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Budget and Balance: Rebuilding My Savings and My Life at 25

Rebuilding Savings

The two B words are what I struggle with weekly. Balance being one and Budget being the other.

For as much as I work, I am not doing so hot financially. Or, I guess, really as hot I as would have hoped!

I am working three jobs, one of them being full time, and am still trying to have a life without becoming a workaholic. I am a veterinary assistant, a writer, and a dog sitter. None of which require my Sociology degree; all of which require my time and efforts.

Through it all, I am keeping my eye on the ball so I can re-build my savings account after my life lesson-filled move to California (and subsequent move back to Houston). So while I am getting back on the budgeting wagon for savings sake, I am very mindful of maintaining balance in my life, too.

Budgeting Time for Life Balance

My full time job at the animal hospital is great, but my schedule is not consistent.  I find myself squeezing sleep in whenever I can, eating when I have time, trying to get my writing done, as well as maintain a social life on my days off.

How do I do this you ask? I’ll be the first to tell you not very well.

For me, sleep always wins.

Sleep > Social Life.

I will have so many things planned in my head for when I get home and almost always immediately fall asleep. I will even have dates planned with my boyfriend and sleep right through them. The hardest part of “transitioning into adulthood” is being constantly tired. Yep, adulting is hard.

But for me if I don’t have enough sleep it is impossible for me to be enjoyable or to get anything productive done. So napping, and LOTS of coffee, really helps me to maintain order in my life with my busy (sometimes hectic) schedule.

When I first started the whole dog-sitting thing I was taking on a lot of clients.

Too many clients.

I would wake up early, go rushing from house to house, all over town, to let dogs out before I had to be at the hospital. I would then work all day long. Then after I would have to rush house-to-house again after work. I would see no sunlight. I was completely exhausted.

I thought the money would be worth the struggle, but I learned mental sanity is far more important than your bank account.

There is no point in over exerting yourself.

Your Money Should Be Working for You

Budgeting Money to Re-Build Savings

As far as budgeting goes, more than half of what I’m making is going straight into savings. So really when I get paid it feels as though I haven’t. I don’t go shopping, I don’t go out, and I certainly don’t go on any vacations. My biggest splurge is on coffee and dog food for my dog, Dom.

Dom > Kelley.

I am trying to rebuild my evaporated savings account (thank you California), save up to move to a house with my boyfriend, save up to hopefully return to school in the future, and not to mention have enough money to live day to day successfully covering basic expenses.

I do think that having a savings account is important. Living paycheck to paycheck is a dangerous thing to get used to. You never know when things will pop up costing an arm and a leg.  So putting a portion of your income into savings should really become a habit. No matter how much or how little.

Plus it’s seriously the easiest thing in the world to set up with your credit union or bank so you have no excuses! Literally takes about fifteen minutes to be financially smarter!

The hardest thing for me currently is sticking with my money management goals.

Having such a low amount of “play money” really makes for a boring social life and can make you feel like a loser, homebody pretty quick. Which I guess is really relatable in the “real world”, who has time for fun when we are all busy chasing paper?

I do try to “treat myself” occasionally though. Like instead of making coffee at home I’ll hit up Starbucks. Or go catch a movie at the theater. I’m talking the little things. I don’t think its good, again for your mental sanity, to restrict yourself from some amount of happiness. I’m not hitting up the Houston Galleria, but a small stop to Target wont be too detrimental to my finances.

When planning a budget, you ultimately need to prioritize your life. I really want to get out my parents house so hoarding all my paychecks in my savings is the move. Do what is best for you and your life. Like I’m sure not everyone buys top tier brand dog food for their pets but that is what is important to me.

Budget and Balance: Rebuilding My Savings and My Life at 25

The two B words are what I struggle with weekly. Balance being one and Budget being the other. For as much as I work, I am not doing so hot financially.

The Two B’s: Balance and Budget

Money does come and go so don’t kill yourself trying to be fiscal and deprive yourself of fun and happiness. This is where the two B words really go hand in hand.

Balancing your time is important but it is also important to balance your spending. What good is all work and no play? Just don’t go overboard on the playing!

It is really easy to wish that I came from a well-off family who could just put money into my bank account whenever I pleased, but it is a lot more rewarding having worked for it myself.

Sense of accomplishment is also important in life.

Although I wouldn’t mind winning the lottery.

Author Bio

Kelley Reynolds

Kelley is a recent college grad who is still learning what it means to “adult.” Kelley earned her Sociology degree from Texas A&M University in 2017 and currently resides in the Houston, Texas area. As a guest blogger for PrimeWay, she will take you along on her journey of struggles, discovery, growth and learning in the real world.

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