the highway. These things happen more often than we’d like them to.
For the average person with no money in savings these scenarios would cause anyone to go into a huge panic. With a savings account built up these all become inconveniences. Savings give you peace of mind and financial security. $1000 may not be enough to live off of if you lose your job but it will give you some time to come up with a solution. If you feel more comfortable having more than aim for a higher goal. Even if you feel that you are currently living paycheck to paycheck, you can find ways to cut out non-essentials to slowly grow your savings account. If an emergency comes up, think carefully about the situation and be sure it is actually an emergency before you spend money out of your savings to fix it.
What changes have you made to help grow your savings?