Should a 21-Year-Old Save up Money or Spend It All on Things That Make Him Happy?

On Quora, someone asked:

“I am a 21 year old man who recently started earning an average salary . I spend my entire salary on gyms, swimming pool memberships, music classes, travelling, good restaurants and bars and updating my wardrobe. It really makes me happy and gives me a meaning to all the hard work I put in at work . But sometimes, it makes me tense that I haven’t been able to save a single penny my entire life. Comparing it with my roommates who save up a lot of money makes me feel even worse. Would it be a good thing to continue living like I do or should I give up some things I love and save up money?”

This was my response:

When I was 21, I made $100k a year. I spent all my money on things that made me happy. $1,500 designer suits. Buying three pairs of $500 designer shoes at a time. Spending $150-$250 a shirt. I was like on a happiness spree. Yay.

It was quite fun.

Then, when I was 22, I decided to try my own business. I exhausted the non savings I had. I racked up everything on credit cards, but I had no income. So when tough times came my way, I lost my car, creditors called me daily, and I had no more happiness. Instead, I just got harassed every single day.

Then, another time, I made a lot of money. I really don’t have the slightest idea how much I was earning, but I can say I was drinking two bottles of Johnnie Walker Blue Label a night for a month straight. Overnight, someone decided to, how do you put this lightly… Beat me down physically. my investors and employer decided that they no longer wanted to work with me, because they felt if I couldn’t take care of myself, then I couldn’t take care of business. So I was dismissed.

So what happened next?

Oh, I knew I was going to lose my Lexus and my 2,600 square foot loft, so I watched movies all day waiting for my eviction notice and just got prepared to live on the streets under a pretty bridge by the LA River. I’m not quite sure why they call it a river, because there really isn’t any water there. But I was going to stay warm by lighting trashcans on fire like in the movies and then begging for change outside the local 7-11. You know, like how the pros do it.

I don’t know how or why, but then my grandma decided to save me. She let me stay with her instead of living on the streets.

So, I determined that we really can’t predict where we will be in the future, even when everything is just going so right. I guess if you want to move back in with your parents later, then it doesn’t matter if you save your money or not.But hey, at the end of the day, it’s completely up to you, right?

Originally posted on Quora.

Looking for a place to blow some cash like I did?  Check out Leonard’s book about social media etiquette.  It’s a great resource on how to actively participate on the internet.  The Etiquette of Social Media – Leonard Kim

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