It’s Never Too Late

Posted by in Articles, personal finance | 15 comments

The following is a blog swap post from LaTisha at Young Adult Finances, where she writes about investing, trading and money management. Check out the post I wrote: Do-Over! D0-Over! Can I ask for that? over at her site today!

Regrets. That is really what this question is about. What do I regret that I wish I could change? And if I made that change, how would my life be different? For this week’s blog swap we all have a central topic and for this week it was ‘if you could have one financial do-over, what would it be and why?’

reset button

Do You Have Regrets?

I keep thinking, what would I change? I’m sure I would have much more to say on this topic a few months back, so let’s go back to ‘February‘ LaTisha. At the time, I didn’t have a job and the bills were piling up. I had made some bad decisions with credit and I started to regret ever hearing the words ‘buy now, pay later’. I was a recent graduate with a 3.5 GPA in a very lucrative industry, the finance industry, but I had yet to be hired away. I was down and frustrated. I regretted going to college in the first place and taking out student loans to finance my education. “What was the point of a degree if no one wants to pay me for it!” I thought. “Why didn’t my parents pay for me to go to a more prestigious school?” I griped. “Why did the economy have to tank right when I graduated?” I whined.

Thinking Back

Then I started to think back to all of the decisions I made. What was the one main decision I made that had led me here? I realized that it was not one but several. When I graduated high school, I went straight to college and completed a Spanish degree with honors and scholarships. I chose Spanish because I enjoy the language. For some reason, it never occurred to me that I should choose a degree based on my desired career path. I should have begun working full time right away but I didn’t. I decided to go back to school taking out student loans, because this time I didn’t have a scholarship; and complete a finance degree. If I could have one financial do-over, I would have researched degrees and followed a degree into a career path.

What I Should Have Done

I should have known that I wanted to make lots of money in my career. That would have led me immediately to engineering, finance or accounting. I finally decided to go back to school after I found myself working in the retail industry. I worked on getting a masters of accountancy, but after one class, I knew this was not the path for me. Even though I wanted to make a lot of money, I didn’t want to torture myself along the way. I say that finance found me. I took the introductory class as a prerequisite in the accounting masters program and I loved it! How could I have missed this before? I decided to do college the right way this time. I would get involved, get internships and graduate with a job lined up so I could make it to my goal of becoming a CEO.

But the problem was, once I graduated in 2010, the economy was depressed and jobs were scarce. Employers were still in the process of firing, not hiring. From May until I secured a position the following April, I worked. Part-time, full time, half time. I baby-sat, I passed out flyers, I delivered sandwiches. I went from discouraged to encouraged month after month. In March, I applied for a position with a firm, like I had been doing for the past 11 months. Sending out resume after resume, working my contacts and coming up empty. But this time was different. I received a call and secured a full-time salaried position in a great company!

It Was All Worth It

It was all worth it. I had my financial do-over! I went back to school, got a better degree and all the pieces fell into place. So what I want to say in all of this is, it’s not too late for a financial do-over! It may take some time, and things can get bumpy along the way, but don’t be afraid to hit reset.

15 Comments

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  1. retirebyforty

    LaTisha, you had a great do-over! Many people complain about their situation and never do anything about it. What an inspiring story. :)

  2. Little House

    LaTisha -What a great “Do-Over!” I really think there’s not enough college prep in high school making selecting a major on a whim more the case. I know that when I chose anthropology, I didn’t really think about what kind of career I would choose except teaching and I realized I would need a minimum of a Master’s Degree in order to accomplish that goal.

    With a little more planning and predicting what the future may hold, it’s easier to chose a better career path. It sounds like you enjoy finance and now your degree is paying off. ;)

  3. Everyday Tips

    We all have regrets, but not everybody ‘fixes’ their regret. Look how everything worked out for you! Maybe had you gotten a job easily using your spanish degree, you would have never found the happiness and satisfaction you have now. Plus, I do think knowing a second language can only help, especially in today’s world.

  4. Sam

    Great job LaTisha! Way to persevere!!!

  5. Ross @ Go Be Rich

    Of course I have a regret or two like everyone else, but nowadays, I have less “regrets” and more “what ifs.” What I mean is, once I make decisions, I go with them and make the best of it, there’s really nothing else to do. But I always wonder what would have happened and what my life would have been like had I made the opposite decision. The biggest one that comes to mind is deciding to move away from home after graduating high school. Now I’m contemplating a move to DC within a year or so… these are decisions that affect the path your life takes for the rest of your life.

  6. Moneycone

    That is an awesome story LaTisha! Learn’t a little about your personal struggle today and glad it has a happy ending! Very inspirational!

  7. Buck Inspire

    Hola LaTisha! Mui Bien! Way to stay focused on your goal. Your never say quit attitude while searching for a job was awesome and it paid off. Kudos!

  8. LaTisha

    @retirebyforty
    Thanks! I actually had a moment of revelation when writing this that I had already had my do-over.

  9. LaTisha

    @Little House
    I agree. I think ‘college prep’ should be more than teaching you to study. It should be also preparing you for a career path.

  10. LaTisha

    @Everyday Tips
    So true! I try to live with no regrets and I truly think there is always a way to fix things.

  11. LaTisha

    @Ross @ Go Be Rich
    Just remember that every decision has it’s pros and cons and at the end of the day, you have to be happy with how you made your life turn out.

  12. LaTisha

    @Moneycone
    I’m glad it could be an inspiration, thanks Moneycone!

  13. LaTisha

    @Buck Inspire
    Thank you! It’s great to see it now, in retrospect and see how everything paid off.

  14. Barb Friedberg

    La Tisha, I love love love your story. It is so inspiring and well written and hit the mark for me. My daugher just graduated in 2011 from college and it gives me a bit of insight into another recent grads world!

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