Most bloggers warn against the dangers of lifestyle inflation as twenty-somethings go from broke college students to young professionals. Before I started working, I’ve also wondered if the thrill of the first paycheck would make me throw caution to the wind and just spend, spend, spend.
Instead, I’ve discovered that stepping out into the “real world” has turned me into a total cheapskate. Why? Well, let’s just say that after working 9 to 5 (that’s 9 AM to 5 AM. The next day.), I’ve truly learned the value of dollar.
Now, instead of going out for lunch, I usually eat leftovers from dinner or make instant noodles. Instead of running to Starbucks for soy vanilla lattes, I make hot chocolate in the office. Instead of buying a $30 lamp at Target, I spent $6 at a thrift store. I don’t browse at Banana Republic’s sales section anymore. I refuse to look at shoes. I might’ve even gotten over my love of handbags. My 4-year old laptop with an overheating problem and non-functioning Excel? It’s staying.
I still spend quite a bit of “weekend” money, but during the week I spend very, very little. And that is why I’m putting away $2,500+ a month: if I am working my tail off, then the very least I can do is to save enough money so that I have something to show for it.