The Rockstar vs The Accountant

by J. Money - Published May 6, 2016

rockstar energy drink

Sometimes you need to embrace your bad side; sometimes you need a pocket protector.

[Got a great article for ya’ll today by Andrew Daniels of FamilyMoneyPlan.com! Show him some love if you like this at the end, and watch out for that inner rockstar of yours this weekend! :)]

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Have you ever felt stuck between doing what’s good for you, and doing what’s right?

I’ve been grappling with this issue since we paid off our mortgage. You see, I wanted to jump right into pursuing financial freedom but… I’m also ready to stop living frugally and just say “Screw it, party time!!!! I’m going to go and buy everything I want for a while!”

There are these two opposing forces inside of me, and they are pulling different ways…

In this corner, we have the Accountant

Meet the Accountant. I call him Andrew, he’s good with money, and wouldn’t know fun if it poured tequila down his throat. This guy is a minimalist at heart. If you ask him how to be financially free, his answer is going to be something like this:

“Cut out everything, reduce expenses, buy a cheap house, or no house at all. Live off the grid and syphon your utilities from your neighbor, or better yet don’t have any utilities at all.”

Phone plan? “Why bother you don’t need friends, they just cost money.”

Internet? “People got along fine for 2,000 years before it, probably a fad, forget about it.”

Clothes? “One outfit will do. Hey, it was good enough for Steve Jobs! Wash it in the rain and dry it in the sun. You don’t need any more clothes than that. You got rid of your friends, remember?”

The accountant would keep slashing every expense until there was nothing left to slash. That’s good, to an extent. We need to be an Accountant once in a while; otherwise we would go off the financial rails and never return.

In the other corner… the Rockstar!

Then there’s the Rockstar inside of me. I call him Andy. His thoughts go something like this:

“Nothing to do tonight? Let’s go to Fiji!”

“Got a spare half hour? Let’s call up anyone, or even better yet… Call EVERYONE! Let’s go out for a drink and see where the night goes!”

“Hey! Here’s a great idea… lets have 20 drinks and buy everyone in the bar a couple of rounds. Let’s live it up all day long, and live for the moment, like tomorrow may never come. That’s why we are here right? Life is meant to be lived, not shackled to financial sensibility. You can’t take it with you. What if you got hit by a bus?”

We all have the Rockstar inside of us. You may have buried him/her deep down, but it’s in there. Go on admit it, it’s just you and me here. Sometimes that fun loving carefree live-for-the-moment, “It’s Only Money” personality needs to come out. Ain’t nothing wrong with that.

Then There’s Me… The Referee

Then there’s me. Stuck in the middle, with these two guys pulling me in opposite directions. Sometimes the Accountant wins. Sometimes it’s the Rockstar with a knockout. Other times it’s a draw.

There are so many times that I just want to say: “Forget the future! I want what I want, and I’m going to have it.” Whether it’s a cup cake when we’re abstaining from carbs, or buying a huge TV that I just can’t stand seeing anymore in the store because I’ve been looking at it every day for a year…

Sometimes the levy breaks and the Rockstar wins. Other times it’s the Accountant whose rationalizations win out: “You can’t get that, it’s not prudent” hey says. And, “Wait a little longer – it’s not time.” He’s the one looking at our cable bill daily asking, “Why haven’t we slashed this yet?”

What it looks like in the end…

I’ve seen the extremes at the end of these guys’ lives. I’ve actually worked with the old Rockstars and the old Accountants.

The Rockstar is broke, working a part-time gig as a minimum wage worker in their 70’s because they don’t have any savings and are in way too much debt. But there’s a never-ending pile of stories that are almost too wild to believe. Their financial situation is, well, let’s just say it isn’t pretty. Non-existent is the word that comes to mind.

The Accountant will be better off financially in the end. Living in a tent, wearing his one outfit cut off from the world. But they’re always thinking: “I should have taken more risk”, or “I should have done more when I had the chance.” Not bad, but not great.  I don’t want to have “What ifs?” when I get older.

So what’s a guy to do?

Personally, I like to nurture them both. You see, without my Accountant-side I’m going to be in deep debt before the end of this article. (Amazon is always a click away!). Accountant Andrew needs to know he’s got a say.

At the same time, if we keep Rockstar Andy locked up for too long, when he finally gets out he’s going to hit the credit cards harder than two kids in a mosh pit (for those of you too young for mosh pits, you missed out… big time).

So he needs to come out and play once in a while. Maybe it’s just me, but when you let him out life seems a little more fun. Expensive, but fun!

How to keep the Rockstar from going all “Kanye” on your wallet

kanye face

Remember when I told you the Rockstar is waiting to blow the lid off this place? Here’s some tips on managing him:

#1. Celebrate the Little Wins.. A LOT!

If the Accountant keeps tightening the guitar strings, eventually they are going to snap. We don’t need the Rockstar showing up with the band at 3:00 am ready to party like… well, like a Rockstar. You need to release the money tension as you go. Celebrate a little, and do it often.

I’ll tell you something I haven’t told anyone before.

When we were paying off our $320K mortgage for those 6 long years, it was hard. We had to throw everything at the mortgage in order to do it. If we didn’t have a reward system in place, we never would have made it. Our reward system kept Rockstar Andy in check.

We didn’t have a lot of money left over, so we would find ways to treat ourselves with whatever made sense. It didn’t have to be big, but our efforts did need to be celebrated.

For instance, I love cinnamon buns. I love them the way Accountant’s love calculators. So every time we put an extra payment down on the house… Boom! Cinnamon buns! The Rockstar was in his happy place. So simple… so sweet…

#2. Give yourself some party money

Even with all the little treats, when we were paying down our mortgage there were times the Rockstar would get so loud that it was deafening.

“I want this new toy.” “Man would a trip to Cabo be sweet right now.” “Let’s buy that new TV!”

It’s so hard to not listen to him. All those ideas sound awesome. You aren’t going to make it very far unless you show this guy some love once in a while.

Give yourself some play cash, or “beer money” as the Rockstar calls it, every month. Hell, or “Heck” as the Accountant says, it can be as little as a 20 bucks. Go out and enjoy the moment! Do what ever you want with that cash. Rockstars don’t answer to anyone.

But… When that money is gone, that’s the end of it. Don’t ever give the Rockstar the credit cards. Living for the moment means paying for it in the moment.

#3. If all else fails… Compromise

Wanna party like it’s 1999? Great! Call up your friends and have a House Party, like the Sam Hunt song suggests. All the fun without the cover charge, and you don’t need to pay for a cab. Plus, the beer is a lot cheaper at home.

Instead of going somewhere tropical, jump in the car and see where a tank of gas gets you for a one-night getaway. Nurture the fun side, without blowing the budget.

So who wins out? The Rockstar or the Accountant?

Here’s the thing, both are necessary.

You can try to keep your Rockstar buried deep down inside you, and it might be all-good. Maybe all-good for a very long time. But he’s in there waiting. Waiting for you to have a moment of weakness. Waiting to blow the roof off and have a Whole Lotta Fun!

Planning for the future is essential, but so is having fun. Your life isn’t about your bank account; it’s the experiences you have and share with others around you.

Let the Rockstar out once in a while, and enjoy life…

Just make sure the Accountant is the one who wakes up in the morning :)

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Andrew Daniels blogs over at Family Money Plan, where he writes about how he paid off his $320,000 mortgage in 6 years and is now focused on finding financial freedom. If this article resonates with you, sign up for his newsletter where you’ll get a free copy of his eBook, “Money Guiding Principles for a Happier Life.”

[Rockstar drinks by Mike Mozart]

Jay loves talking about money, experimenting, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his two beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!

{ 75 comments… read them below or add one }

1 The Green Swan May 6, 2016 at 5:26 am

My accountant definitely tempers the rockstar most the time, but you’re right, letting the rockstar enjoy some freedom every now and then keeps you going. And I could definitely see myself let the rockstar win more in retirement… So the accountant says better have plenty of cushion!

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2 Andrew May 6, 2016 at 7:20 am

Hey! I hear you. The more the accountant wins now, the more the rockstar is going to enjoy retirement. That’s why I let mine out once in awhile. He needs to get is “Rock on” and enjoy the moment.

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3 Brian @DebtDiscipline May 6, 2016 at 6:15 am

Good to find that balance. The Accountant better stay in shape or the Rockstar may try and pummel him.

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4 Andrew May 6, 2016 at 7:26 am

Lol No doubt Brian. Those rockstars have some mad strength in them. The accountant’s going to need to keep up with his push ups (he does those because push ups are free)

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5 Lindsay @ The Notorious D.E.B.T. May 6, 2016 at 6:58 am

Am I the only one who was also expecting a corresponding picture, perhaps of water bottles with a simple “Accountant” label on them? :D

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6 Andrew May 6, 2016 at 7:23 am

Lol. That’s awesome Lindsay. My accountant would have brought water from home. In a water bottle he has been re-using for the past year. You know… just to make sure he gets his “full value” out of the water bottle he bought. ;)

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7 Roy Largo @ Band of Savers May 6, 2016 at 7:21 am

Loved the analogy, I enjoy analogies in general and thought that this one was very well thought through to highlight the true inner struggle that we all face in a visual way.

I think that my wife would say that I am only an accountant if she read these descriptions.

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8 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 7:42 am

That’s cool Roy, but is there a Rockstar in you wanting to break out? Thank you for the kind words. :)

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9 Apathy Ends May 6, 2016 at 7:33 am

It is funny how insignificant some of the battles are financially – but are still necessary on a consistent basis.

It’s important to indulge, I try to put beer money as a grocery item to avoid that battle

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10 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:44 pm

Hell yeah! The only thing tastier than beer is beer that’s already budgeted for ;)

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11 FinanceSuperhero May 6, 2016 at 2:51 pm

How funny that beer is the great equalizer for even the strictest budgeters! I also include it as a grocery item, because priorities. :)

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12 Dr. Beard May 6, 2016 at 3:47 pm

Ha. My wife and I have a separate, dedicated wine budget, and it’s larger than our cell phone bill, monthly car insurance, internet, and water bill. We spend more on wine than water. That’s priorities! Beer does gets tossed in the grocery budget, though. My wife can deal quite well with the budget (better than me, really) so long as the wine is there.

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13 J. Money May 9, 2016 at 1:51 pm

Hahaha….

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14 Andrew May 6, 2016 at 1:44 pm

I love that. I have found that something as simple as a chocolate bar will tide the rockstar in me over. It’s important to know yourself and what it will take to calm your inner rockstar.

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15 Cathy Pryor May 6, 2016 at 7:34 am

Cinnamon buns are the best! :)

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16 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 7:44 am

OMG THEY ARE THE BEST!!!! I totally wasn’t thinking about cinnamon buns but now they are in my head… I’ve gotta go get one.

This is what happens when my rockstar kicks in. If i don’t feed him a cinnamon bun now it’s going to be a long day.

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17 Ms. Montana May 11, 2016 at 3:19 pm

We have a place in town that serves caramel rolls the size of my head. But then I need a bread bowl with potato soup to go with it. Then my inner rockstar needs a nap. It’s a slippery carb slope.

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18 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 13, 2016 at 7:29 am

Ms Montana where is this magical place you speak of?

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19 The Bus Thinker May 6, 2016 at 7:55 am

Two and a half beers. That’s the amount it takes to go from Accountant to Rockstar. Then it’s spending like I just rocked out MSG.

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20 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 8:44 am

Lol I love that MSG analogy. You know your turning point, or your Rockstar point. Keep on rockin’ in the free world. :)

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21 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:45 pm

Haha…

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22 Money Beagle May 6, 2016 at 8:12 am

It definitely does seem to go all or nothing which is the big problem that I have to grapple with. I’ll say no, we can’t do anything, and then when we do it turns into a big mega-event with the bill to follow. Trying to get a balance is key, as you mentioned.

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23 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 8:49 am

I hear you. I get like that all the time. That’s when I started to let the money pressure out a little bit at a time. It helps you to keep moving forward and gives you something to look forward to. Give it a try and let me know if it works any better. :)

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24 Al May 6, 2016 at 8:31 am

Think of it as accountant now from 20 to 35/45/55 (whatever goal you set) THEN Rockstar later. Well worth it!!

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25 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:46 pm

Yeah! There you go!

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26 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:04 pm

I love that idea Al. Get to the end goal and then release beast. That’s what we’re thinking we will do with our 10 years to financial freedom goal

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27 Stefan @Mllnnlbudget May 6, 2016 at 9:01 am

Laughed at this accountant analogy as I am one. While we are tame most of the time put some drinks in us and we will easily be Rockstars. Like my boss said once nothing good happens after 12.

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28 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:12 pm

You must be a hardcore accountant. We were always told nothing good happens after 10. Maybe I’m just getting old. ;) Lol

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29 Mortimer May 6, 2016 at 9:22 am

Haha, love it! Great analysis of the yin and yang of financial management. Sometimes as the sole breadwinner I feel like I’m playing accountant to everyone else’s rockstar, which gets pretty exhausting. Pretty often I just want to say screw it, let’s go to Harry Potter World and drink butter beer for a week! But then my accountant reminds about all those future college tuition payments… Do you have kids? How do you manage responding to other people’s desires?

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30 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:48 pm

YES!!! Being smart with your money is all good and all, but MAN can ignorance be bliss sometimes… I wish I could blow $$$ and not think about it for 10 hours afterwards, haha…

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31 Ms. Montana May 11, 2016 at 3:27 pm

We once spent $43 on a shot of whiskey. The hubs said it was good. But there were a few times that I found my mind drifting to “What the hell!” over the next 24 hours. It was over our half million net worth celebration weekend. But ignorance is more blissful!

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32 J. Money May 13, 2016 at 5:01 pm

I think I just found out how I’ll be celebrating mine, thx :)

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33 Renae May 6, 2016 at 9:27 am

LOL! I am an accountant, and you are absolutely right about us! It is refreshing to hear this point of view. I read other bloggers who, after becoming financially independent, are happy never eating out, never running the air conditioner or dryer, never traveling anywhere, etc, etc, and I think – really? Why do I constantly fight the rockstar? Why can’t I find contentment in minimal conveniences and next to no splurges? We are currently downsizing, and building a house (hopefully) with cash. The builder has a teeny tiny lighting allowance, and those pretty light fixtures are calling to me. And I am listening, as evidenced by the lighting ads showing up on this page right now!

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34 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:51 pm

Haha…

Pretty baller you can pay in straight up cash! That’s Rockstar-like in the awesome department ;)

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35 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:15 pm

Hey Renae! I wrestle with that a lot too. I want financial freedom but to me that freedom doesn’t involve looking at the walls and feeling restrained. It’s a mindset thing for sure. Maybe I’ll get there. If you have questions about building a house, let me know, I’ve been through it. It’s fun but there’s a ton of decisions. Good work on downsizing!

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36 [email protected] and the Beach May 6, 2016 at 9:39 am

I love this!!! I have my own accountant and rockstar too. When I run they change clothes and become Jillian Michaels vs The Diva. :) Diva haaaaates running. I think you’re right that you do have to nurture both a bit. They both get along when you feed them both healthy, nutritious meals. But if you starve one that part of me just gets hangry.

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37 ESI May 6, 2016 at 9:43 am

You have it right IMO — it’s a balance.

You can’t save every penny or life is dull and boring.

You can’t spend everything or you’re going nowhere financially.

An example from our family:

We are saving to retire at 54 or so (two years).

We are also taking the family on a cruise in January.

Could we retire a bit faster if we avoided the cruise? Sure. But this may be the last time we go on a family vacation before the kids leave home. And I want to go out with a BANG! :)

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38 J. Money May 6, 2016 at 1:53 pm

(Can I be adopted, please? :))

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39 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:17 pm

You and I are so similar. We are thinkng the same thing. we are wanting to go at early retirement with full force, but now that the house is paid off we are looking at the kids and thinking we need to some fun things, while they still think we are “cool”. So we are pushing early retirement back in order to go on some trips with them and enjoy our young family while we still can.

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40 The Jolly Ledger May 6, 2016 at 9:47 am

It’s funny but it actually helps to read a blogger that tells you to party a little. I get pretty wound up about the purse strings. When I party, I stalk my accounts for months trying to see how my decision has affected my savings goals. I kind of drive myself nuts with it all.

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41 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Thanks! I appreciate that. Coming from a guy who has done the same thing you mentioned my advice is to enjoy the party and let go of what you did in the past. Can’t change it, and regretting it doesn’t help you. Just learn and party differently.

Easier said than done, but well worth putting in the practice so you can enjoy the moment more. :)

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42 Amanda @centsiblyrich May 6, 2016 at 10:27 am

Great post! You’ve inspired me to be a Rockstar this weekend…the accountant generally runs the show, but maybe she needs a couple of days off! Thanks!!!

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43 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 2:07 pm

Thanks Amanda! It’s good to let the Rockstar out. I’m all for the celebrations. Otherwise whats the point? If we keep tightening things eventually they break, I’ve had the flood gates open up before, and a whole lollapalooza worth of Rockstar spilled out taking my wallet with them. ;)

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44 Sense May 6, 2016 at 10:35 am

What’s beautiful is that when you are mindful of your finances long enough, you can go on semi-autopilot because you instinctively know when you’ve gone overboard as the Rockstar, and when it is time/OK to cut loose the Accountant for a little while.

That moment when you realize you can 100% trust yourself and your instincts without restricting/questioning yourself is just glorious.

…at least that how it was/is for me. I’ve somehow calibrated my brain and behaviour so I can get everything that I want and still save for the future. I love myself. :)

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45 Rose May 6, 2016 at 12:02 pm

LOL @sense – well chosen name.

You do have a point about calibration. For me it is almost like the Pavlov dog effect – I’ve been kicked by the financial consequences often enough, so that now I at least stop and think, before I let the Rockstar “Fools rush in:)” take over.

Bottomline, the more good choices you make, the better off you will be and we all want to be better off.

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46 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 7, 2016 at 12:06 am

Absolutely. Though everytime I get close to trusting myself 100% I think “Wait! Is that what the Rockstar wants so I can let my guard down and then he’ll do a sneak attack” …My accountant is a little paranoid. ;)

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47 Aliyyah @RichAndHappyBlog May 6, 2016 at 1:38 pm

The accountant in mean is much more present than the rockstar. I am working on balancing the two better. I am planning to travel more in the coming years.

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48 Andrew May 6, 2016 at 4:46 pm

Me too! I can’t wait to start travelling more. The road keeps calling me. :)

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49 Stockbeard May 6, 2016 at 1:50 pm

I feel like I’ve boosted my Accountant side to counter-balance the dangerously inflating rockstar on my wife’s side. Kind of a vicious circle: she used to be the accountant, I was the rockstar. Now that I’ve gone full frugal, she’s trying to counterbalance, I think.

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50 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 10:55 pm

Lol. I think the same thing has happened with us from time to time. When one of our rockstar personalities shows up, the other one’s accountant pops up. It’s good to have both parts in a couple, it definitely keeps things interesting.

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51 amber tree May 6, 2016 at 3:31 pm

Great analogy that is used here… I do like the account and rockstar. They both have qualities i like a lot.
Our key to finding the balance is point 2= have some fun money. We have monthly fun money and also recently travel budget. That should help the rockstar in us to party like hell.
The accountant can get its kicks from the fact we pay ourselves first each and every month. Money flows into saving and investing without the blink of an eye…

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52 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 10:58 pm

I love this method Amber. Great stuff. Sounds like you have things worked out. Well done on paying yourself first!

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53 Francesca - From Pennies to Pounds May 6, 2016 at 4:36 pm

I love this so much!! I am the accountant though and my husband is the rockstar, ha! Only kidding I have the rockstar too but he has no accountant inside of him so I need to balance him out!

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54 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 11:07 pm

Thanks Francesca!

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55 Dr. J @ MedSchool Financial May 6, 2016 at 5:18 pm

Balance is key, and helps prevent fatigue as you condition the accountant to become a lean, mean, fighting machine over time.

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56 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 11:12 pm

Balance is key. Sounds like you are creating Rocky the Accountant. That’s awesome!

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57 Latoya @ Femme Frugality May 6, 2016 at 6:23 pm

I love the comparison of the two extremes I believe many of us face when it comes to frugal living. Im not afraid of having a little fun every now and then and I’ve realized it doesn’t take much for me to have fun. I guess living frugally tempers ny party animal to where I don’t expect much to enjoy life.

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58 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 11:20 pm

Thanks Latoya. :) It’s nice to see you loved it. Frugal living definitely has it’s ups and downs. Realizing that it doesn’t take much for you to have fun is a great thing. The more you can enjoy life without spending money the more the rockstar will be appeased. Well done!

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59 Elle @ New Graduate Finance May 6, 2016 at 9:14 pm

This is an idea I have thought but not been able to articulate nearly as well.

I definitely lean way too hard on the Accountant side of things, and I already feel regret over the experiences I’ve missed out on.

I need to let my Rockstar out!!!!

Great article.

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60 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 6, 2016 at 11:10 pm

Thanks Elle. Sounds like we all lean on the accountant a lot, which is why the rockstar is even more important. Enjoy the moment! Let the Rockstar loose!

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61 ZJ Thorne May 7, 2016 at 1:49 am

Finding the proper balance for the proper time is so important. It can and does shift. I really like the naming of it as Rockstar versus Accountant. I’ve seen both rocking a leather jacket, which I crave, once I’m free.

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62 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 7, 2016 at 8:45 am

You’re absolutely right ZJ. Now my rockstar wants a new leather jacket too ;)

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63 Rachelle May 7, 2016 at 8:40 pm

I’m struggling with this issue right now. I’ve been debt free since 2011 and haven’t had the tightest of budgets. I was able to FINALLY start retirement investing and it’s exciting to see it grow but I haven’t done such a great job accumulating cash for my emergency fund.

Well now I’m faced with the issue of needed a new to me vehicle. My car needs $2,000 worth of work but isn’t even worth a grand. I have my eye on a Toyota Rav4 but even the 2013 models are running 20k.

Add in some weird feelings I’m having lately about living life and the little devil on my shoulder is screaming buy that 2015 Orange Rav4 limited edition if you really want it. lol Groan!

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64 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 9, 2016 at 7:45 am

I dealt with the car voice last year. It is not a fun one. We were constantly putting money into our old CRV that it just didn’t make sense. 2 grand is a lot of money but not nearly as bad as 20k paid out over years. Fight the Rockstar. If you are wanting my take you can read it here. http://familymoneyplan.com/autopsy-of-big-purchase/
long story short. Love the car, hate the payments. Going to keep it until it dies probably 15-20 years down the road.
Good luck!

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65 J. Money May 9, 2016 at 1:55 pm

All about the *priorities* with this one. Which do you want more, Rachelle? Nice ride or fat cash cushion? No right answer either way, but one probably speaks to you more than the other :) At the end of the day it’s YOUR life so you gotta do what you gotta do!

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66 [email protected] May 8, 2016 at 12:34 am

I was both of them at different times in my life, the rock star in me get me into debt years ago, but now the accountant have bring me savings and money and in the bank. Now I want to find a balance between them two at the same time, to enjoy and still have money

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67 Ally May 8, 2016 at 12:19 pm

My inner rockstar and my inner accountant are currently in a battle of the ages right now. You see, a concert was just announced and I desperately want to go to it. Maybe you have heard of it, maybe not, but it’s called Desert Trip. Six of the biggest bands in the world are going to be performing at a 3 day festival in October. Five of those bands are at the top of my bucket list. The problem is that the concert is half-way across the country and tickets are close to $1k a piece.

The rockstar in me is saying, “This is a once-in-a-lifetime concert. You’ll probably never get the chance to see The Rolling Stones or The Who ever again. If you want to see them, then this is your only chance. You can always pay off your debt later but you will never get another chance to see these bands again.”

The accountant in me is saying, “Not only will it cost you $1k for a ticket but there’s also hotel, gas, food and drinks, and any souvenirs you buy. It will probably cost at least $2k when it’s all said and done. Can you really afford that? So what if you miss out on a bunch of old guys playing instruments and screaming into a microphone. You missed out on seeing Prince live and while it sucks, no one thinks you’re a loser for not seeing Prince perform (despite having ample opportunities since I live in MN) so why do you have to see these other bands? None of your friends even want to go to this concert so you’d have to drive all the way to California by yourself. Also, what are you going to do with the dog? You definitely can’t afford boarding and I’m sure mom and dad won’t approve of you going all the way to Cali alone so I doubt they would be willing to pet-sit for free. You also made a new year’s resolution to get the car loan paid off. That $2k could help get the car loan paid off 3 months early. Isn’t being debt free a better feeling than going to some concert?”

Tickets to the concert go on sale on Monday and will most likely sell out quickly so I need to make a decision soon. Do I go see my all-time favorite bands in a once-in-a-lifetime concert? Or do I pay off my car loan 3 months early? Right now, my inner rockstar is winning. I keep thinking about all the concerts I have attended in the past that I almost didn’t go to but am glad I went anyways – The Police, The White Stripes, Beastie Boys, BB King, etc. You can’t see any of those bands any more and they were some of my favorite shows. Like my rockstar keeps saying, “The debt will get paid off eventually but you will never get to see some of these bands again.” If only it was cheaper, then I could keep both the rockstar and the accountant happy.

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68 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 9, 2016 at 7:51 am

Ally! Now my Inner Rockstar is wanting to go to Desert Trip. lol

Rockstar talking: This concert looks amazing. I’ve seen Dylan, Stones, and Neil Young all rock out at different times. But an experience like this looks amazing. We should all go

Accountant: ahem…. we have seen half of these bands already and they were great, the last time they came to town we didn’t go because we had already seen them. Do you really need this?

Me: Ok guys, There’s no way we can make this and go to Fincon, and that’s the priority. I’m sure you they will concert footage and we can listen to the albums if need e, because we haven’t listened to some of these bands in a while.

So that’s my inner dialogue

I hope that you figure it out, let us know. And if you go have a blast!

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69 J. Money May 9, 2016 at 2:00 pm

GOOD LUCK!!

For what it’s worth, I’ve never regretted “experiences” either like this and choose it over $$ almost every time. I think the main variable is *how often* you do experiences like this? If you’re seeing concerts and taking trips every other month, then it’s probably worth curtailing. However if it’s every year/cple of years, then it would be hard to turn it down :)

A 3 month extension in car payments doesn’t sound like the worst thing in the world to me, but it’s you who has to pay the bills so good luck! Haha… Let us know what you end up deciding :)

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70 Kevin May 9, 2016 at 12:56 am

Awesome article!!
My wife and I had the talk when it came to this. We were both totally on board with paying off our debt and being frugal, but we didn’t want to give up everything. So now we just pick and choose. Instead of saying yes to everything we have our amounts that we can spend on anything that we want and an entertainment fund and that’s it.
A lot of the time we will go over slightly but we talk communicate it and try and pull it from other areas.

……Still don’t know how I convinced her our cell phone bill was really 30,000 dollars…..

Now I have to find a place for the boat……

-KB

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71 Andrew @ Family Money Plan May 9, 2016 at 7:41 am

Thanks Kevin! Sounds like “the talk” wen perfect. Good job. Way better to pick and choose rather than feel like you need everything and have that “coming up short” feeling.

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72 Tyler @ Oddball Wealth May 10, 2016 at 5:00 pm

Sometimes the old carefree college party kid me just wants to break out and live for the moment. It’s difinitely hard to contain him sometimes, as fun as he was, he liked blowing ever dollar at the bar, partying, and taking drunken trips (Vagas, California,Florida, spring break destinations).

Although the old carefree college party kid me, had few expenses, no budget, and zero financial goals. Which is why as I get older its good to keep him locked up, except for one weekend a month, ill let him loose and have fun, haha.

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73 J. Money May 10, 2016 at 5:04 pm

Take me with you, please! :)

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74 Julie @ Millennial Boss May 21, 2016 at 11:29 pm

I miss rockstar Julie sometimes! She was the life of the party and always the person who you could call to have a good time! Now I’m totally the accountant. Great idea about living in the moment and paying in the moment. It’s super smart to not give the rockstar side of you access to credit cards. I think I might use that tip going forward!

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75 J. Money May 23, 2016 at 2:00 pm

Haha… I miss Rockstar J$ too ;)

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