I consider myself to be an “elder Millennial.” I’m not quite Gen X and not really a Millennial. I’m happy to be referred to in that way, but that means we grew up with credit cards being peddled on college campuses (“Get a credit card, get a T-shirt!”). People our age had parents who talked to us about money, but they didn’t know that we were being marketed to so heavily by credit card companies on campus. In college, I hovered around $2,000 in credit card debt because I liked to travel, but it felt manageable because I always had a job so that I could have some “fun money.”
While I was able to handle my money, I was never into money and numbers. I always passionately hated math and avoided it. I was capable but begrudgingly, I managed to get through school with the help of many kind tutors.
After I graduated, I felt I was doing well with my finances, but they weren’t very complicated. I had little (or no) debt, and I had a steady job and predictable expenses. Later, I decided to go back to school. A couple of years after I finished that degree it was a vastly different picture: I had student loan debt and I started a business. So, I had business expenses combined with less predictable income.
Deciding to Work with Dr. Budgets
I went to Dr. Budgets to seek help with my business, but then it became obvious I also needed help with my personal finances because I was dealing with an erratic income. I say “erratic” instead of “variable” because that’s how it felt: it was scary and felt “erratic” and “volatile.”
The first meeting was stressful. It was raining and I was late. It was like going to the dentist… I knew I needed to go, but I didn’t want to go. My dentist growing up was the nicest person in the world, but I still didn’t like it 😊
Fortunately, I had a very pleasant experience even though the subject matter was very unpleasant for me. I felt encouraged after the meeting, which was a relief… it was like going to the math tutors while I was growing up. I also felt empowered and was really proud of myself for taking the first step on the path to financial clarity!
Working with Dr. Budgets
I like that I’m no longer relying on a gut feeling to decide if I can afford something. I have already budgeted for travel and hobbies so I know I can afford those things. There are budgets you can download online, but those don’t factor in everything. They have things like rent, but not Christmas spending, travel, hobbies, or items specific to your lifestyle. Dr. Budgets has really thought about the realistic/practical side of it.
I also feel peace of mind that I’m not being irresponsible when I spend money on things… I’ve budgeted for it and it’s doable (to travel, buy Christmas gifts, etc.). It was just a matter of taking the time to put a limit on those items and determine when I could spend on them.
It also feels good being able to delegate to somebody. I didn’t want to do it myself, but I didn’t want it completely out of sight, out of mind. It is nice to have a scheduled interaction with somebody who has the knowledge to guide me. I feel that I have a built-in teacher with an opportunity to learn a little bit each month.
My initial goals were to have a better handle on discretionary spending, start to fund a retirement account, and start a rainy-day fund. I feel good about my progress toward those goals. I also wanted to pay off my $10,000 credit card debt, which I did in one year. Going into it, I felt like it was doable, but I wanted to do it in a responsible way. Even though I had the money to pay it off, I wanted to do it in a smart way so that I would have money for my other goals. I felt that I had the proper guidance on how to move toward my goals in an intelligent way.
How do you feel now?
I feel choked up… upon reflection, Daniel is up there as one of the people I have trusted to handle something important in my life. There are certain things I don’t share with people in my world… like me doing poorly in math. With Daniel, I felt I could be transparent.
What would you tell someone in a similar situation to yours about Dr. Budgets?
Dr. Budgets money coaches are absolutely not trying to do investments! Financial advisors will poster like they’ll help people with their budget, but no, no, no, no… they give you a one-size-fits-all budget that doesn’t work.
Anything else you want to mention?
Daniel’s going to be mad at me (just kidding!)… I must own up to the fact that I got my boyfriend an annual pass to Disneyland 😊 Many of us grew up with Disneyland being a SPECIAL OCCASION thing. And, now as an adult to have an annual pass has become a symbol of success. I can just go when I want to, and it’s achievable to have a pass. Dr. Budgets won’t make you give up your annual Disney pass!
It is awesome when someone seeks guidance in an area of their life where they are not strong. And then watching them crush their goals! If Gina has inspired you to take action with your finances, then click here to schedule your complimentary consultation.
*For client confidentiality, we changed the name of the person to “Gina.” Everything else is factual.