Learning a Tough Lesson in Personal Finance

We love hearing about personal finance success stories but the hard lessons learned through bad experiences can be just as good at teaching us how to handle money.

One person shares how a tough lesson in personal finance has taught him to look before he leap.

Negative Reinforcement for Learning Personal Finance

Parents are always eager to spread wisdom on to their children, but the most effective lessons usually come after a mistake is made.

The same way a child learns to walk near the wet edge of a pool after falling, I learned to wait and compare prices before making large purchases through an equally painful experience.

Learning Money Lessons the Hard Way

This lesson came after my twelfth birthday when I decided to use my birthday money to buy a new bike.

I already owned a perfectly good bike, but after seeing the alarmingly low prices of what seemed to be significantly cooler bike I decided it was time for an upgrade.

The next day I woke up to an unsettling feeling which I later learned is commonly known as buyer’s remorse. I realized that in less than four hours I had spent all of the money I essentially made in an entire year.

Buyer’s Remorse as a Personal Finance Lesson

I did the best I could to justify the purchase in my head and felt a little better until around noon when I asked my mom for five dollars to buy an ice cream cone.

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