So the 20 Something Bloggers posed an interesting question this week, and for once I thought I’d participate. Not because the others were weak or anything, but when it comes to money y’all know I’m ’bout it ’bout it! Plus, there’s an off chance of winning $100 ;) I know, I’m a slut.
Here’s the question, in question – feel free to answer it yourself in the comments below:
How do your friends and others affect your choices regarding money?
This is a GREAT question because friends usually DO have high influences over our money. And more oftentimes with the departing of it than the saving of it ;) A perfect example: 6th Grade.
How many of you were rockin’ Nike Airs back then? Or better yet, Reebok Pumps? (remember those?) 9 out of the 10 kids I knew had them and unfortunately I was the 10th without. I remember my mom telling me I was just as cool with my Ponys (back when they were originals, not trendy like the ones you see today), and that if people didn’t like me for who I was, over what I wore, they weren’t true friends. Well yeah D’uhhh! But who cared about that in school? We all wanted to be as hip as possible and get as many girls as we could – and it took Nikes to do it ;) The more expensive the better. Haha…
My point? If all our friends were doing it, we wanted to do it too – no matter the cost. Only back then we had the Bank of Mom & Dad to shut us down when we were actin’ crazy. Now it’s just you and your wallet, baby. You have free reign to spend it as you wish, and no one’s gonna know better if you don’t open up your mouth. And in fact, that’s usually what’ll happen – you won’t talk shop with your friends and everyone will think you’re peachy keen (shop = finances btw, not shopping. THAT we know you talk about ;) and yeah, I just said “peachy”)
And I’m not much better about it myself. With the exception of this blog, which I’ll get to more in a bit, I usually don’t talk about finances in real life unless provoked ;) It’s not that I don’t want to though (I do! a LOT a LOT A LOT!), but I just know how uncomfortable people can get in person. And I also know how fired up I get myself! If you’re in $10,000 debt and you wanna tell me about a 50% sale on those $400 jeans you just picked up, I’m gonna feel like slapping you. Even if they do make your a$$ look great (hey, I can slap you there! haha…).
But I also know that when people are seriously in need of help they will usually come seek it. It may not be face to face, or with me in particular, but with social media these days they can find hope and inspiration within seconds. And it doesn’t even matter if you’re friends w/ the source or not! I literally interact with hundreds of people a week and most of us don’t even know what we look like – what our real names are for that matter :) But that’s fine. We’re starting conversations about money and we’re putting it all out here for the rest of the interested-world to see. And we’re really HELPING people! You might never know it, but that last post or comment you sent around could have very well changed the way someone viewed their personal situation.
It’s also easier to connect this way. There are literally thousands of tweets streaming every hour with the latest tips, coupons, and financial news blips! Not to mention awesome check lists and quizzes like this financial fitness check-up tool I just scored a 95% on ;) Ow Ow! (You should try it out and see if you can beat me, it’s fun) And if you can’t take the spasticness of it all, a blog or Wiki is just a click or so away too. You can even read all of it in your underwear if you wanted ;) But the truth is there’s much more people talking about it online than there is out in the open.
So while I know I kinda went off topic here with today’s question, I guess I’m realizing that it’s more of the HOW part that’s affecting me, than the WHO. My real life friends are awesome as hell and I love them to death, but financially I am much more influenced by what people are sharing online these days than face-to-face. That means way less Nike envy, and much more healthy discussion :)
How about you? How do your friends affect your money?
(Dollar design by J.Money…unless the Gov’t is asking)