My Biggest Financial Mistake.

But at least it has magic seats.

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2013. Life was good. I was two years out of my Bachelor’s degree in theatre, employed in a university job and saving money. The savings were pouring in because I was living at home. I had passed the GMAT and had gotten accepted to my school of choice for my MBA. Things were trending up.

The biggest gap in my life? My inability to move around freely. Furthermore, now it was MBA time, so I was going to need to move every 4 months to accommodate my co-op terms. The pieces were falling into place for my first big purchase: it really felt like car time.

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A Letter to my Future FIRE’d Self

You did it!

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Dear Future Self,

You’ve done it. You’ve f*cking done it. You’re FIRE’d. You don’t need to go back to work. You don’t need to slave away on strict schedules and timelines. You can instead spend time with those that matter most to you: your friends and your family.

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2017: A Personal Finance Year in Review

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2017 was a mixed bag of feelings. Between the joys of travel (a post on my trip to Japan in April is coming soon…), a new job, and starting this blog in June, the year was also mixed in with some sadness. The passing of my girlfriend’s father at 65 particularly stands out  as a moment that kickstarted me on starting this blog.

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Boxing Day: The Day I Didn’t Shop.

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July. November. December. Three dates marked on many a shoppers’ calendar. And why not? There is honestly so much bold and CAPS happening. On mailed flyers. In emails. On websites. In storefronts. It’s like retailers collectively decide to work together to tell you: “GO SHOPPING. PLEASE.

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Getting Paid to Monitor Your Health.

Don’t waste your hard-earned benefits.

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Not so long ago, I was living in the proverbial millennial malcontent. Underpaid, underemployed, and feeling defeated. Whatever jobs I secured were usually on a part time or contract basis and missing things like benefits, vacation time, or sick days.

Even though I was young and healthy (I like to imagine I still am J), the reality was that I was always scared. Scared of the flu. Scared of slipping on ice and hurting myself. Scared of needing emergency dental surgery. I was acutely aware that any illness or injury could keep me unemployed and even more cash strapped.

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Quintupling My Salary in 7 Years

From $20K to $110K.

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I remember staring at my bank account in 2011.

It was pay day and I had received my meagre $800 paycheck for two weeks of full time work. I had no benefits, no vacation time, no overtime pay – nothing but a small suitcase of stuff and my fellow broke colleagues. I’m pretty sure we ate Kraft Dinner.

This was my reality that I lived in for a year working in the arts. But that $20,000 salary experience was invaluable. It taught me frugality and gave me the ambition and drive to generate a higher income.

*Note: This post focuses on strictly my career after graduation. But if you’d like to know –  I worked in retail for about 4 years throughout my Bachelor’s degree renting out DVDs (Gasp!). Yes. I am a dinosaur. I also had a job one summer where I temporarily paused my retail job to dress up as a character at a tourism place and made an insane $29 an hour. That’s another story, though.

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November 2017 Financial Update

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November. The worst month of the year. Dreary. Long. And full of consumerist temptation in the form of Black Friday and Christmas shopping.

Spending went up, thanks to some of that shopping but all in all I had an amazing month. I got a job offer for a new gig with a 24% increase in salary which I start in December, scored a semi-kind of bonus at work, and got offered a side hustle speaking gig for 2018. All in all, that gave me a savings rate of 69.22% despite spending $2554.23.

So dreary? Yes. But life goals are chugging along just fine.

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