- By Nick Kelland
- Posted April 4, 2016
The future is scary.
This is the next in our series of guest blogs written for WealthNation by Gen Y’s who share what it actually feels like to look into the future and contemplate the bumpy road to responsible adulthood. Whatever the hell that’s supposed to mean.
These are real stories, written by real people, in their own words.
The future is scary.
By Nick Kelland
When I say the future is scary, I'm not talking about what I'm going to have for lunch tomorrow, or what TV show might spark my interest that evening. In fact, It's relatively simple to wake up each day, go through your daily routine and come out the other side ready to put your head on the pillow and do it all over again.
When I say the future is a scary thing, I'm referring to many years down the track. Adulthood, parenting, mortgage, jobs, children. It seems to someone still in the scheme of things; very young, a daunting and often frightening notion. The road ahead is dynamic and volatile, and the harsh reality is, we really have no idea what is going to happen to us.
I hope I haven't scared you too much with that somewhat nihilistic glance into the future, but it is an important point to consider. I am an advocate for, and try very hard to manage the variables within my control when it comes to living. As my friends and family would know, I tend to gravitate towards the use of sporting terminology and analogy to prove my point.
So, with that in mind, let's say life is like facing the first ball of an innings in cricket. You can control the way you walk to the crease, the way you tap your bat, the way you repeat to yourself "move your feet, watch the ball", the way you position yourself best to play what is bowled at me... The only problem is, you have no idea what the ball from the other end of the pitch is going to do.
In a game comprised solely of a batsman facing a bowler bowling a cricket ball, this is quite a major variable that can not be controlled. Essentially what that long winded analogy proves, is that any situation we find ourselves in has a number of facets, some controllable, some completely out of our managing capabilities.
On a personal level, as someone firmly entrenched in the Gen Y category, I'll admit that whilst I do try to control as much as I can, I am not very good at it. I am impatient, I want things quickly, and I'm addicted to the fast fix. Whilst this is not necessarily a bad thing, it doesn't bode well for a long-term wealth strategy tailored towards setting up my future and giving myself a safety cushion (or even a short to medium term strategy!). If I have money, I want to spend it - It has always been the case.
So, what is the point of this blog? I apologise for the difficulty it may have taken to get to this point, but I didn't want to gloss over what is a very important issue, and one that does start to hold more importance with me as I grow older; that being - Getting out of debt and Saving money is HARD. Generally speaking, we are bad at it, and I believe this is due to an inherent lack of education and knowledge on exactly HOW to prioritise and save.
We all have goals and dreams that inevitably require money and time to achieve, but we still lack the motivation and drive to move money in and out of accounts, not go out with friends or save those extra dollars by missing lunches or dinners. And really, who wants to miss out on those things? I know I certainly don't. And so I worry. I worry that if I can’t even master the basics of saving, what sort of future am I creating for myself? Living pay-check to pay-check, hand to mouth, one financial emergency to the next? That doesn’t sound sensible and it definitely doesn’t sound like much fun. It sounds like a recipe for future stress and anxiety.
And that is scary.
But, scary can often be motivating. And so, with time on my side, I’m motivated to start with the simple things first - setting some simple, realistic savings goals and getting a handle on my money (whilst avoiding all those companies out there telling me I should forget the basics and invest in the stock market.)
I reckon I’ll see some quick wins out of that strategy, I’ll feel more confident around money and I’ll want to keep at it and up the ante. That’s what I expect will happen.
And that seems, at least to me, far less scary! I’m on it.
Nick Kelland - 19, Sydney Uni, sports fanatic.
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