I graduated from college with $30,000 worth of debt.
Yet within a couple of months, I had paid this debt off and three years later my net worth has risen to $400,000.
Getting here hasn’t meant living under a bridge.
I don’t skip meals and, yes, I change my underwear daily.
I’ve traveled to Italy and Argentina. I’ve been to Portland and Vancouver and Yellowstone and Zion.
But there are things I’ve done differently over these past few years from many of the people I know.
And, through living differently, there are a few things I’ve learned along the way:
My friend Felix lost $10,000 back in April, close to two month’s salary for him. On Monday this money was in his bank account and on Tuesday it was gone. …
My sister went vegan in ninth grade, back around 2006, which seems like a lifetime ago.
(To give a sense of how much time has passed, in 2006 George W. Bush was president, YouTube was in its infancy (Charlie Bit My Finger wouldn’t come out until 2007), and ExxonMobil was the world’s most valuable company.)
I was then a snot-nosed 6th grader and found it hilarious to give my sister grief. One of my favorite games to play was Vegan What-If. This game angered her to no end and so was deemed a terrific success in my book.
The game went like this: once we were all seated for dinner, me with a plate of chicken in front of me, she with a bowl of pasta, I’d look over and with feigned innocence would begin my questioning. …
I graduated from school back in May 2017. In the pictures from that night, there’s a smile on my face and wisps of coarse, dark hairs on my upper lip and chin. (Sad to say I haven’t made much progress here. If there are any secrets to growing a lustrous beard do let me know.)
A couple of months earlier, I had accepted a job offer at a big tech company on the west coast. I was going to be a Software Engineer. My dream job. A six-figure salary and stock options.
My whole life I had said I would make six figures out of college — even when I was ten and didn’t know exactly what ‘six figures’ meant — and now it had come true. …
Do you talk to yourself? Dumb question. Of course you do. I do too. Here’s what the voices in my head have been saying lately.
Well, it’s like this, I feel like I’ve been living under a dark cloud. It’s not raining. It’s not thundering. There’s no lightning or wind.
It’s just this dark cloud sitting over my head that I can’t seem to shake.
And I’m going about my day, but the whole time the cloud is looming over me and I feel very small and scared and trapped and insignificant.
But we’ve known this all along, haven’t we? I mean this is not a revelation. Of course you’re insignific…
College for me was a world of ‘firsts’: first time living on my own, first time doing groceries, first time having a credit card and managing my own money, first time cooking for myself, first time doing laundry, first time massively failing a big exam, first time drinking, first time smoking weed, first time having sex, first time having a girlfriend, first time for extended periods of walls-closing-in-on-you existential crisis.
There was a lot of growing up and a lifetime of memories packed into those four years. …