“I want freedom and stability... a very big life made up of the very small things.” ~ Meg Fee
I came to college with the understanding that when I turned 18 I became an adult, and have spent the past four years learning how to act like one.
I’ve made substantial progress, going from wasting the precious money I earned and saved (while in high school) to earning back those savings, and taking action (in the present) on the behalf of my future expenses.
Last February I wrote my first self-love post, focusing on the importance of prioritizing one’s financial goals as a form of self-love. I wrote: “I learned that accepting who you are in the present, who you were in the past, and understanding that you have power over who you are in the future is my definition of self-love”.
The heart of the matter is that our finances play a much larger role in how we function in society than FAR too many people are willing to admit. As adults we have to, at the very least, acknowledge where we stand. Only then can we decide where we want to be, and figure out how to get there.
For reference, my definition of financial stability is “non-fluctuating money”. When your bank account hops from a negative balance, to all of your monthly earnings, to zero it’s obvious why you’d be stressed.
Having to worry about whether or not you can afford college, textbooks, supplies, food, and anything else is stressful. However, if the balance remains steady despite your income and expenses, that stress is alleviated, and you’re able to focus on the things that make you happy.
I can’t put into words the feeling of satisfaction I have, the power I feel when I take control of my destiny by not being afraid of spending my hard-earned money on necessities.
There are so many people out there who have far more to worry about than I, so I try to remain humble and recognize where I stand. There are also people who have always been better off than I’ve ever been or ever will be, and I have to accept that my mission in life is NOT to keep up with the Joneses, or Kardashians, or anyone else!
I look back to where I used to be, and sometimes I was better off before. Still, I’m proud of myself and will continue this journey, trying my best whenever I am able.
As students, our academics and extracurriculars take priority, however we do not exist in a vacuum, and the “Coe bubble” will pop ー if it hasn’t already.
This is why it’s best to get comfortable with your finances while you have the cushioning of not paying for your own utilities.
Let’s do an activity:
- Go to my.coe.edu and log in.
- Select the “Student” tab
- Click the link for “Student Accounts Information”
- Select “Course and Fee Statement”
- Select “Generate my Course and Fee Statement”
- Select “View my Course and Fee Statement”
Next, look through your Course and Fee Statement. It doesn’t matter whether you paid all, or none, of your tuition and fees. What matters is that you see how much your education is worth and learn to get comfortable with those numbers.
I understand that money can be scary to many people, so alleviate that anxiety through exposure. The more you avoid what you fear, the scarier it will become.
You may feel nervous looking at those thousands of dollars attending this college cost, or you may feel excited because you’ve been waiting to finally have adult responsibilities.
Either way, it’s important that you accept your current feelings towards your finances, so you know where you’re starting from.
There will be times when you are in a good place, and that feeling of contentment will come and leave you encouraged to reach it once again.
Link to Original Post (Coe College Student Blog)