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My coworkers and I were talking about how we are all in a point in our lives where we’re making the most money we’ve ever made, and we’re all the most broke that we’ve ever been. No matter how much money we set aside for savings or anything else, we seem to only be able to pay our bills and slip through week by week, living paycheck to paycheck. None of us can figure out why. I personally have an extensively detailed budget and I keep track of where every single penny goes, and yet I still can’t figure out why I don’t have more money to my name at the end of each pay period. I have it all listed out in front of me and the money spent is completely reasonable. Apparently we all just need to make more money.

I paid off one of my three credit cards yesterday. I have a normal credit card, for random emergencies or expensive things I want (like highlights) and I pay it off regularly, but right now it’s near the highest it’s ever been. I have a department store credit card (which is the one I paid off yesterday) which I only use 5-6 times a year, and pay off regularly, and then I have a care credit card for my medical expenses which is almost always paid off, and when I do use it for a teeth cleaning or whatever else I usually have it paid off within three months. These are my only rotating charges. Everything else I have is big: a couch, a car, and three student loans. I tend to pay high on my car payment, which is one reason I never have any extra money. Every time I do I put it towards that car. The couch won’t take me long to pay off, I got an amazing deal on it, and the student loans…. well I’m sure I’ll have those for my entire life no matter how hard I try to pay them down.

And then of course, there are the regular monthly bills. Rent, utilities, cable, insurance, and cell phone. Sigh.

Aaaaaaaand the BIGGEST expense I have: groceries, gas and personal buys. siiiiiiiggghhhhhhhh.

No matter how hard I budget, these three things constantly take more and more money from me.  I don’t even buy that much for myself, the occasional at work lunch or candy bar. A few drinks at the bar once or twice a month. I almost never buy new clothes or shoes. I rarely ever shop online or buy apps or junk at the store, and yet there is never any money left over. But groceries, man. You eat healthy and you pay more. I do most of my shopping at a really nice farm market near my apartment, where veggies and meat are shockingly cheap, but I cook a lot and I need a lot of groceries, so the money disappears. And gas, man, gas. We ALL feel the effects of gas prices. It’s killing us all. Not. even. fair.

Again, I don’t know why I complain so much. I’m doing a lot better than other people I know, and I have yet to come to a day when I CAN’T afford something I want or need to pay for. I always have enough money I just never have any extra money. I’ll try to be less cranky about it… 🙂