This week we’re talking money, and honestly, I wish I had some sort of hot take or great advice to insert here, but I don’t. While I may be an Editor of a magazine, I am not at all a financial expert – as evident by the large number of times I’ve made just outright frivolous purchases. Whether it’s buying lunch on campus for the third time in a week or paying $11.50 for parking when I really could’ve taken the bus, I do often dip into my paycheque a little more than I should. I wish I had some way of justifying this, but I don’t.
At this stage of your life, you probably don’t have a lot of money. And even if you do, it’s probably outweighed by the large student loan debt you’re accumulating. You have a lot of life to live with huge financial commitments – mortgages, loans, and credit card repayments. So for now, with the student loan safely in the background on interest-free, allow yourself to make some moderately reckless financial decisions. Get guacamole for a dollar extra, add those subway cookies to your order, and maybe allow yourself to buy the second cheapest wine at Countdown (an $8 bottle of Cleanskin is really never worth it).
I’m not endorsing making terrible financial decisions – I would suggest not spending what you don’t have on what you don’t need. But I don’t always follow that rule so I can’t exactly expect you to either. Spend your money how you want. Make moderately bad decisions. At the end of the day, no one remembers the night they stayed in and spent no money.
P.S. On an unrelated and exciting note: we now have little illustrations of ourselves! That’s one project on campus actually completed.
I know how you’re feeling right now:
Orientation parties are over. AUSA events have come and gone. Shadows’ re-opening has passed you by with the speed and ferocity of a drunk white girl chasing her friends down Queen Street. And now there’s nothing left but a big ole hole in your wallet. Everything sucks.
Don’t sweat it. Everyone’s in the same boat. The first few weeks of university are supposed to leave your bank account emptier than an 8am lecture in the middle of winter. It’s part of the fun.
But now that those events are behind us, it’s time to start thinking about fattening up the wallet again. As uni events die down, and everyone gets back into the swing of actually doing work, you’ll find it easiest to pick up good money habits now. It sounds nerdy, but changing your spending habits is worth your time – every dollar you save now can be spent on going out later down the line.
I like to think of my savings in drinks: I spend about 6 bucks a day on lunches, so if I started bringing in my own meals, I’d free up an extra 3.75 shadows jugs every week. By downloading the pdfs for my law courses – instead of picking up the $45 hard copies – I’ve added an extra 20.70 rum and cokes to my next stein. And by picking up an extra shift shaking it on the end of K-Road, I’ll be able to slam back an extra 0.55 toasties the next time I pop in to Shads for a cheeky feed.
It’s tough being a student: this is the period of your life where you have the least commitments and the most time on your hands, and yet you don’t have the money to go on the never-ending benders you want to. That’s why it’s important to save up now – or else you’ll have nothing to piss away later.