Anything look different this morning? If you’re reading this on a desktop, you’re seeing the new blog design:
When I decided to launch a blog way back at the end of 2012, I pulled my hair out for two months trying to decide on a theme (look and appearance of the blog). I couldn’t decide on one, so just defaulted to an ancient design. It looked horrible, but I vowed to change it shortly after launch (January 1 of 2013). And then it didn’t happen.
2014 rolled around:
I couldn’t stand it anymore, so I finally updated the blog. And I did if for you. Because I love you.
Are you throwing up yet?
Anyway, the new theme also allowed me to add some more nonsense to the site:
The Anti Bucket List is what I want to ask you about today, but first we must revisit the question from two weeks ago when I asked you what advice you’d give a 23 year old. It all started when a reader wrote me:
I’ve recently graduated and landed a fairly swanky job. So naturally I’m planning an escape strategy…. Do I want to have my nose to the corporate grind-stone forever? No. Do I fancy retiring from formal work at 43? Um, yeah!
Long-story-short, I’ve just stumbled on your blog and I really like it. (I also really like Komodo dragons.) And I was wondering – what would you tell your 23-year-old self?
Any tips for someone starting with…well… financially nothing? (Not including an overdraft and a sizable student loan).
Here is what you had to say:
Make saving automatic. Have as much as you can set up to roll to savings, or your investment account.
Spend some time figuring your self out, your values, and if you use that as your guide and act accordingly it makes life much easier.
Jamie from Medium Sized Family:
So skip the car and the expensive handbags and hitting the bars every night. But do make a budget line for some fun!
Reader FI by 55:
Invest more! I have always been a saver (as an adult), but never really invested. I had a 401k, but was relatively conservative in my youth. So I would tell my 23 year old self to invest in the market (index funds), invest in real estate and max my 401k. I’m in pretty good financial shape now, but I think I would have arrived at my goal long since if I would have invested more. Oh… and keep your car until it dies… don’t upgrade every 3 years.
I like this one from Mrs. Adventure Rich. Her advice is especially true if your employer matches your contribution. Don’t leave free money on the table:
Depending on the interest rate on the student loans, I would suggest tackling both the debt AND investing at the same time. The debt will whittle away but the investments will compound and grow in the long run.
Great one from Mrs. PoP:
Advice to a 23-year-old me? Realize that you are living your life for you, not for anyone else. You don’t have to impress others, or get anyone’s approval. For better or for worse, it’s on you – so make sure you are doing what’s going to make you happiest long-term.
I wish Done by Forty and Reader KL had given me advice when I was 23:
DbF: I’d also tell someone at that age to keep some money around for doing the stuff you want to do in your twenties, perhaps before kids come along. Go travel on the cheap. Save money for going out and doing the stuff you like with friends. Take some time off of work and your hustle for adventures.
KL: I have a somewhat counterintuitive advice: do the crazy stuff now. Do that long trip, hop over to another continent to work, make that 6-week hike in the mountains. You will find out you will regret things you haven’t done – and in your age they are dirt cheap. I’ve done the long travel and the interrail (I’m living in Europe) and now, pushing 40, I no longer want to do the hostel thing. I also no longer get youth or student discounts.
Finally, Reader Zaxon mentioned this awesome piece: How Millennials Can Get Rich Slowly. There is a load of good information in here. Seriously, stop reading my nonsense and read this now.
Anti Bucket List
How about the opposite? What do you never want to do? Here are some from my list:
- Get a tattoo: Not for me.
- Climb Mt. Everest: cold + imminent death
- Buy a new car: Silly waste of money.
How about you?
Join the 10s who have signed up already!
Subscribing will improve your life in incredible ways*.
*Only if your life is pretty bad to begin with.