I successfully survived the month of October on less than $1,000.
In fact, I spent only $922.65. I feel pretty good about that.
Talking about saving money isn't the sexiest topic, but it's where I'm at right now. I learned a lot this month, and I hope that by sharing my journey you too did too. In particular:
I had fun on a budget.
I managed to keep myself entertained. I watched the lunar eclipse, went camping with friends, and spent lots of time outside. I entertained a friend who was visiting me from out of town. I was able to go out with friends decently regularly. Life didn't suddenly become boring.
I've heard before that money makes you more of who you already are. If you can't keep yourself entertained on a budget, then having all the money in the world won't change that.
I have more gratitude for my friends, family, and connections.
It's hard to take your friends and family for granted when they see that you're in a bad way financially and do what they can to help out. From family that bought me groceries, to friends that did everything from lending me a computer to inviting me to drinks, I am definitely blessed to be surrounded by an awesome group of people.
My guess is most of us have awesome friends and family out there willing to support us in hard times, if we're able to ask for help and recognize the gestures each person is able to make.
I bought a lot of stuff I didn't need.
In June I moved out of the apartment I'd lived in for two years. It was a small studio apartment. About big enough for a basic kitchen, table, bed, desk, couch, and bathroom.
I was aghast at how stuff I had crammed into that tiny apartment that I suddenly had to move out of there.
Throughout this month, I've consistently had two feelings: appreciation and gratitude for small pleasures that I took for granted previously, and a resetting of the way I spend money. I feel stingier (a good and a bad thing), but I also feel more in tune with the value my money creates through my purchases. In other words, I feel better able to distinguish if something I buy is likely to create long term value for me and those around me.
For example, I knew that seeing my business succeed was a priority that will hopefully create long term value for many people, myself included. So I felt comfortable making purchases that weren't in my budget that were related to the health of Levaté.
On the other hand, I found it easy to resist cravings for junk food, or beer, or to eat out instead of cooking something myself. I knew that I would just be wasting money. In other words, I felt able to view the money I spent like a long term investment in my own success.
It's been an interesting, growth filled journey. Until next time,
Dillon Dakota Carroll
...sees much and knows much