TEEN BEAT: Spending your hard-earned money
Spending your own money feels a lot different than spending someone else’s. For example, when I am thinking about buying a shirt with my own money it takes me about three times as long to decide if I actually want to buy it than when my mom is paying for it. And I’m not saying that I spend other people’s money frivolously but I just work so hard for the money that I make that I want to make sure it is well spent.
When we moved to Greenville my mom helped me open up a savings account and I have really enjoyed watching it grow. I love getting a paycheck and then going to the bank to deposit it. Also, just recently I have become an official Daily News employee and so now I get a “real” paycheck, as opposed to getting $40 in cash when I babysit. I feel more like an adult now.
I have a really hard time spending my own money, not just on things like a movie with friends, but things that I know I need or I really really want. I also especially hate loaning out money to anyone, even my family. For instance, at a basketball game a while ago my brother really wanted something to eat and he asked me to loan him some cash. I know for a fact that he has the money to pay me back but for some reason I still couldn’t bring myself to loan it to him.
Having a job and understanding how hard and how long you have to work to earn a decent sized paycheck has also caused a change in my perspective. I understand that a $20 shirt means that I have to work for almost three hours. And sometimes, that means that it isn’t worth getting the shirt.
I have a decent sized amount in my savings account and I guess when I think about it, I’m not really saving for anything. I don’t really have a plan for how I will spend my money but it’s just nice knowing it’s there in case I need or want something.
I know a lot of my friends are the opposite. My best friend for example, has a consistent income but he doesn’t really save it that well. However, the things he buys are important to him and that’s what matters. He does do a pretty good job of planning ahead though. He will think about upcoming things that he will need to pay for and plan accordingly with how many paychecks he will need to save.
As long as the money you spend is a good investment and isn’t from your last bank robbery, I think you are probably in pretty good shape.
Grace Fowler is a senior at Greenville High School. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.