Dear Dharma visits Cinnamon Sunrise
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Today on Cinnamon Sunrise we have a special treat. The very experienced Dharma of Dear Dharma fame has stopped by to provide some of her wise and time-tested advice. I thought long and hard about what I could ask her – after all, this is a woman who has provided advice on everything from time management to managing your first Christmas away from home to spotting red flags in a relationship.
In the end I decided that my confusion over what to ask was, in itself, a good place to start.
It’s been fantastic reading all your advice over the past few weeks. It’s clear you are a fountain of good advice!
It strikes me that over the past few years you must have seen all sorts of problems, situations and personal troubles spilled out to you. And I’m willing to bet that there are a few times that you’ve shaken your head and thought – man, I wish they’d come to me sooner!
So drawing upon your experience – what’s the one piece of advice that you wish you could give to people before they strike out on their own and have to start making their own mistakes? The advice that you think would help prevent a lot of problems from even popping up in the first place?
What a great question, and one that certainly had me digging deep into the mind vault. However, it didn’t take too long to come up with a couple of things that I wish, I WISH, young people would really get straight for themselves as they strike out on their own.
One of the most important things, my friends, is to understand how money works. As in, if you spend more than you make on a routine basis, you’re going to get yourself in trouble.
“Yeah, yeah”, you say, “I’m young, YOLO blah blah blah!” – but no! Really, this is something you want to take seriously.
It’s like there’s this huge pit that 18 – 24 year olds (kind of guessing at the target ages) can’t resist toppling into head first. Lack of budgeting and understanding of finances paired with the appeal of credit cards is a heady combination. And let’s face it, there are so many fun things to do within that credit card limit, right? I’m not going to lie, when I got my first credit card with a $2000 limit, I took it as a personal challenge to hit that number as quickly as possible – dumb, dumb, dumb…
And did I fall into that pit? I sure did. Hard. And it impacted the next AT LEAST 10 years of my life. Longer, if I were to be completely honest with you…
So if you can side step that big hole in the ground and make it out the other side with minimal debt (especially useless consumer debt – crap you wanted but certainly didn’t need), you will be so much better off, you can’t even imagine.
And that topic leads me to the next piece of advice… people who move in with their BF or GF for convenience sakes – aka “We already spend so much time together, we may as well move in together to save money!” Followed by a million heart emoji’s…
Call me a bit old fashioned, but I believe living with someone needs to be taken seriously. Because really, isn’t it a serious thing? Live together long enough, and you’re considered common-law. Common-law pretty much has the same legal ramifications as being married… Something else that should probably be taken seriously too, I would think.
So the reason to move in with someone should NOT be about convenience or a cheaper lifestyle, it should be about actual compatibility, love and respect. Crazy, I know…
Look, people hardly know themselves at this stage of the game, let alone the other person, so PLEASE… give yourself the space and time you need to continue your development – emotionally, spiritually, financially – whatever!
Because when these relationships don’t work out, which is so often the case, the upheaval and upset is immense. Break up’s are bad enough, but having to move out and start over again – obviously that’s going to set you back in those exact same categories we just mentioned – emotionally, spiritually, financially. So take the time to get to know yourself and understand what a healthy relationship means to you before you start figuring out who’s socks go in which drawer.
So there you have it.
I think that your blog is fantastic, Cinna Sunrise. The things you talk about are on point and relevant, and your style is so incredibly down to earth and genuine. Thank you so much for having Dear Dharma as a guest, I’ve really enjoyed answering this question. Maybe between the two of us, we can create a Catcher in the Rye effect (trying to prevent people from falling off the edge of the cliff) and help get folks on track as they venture into the world of adulting!
Thank you Dharma!
As expected, Dharma gave some excellent advice. Credit cards are never a good way to patch a hole in your budget. And moving in with someone else if not a decision to be made lightly!
If you’d like to ask Dharma a question about any aspect of adult life that has proved unexpectedly challenging, you can head over to Dear Dharma. I’m know she’ll be happy to help!