I’m sitting in Barnes and Noble right now. I’ve had a few glasses of wine ($5.99 courtesy of HEB thank you very much) and I’m reevaluating things in my life, as I have been doing for the past couple of months, and I realized that while I’ve learned a ton in my effort to better myself, I haven’t been implementing it in all areas of my life. I mean, sure, I have fewer debts (thank the LORD. I’m now sitting at $25,076 in total debt), and I celebrate that, but I could be so much further in my journey.
I don’t want to relish in my shoulda, coulda, wouldas, but I’m realizing that I’ve chosen those things that I’m comfortable with over those things that will most certainly benefit me in the long run and I’m done with that (at least I hope). I mean, let’s get serious, it’s easy to slip back into the norm. Come on, it’s EASY. You start to feel lonely. Like you’re missing out on the fun things in life. Like you’ve become the boring friend that just wants to stay at home. It’s enough to make anyone tiresome. BUT, you have to persevere. You have to think about the future, not just what feels good today. Seriously, It feels good for everyone to see that you can go out every Friday and Saturday night, buy shots for your everyone and still hold your head up high on Monday morning (albeit with a slight hangover), but that feeling isn’t there on the 23rd when you’re all alone and you get that bill from Capital One that says you spent $500 the previous 30 days eating out.
If you’ve read any of my blog posts, you know that I’m on a $30,000 Journey to Debt Freedom. Part of that journey involves me seeking new ways to earn extra income. And, a little over two months ago, I came across Robinhood. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s an amazing app that allows you to trade stocks, stock options and cryptocurrencies for free. It works with both Android and iPhone. And, it has simplistic tutorials that can help in your decision-making.
Let me just preface the rest of this post by saying that I’m not a financial advisor and I would never tell anyone to buy this stock or that option. But, I am going to share with you what I’ve learned using Robinhood and hope that it encourages you to do your research and act accordingly.
What I Learned Using Robinhood
Options offer more leverage than stocks.
With options, you’re able to purchase contracts that allow you to effectively control 100 shares of a certain stock, at a certain price, up until a certain date for a fraction of what it would cost to actually own the shares. I know that may sound a bit confusing, but I want you to do some research on options so that you can be informed for yourself.
The road to financial recovery isn’t always sunshine and roses. Matter of fact, it’s hardly ever that. It’s filled with a ton of sacrifice and discipline followed by a few moments of satisfaction when you meet your first goal. Then the never-ending cycle starts all over again and continues forever. It can get tedious and sometimes, you have setbacks.
At least that’s where I found myself last month. I mean, my setback wasn’t devastating. I didn’t have an emergency that cost hundreds or thousands of dollars or anything, but I found myself going down a path that could have been a huge blow to all the progress I’ve made. And, it all started when I had a few too many drinks.
When I first started my journey, my lowest credit card balance was $1,800. Well, I’m super excited to be able to say that debt is dead and gone!
$30,165.56. That’s my number now.
Since last month, I’ve been able to reduce my debt by $1,786.20 and I couldn’t be more excited. My next goal is to pay off my CareCredit card which only has a balance of $200.
Sidenote: It’s from a dental procedure I had last month. I had to make a choice. I could have paid cash for the procedure and put off my goal of paying my first credit card for another month. Or, I could charged the procedure, with zero interest, and pay that balance off next month.
In the end, I felt like I would feel more accomplished if I completed my initial goal, so that’s what I did.
So far, no regrets.