As you may have guessed, I’m cheap (cue bro joke about sexual promiscuity). Parting from my money almost causes me physical pain. Before purchasing most things, I calculate how long it took me to earn that amount of money working. While I’m sure it has helped my math skills (which are in dire need of help, believe you me), it only serves to make me depressed.
So why do I do this to myself? The answer is simple. I have to make the money mean something. It is too easy to forget that money is more than magical paper used to acquire fun – especially for a college student who pays a lump sum per semester for housing and food. I don’t use money to buy necessities (in general), so I feel less inclined to save it because I won’t starve to death/miss my rent payment if I don’t have enough.
For this reason, I have my paychecks direct deposited to my bank account, and I avoid using my debit card. I can understand how people can go into massive debt using credit cards. Swiping a card does not even feel like spending money. It’s a conspiracy, I tell you! I digress. In any case, I also keep a minimum of cash on hand, so that it’s annoying to have to take the time to walk into town to withdraw money, so I don’t spend my money on frivolous things.
I’ll admit that I struggle not to go to LimeRed Teahouse every other day for delicious bubble tea, or Subway to avoid a bad meal at Val. It’s not that I don’t want to spend money; it’s just that I can’t in good conscience. Always, looming in the back of my mind, is the question of how I’m going to make my next semester payment. Fear not – it’s not as dire as it sounds. My parents will help me pay for it if I don’t have the money, which will be the case soon, since I’ve used up most of my savings on tuition. I will, of course, have to pay them back at a later date.
However, I must save as much as I can, because I find the thought of debt abhorrent. I don’t know how people can live with it hanging over their heads. For example, my boyfriend got a loan from the college to pay for his laptop at the beginning of freshman year and still hasn’t paid it back. The loan is interest free, so it’s not really a problem, but I just can’t handle it. It’s at least number three on the list of things we fight most often about (number 1 being the whether or not Led Zeppelin is the greatest band of all time, and number 2 being which of the two of us is better at Mario Kart).
My point with this post is to impress upon you the importance of saving money, despite how hard it may be at times. As we head out into the world in a few short years to begin building our lives, having a little extra money certainly won’t hurt.
Down home country wisdom, yo.