At the ripe age of 39 I can recognise that the way I see and handle money has changed drastically over the years. More likely to save up to buy a costly item than to use a credit card, I feel more sensible and sage regarding money than ever before. And so I thought it might be interesting to write a letter to the 13 year old me, way back in 1988, at a time when I had just started secondary school and receiving pocket money.
Dear Me, It’s Me, not the ‘you’ Me, the 13 year old, slightly spotty AHA obsessed version. I’m the 39 year old, no longer spotty Breaking Bad obsessed version, the future you, here to impart some words of wisdom.
Money doesn’t need to spent in the same week that you are given it. I know it’s novel now, that you’ll spend the entire of your teenage years spending it within 24 hours of receiving it, but try to think about long term savings once in a blue moon, it will stand you in good stead for the future.
Save money. It doesn’t have to be all your money, but having a little bit spare is always going to be a good thing. Right now it’ll be a good thing for you to save it bit for times when you see a record that you’ve been dying to buy but can’t afford when it’s hugely discounted. In the future it’ll help you replace your washing machine when your old one explodes and leaves you with a mountain of whiffy socks. Times change, your likes and needs change but you will always, always need a ‘buffer’, an ‘emergency’ fund.
Don’t get sucked into spending using credit. This isn’t applicable to you right now, but in 10 years time you’ll learn the hard way what I mean. This circles back to ‘saving’. Having savings gives you more freedom and choice in life and when life throws you a curveball it’s good to be prepared.
Money spent on turquoise eye shadow is always a bad thing, at any age. Especially when you go on your first date with Eddie in a years time. Pay heed!
Muchos love, Future Me
Have you ever thought about what you would say if you could write to your teenage self about money or life? If so do share in the comments below, I’d love to catch a glimpse into a snapshot of your life.