Here’s A Shout Out To The 20-Somethings Who Are Bad With Money

I’m pretty skint.

That’s the bare-faced truth. I have two credit cards, a student overdraft, a student debt and a list of money I’m owed which I probably won’t see for another 90 days (#SelfEmployedLife). Last month I had to dip into my savings to pay my rent, and although every year I imagine that the next Christmas I will be prepared, flush with cash and most definitely not worrying about what I can and can’t afford to buy people, here I am, yet again, praying some of my invoices get paid before the 20th so I don’t have to rely on the plastic in my purse yet again.

When I’m having one of those moments where I’ve paid off my tax bill and my savings have been decimated, I can’t help but think of other people my age and wonder ‘how the fuck do they have their shit together?’. How did they manage to save a deposit? Is Bali really that expensive, because a lot of people seem to be spending 3+ weeks lounging on the bright white sand there? Should I stop spending £2.90 a day on coffee so I can open an ISA?

Guys, I don’t even know what an ISA is. I mean, I’ll Google it now and find out, but do you know how many conversations I’ve had about opening an ISA without actually knowing what it is? Or how many times I’ve discussed the pitfalls of the help-to-buy-scheme, whilst simultaneously wondering if I’ve misunderstood the whole arrangement and so am missing out on a great opportunity to get onto the property ladder?

Of course, when the right time comes, I’ll educate myself on all of the above and seek the relevant professional help, but sometimes it’s so easy to feel like you’re being left behind. On the one hand I’m reminding myself that I only graduated a year and a half ago, and in that time I’ve quit my job, gone full-time self employed and moved out into our home, but then on the other hand, I feel this overwhelming pressure to have 6 different savings accounts with 6 different banks and to have had my pension sorted yesterday.

Truth is, I’m not good with money. And I’m telling you this in the hopes that if you too are not great with money, you’ll read these words and stop feeling like every person online has their shit together. Because I most definitely don’t. I’m like a financial rollercoaster - sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad, and sometimes I go and work in coffee shops so I don’t have to pay for my own heating.

I don’t have health insurance sorted, I don’t have my pension sorted, I have one savings account which is look extremely depressing at the moment and I have 4 years of university debt that rears its ugly head whenever I go to look at my tax return (for a degree I ultimately didn’t need, but you know, I’ll just leave that bitterness there). I’m a real comfort spender, and often if I’m having a bad day, I find myself buying the weirdest of items, just to feel that warm glow of owning something new. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not out of hand to the point that I have bailiffs peering through my windows, but often when I have a little nest egg saved, I feel the temptation burning a hole in my pocket, and before you know it, ~ pow ~, DPD are at the door.

And I’m sure someone will observe: ‘but wait, doesn’t she have designer bags?’ And yes, I have purchased two in my time, plus a pair of shoes. But you know what? When the mountain of single-handedly organising all of your finances - from savings to deposits to pensions to tax returns to credit ratings to whatever the fuck else - seems so gargantuan that, quite honestly, it’s slightly depressing, then fuck yeah, I’m going to get something nice once in a while. It motivates me, it makes me feel like there’s light at the end of the tunnel, and if you need a voice of approval, then here it is: we’re allowed the occasional glimmer of sunshine in an otherwise dreary situation. With that being said, please don’t think that I can often afford items that expensive. Those opportunities are extremely few and far between, so if they ever arise, I seize them with both of my tiny, greedy, grubby hands.

I don’t have anybody in my life that helps me with money. I have no pot of cash stored away for me by my relatives, I have no inheritance, I have no advice on interest rates or how to invest my money wisely - I literally just try to keep myself afloat. For now, at least. In the future, I do want to take better care of my finances, but right this second? I just want to keep my head above water and yes - shoot me - I do want to enjoy my life. Undoubtedly there is a list as long as my arm of the things I’m doing wrong, the mistakes I’m making and how I could be a more responsible adult, but that’s how it is. I’m learning as I go along, and that means that progress is likely going to be slow.

The next time you find yourself elbow-deep in a sharing bag of Doritos Chilli Heatwave, jealousy-watched the latest ‘My Brand New House Tour’ video from some YouTuber in who-knows-where, wondering what the fuck you’re doing with a minus bank balance and with no real clue of where your life is going to go, just know: I got u boo.

I’m there with you. I’m shite with money, I don’t really have any, and my foresight goes as far as knowing where next month’s rent is going to come from. We don’t all have our shit together, as much as it might seem that way online. And that’s not always down to us being wildly irresponsible with cash - sometimes it’s just that we don’t know what the fuck we’re doing, and we’re trying to figure it out along the way whilst maintaining some level of life satisfaction. Maybe we do indulge in a few too many meals out when we could whip up a delicious meal of rice, cheese and mayonnaise at home (you knew I was going to get this in here somewhere), but do you know what? Maybe we just need something to look forward to, because endlessly saving when the final result seems so distant leads to an unhappy existence.

That’s me, that’s my situation, and if it’s yours too, panic ye not. You’re not alone girl.

Until next time lovelies - hey, wait, I really mean I have something for you to do until next time. Pop on SZA '20 something' if you get a spare 3 minutes and enjoy. You’re in good company.


  • Justina Kenyon

    I appreciate you sharing this so much! I often feel like I’m just barely holding on when it comes to money. I don’t understand so much of it (like the concept of IRA’s and saving for retirement). The latest thing I have been worrying about is health insurance. I have just under a year left of being on my mom’s and I have no idea how I’m going to pay for my own come September. Even with that in mind, it’s hard for me to curb my comfort spending. I don’t want to screw myself over for the future, but I also can’t just stop spending money on anything for the next ten months. Anyway, thanks for sharing. It’s nice to know that there are other awesome women in the same situation I am.

  • Holly White

    I’m totally crap with money!! But I can’t help but treat myself to food n clothes (mostly food) to cheer myself up! xxx

  • Girl I FRIGGING feel ya. I’m horrible with money – just horrible. Food, homewares and skincare always seem to make me feel better so I just splurge my extra pennies and am left scrambling haha I hope I can figure a proper budget routine out one day!

    Sharni xo

  • forever trying to save, but forever finding things I NEED to spend my money on. I moved home last year and had hoped to have saved a fair few grand by now but alas ASOS have another 20% off day and I’m back to square one haha

    Laura |

  • It’s so relieving to know that someone else doesn’t have their financial life together – it’s so easy to think everyone other than you does! Love how raw this post is, thank you for sharing! x

    Ariadna || RAWR BOWS

  • I feel like this blog post was made for me hahaha. I’m so clueless with money and can’t help but splash out to cheer myself up. I still don’t know what an ISA is although I feel like I should probably get one tbh but who knows! Hopefully I can sort my life and money situ out before the dreaded day I finish uni 😪 It’s nice to know I’m not alone!

    Linda |

  • This is so lovely to read. I haven’t even started looking at help to buy schemes and ISA’s and things yet and I’m planning to start saving to get on the property ladder in January, all the while I have an ASOS and boohoo order on the way and last week I had a topshop and pretty little thing order arrive, it’s awful! Plus I’m sure my student loan will rear it’s ugly head some day soon, if it hasn’t already (I’m shite at understanding pay slips too) But hey we live on and we enjoy those things we have bought haha xx

  • Oh my goodness I know the feeling. It feels like a lot of my friends won’t stop talking about money recently. ISAs, deposits, a seemingly infinite savings account – drives me mad because I try so hard to budget and be good with money but there’s never quite enough. Glad to hear others are in the same boat!

    Becca x

  • Chi-Chi

    Great post! Thanks for being honest…..there are some people that are crap in money and are in denial about it.

    I’ve not been the best with money either; I had a look at me pension recently and that made for a depressing read. however there are small things that you can do to become better with money; it all adds up.

    Also, read up on what an ISA is; it’s worth it!

    wishing you all the best x

  • I needed this blogpost haha! I’m literally the worst with money and everywhere you turn it seems like people have their life together D:

  • This is really a great post to read!! I feel totally like you when it’s up to money. Thank you so much for sharing and make me feel less stupid hahaha. Have a great day!

  • I didn’t realize just how much I needed this post! Social media definitely gives the illusion that people seem to have all their finances in check – it’s so refreshing to see such an honest post about this. So many twenty-somethings are in the same boat! x


  • Definitely where I’m at in my life!

    I’m currently trying to find time to set up a help to buy ISA, a savings account with higher interest and get my credit cards under-wraps whilst still having a life and trying to enjoy it! I’m terrible with money and this post really did help!

    Thank you Chloe : )

  • Good to hear a real person talking about this. Just watched a YouTuber who was complaining about having no money – suddenly go off and take a 2 week holiday to New York. Eating out every day and going out every night. I feel like I’m doing something wrong. haha


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