What I Learned From The Billfold in 2016

We need money stories from all kinds of people.

Ruzielle Ganuelas
Jan 9, 2017 · 6 min read

I found The Billfold after typing “personal finance blog” on Google—shortly after Mike Dang and Logan Sachon launched the site, as it turns out. I was drawn to The Billfold because everyone I knew was secretive about money. I couldn’t tell you what my friends’ finances look like, or how much my parents paid for my childhood home. So I read a lot of personal finance books to get my fill.

But I noticed that many personal finance books were written by hyper-successful people who have forgotten that the struggle is real, or blissfully unaware that the decade in which you were born could undermine your chances of career stability or homeownership. Wealth and poverty are complex issues, and it takes just as many people and opinions to expound on money matters. Since joining The Billfold, I’ve read those complex stories, written by all kinds of people, and learned so much about work, money, and success.

Here are some things The Billfold taught me in 2016:

It’s okay to quit.

You have to be organized, goal-oriented, and good at follow-through to be successful.

Seasoned writers aren’t immune to rejection.

My life choices won’t buy me a McMansion, but I like my life anyway.

On paper, my software engineer brother should be the most successful, but he’s not. Why? He lives in SE Asia, and life there gets hard. Lukas is a HS dropout but he owns an apartment building. I’m a baker but I own stocks and bonds, but my (business major) sister doesn’t have either of those things and in the past, I’ve had to help her out financially. It’s futile to compare myself to other people, my life is mine to live. The best I can do is try to make conscious life decisions to help prepare for a financially-stable future.

Everyone’s money story is fascinating, even if it’s not the most “liked.”

Writers can have day jobs.

Success is a marathon, not a sprint.

2016 was a standout year for The Billfold. I’ve read some beautiful writing; some pieces were incredibly sad, some were anger-inducing, and some were just fun to read. The world could fall apart, but as long as we have a safe place to read and write, we’re all going to be all right.


Ruzielle Ganuelas is a writer, baker and PF nerd in Washington State.

The Billfold

Everything you wanted to know about money but were too polite to ask.

Ruzielle Ganuelas

Written by

Find me at ruzielleganuelas.contently.com

The Billfold

Everything you wanted to know about money but were too polite to ask.

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