It is an exceedingly rare circumstance under which I discuss my personal financial accomplishments in my “real” life. One of the reasons I choose to write this blog is that I get to discuss – with like-minded people – a topic that is taboo in most circles. But every once in a while an opportunity arises that I can get to toot my own horn a little bit. A couple of months ago I was talking to some of my teacher friends about how much we pay in rent. One of my friends was astonished that I pay over $1000 each month for my apartment. I told her that I don’t really feel guilty about spending so much on rent because I’ve still been able to pay off a lot of debt over the past couple of years. She prodded me a little about how much – exactly – I’ve paid off and I told her “about $30,000.”
Both of my friends’ jaws dropped (which kinda made me feel proud!).
Finally, the other friend said, “Wow, you must be really disciplined. I’m so bad about spending money.”
My immediate response was, “Yeah, I’ve cut out a lot.” Which is true. I have gotten into the habit of really scrutinizing every purchase, and, more often than not, I put things back on the shelf/rack that I had originally intended to buy. But the truth is, I still have a lot of bad financial habits, including:
I have a really bad habit of being wasteful, especially when it comes to food. Some of this comes from being young and single: “Wanna go out for beer and wings tonight?” “Sure!” (as she thinks of the chicken and broccoli in her fridge at home, waiting to be prepared). Some of it comes from just plain laziness (“I just worked 15 hours straight – screw cooking!”). Either way, a shameful amount of food that I buy – intending to cook – goes to waste.
2. Buying duplicates
I’m too horrified to count, but it’s extremely possible that I have 10 pairs of black heels. I’m a serial over-buyer of certain items and it’s just plain ridiculous.
3. Eating out
Again, when you’re young and single, eating out is a major part of being social. And with eating out comes drinking. And both are major money-wasters :/
So even though I’ve managed to pay off a lot of debt since I started teaching, I still have some bad financial habits that need to be tamed….I’m feeling some 2012 financial goals coming on…..
What bad financial habits are you hanging on to?