Author Topic: Really? This guy is the worst  (Read 9797 times)

llabruce4

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 5
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Hilton Head, SC
  • The money idiot
Really? This guy is the worst
« on: December 16, 2014, 08:15:36 AM »
Everybody knows that guy/girl.  The one who makes a decent living, seems to be fairly intelligent, but when it comes to money and savings, they have the decision making skills of a washed up 80's child actor.  It makes me sick and upset, especially because that guy is me.  I figure my first real post belongs on the wall of shame, because up to this point, that is what my finances have been.  I have been lurking here for a little over a month, and after saving close to $500 just watching every penny (early retirement, here I come), I am ready to jump into this 100%, if ya'll will have me.

So how did I get here?  Always hated talking about, or thinking about finances.  Watched my parents stress and fight over bills my entire childhood, so have tended to just ignore it, ( outside of actually saving and being productive, this is a very good plan) and always have an everything is great attitude.  Graduated college in 2003, made a few poor career choices with jobs where I thought I could make a lot quickly, and in 2008 decided to go back to school, beat down and broke.  I now do golf course construction and love it.  Not the highest paying job, due to a lot of competition for work and today's market, but I love it, and it is actually a "green " career ( despite the reputation golf has). So for the last 6 years, I have worked 60-80 hour weeks, thrown a little bit (3-5%) in 401k and spent everything else like a true baller. ( Sadly, that isn't even true.  I spent $20-30 at a time, mostly eating or bars, and since it seemed like small amounts I didn't care.  Wasn't until I budgeted a month that I saw how much money I really wasted.  Which may make this a little easier, since I didnt really spend a lot on "things", just need to cook for myself and spend a lot less on little things here and there)  So now at 34, and realizing finances had hurt past relationships ( more due to me not being open, and letting stress build more than money itself) , and am now with someone I hope to marry one day, I see the need to truly change and not just go through the motions.  She is a lot better financially than I am,  and may not be full on mustachian, but saves a lot, and supportive of me doing this.  Being at this point in my life, and basically at square one sucks, but what can I do? 

Luckily, the one thing I did do well, is that I have no credit card debt.  I do have student loans ( about $18,000 left) and a car payment that is almost paid off ( I know, was trying to be cool ), but little expenses outside of that.  My goal is to save 20% of my income ( not counting the 12% I now contribute to my 401K), as well as pay off half of student loan debt by end of 2015.  I really wish I would have found this years ago ( most of my internet searches did not include mr. or mustache ), but I cannot change the past, so it is all about from this day forward.  I will continue to make tons of mistakes, and will probably end up on the wall of shame a few more times, but in 10-20 years from now, I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

Feel free to judge away, and any advice will be greatly appreciated

Zamboni

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1780
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2014, 08:43:23 AM »
Congrats on seeing the light, saving your first $500, and not having cc debt!  Welcome to the board.

Kaspian

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1534
  • Location: Canada
    • My Necronomicon of Badassity
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2014, 08:48:35 AM »
... My goal is to save 20% of my income ( not counting the 12% I now contribute to my 401K), as well as pay off half of student loan debt by end of 2015.  I really wish I would have found this years ago ( most of my internet searches did not include mr. or mustache ), but I cannot change the past, so it is all about from this day forward.

Welcome!  Don't feel too bad--I think many of us feel the same about that "finding the site earlier thing".  20% is a good starting point and just sit back and watch as that number slowly rises.  Some things you slash will solidify into routine and some things won't.  It takes a little while for efforts to show on balance sheets (e.g., cutting cable, finding cheaper Internet, cooking more with veggies, eating less at restaurants, insulating and turning down the heat) but they eventually show up in the numbers and the next thing you know you'll be at 50%.  ...Which sounds insane, but it's so very doable given time. 
"30 bucks?! What are you, crazy? I don't have that kind of money." - Trailer Park Boys
Journal = Necronomicon of Badassity

Davids

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 891
  • Location: Somewhere in the USA.
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2014, 08:49:40 AM »
Welcome aboard. There are many great topics and tips on this site. Good luck and remember it is a long term process but if you stay diligent and focused you will reach your goals.

llabruce4

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 5
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Hilton Head, SC
  • The money idiot
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2014, 09:07:26 AM »
Thanks for the replies.  I am excited to see what happens once this lifestyle becomes a little more like second nature. 

OutBy40

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 226
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Tucson, AZ
    • ThinkSaveRetire.com
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2014, 09:08:09 AM »
Honestly, I think all of us started this way, or at least fell into some of the same traps that you did.  Very few of us are simply "born" with money sense.  Even those of us who had smart enough parents to teach us money sense, that doesn't necessarily translate after we leave the house and start to truly make our own decisions.

The important thing is that you're ready to make the change and start to prioritize true happiness out of life.  Congratulations.

...and welcome aboard.
Steve Adcock
http://www.thinksaveretire.com

My goal is to achieve financial independence and officially retire from the rat race by 40.

skyrefuge

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 999
  • Location: Suburban Chicago, IL
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2014, 09:50:52 AM »
Honestly, I think all of us started this way, or at least fell into some of the same traps that you did.

Since this is the second time I've seen you say this in short order, I have to pipe up to disagree. Along with MMM himself, many of us had it figured out early. I don't remember ever seeing a poll, but I feel like a significant portion of the people here (50%? Maybe declining as time has gone on...) are people who had been living Mustachian or semi-Mustachian lives before MMM even existed. For us, he just provided a clarifying vision for what we were already doing. But it's good for MMM and the world that he seems to now be reaching more people who are reversing course, rather than just preaching to the converted.

And I don't say this as some kind of bragging, since people who are genuinely reversing course after a decade or more of built-in habits are a lot more impressive than those of us who never had to fight through such a course-correction. I just don't want to see "don't worry, everyone was terrible with money when they were young" thrown around as an excuse.

gimp

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2355
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2014, 09:51:24 AM »
Rabble rabble rabble! Insults to your person and your mother! How could you!

Nah, you've seen the light. It's not going on a diet, it's a permanent change in the way you eat. You've got some debt but you'll manage it, you're not crazy underwater. Save more, spend less, pay down debt, and don't make your wife-to-be the owner-to-be of half of it, right?

EricL

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 661
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2014, 10:15:23 PM »
Welcome!  We all gotta start somewhere and while you may be feeling "Doh!" you're doing better than a lot of people.
Gentleman of Leisure

boarder42

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5503
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2014, 05:04:13 AM »
good work man.  doesnt matter what age you are you wish you would have found this site sooner.  Good Luck
PM me about how to save 6% on your annual grocery Bill!

There is a 35k starwood bonus right now as well. PM me for the info.

craiglepaige

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 758
  • Location: Ohio
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2014, 07:05:20 AM »
I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

Don't think of it as a sacrifice, that has a negative ring to it. Think of those unneeded wants as another obstacle to your ultimate goal of being free.  Once you start prioritizing your needs and what truly makes you happy, you will not care for material objects. Fill your spirit and soul and not your closet.

-The conqueror will always become a slave to his conquest.

- Eres Un Esclavo Financiero
https://youtu.be/GO1Fsp4cUTQ

BPA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1080
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2014, 07:24:39 AM »
Honestly, I think all of us started this way, or at least fell into some of the same traps that you did.

Since this is the second time I've seen you say this in short order, I have to pipe up to disagree. Along with MMM himself, many of us had it figured out early. I don't remember ever seeing a poll, but I feel like a significant portion of the people here (50%? Maybe declining as time has gone on...) are people who had been living Mustachian or semi-Mustachian lives before MMM even existed. For us, he just provided a clarifying vision for what we were already doing. But it's good for MMM and the world that he seems to now be reaching more people who are reversing course, rather than just preaching to the converted.

And I don't say this as some kind of bragging, since people who are genuinely reversing course after a decade or more of built-in habits are a lot more impressive than those of us who never had to fight through such a course-correction. I just don't want to see "don't worry, everyone was terrible with money when they were young" thrown around as an excuse.

Agreed.  I had the same thoughts about the "all of us" comment.

To the OP:  welcome and good for you for accepting responsibility.  Here's to a better life ahead.  :)

slugline

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1097
  • Location: Houston, TX USA
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2014, 08:05:12 AM »
I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

Don't think of it as a sacrifice, that has a negative ring to it. Think of those unneeded wants as another obstacle to your ultimate goal of being free.  Once you start prioritizing your needs and what truly makes you happy, you will not care for material objects. Fill your spirit and soul and not your closet.

In the blog MMM has put a great positive spin on savings by calling them gifts to your future self.

rocksinmyhead

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1525
  • Location: Oklahoma
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2014, 08:22:25 AM »
I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

Don't think of it as a sacrifice, that has a negative ring to it. Think of those unneeded wants as another obstacle to your ultimate goal of being free.  Once you start prioritizing your needs and what truly makes you happy, you will not care for material objects. Fill your spirit and soul and not your closet.

Totally agree. I think of it as using money to optimally support my values and happiness.

EDSMedS

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 208
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Washington, DC
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2014, 10:02:27 AM »
Congrats on your 180!  The forum title should be "[...] WAS the worst."  I'd like to hear more about what makes you happy about our life.

As a native of the most altered state in the USA (Iowa >99%), I should beg you to turn your talents for landscaping towards naturalist projects such as environmental restoration vice homogenization/destruction.  There is a ton of money to be made through government restoration contracts.  Money will come, you will pay off your debts and build your stash, but local species and habitats are a dwindling resource.  Golf courses suck and are reflective of a culture of consumption, false recreation, and waste.  You mention that golf courses are green, which is a funny pun, but I'd like to hear your thoughts on why/how.

Cheers, bro!  Best of luck.
"The chase is constant; only a man's control of the elements of the chase determines whether he be hare or hound." - Jack London

Gen Y Finance Journey

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 211
  • Location: CA
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2014, 11:28:44 AM »
10-20 years from now, I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

It may feel like sacrifice at first, but once you eliminate the debt and watch your investment balances start to take off, saving money becomes so much more enjoyable than spending it. Hell, you may get to the point where spending money feels like sacrificing your savings rate. :)

Le Barbu

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 997
  • Age: 45
  • Location: Lake Wobegon
  • We are all strong, handsome and above average
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2014, 12:03:43 PM »
I seak for finances-related things since 1998 and then find MMM 18 months ago. I swear that this blog is the best financial/life stuff ever. Glad you found it in your 30's! Your best weappon is to live with someone even more MMM inclined than you, lucky bastard! Keep up with us and you'll fligh over the Grand Cayon soon.
"The real reason this blog exists, is simply to save the entire human race from destroying itself through overconsumption of its own habitat"

-MMM

llabruce4

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 5
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Hilton Head, SC
  • The money idiot
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2014, 07:15:50 PM »
Thanks again for the support and feedback from all.  Definitely already think sacrifice was the wrong word to use.

To EDSMedS:  most of what you said regarding golf ( both financially and environmentally) is correct.  However, the company I work for takes only existing golf courses, and brings them back to a natural environment, both through water management and natural landscape.  It would be better if the land was never disturbed, but this is coastal SC, if it isn't already a golf course it is a retirement community.  We use only natural growth products ( no chemicals) and everyday I see eagles, gators, deer and other forms of nature reappear and prosper.  I would love to one day get into another side of environmental work, because it is what I am passionate about, and really all I am good at, but it is nice to see an environmental eye sore be redesigned back to what it originally was ( for the most part).  There will always be the construction aspect, so never fully green, but I definitely feel I am doing a good thing for a coastal region I love and care about long term.  In no way am I trying to disprove anything you said because you are very right, but just like in most businesses, there are people who do it the right way and those that do it the other way.

EDSMedS

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 208
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Washington, DC
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2014, 05:56:52 AM »
Thanks for your explanations.  That's really nice to hear.  Seems like you are on the right path!  Any examples of finished products that we can see online?

Echoing previous comments, though it may seem like sacrifice now to live/consume consciously, it will seem RIDICULOUSLY EASY later on!  You should check out the MMM archives, specifically http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/10/22/what-is-hedonic-adaptation-and-how-can-it-turn-you-into-a-sukka/.  You're taking control of your past, present, and future, bro!  Cheers to you.  We're pulling for you!
"The chase is constant; only a man's control of the elements of the chase determines whether he be hare or hound." - Jack London

dude

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1799
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2014, 06:54:09 AM »
Everybody knows that guy/girl.  The one who makes a decent living, seems to be fairly intelligent, but when it comes to money and savings, they have the decision making skills of a washed up 80's child actor.  It makes me sick and upset, especially because that guy is me.  I figure my first real post belongs on the wall of shame, because up to this point, that is what my finances have been.  I have been lurking here for a little over a month, and after saving close to $500 just watching every penny (early retirement, here I come), I am ready to jump into this 100%, if ya'll will have me.

So how did I get here?  Always hated talking about, or thinking about finances.  Watched my parents stress and fight over bills my entire childhood, so have tended to just ignore it, ( outside of actually saving and being productive, this is a very good plan) and always have an everything is great attitude.  Graduated college in 2003, made a few poor career choices with jobs where I thought I could make a lot quickly, and in 2008 decided to go back to school, beat down and broke.  I now do golf course construction and love it.  Not the highest paying job, due to a lot of competition for work and today's market, but I love it, and it is actually a "green " career ( despite the reputation golf has). So for the last 6 years, I have worked 60-80 hour weeks, thrown a little bit (3-5%) in 401k and spent everything else like a true baller. ( Sadly, that isn't even true.  I spent $20-30 at a time, mostly eating or bars, and since it seemed like small amounts I didn't care.  Wasn't until I budgeted a month that I saw how much money I really wasted.  Which may make this a little easier, since I didnt really spend a lot on "things", just need to cook for myself and spend a lot less on little things here and there)  So now at 34, and realizing finances had hurt past relationships ( more due to me not being open, and letting stress build more than money itself) , and am now with someone I hope to marry one day, I see the need to truly change and not just go through the motions.  She is a lot better financially than I am,  and may not be full on mustachian, but saves a lot, and supportive of me doing this.  Being at this point in my life, and basically at square one sucks, but what can I do? 

Luckily, the one thing I did do well, is that I have no credit card debt.  I do have student loans ( about $18,000 left) and a car payment that is almost paid off ( I know, was trying to be cool ), but little expenses outside of that.  My goal is to save 20% of my income ( not counting the 12% I now contribute to my 401K), as well as pay off half of student loan debt by end of 2015.  I really wish I would have found this years ago ( most of my internet searches did not include mr. or mustache ), but I cannot change the past, so it is all about from this day forward.  I will continue to make tons of mistakes, and will probably end up on the wall of shame a few more times, but in 10-20 years from now, I plan to look back at this decision and be glad I sacrificed what I may want now to better what I have later. 

Feel free to judge away, and any advice will be greatly appreciated

HAHAHA!  Excellent, self-effacing post!  I like your writing style.  Looking forward to future posts from you.  Dude, you got this shit figured out at 34 without having amassed massive debt, you're gonna be fine!  Welcome!
« Last Edit: December 18, 2014, 06:55:58 AM by dude »

rocksinmyhead

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1525
  • Location: Oklahoma
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2014, 10:46:52 AM »
Thanks again for the support and feedback from all.  Definitely already think sacrifice was the wrong word to use.

To EDSMedS:  most of what you said regarding golf ( both financially and environmentally) is correct.  However, the company I work for takes only existing golf courses, and brings them back to a natural environment, both through water management and natural landscape.  It would be better if the land was never disturbed, but this is coastal SC, if it isn't already a golf course it is a retirement community.  We use only natural growth products ( no chemicals) and everyday I see eagles, gators, deer and other forms of nature reappear and prosper.  I would love to one day get into another side of environmental work, because it is what I am passionate about, and really all I am good at, but it is nice to see an environmental eye sore be redesigned back to what it originally was ( for the most part).  There will always be the construction aspect, so never fully green, but I definitely feel I am doing a good thing for a coastal region I love and care about long term.  In no way am I trying to disprove anything you said because you are very right, but just like in most businesses, there are people who do it the right way and those that do it the other way.

That's actually really really cool! Sweet gig.

BlueHouse

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2507
  • Location: WDC
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2014, 12:16:48 PM »
So now at 34 . . . .   I really wish I would have found this years ago.
Yeah, I'm 47.  Just found this site last year.  Consider yourself well ahead of the game.  when you're my age, you'll look back and be glad you found it when you did.

Good luck!!
Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand

MooseOutFront

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 513
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Texas
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2014, 02:07:13 PM »
Great introduction.  Way too much of my past income ended up in restaurants and bars also.  We're still young though.

viper155

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 258
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2014, 06:21:49 PM »
Being at square one at age 34 is a great position to be in. I was where you are at at 31. I am a retired civil servant collecting a pension and working at a job I really like when I WANT to. I'm 54 years old. My house is almost paid for. I have no debt. I have a very respectable amount in liquid assets and have paid cash for 2 private college educations for my 2 kids. Once you see the light the world is your financial oyster. Stay the course and good luck!

Westoftown

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 53
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #24 on: January 03, 2015, 10:16:55 PM »
Welcome.  You generally won't get beat up about your past mistakes here - as long as you are really trying to change them.

Good luck, and look forward to hearing about your progress.

SpicyMcHaggus

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 309
  • Location: MKE, WI
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2015, 12:30:29 PM »
I started last May. I have since gone from 10-15% saving to 33%, then 50%, and am now somewhere around 70%, depending on how you do the math.  I was already aware I wanted to do this before I found MMM and the push/motivation to actually do it. Your turnaround may take more time (most do). I didn't have a wife, kids, or home to maintain. Do what you can, and then look for more ways to save and cut spending.

ET ERE: 5yrs

steveo

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1470
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2015, 02:26:58 PM »
Honestly, I think all of us started this way, or at least fell into some of the same traps that you did.

Since this is the second time I've seen you say this in short order, I have to pipe up to disagree. Along with MMM himself, many of us had it figured out early. I don't remember ever seeing a poll, but I feel like a significant portion of the people here (50%? Maybe declining as time has gone on...) are people who had been living Mustachian or semi-Mustachian lives before MMM even existed. For us, he just provided a clarifying vision for what we were already doing. But it's good for MMM and the world that he seems to now be reaching more people who are reversing course, rather than just preaching to the converted.

And I don't say this as some kind of bragging, since people who are genuinely reversing course after a decade or more of built-in habits are a lot more impressive than those of us who never had to fight through such a course-correction. I just don't want to see "don't worry, everyone was terrible with money when they were young" thrown around as an excuse.

Myself and my wife have never been big spenders and we have always saved however we are still looking to retire anywhere from 45-55. We only realized over the last year or two that we could RE. We do have though 3 kids and pay an exorbitant amount for housing. Our housing costs though are not abnormal for where we live.

We've never had credit card or car loan or any debt other than student fees (mine has been paid off for years) and two mortgages. One mortgage was paid off but we upgraded from a unit to a house which I think we had too.

My advice to the op is to start really thinking through all your purchases and try to consistently increase your savings rate.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2015, 02:28:31 PM by steveo »

BlueMR2

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1782
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2015, 04:11:39 PM »
Welcome to your new journey!  :-)

Sounds like you're at the easiest AND hardest part...  There are tons of easy wins for you, but every one can feel like a challenge.  Lots of good advanced tips in the forums (and nitpicking over how to get that last 1 cent of savings).  I think the best beginner moves are covered in the blog posts.

Keep us up to date on how you're doing and don't get discouraged!

LeboLebo

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: Really? This guy is the worst
« Reply #28 on: January 08, 2015, 05:45:40 AM »
Welcome!

Good luck in your journey