Living within your means

I have debt. Debt that is BAD debt. I got into it at a young age, and I am currently focused at getting out of it at a young age.

Owning a business, does not automatically mean I am rich and have thousands of dollars in the bank, just as working in the fashion industry does not mean I live a luxurious, glamourous lifestyle.

In fact, the purpose for starting Fashion Weekly, was to teach people you dont need to spend hundreds of dollars to look and live stylishly.  We are about to hit our 4th birthday, and have to say, we think we are doing an alright job of educating majority of Australias society on how to look stylish for less.

Living within your means is something that, unless taught at a young age, is something most of us learn the hard way.  Living within your means is to spend less than you earn.  Simple as that.

It is to purchase something with money you physically have, not by money you may have in the future.  It is real money you have in this moment.

Society and the media currently drive our pursuit for the latest and greatest luxuries, so much so that, alot of us are in more debt than we could earn in a year. 

I dont mean debt for a house, which to me is good debt, I mean debt for flat screen tvs, holidays, cars, furniture, computers, clothes and more.  That stuff that goes in your house or on your back is stuff you should be paying for in real money.

Yes, I know, I am in BAD debt.  I have debt for my car, and debt from a credit card.  Both in which I applied for when I turned 18.

I moved out of home at 16, always brought up in a home that had debt, no good debt, just debt.  I had no real lessons on how to manage things financially, but I know that majority of society is in the same uneducated position at 18.

Up until a few months ago, I still made decisions based on whether the money was there already or not.  Now, I make decisions, only if the money is already there.

It has taken me 8 years living without parents to finally get to this stage, however I would rather learn now than at a later stage.

To me, life has always about ‘bargains’ and ‘basics’.  I dont like fancy restaurants, and I dont drink fancy cocktails (in fact I dont drink alcohol at all).  I buy clothes when I find a bargain, and I dont go to festivals.  None of this has been about an attitude towards money, its just something that has ‘always been’.

So with these attitudes and actions, why am I still in debt, and have no savings? 

I dont keep track of small purchases, I can never stick to a budget, I don’t have a regular income, I moved out of home really young, I have my own business, blah blah blah….  All of these at some point have been a sub conscious excuse for my own lack of education with money. Well I’m 24 and Im sick of not wanting to answer private numbers when they call.

After reading an article (Im always reading something) on frugal billionaires, I realised what I had always known.  To get rich, and stay rich, you have to do what makes you happy, and implement your attitudes into your EVERYDAY life.  Not just on days you feel like it, but as part of your routine.

I have never desired to drive a BMW, or wear an outfit worth thousands of dollars. The things I desire, I have always known, but I never really put anything into action.

I know who I am, I know what makes me happy, and I have an end goal and purpose to wake up everyday.  I just cant keep doing what Im doing. I cant buy petrol and buy a chocolate, that $2.20 adds up.  Its not that I should not eat chocolate… there are just smarter ways to do it. 

Lunch is something alot of people dont realise how much it costs them.  In Brisbanes CBD the average lunch to me would be about $8.  For an entire week, thats $40 spent on just 1 meal, and alot of the time its not even that great, its not that nutritional, and you had to line up to get it.  I know its crazy, but I know people who spend $40 on their entire groceries for a week.  Not because they have to, but because they are smart about it.

Not having a regular income is something I chose to do.  Its something I decided to put into my life and set of circumstances.  In turn, I have to deal with it.  Last year, we moved into our office at Spring Hill, when as much as it has helped our business was not the EXACT space we needed.  Therefore, we now pay rent for a space that we cannot use effectively, which causes frustration and forces us to seek alternatives.

I am doing a budget, a real one where someone else has to sign off on it.  I am taking responsibility for each dollar I earn, and spending it the best way I possibly can.

If I want to be what I deem as successful, than I need to take control now.  Life stops for nobody, money is not guaranteed, and happiness is in your control.

Soo lets see how I go….

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