8 Unexpected Things I Learned About Money in my 20’s

I live what you would call an unconventional decade in my 20’s. Married young, kids young, poor to career success to starting a business and achieving financial freedom at 28. Here’s some of the unexpected things I learned about money during my 20’s.

8 Unexpected Things I Learned From My 20’s

1: Financial Freedom Doesn’t Made You Happy

2: Being Poor Definitely Makes You Unhappy

3: Debt Will Eat You Alive

4: Budgeting Is a Skill You Can Learn

5: Focus on Building Your Skills

6: Paying Yourself First is SO Important (and so easy)

7: Happiness is More Important Than Money

8: STOP Trying To Get Rich Quick

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I lived what you might call an unconventional decade in my 20s I didn’t live a life that most 20 year olds were to live but through that journey I learned a lot about money and in today’s episode I want to share some of the unexpected things that I learn about money through my unconventional 20s hi i’m ryan from on-property don’t comdata you helping you achieve financial freedom and welcome to the money shed where today we’re going to be talking about these lessons that I learned now as I said at the start I didn’t live at conventional 20s or maybe that’s conventional for someone in the 50s or something like that I actually got married at the age of 20 I had my first child at 22 my second child at 23 so I didn’t go to university or anything so we were quite poor at 23 and I had myself and three other people that I was fully responsible for fully financially responsible for for feeding for housing all of that sort of stuff so we weren’t very well-off I then did the career path ended up in a career where I was earning six figures had a free car free petrol a really good career and then left all that to start my own business build up my own business had my third child at 27 and was financially free through my business at 28 lived in a van lived in multiple different cities so didn’t really do what a standard 20 year old might do which is go to uni party travel a bit and then start building up your career yeah I started young and I kind of did my 20s really differently and so here are some unexpected things that I learned through that decade of my life that I think may help you whether you decide to live a more conventional 20s and you know I probably wouldn’t advise people to do what I did but I don’t regret it either but these things might help you on your journey so the first thing and I think this is actually the biggest thing that I want to get across and that was discovering that financial freedom doesn’t make you happy so that age of 28 I achieved what I call pseudo financial freedom so online businesses that were generating me enough money that I didn’t have to work so I had a couple of years there where I didn’t have to work at all I just we spent it up in noose our I went to the beach every day drank coffee every day and just kind of worked on the side and dabbled in work a little bit here and there but I didn’t need to work I call it pseudo financial freedom because I knew it wasn’t the long-term financial freedom that property investing or investing in shares can give you and it was going to be a short-term thing but I got to experience what financial freedom was like for a couple of years there at the end of my 20s and I learned pretty quickly that financial freedom does not make you happy so I thought it was just going to be get you chief financial freedom or you get rich and then BAM click your fingers you are going to be the happiest person on earth you can do whatever you want with your time whatever you want with your life and while there was an element to that what I actually found out what my experience actually was was that I didn’t have any purpose in my life and I didn’t know what to do with my life or what to do with my time because previously I was just working so hard to get to this goal of financial freedom and my identity and all of my time was put into that to then take that away from me I was like I don’t know what to do with this and so I learnt that financial freedom doesn’t make you happy I went into a deep dark depression one of my worst depressions ever in my life and I’ve you know struggled with that stuff on and off throughout my life but that was really bad and it took me probably 18 months to kind of find my footing and to work out okay what is it that actually makes me happy in this life now that I don’t really have to work so while financial freedom doesn’t make you happy it does give you the freedom to explore your happiness and to try and find it and so I tried multiple different things I was playing out doing a lot of video games and trying to get good at that I was looking to run an ultra marathon I just tried so many different things in my life and so having the freedom to try those things was great and financial freedom buy you that which is really good but you start to go out there and find your happiness financial freedom doesn’t create happiness for you the second thing that I learned is that being poor definitely makes you unhappy we spent many years I guess a couple of years there where we had young children and we were really not well-off at all and we were really just scraping by and we had so many fights in our relationship and so many troubles just because of our lack of income and lack of money that we had so while when you’re being us when you’re a single person you can get by on a lot less and it doesn’t matter as much but when you’ve got a child to feed or multiple children to feed as well as other people that you’re responsible for then not having money definitely makes you unhappy so while financial freedom doesn’t create happiness not having money I definitely experienced that that makes you unhappy what you want to do with that is completely up to you the third thing that I learned is that debt will eat you alive so we started our marriage at 20 heavily in debt so credit card debt travel debt car loan debt as well and as I said we weren’t very well off at that time either neither of us went to university wouldn’t have skills to earn a good wage I was trying to make money online and just working part-time so it wasn’t only good money anyway and those debt repayments were just eating us alive and eating the little money that we did have so when we finally got out of debt I made sure that we wouldn’t get into bad debt again so when it came to car loans when it came to getting loans to buy technology or things like that the answer was just know if we can pay cash for it sure but if we can’t then we’re just going to make do with what we have and so that meant buying cars that were just a few thousand dollars and paying those in cash and not being really happy with those cars but they got us from A to B and they were okay and meant going without a lot of things but not being in debt meant that when it was time to I wanted to leave my pharmaceutical rep role leave the high-paying career and go out on my own I could do that because we didn’t actually have anything pulling us down in terms of debt repayments that we needed to make so that just gave us so much flexibility in life to pursue our happiness the fourth thing that I learned and this learn late in my 20s and I wish I learnt it earlier is that budgeting is a skill that you can learn I always thought of budgeting is something that you’re either good at or you’re not and I just wasn’t very good at it it didn’t really make sense to me I couldn’t really follow our budget I would do it for a bit then I’d get over it and then I would just leave it be what I learned towards the end of my 20s is that there’s multiple different ways to budget and you need to find a budget that suits you I’ll link out to a video below where I talk about the budget that I finally found that suits me and what budgets I went through to get there so you can go ahead and check that out but I learned that budgeting is not something you’re good at or not it’s something that you can learn and develop over time and you actually have to invest time effort energy and learning into it in order to get good at budgeting but once you do get good at it it actually becomes quite easy and that gives you the financial foundation that you need to set yourself up for success so budgeting is a skill there’s very different ways to budget that suit different people so you need to find the budget that suits you and then you need to practice it but know that as you practice you’re going to get better at that over time and it becomes easier the next thing is that I would say focus on building your skills so I guess I always thought that finances and life are just going to kind of go on this upward trajectory and the reality of life is that you may have years where you’re on this upward trajectory and everything is going well but then you have years where things just crash and burn or you have things that change whether it be relationship changes like I had or whether it be health issues that come up or maybe you get fired from your job or get made redundant or you just get burnt out so you can’t do that anymore life kind of goes through these ups and downs and what I found really important was that your finances are going to go through those ups and downs your careers going to go through those ups and downs but actually focusing on building your skills in your 20s so that you have a more diverse skill set that you have multiple different ways of making money that means if one thing goes pear-shaped then you’ve got all of these skills that you can either go and apply to a career and offer it to someone else’s business or like me you’ve got all these skills that you can then use to make money in your own business and so in my early 30s now I’m in that position where I’m working again building up my business and the skills that I learned over my 20s are actually allowing me to build up my business and build up passive income way faster than I would have been able to do otherwise so even though my finances kind of went like this through my 20s and I didn’t end my 20s in a great financial position because I built up those skills I can actually get out of those ruts faster and achieve more success faster so focus on building up those skills educate yourself I’ve read so many books through my 20s on finances on business and the things that I was passionate about so I suggest that you can set up doing the same another thing that I learned is that paying yourself first is so important and can actually be so easy and so what paying yourself first means is that when you get paid each week each fortnight each month whatever it may be put aside an amount of money for you whether that be for investments whether you decide to save for travel or whatever it is but get in the habit of actually putting money inside for you and then learning to live off the rest or – if you can’t live off the rest then look outside of your current reality look outside of your current job and say how can I earn more money so paying yourself first is just a really important skill but then I guess prepared with that skill is actually then saying okay I’ve paid myself first which is going towards my investments and my financial future I now need to learn to live off this which is the budgeting portion we’ve talked about but then outside of that as well you have so much spare time so much free time so much extra creativity in your brain and in your life to then say okay this is how much I’m living off but what’s out there and how can I earn more money and how can I grow this and the extra money that you earn you can use just to save or you can use to live a better life and so I think that idea of paying yourself first living off the rest and then trying to find other ways to earn more money is a really valuable skill to have so important and actually so easy seven thing that I learned is that I think happiness is more important than my and so there were multiple times in my 20s where me and my wife at the time Kelly we made decisions to pursue at happiness over pursuing financial success so there was times in our lives where you know we’re living in areas where we just we just didn’t feel at home and we didn’t feel happy with the lifestyle that we had or the career that we had or what we were doing and so we decided to actually take a gamble and to take a plunge and to try something completely different so that was leaving the high paying job to move to Queensland to start my business that was leaving the Gold Coast where we lived for three years and had family around us and an awesome house that we were renting to move into a van and to explore that which we had no idea whether that would make us happy or not but we knew that we weren’t happy with where we’re at and we can keep doing that for the next five or ten years or even longer you know and try and build up our finances but we were unhappy we weren’t happy and the idea of doing that for another decade just seemed ridiculous and so I do think pursuing your happiness is more important than money but I think if you’re focusing on you know budgeting paying yourself first you can do both at the same time and obviously building up those skills as well so you can grow your income over time and I guess the last thing that I learned is to stop trying and get stopped trying to get rich quick so I had a few get-rich-quick schemes schemes throughout my 20s where I remember trying to import USB sticks from China they ended up being fakes and duds and so I lost a lot of money on that there was other things where I thought oh if I can just do this I’m gonna make money so quickly and I’m going to be able to quit my job super quick yeah just stop stop just just just stop okay stop trying to get rich quick it’s much more valuable I have found to actually project into the future in my own business I use a three year rule so what business activities am i doing now that are going to then pay off in three years time so this video that I’m creating today well I guess there’ll be some benefit to people who are watching today this goes up online and this will be online that in three years time people might be watching this or someone might subscribe today and then follow my channel for the next three years and then become a customer three years down the track or I can create content in my business that’s going to stand that test of time and that’s going to actually pay me dividends down the road so I guess that’s kind of the horizon that I look at it doesn’t have to be three years and can be one year two years ten years whatever it is but it’s that idea of longevity it’s that idea of creating something that’s going to last and actually creating something that you’re building towards and that actually has some stability to it so rather than trying to okay I got to flip this right now make super quick money right now you’re like okay what decisions that I can make today that are going to put me in a better financial position by the end of the year that are going to put me in a great financial position within three to five years that are going to make me financially free within 15 to 20 years so having that longer time frame but then enjoying your life in the process your 20’s are there to be lived and I made some unconventional choices in my 20s I you missed out on a bunch of things which kinda sucks but I also got to live a life that other people don’t get to live so I was very mature in some areas miss out on things in other areas my 20s were my 20s and that’s how I chose to live them and I have no regrets with that I lived a you know a very interesting decade there and learnt some very interesting financial lessons that if I didn’t go through that I wouldn’t have learned achieving financial freedom at 28 and being able to experience what that was like at 28 when most people have to wait until they’re 65 to realize it doesn’t make them happy imagine you might spend my whole life thinking this is gonna make me happy and I get to 65 I’m an old man hopefully still quite attractive 65 year old but if I get to 65 and I’m been pursuing and delaying my whole life because I think this is gonna make me happy and I get there and it doesn’t then it’s like I just wasted my entire life so to be able to achieve that at 28 and to realize this doesn’t make me happy and then spend the next few years working out what does yeah it is absolutely priceless so yeah I’m really grateful for my 20s I’m grateful for the lessons that I’ve learned and hopefully these lessons can help you to now go ahead and check out the video that I did talking about some of my best and worst financial decisions and also check out the video that I did on how it feels to be financially free where I go into detail on exactly what that feels like and so you can get an idea for it as well thanks so much for tuning in and until next time stay positive 

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