Whoa! It has officially been a year since I hit “publish” on my first post!! I can hardly believe it. I remember how nerve-racking it was to share my story, and here I am 56 posts later. Baby Money Gremlin has officially become a toddler!
To put it into context I’ve written ~ 1 post a week on average. In total, I’ve written 71,684 words so far.
Is that a lot? Yup!
For comparison, that’s approximately the length of the first Harry Potter book (although wildly less famous). Give me a few years and perhaps I’ll have the equivalent of a full book series!
Sharing my thoughts, lessons, rants, and math with you is truly one of my favourite parts of the week, so thank you for joining me on this journey!! I hope that the blog has inspired you to reassess what’s important to you and doggedly pursue THAT with your money. No one gets to tell you what the “right” money decisions are, but I aim to give you the tools to determine that path for yourself.
So, which of those words are MOST worth reading?
I’ll admit when I find a new blog that I enjoy I have a tendency of finding the “all posts” list, starting at the beginning, and toggling my way through every article.
However, I’m a bit of a weird-o and my therapist says I can’t expect everyone to think like me (I half joke?).
So, this post is for you!
Deciding between my articles was not easy for me since I had to cut out ~75% of my work. Anyone who writes knows you get strangely attached to what you’ve created. I completed the painful task though, so here they are:
My 15 favourite posts of year 1!
For newer readers these posts should give you a good idea about my story (ie how I got in SO much debt), my philosophies about life and money, and ways I believe you should question common financial habits to improve your life.
For my long time readers, I’m curious if you agree with the list or feel there are ones I should have included (tell me in the comments!).
The list is ordered from oldest to newest articles since I believe that tells a better story.
Lets do this! (The titles are links to each article!)
1. My Story
I distinctly remember the day I posted my first article. I’d wanted to start a blog for awhile, but I was TERRIFIED.
Maintaining the appearance of “success” was important to me, and I felt like if I admitted how much debt I had my entire world would collapse.
“But what will people think?” is a sentence that haunted me.
Somehow I worked up the courage, wrote my truth, and hit publish for the first time (then dry heaved for awhile; yeah, I was that scared).
For obvious reasons, my first article had to be included on my favourites list.
Deciding whether to go crazy on my debt versus building up some savings was a decision that plagued me. I wanted to get it right, yet kept reading “it depends” which drove me crazy. Therefore, I decided to write the article I wished I could find! I answered my own question.
Yes, I believe you should save money when you have debt.
These are the reasons I believe you should, and the few exceptions when I think you shouldn’t.
In a way, putting this post on my favourite list feels wrong since it was such a terrible point in my life.
However, if my story inspires anyone to get out of a similarly terrible situation writing it was worthwhile. You will never in your life make a more worthwhile investment than buying your freedom and safety.
To date, this is one of my top favourite articles I’ve written. Comparing my legs to a hairy cow is a highlight of my writing “career”.
My only regret? What I named the article!!
I wish I had just named it “Pay down debt quickly” since the addition of “after graduation” makes a lot of people believe the advice isn’t applicable to them.
Do you have debt? Do you want to pay it off? Then this article is for you!
The concept that it’s best to start investing when you’re young is so commonplace that most people’s eyes glaze over when it’s mentioned. “Yeah yeah, I’ve heard that before- next!”. It’s worth understanding WHY it’s so important though.
I aim to show exactly that yet keep it interesting in the best way I know how: by competing with my sister.
You see, I’m quite certain my sister does not read my blog since the topic bores her (I know what you’re thinking… what an unsupportive sister! Right?). So I set up experiments to see if I’m right. That basically entails using her as an example of what not to do with money every chance I get on this blog! I’m waiting for the day she reads one and texts me a “what the heck!!”. Oooooh will I laugh.
This post explains just how powerful it is to improve your financial habits when you’re young. It also makes fun of my sister. Win/win.
[Hey Melissa, this is another opportunity. Come at me!]
Almost everyone I know has created a budget at some point in their life. The number of people that believe budgets actually work?
Close to zero.
I was personally in the “budgets are stupid” category before I discovered the secret to making myself stick to one.
Following a budget can change your financial life, and this article will teach you how to do that. Read it!
FIRE= Financial Independence Retire Early.
Also known as “having enough money saved that you never need to earn another paycheck”.
Discovering financial independence truly changed my life. It turned a light bulb on for me.
This article is a beast, but the concept can change your life. It’s one of the only articles that has taken me multiple days to write because it was incredibly important to me that I did it justice.
Life has a funny way of timing things. I was in the middle of writing this post when a traumatic event occurred in my personal life and I ended up using my own advice.
Feeling sorry for yourself can range from “life’s not fair!” to full blown heartache. I wanted to write an article that could help people regardless of what they were going through.
From the deepest part of my heart to yours- this is the best advice I’ve got.
You know those financial tips that sound too good to be true? This feels like one.
Except the numbers actually work.
Would you like to pay off your mortgage in half the number of years? (trick question; who wouldn’t).
This is one of the shortest articles on my blog, yet it’s top 3 for most shared. That says something.
I really enjoy opposing common thought.
In personal finance, when paying off debt is discussed there seems to be two concepts: Debt Snowball or Debt Avalanche.
I think they’re both wrong 🙂
Humans have an incredible capacity to overcome when we either: 1) WANT something really badly or 2) Want to AVOID something very badly.
Tap into that power, and your debt will fall much faster.
Owning your home is commonly discussed as the path to financial security. If you rent, it’s only because you don’t have enough money to buy yet. But is that true?
Can renting be the BETTER financial option?
Can renting make you rich?
I traveled to Africa for the first time when I was 17 years old. Talk about a wake up call!
Traveling has an amazing way of making you question “normal” by showing you other ways of life.
Can you really afford that thing you’re about to swipe on? Or are you banking on future you paying for it?
Improving your finances is important. If I didn’t believe that, I wouldn’t spend my spare time trying to motivate people to do exactly that.
However, I noticed a concerning trend on other blogs that basically suggest life & happiness should stop until you’re out of debt/paid off your house/ financially independent.
When you only focus on the perceived finish line, you miss out on enjoying the journey.
That journey happens to be your life.
I talked earlier about regretting what I had named one of my posts. This one?
There’s a fascinating fear in our culture to step away from the herd mentality and do something outside of “normal”.
However, normal happens to be swimming in debt and stress.
I challenge you to read this post and look for examples in your everyday life.
If you lead rather than follow, you won’t step in poop.
The thing I want most in life? Options.
One of the simplest ways to give yourself that? Money.
Consciously or subconsciously, so many of our decision are run through the money filter. Financial independence changes that. Rather than asking “What does it pay?” you can ask yourself “What do I want to do?”.
This article explains why I think financial independence is for everyone.