Being in my roaring 20s, having a job (dare I say career?) and just being ALIVE makes me qualified to share some life hacks and pro tips, right? Meh. Just roll with me!
1. You will be ravenous when you come home from work, even if you sit at a desk all day. Fight the urge to gnaw on the kitchen counter while dinner cooks, and always keep a box of cereal and milk in stock. A quick, easy and delicious pre-dinner snack as soon as you get home from
working in the fields staring at a computer screen all day. (Two to three bowls can qualify as dinner.)
2. If you are paying property tax and don’t have a library card, please stop reading immediately and head to your local branch to procure one.
3. Credit cards have a terrible reputation as Satan’s preferred payment method, and yes, they can be very dangerous. BUT. If you can control yourself (and that’s very, very important), get a credit card with decent incentives and work the rewards to your advantage.
4. Don’t be pressured into doing anything you don’t want to do. You can say no. Do accept the help of others if they offer. You can say yes.
5. Go to a community dance. Not a club or skeez city, but a square or contra dance. You’ll meet all kinds of people, and better yet, there’s no pretense. You’ll be having the time of your life without even realizing you’re undergoing a fantastic social exercise. (Oh, and you’ll get an amazing workout without even knowing, which is the best kind, amiright?!?)
6. Watch all the movies you loved as a kid. You might end up laughing harder or even shedding a tear because you understand it far more. Or you’ll sit there scratching your head like, “I thought this was cool?”
7. Be confident about what you like. If it’s not the same as everyone else, who cares? If it is the same as everyone else, who cares?
8. I imagine that having a baby is the craziest, most amazing thing that can happen to anyone, so let’s give new parents a little slack when they start sharing all sorts of pictures and videos. (I will say I could go without knowing about your kid’s blowout.)
9. Before you buy ANYTHING besides necessities, don’t. You’ll end up with far less clutter and more money. A win-win! Unless it’s reservations for a travel adventure, then don’t think twice.
10. If you’re frustrated with your finances, lots of other people are too for what it’s worth. Most people don’t ever think, Well, I have enough now, so I guess I’ll just stop worrying. Everything costs more than you think it will, and just when you feel like you’re ahead, something comes up. If you’re smart, careful and patient, the dust will settle from the fray. My dad would recite this quote to us as kids: “Watch your pennies, and your dollars will take care of themselves.” It’s taken me a while to get it (and I’m still working on it), but it’s true. How many times do I think, Oh it’s just five bucks. But multiply how many times I think that over the course of a couple months, and it’s not just five bucks anymore.
11. Chocolate milk is still delicious even though you’re not a little kid, so enjoy a glass every now and then.