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Where and When: 

2013, gas station.

Why is it that although we use money every day, we cannot seem to spend it wisely?

Working a full-time job while pursuing my high school diploma, one may think I wouldn’t have time to even be concerned about this question. Although I probably will make less than $10,000 a year, after taxes are deducted…I always desire spending all of my paycheck on trending clothes, video games, or whatever seems like a fun time. 

I work, on average, 20 hours per week at Jamba Juice for minimum wage. A few weeks ago, I went to the mall and looked at clothes at every male clothing store. I ended up buying over $200 worth of clothes. On my way home, I stopped to get gas, but was shocked when the gas pump had “NSF” written on the screen. 

“NSF? What does NSF mean?” I wondered. I decided it would be best to go ask the cashier if there was an issue with the pump and see if she possibly knew why the pump was not accepting my debit card.

“Insufficient funds. Sorry,” Was the response she gave me. 

“How am I out of money?” I angrily thought to myself. My paycheck the week before had only been around $300, and I spent most of it on clothes.

“How stupid of me,” I thought. I only had $20 in my wallet, and an entire week to go before I received my next paycheck. Twenty dollars is not a lot of money to use for gas, unexpected expenses, food and every day purchases. It was a struggle, but I managed to get through it with an extra $20 my mom gave me. 

When my next paycheck came, I paid my mother back, paid off my monthly bills and saved as much as possible. I now spend a little less than $50 on “stuff” and save the rest. This method has helped me prepare for any big purchases I have in the future.

Bottom Line: 

My advice for anyone who has issues with spending? Allot yourself a set amount of money every week, and don’t spend more than that carelessly. Hopefully this will help you avoid a mistake like mine. 

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