Coming from an extremely freedom-restricting family headed by a narcissist personality, my definition of success is obvious – Freedom.
If you are familiar with narcissists, you will straightaway recognize that one of their pet gratifying actions are putting the other person down and gaslighting their thoughts to the point you firmly believe that you are a lowly creature who is just lucky to have someone like him. Oh, and that you are nothing without him.
I want you to think of nothing as the deadly Thanos snap.
Which directly or indirectly meant being completely dependent on him (he is the sole bread-winner of the family). If I am supposed to be successful, I am going to have an independent source of income for myself, and myself only. And be situated in a place geographically out of his reach so that they don’t keep a track on me. Yeah, he taught me to be paranoid.
So that meant getting a job. And eventually, being financial free.
I realized very early on that I will have to manage and keep track of my money very, very carefully. So, I did what anyone would do. I googled.
While each of those “personal finance tips” and “how to budget” are very well, I think financial planning starts way before you even step a foot on a new city.
Today, I want to tell you the basic steps I ALWAYS take before I even booked my tickets to the next city:
HEALTH CARE FACILITIES
The first thing I googled about the new city I was gonna move in to is the list of government hospitals. Its no brainer to all – private hospitals cost A LOT.
After reading reviews, the departments available and a bit about the kind of doctors I’ll be needing the most, I proceed to see how far are each of them located from each other. I scan the maps and find localities where I can possibly share my room and rent with.
After I pick some of them, I proceed to see what public transportation facilities are available in the city. If there are city buses, are there any stops near my preferred locality? If there is a metro, how far is it from my place to the station? How much does it usually cost? Are there any student or working professional passes available? And so on.
Next, I find out if there are any government pharmacies. Some cities have them, and I scourged the maps again to see if they come under my preferred locality radius.
Next step is to see how much does the rent cost. And chalk out the localities in the order of pricings.
I found out that eating and drinking out are the most expense-causing items for millennials, so I sought to eat in.
I so wish I learnt cooking back at home, but then, I opted for tiffin services. They deliver healthy meals twice a day, every day for a monthly fee. I once calculated how much it would cost if I made those myself, and turned out that they are more or less around the fee they charge.
The quality of the food matters tremendously. To me especially, because I have an extremely sensitive tummy. That’s the reason why I almost never have street food.
EAT HEALTHY, POOP HEALTHY
It is important to stay healthy and have proper nutritional diets, because if you don’t care of your stomach, you’ll have to visit a doctor. While the government hospitals have very less fees, it’s the medicines they prescribe which can incur you expenses you never thought of. I can proudly say that in the 365 days I have stayed in this city, I have visited the doctor only twice. Beat that!
BEFORE YOU FIND A JOB
Now, obviously, you will have no control over where your job will be, so you have to have some backup preferred localities ready. I would recommend you to shift to a city where a friend of yours already lives, stay with him/her for a month minimum and find yourself a job within that time frame. Its not that hard.
These are optional things which you should look out for, forits subject to availability:
Find friends who have a washing machine.
Quite lately, I found a guy who has one.So,ever month, first and third Saturdays, I bring my heap of dirty clothes and get them cleaned in bulk. When he asked why, I told him right away – because we don’t have a washing machine in my flat and it would be a great money plus labor saving option for me if you would let me use yours twice a month.
Sometimes, being true pays. Quite literally.
Same thing with drinks.
I love beer. You can say I am a total beer-baby. But I never paid the bills. The host always did, its his courtesy to do so. While I find such a courtesy useless and downright crappy, I leverage it to my advantage.
Does that mean I’ll never pay for my beer? Not at all! Not just right now. In the next months, sure!
Paying the bills
Contrary to popular opinion, I enjoy paying my bills. I enjoy paying my rent on time, buying the food and in general adulting. I especially like to have sudden “no spend challenges” where you spend only on the bare necessities and not anywhere else, and later add up the pennies I “saved” over the days.
I dunno why so many people out their mop around wailing that living like an adult is so tough.
No, woman, it’s not! Though of course, maybe you have had a good beginning with security, the reason why you feel frail and helpless now.
Paying the bills gives me the feeling of security and stability with I enjoy and am proud of. Paying the bills gives me the feeling that I am in control of my life and the direction in which it is going. Keeping track of where my money goes makes me feel like I am the captain of my ship and I am steering it with the help of a lone star. If you are a fresher, and you are moving in to a new city with a job or going to search for one when you reach the city, I would highly recommend research about food, shelter and clothing requirements beforehand.