EP 124: Why People Become Nurses

EP 124: Why People Become Nurses

Benefits of Becoming a Nurse

There are many reasons to become a nurse, from good pay to job satisfaction. A career in nursing is an unselfish one, to say the least. Nursing allows for a wide variety of opportunities inside and outside of work. Growth opportunities through education combined will allow flexible hours to pursue multiple ventures. 

5 Reasons to Become a Nurse

  1. Competitive compensation in a growing industry

The healthcare field is always growing and changing. The beauty of it is that it will forever be growing because we always want to improve our health as a species. We want to live longer,  more efficiently combat disease, and improve our well-being. That is why most careers in the healthcare industry are safe and consistent careers. It is a forever evolving industry, some jobs will be weeded out but new ones will always arise. 

Medical professionals are in high demand to care for an aging population that is increasingly aware of the importance of preventative healthcare. The increased need and awareness have made registered nurses one of the top five occupations expected to add jobs from 2019-2029.* As a result, job opportunities in this sector have never been greater!

https://www.bls.gov/newsroom/2019_jobs-and-careers 

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics estimates that the employment of registered nurses is projected to grow 7 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. Growth will occur for a number of reasons, including an increased emphasis on preventive care; increasing rates of chronic conditions, such as diabetes and obesity; and demand for healthcare services from the baby-boom population, as this group leads longer and more active lives.

https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/registered-nurses.htm 

  1. A job that makes a difference

Nurses are often looked at as the “rock star” profession of healthcare. They’re always there for you, night and day with a warm smile on their face to comfort you when life might be rough. Nurses dispense comfort, compassion, and caring without even being asked. It’s true that Nurses do more than give medicine or treat wounds they care about patients by helping them improve not only their acute hospital outcomes but their lives. 

Every day as nurses we get to leave our mark on someone’s life by providing them with that extra little bit of love and understanding when they need it most.

There are not many careers with the potential to change or save a life every day. As a nurse, you will constantly have new patients with different interactions. It is an interesting career because there is always an equal opportunity to teach and to learn. 

Most surveyed nurses (81%) reported satisfaction with their career choices, according to a 2019 survey conducted by AMN Healthcare and The Center for Advancement of Healthcare Professionals. According to a 2018 survey of nurses by Medscape, 94% of registered nurses answered “yes” when asked whether they were glad they became a nurse or advanced practice nurse. 

https://www.purdueglobal.edu/blog/nursing/10-reasons-become-nurse/ 

  1. Active and exciting work

If you’re the type of person who likes to be on their feet all day, then nursing might just be for you. Unlike many desk jobs where employees sit at a computer screen staring aimlessly into space until they get bored and go watch cat videos on YouTube, nurses are always busy doing something—even if that thing is not as fun or exciting as other tasks. True, there will often come parts in your job which may seem mundane but don’t let them discourage you–because with every task comes an opportunity to learn new things!

Nurses are the backbone of healthcare. From meeting new patients to dealing with various health concerns, nurses tackle a different challenge every time they step into work. For many nurses, this can feel like an adrenaline rush as their day is full of surprises and mystery! That’s why most embrace these challenges that come with being in such a demanding profession according to AMN Healthcare’s nursing survey. 

  1. Flexible schedule and variety of specialties

It doesn’t matter when you’re a nurse, as long as you have the right shift for your needs. You can work evenings if mornings don’t agree with your sleep schedule or take on longer shifts over fewer days so that family time is yours to spend in large chunks. Or stick to what feels more traditional and find someplace where they give their employees regular schedules without too many changes.

While there are nursing jobs out there that fit the normal eight-hour day, five days per week, the average workday for nurses in long-term health facilities or hospitals is twelve-hour shifts, three days per week. Nursing offers a unique benefit that most professional careers don’t: job flexibility. Depending on where you choose to work as a nurse, oftentimes, you have a say when it comes to working full-time, part-time, or on-call.

https://absn.madonna.edu/blog/6-reasons-why-become-a-nurse/ 

Flexibility in location is another perk of becoming a nurse. Nurses can work anywhere from traditional locations, such as hospitals and doctor’s offices to less-obvious ones like home health care or schools. And some nurses even choose an exciting career as a flight nurse!

If you’re ready to get away from home but not too far away; if you crave variety while still being near friends and family – then I have just what you need: Meet “travel nurses” who literally live out fantasies by moving between hospitals around America due lack of staffing needs at each location. This high in-demand job oftentimes offers lucrative paychecks. 

Bedside nurses serve on the frontlines of direct patient care. You can find them working in settings such as nursing homes, hospitals, and long-term care facilities. As a bedside nurse with a BSN degree, you can pursue certification in the following specific areas of practice:

  • Emergency care: this nurse cares for patients who require urgent treatment.
  • Oncology and hematology care: this nurse cares for patients who have (or are at risk for) cancer or blood diseases or blood disorders.
  • Transplant care: this nurse cares for patients donating or receiving an organ.
  • Pediatric care: this nurse cares for primarily children and patients under the age of 18.
  • Labor and delivery care: this nurse cares for women and babies at all stages of childbirth.
  • Nephrology care: this nurse cares for patients with kidney disease or abnormal kidney function.

Another benefit of earning a BSN degree? You’re not pigeonholed into working inside of the hospital. You can choose to apply your skills and knowledge beyond the bedside, in settings such as:

  • Airplanes
  • Correctional facilities
  • Courts of law
  • Health insurance companies
  • Medical disaster teams
  • Laboratories

Alternative nursing careers can also be those that don’t involve direct patient care at all. These job titles, which often require educational training outside of a BSN, include:

  • Legal nurse consultant: this nurse works as a medical expert in legal cases.
  • Nurse attorney: this nurse represents medical professionals in the courtroom.
  • Nurse writer: this nurse writes educational materials, articles, blogs, and even Hollywood scripts.
  • Nurse entrepreneur: this nurse owns his or her own healthcare business venture.
  • Informatics nurse: this nurse develops communication and information technologies.

https://absn.madonna.edu/blog/6-reasons-why-become-a-nurse/ 

  1. Professional developmental opportunities 

You can explore a variety of careers by earning your Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. The BSN opens the door to new, exciting roles with higher salaries and more opportunities for career growth than ever before! 

The power of education cannot be overstated–the higher your level of certification, the greater potential there is for opportunity within your profession. When seeking out further specialization after earning a Bachelor’s degree from one school system (a “BS”), many nurses opt instead to earn their Master’s Degree in Nursing (MSN) from another institution (“MS”). This postgraduate coursework provides them with valuable skills which can then translate into careers like:

  • Nurse practitioner: this nurse has similar responsibilities to that of a doctor. However, it’s important to note that every state has different rules that determine the scope of practice for nurse practitioners.
  • Clinical nurse specialist: this nurse brings leadership to practice settings.
  • Nurse anesthetist: this nurse delivers anesthesia to patients.
  • Clinical Nurse Manager: this nurse supervises the nursing staff.

Advances in technology are allowing nurses to use data analysis for the purposes of treatment and care. It would be very surprised if this new field didn’t lead to a whole new career path, but informatics has already created one that is accessible now through nursing programs across America. Informatics deals with measuring all sorts of things related to healthcare including how it can help diagnose patients’ conditions or provide them access to tailored treatments at their bedside when they need it most. Nurses who specialize in data analysis will become leaders as we forge into our future where there’s no telling what kind of medical advances could happen next!

Becoming a nurse has many positives. It is credited with being part of an ever-evolving industry, healthcare. Career stability and high incomes are nice benefits to have in a career. Nursing also brings in respect and ample room for growth through education and clinical skills. Due to its flexible schedules and varying specialties, nursing is a great career path for many. 

EP 122: Day Shift Expectation vs Reality

EP 122: Day Shift Expectation vs Reality

Nurses working dayshift expectations vs reality

As a nurse, depending on your shift, your workflow and experience as a nurse is going to differ. We have worked both shifts, mainly 4 years on nights but today we are going to share our experience to share the expectations vs reality of working day shift as a nurse

Your nursing shifts start at 5 am

As a dayshift nurse, you have to get up as early as 5 am to eat, pack your lunch, and beat the morning traffic. This is the part that most nurses dread. The Day shifts typically range from about 6:45 in the morning until a little around 7:30 at night.

Are you someone who constantly stays up late? Or are you the type of person who prefers a regular bedtime and enjoying the sunrise? If the answer is no, then you might have a hard time dealing with early nursing shifts.

Getting your butt up at 5 am to get ready for work definitely isn’t fun. But you’ll get used to it. After all, that’s why coffee was invented (for dayshift nurses).

The best benefit to working the day shift is having a consistent schedule that your body loves. Working the day shift also gives you the benefit of lining up with the rest of the world’s schedules.

Dayshift is hands-on

If you’re looking for opportunities to practice your hands-on skills, the day shift is ideal as it has more procedures. If you love starting IVs, ambulating, assisting in procedures, you will enjoy working days, as nights typically see procedures during emergencies.

The noisiness on dayshift

During dayshift the noisiness is consistent. There are patients, alarms, phones, family, call lights, food trays, consults, nursing rounds, procedures, tests, etc.

The dayshift nursing environment is constantly noisy, so if you love organized chaos and are constantly connected to your work environment, dayshift is for you.

Nursing support on dayshift

Dayshift nursing is really busy but with days this means there are more people to pick up all the extra work. There are always patients to take care of with constant order changes throughout the day, consults to follow-up with to figure out the plan of care, etc. You will never feel alone as a dayshift nurse because you will constantly have nursing support such as nursing leadership (charge nurse), nursing staff, and coworkers.

The plan of care

As a dayshift nurse, you’re the primary team member when It comes to total care.

As the primary nurse, you are not only responsible for the direct care of a patient, but also taking part in providing indirect nursing care for other patients as well. During the day the entire hospital team is there; Doctors, residents, consults, Physical therapy, occupational therapy, respiratory therapy, dietary, social worker, case management &, etc.

If you adapt easily to quick changes in plans and are flexible to other people needing access to your patient, the day shift might be for you. If you don’t enjoy this type of commotion, stick to the night shift; it’s much more controllable in this area.

Charting during dayshift

Charting nursing care during dayshift can be a challenge as well. With the constant stream of nursing activity and interruptions, charting nursing care can become tricky. Day shifters chart at random times throughout the day, but have more patient face-to-face contact and charting

Dayshift nursing is fast-paced. You will get used to charts quickly on your dayshift. If you love reading up on your patients and do some digging to perform better care, consider working nights.

PO supplementation on day shift for nurses

Are you someone who cannot go without food or drinking? With the entire team being at the hospital, this includes management, which never allows any food or drinks at the nurse’s station.

During nights, the opportunities to sit down and eat more often and you can enjoy your meal. Most hospitals don’t have a 24/7 cafeteria, which can be tough for those without outside meal plans.

Friendships on days

Both day and night present an opportunity to engage with and get to know your coworkers. Nightshift is a lot easier going and to get along with.

Night nurses are typically quiet and reserved; day shift nurses have the opposite demeanor: they are talkative and engaging in conversation. Both dayshift nurse and night shift nursing have their own unique perks

Concluding thoughts

If you’re looking to get ahead in your nursing career, it’s important that you have a good understanding of the nursing shifts and responsibilities. Both nursing shifts offer different nursing opportunities and nursing challenges.

Working dayshift nursing can be very taxing on your schedule if you have a family or children to take care of. It is constantly noisy, fast-paced, and not the most relaxing nursing shift at all. If you are really dedicated to your nursing career, both shifts will be equally challenging.

 

EP 121: Code Blue: Dos & Don’ts

EP 121: Code Blue: Dos & Don’ts

Nurses and Code Blues

Code blues are one of the scariest situations to be in as a nurse. Every nurse should know the basics of code blue because they can happen at any time. Many times a nurse is the first one to witness a patient going into cardiac or respiratory arrest. There is a lot to know about how to run a good code blue.

Prevention

The best way to deal with a code blue is to prevent a code blue. As a nurse you need to try and round on your patients at appropriate times, even the more stable ones can turn on you. It is understandable that in certain situations hourly rounding is impossible but rounding should never be neglected on purpose. Labs are important and should be one of the first things to look into during your shift and throughout.

What to do during a code blue

It is very important to stay calm and professional during a code blue. The nurse in charge of the situation should delegate tasks accordingly. This includes making sure that when there are nurses available, they are doing what they can for their assigned patient while not forgetting about the other patients on the floor space as well.

During a code blue, nurses should first assess the situation. They need to check for signs of life, and then start CPR if needed. There are times when you can visually see that the patient is not breathing even by the way they look. If you enter the room and are not sure of what is going on with your patient always assess. Call their name, touch or shake them, and feel for a pulse. If there are no signs of life call a code!

According to ACLS guidelines, the adult cardiac arrest algorithm is:

For Shockable Rhythms

  1. Start CPR (100 compressions/min), attach to monitor and defibrillation pads, and give Oxygen.
  2. Check the rhythm: is it shockable? Ventricular Fibrillation and Pulseless Ventricular Tachycardia are shockable.
  3. Shock 120 – 360J
  4. Continue CPR for 2 min and establish IV access.
  5. Rhythm and pulse check, shockable? VF/pVT
  6. Shock 120 – 360J
  7. CPR: 2 min, Epinepherine every 3-5 min
  8. Rhythm and pulse check, shockable? VF/pVT
  9. Shock 120 – 360J
  10. CPR: 2 min, Amiodarone, lidocaine, treat reversible causes.
  11. Back to step 5

For Nonshockable Rhythms

  1. Start CPR (100 compressions/min), attach to monitor and defibrillation pads, and give Oxygen.
  2. Check the rhythm: is it shockable? Asystole and Pulseless Electrical Activity are not shockable.
  3. CPR every 2 min and IV access
  4. Epinephrine ASAP every 3-5 min
  5. Treat Reversible cause
  6. Back to step 3 until ROSC or termination

What are the nurses’ roles during a code blue?

There are a few nursing roles to play in a code blue situation and each has its own responsibility. The first thing to understand is that it is not your fault.

Lead Nurse

The first nurse role is the “lead” aka the nurse who is in charge of running the code. This nurse is responsible for dictating and delegating certain tasks. This should be the primary nurse or a charge nurse because the primary nurse is the one that knows the patient the best and the charge usually has a higher knowledge base and skill set. The primary nurse or a charge nurse are the best people to assess the situation because they have been managing the patient’s care and are our best hope in figuring out what happened. 

The lead can then change when a physician comes or another nurse takes over.

The dos and don’ts of a lead

  • Don’t take on other tasks or leave the room.
  • If you are the lead, you are running the show so know the cardiac arrest algorithm.
  • Speak loudly so everyone knows what is going on, make sure people know you are the one running the code.
  • If you are the primary hand this role over to the physical and critically think of what could have happened (harder than you think).

IV access and medication

This role can be filled by one or two nurses because getting IV access and maintaining IV access can be a tough job. It is better to have 2 nurses on this job until good IV access is maintained then one nurse can step away and take on another task. You will be administering medications per the cardiac arrest protocol but also some paralytics and sedatives like etomidate, propofol, versed, fentanyl, etc…

Dos and Don’ts

  • Don’t stop after the first attempt, keep trying.
  • If you are struggling ask for help and keep trying
  • Try not to forget the labs
  • If pushing med keep the vials so you don’t forget what you gave.
  • Push the correct medication.
  • Let people know what you’re pushing and when.

Recorder

the recorder’s role is exactly what its title is, you record. Many nurses don’t like this role because it usually requires you to chart after the code. As the recorder, you write down everything that is going on into time slots. A code blue sheet looks like a spreadsheet. It is your job to also manage time so everyone knows when it is time for a shock, pulse check, and medication.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Don’t think you will remember something, always write it down.
  • Maintain this role, don’t do other tasks
  • Keep your eyes on the clock.
  • Know the Cardiac arrest algorithm.
  • Speak loudly.

Compression master

This is usually when the boys come in. Every guy likes doing compressions but just like other things, not every guy is good at them. Always remember 100 – 120 compressions a minute is a way to go. This is also not a one-man job. There should be a person or two ready to hop on the chest. Compression gets tiring so try and switch every 2 min.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Don’t be a hero, ask for help, and switch!
  • Give good compressions, 2 inches, and push down hard and fast.
  • If no one is in line, delegate to someone that isn’t doing anything.

Runners

This role can be plated by a few people. Your job is to chase down and meds or equipment. You can also be the one putting in orders for labs, making phone calls to radiology, or getting ahold of anesthesia or a physician.

Dos and Don’ts

  • If there are a lot of you, then it is better to stay away
  • Try and recognize when the situation is under control and you might not be needed. Sometimes the more bodies the harder it is to run a code.
  • Check on the other patients.
  • Let people know what you are getting or where you’re going.
  • The better you get at this the more efficient you will be inputting in orders or grabbing meds.

Speaking with family

This is a very important role and will usually be the responsibility of the primary nurse. It is always hard letting the family know that their loved one is in cardiac arrest or has passed away. This is a skill that gets better with practice.

Dos and Don’ts

  • If you are not sure how to approach a family ask someone.
  • Be honest and don’t speak on things you aren’t sure of.
  • Ask the family to come in.
  • You can always defer some concepts to the physician and say the Doctor will better explain the situation once you arrive.
  • Don’t give false hope.

As the primary nurse, try to figure out the underlying causes of cardiac arrest. Look at lab values and prior issues. It’s easier said than done but try to stay calm. If this is not your patient make sure you have a role not just standing by and interfering. If it is your patient make sure to stay in or near the room because you will have to maintain the report. Remember to speak to the family and explain what has happened. Always try your best, brush up on your knowledge, and remember that it was not your fault.

https://cpr.heart.org/-/media/cpr-files/cpr-guidelines-files/algorithms/algorithmacls_ca_200612.pdf?la=en

EP 120: 5 Habits That Will Change Your Life

EP 120: 5 Habits That Will Change Your Life

5 Habits to incorporate into your life

If you’ve been feeling like you’re stagnating in life or just can’t seem to figure out what to change, we have a list of 5 habits for you to start incorporating into your life outside of work and inside. We always try to better ourselves or change in some way, you usually start with a self-reflection and then some research. Unfortunately, many people fail to realize that the best habits are fostered when introduced by someone else with life experience. 

5 important habits

  1. Create a Schedule
    1. What is something you enjoy doing in the morning or what is something you currently do that you enjoy? Maybe you like to meditate, work out, read, or enjoy a healthy breakfast. Whatever it is that makes you feel supercharged, kickstart your day with that habit. 
    2. Establishing a meaningful morning ritual helps you start your day on a positive, proactive note. Having a structured start to your day instead of rushing to make up for the lost time also helps eliminate stress, mental fatigue and enhances your productivity.
    3. If you don’t know where to start, a good idea is to plan out your morning the prior night. You don’t have to plan out your whole day just think about 1 or 2 things you’ll do after you wake up.
  2. Do not stay up too late
    1. What we’ve noticed throughout the years as being the number 1 reason people stay up late is control. People’s lives get busy and some people almost lose control. So just like some drug users seek drugs because their life is in shambles and drugs are the only control they have, you seek to have control oversleep. This type of control is bad because you are tired, your body is saying sleep. You control when you go to bed and you will not let your body tell you who is boss. This is negative control because you lose sleep by staying up too late and this turns into a vicious cycle. 
    2. You can’t comprehend the effect and importance of going to sleep on time or early. You have more functioning day hours and you’ll feel great and more accomplished. Studies show that ⅓ people don’t get enough sleep. Don’t be one of them. https://www.sleephealth.org/sleep-health/the-state-of-sleephealth-in-america/ 
  3. Learn to single-task
    1. There are many people out there that say you need to multitask. What they don’t tell you is that only about  2.5% of people can actually multitask efficiently. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/science-clear-multitasking-doesnt-work/#:~:text=%E2%80%9CWhen%20we%20think%20we’re,are%20able%20to%20multitask%20effectively. 
    2. It’s a simple concept that you think is inefficient simply because math always told you 2 are greater than one. That is not the case in life. Most people are a lot more efficient doing 1 thing at a time. This is especially true at work. Most jobs require you to handle one thing at a time, many people try to do more than one, and then their productivity dwindles and you cant figure out why things are not getting done.
    3. This goes along well with prioritizing. What is due first, what is something you want to do first, and what is most important are good things to ask yourself before starting that first task. 
  4. Listen and be kind
    1. This sounds cheesy but it really works. Some people are struggling in life and just a simple conversation lights up their spirits. We all need outlets and the greatest outlet is speech. It is really that simple. Not only will you make someone’s day you will also learn something. This is also important at work, especially in the medical field. Just by actively listening you can figure out what is going through your patient’s head. You’ll be better at treating not only their medical issue but you’ll also be helping them on a mental and emotional level.
    2. What goes around comes around. What energy you give to this world you receive back. Too many people surround themselves with hate and anger and you can feel it. There is too much negativity in this world so start doing kind things for others. It would blow your mind how much good advice and free things you can get just by being nice. People are at different points in life and in situations, we might not be able to comprehend. Share the love and you’ll get love back. 
  5. Always try to learn
    1. By this, we mean to try and experience everything. Conquer your fears inside of work and out. Treat every experience as a learning opportunity. Try and do new things.
    2. Being uncomfortable is the area for growth. Learning is hard and it’s usually uncomfortable because you are dealing with something unfamiliar. 
EP 119: Should You Move Out After Nursing School

EP 119: Should You Move Out After Nursing School

Moving Out After Nursing School

How soon did you move out after nursing school? 

There is no ideal time frame. Some nurses do it a few weeks after landing their first job, some wait a few years and build up their finances, while others have already been living on their own. Moving out is a big part of your life, so make sure to think it through. Why do you want to move out? Is it because everyone is doing it, you want more space, you want more freedom, etc… You may think; what are the benefits of moving out after nursing school.

Things to consider before moving out

Finally getting to move out of your parents’ home is one of the greatest and most accomplishing things you will do in your lifetime. It puts you in a point of optimal growth, you’re going to experience life on a different level. These are some steps to take before you move out.

  1. Figure out your financial situation
    1. If you want to move out you first have to make sure you have enough money. There’s a thing called rent or mortgage for everyone still living at their parents’ home. You’re going to be paying for the place you are living in and it is going to be your most costly expense. The average cost of rent in the US is a little over $1,000 a month, depending on the location you will most likely be paying more. For example, a 2 BR condo in LA will run you around $3,000 – $5,000, in Chicago $1,800 – $3,000.
    2. You also need to incorporate groceries, utilities, Netflix, phone bills, and personal expenses. It all adds up and it’s usually a lot more expensive than you initially thought. 
    3. Consider your loans. What are your monthly loan payments? You might be better off living at home for a few months or years longer to get them paid off quicker. 
  2. Where do you want to live
    1. Location, location, location, one of the biggest real estate owners is McDonald. You need to think about where you want to live, city, suburb, local, or out of state. Is there a particular spot you always go to or really like? Do you want some views, or maybe live close to your parents.  
  3. Why do you want to move out
    1. Moving out is a lot of work and increases your responsibility. Are you moving out for the right reasons or are you mindlessly doing it because everyone else is? 

Benefits of moving out

  • More freedom: You will not have a room anymore, the whole place will be your temple. You can do whatever whenever walking naked from your bedroom to the kitchen kind of freedom.
  • More responsibility: You will now be a fully functioning adult with complete control of your life and future. You are going to learn all the things associated with living at your own place; decorating, cleaning, fixing, maintaining, etc… It is a new sense of being. 

 

EP 118: Managing Your Finances as a Nurse

EP 118: Managing Your Finances as a Nurse

Managing Your Finances as a Nurse

Managing your finances is something schools and universities still neglect. Coming out of college some people don’t know how to open a bank account. A career in nursing can be lucrative when it is done right. The highest nursing salaries also allow you to pick and choose where you will work around the US.

We also did a great episode about how to pay off debt and save money with the DebtFreeNurse

Understand how much you get paid

The 2 biggest things in understanding your pay are; there is a difference in the amount you get paid by your employer and how much you take home. That is called net and gross income.

  • Gross income = Income before taxes
  • Net income = Income after tax (the amount you actually get)

It’s always good to know how much money you make on a yearly basis as well as know your average paycheck total. 

  • If you make $2,800 biweekly then your monthly income is double, $5,600/month
  • That’s $67,200 a year

Your income means that just by yourself you already make above the median household income of the US, according to the median income in 2019. Median household income was $68,703 in 2019, an increase of 6.8 percent from the 2018 median of $64,324.

It is also important to take into account how much you pay for insurance. Most people get health insurance, dental, and vision through their employer. It gets taken out directly from your paycheck. 

Understand your bills

We are entering a more and more subscription-based society. It is a lot harder to keep track of monthly occurring expenses vs a one-time payment basis. What makes it tricky is they offer something low cost with improved tiers which don’t seem like a lot at the time but multiply it for the year and it might add up to $1,000. 

Some staple bills to always keep in mind are; cell phone, internet, home bills (gas, electric, water, rent), Netflix, apple subscriptions, and car insurance. 

Take into consideration your costs of groceries.

Create a budget and stick to it

Knowing your income and expenses is the key to understanding your financial situation. Once you have those understood it is time to create a budget. When making a budget to add up all the money you make from work and add up all your recurring monthly/weekly expenses.

This gives you an idea of how much you make and basic necessary spending. This also gives you an amount left over. You need to budget the money you have leftover when you subtract your expenses from your income. 

The money you have leftover is technical your “spending money”, but that also accounts for money you want to save. This is the money you have to do things outside of food, shelter, water, etc.. Your budget should consist of 2 major things; money to save and money to spend.

It is important to realize what percentage of your money goes where. The best way to make a budget is to break it down into months. X% is devoted to categories like bills, food, restaurants, ets.. Let’s take $4,000/month of income for example

  • 40%: $1,600 in monthly bills (water, loans, mortgage, rent, comedy, internet, cellphone, etc..)
  • 15%: $600 on groceries
  • 25%: $1,000 saving
  • 10%: $400 extra
  • 10%: $400 eating out/leasure

Starting with just breaking down to the major categories gives you an idea of how much money it actually costs to live and how much you really make. Once you have the fundamentals of the budget you can then add other categories like goals, or you can rearrange where your money goes. Once you have a budget you can safely save and spend. It’s about understanding your money not how much money, at least in the beginning. 

Saving and Paying off debt

The biggest and most inconvenient things about being an adult are saving for the now, saving for the future, and paying off debt. The best way to battle debt is to not get in it in the first place. 

The number one rule with paying off debt is to pay the high interest off the quickest because that’s the one that is charging you the most for borrowing. Another good step would be to pay your credit off in full if you have the chance to instead of just adhering to the monthly payments. It is also good to use your leftover income to get used on the loans, trying to make a higher than your regular/minimal monthly payments because you’ll pay it off quicker.  

When it comes to credit cards you should use them like a debit card. Only spend money you have, not money you will have. The majority of the time it is more beneficial to use your credit card so you can earn points and build your credit. Most debit cards don/t offer any perks. 

It is good to save outside of your 401k, most employers over a 401k plan which makes it very simple. You should still have a savings account as your savings for the short term. In your savings, you should also have an emergency fund with at least 3 months worth of living expenses.

Understand your credit score

Your credit score is a three-digit number that can have a big impact on your finances. Lenders are willing to offer borrowers with high credit scores better loan terms and lower interest rates.

As you apply for large loans such as a mortgage, a small interest rate reduction can save you thousands of dollars. Credit scores generally range from 300 to 850

What Factors Impact Your Credit Score?

  • Pay your bills on time, every time.
  • Pay off your debts as quickly as you can.
  • Keep your credit card balance well below the limit.
  • Applying for multiple credit cards