Building Wealth Paycheck to Paycheck


I’m present- and future-oriented. The concept of building a restrictive budget and then potentially beating myself for past decisions is a turn off for me. I needed something simple-ish.

I’m an optimistic tinkerer with both a high risk tolerance and capacity who needs guardrails to keep me from tinkering my way into negative returns. I’m more flow-oriented than time-oriented, which makes tying things to events and need easier than tying them to time.

I see finances in terms of two primary scales:

  1. Immediate-need and long-term future.
  2. Negative-return and high-return.

To appease the tinkerer and risk taker in me, I needed a method where I was hands-on; moving things around and logging into accounts—feeling like those scenes in movies where hackers are doing all this insane stuff on computers that is literally impossible and not how computers work. With that said, I wanted decision making to be as automated as possible. I didn’t want to have to call or sign on to a bunch of places to cancel automatic payments should I find myself living in my car again or couch surfing because I couldn’t afford to pay rent somewhere.

These desires and what I knew of myself became my budgeting method.

This series chronicles the moves I started making regarding finances—at least from April of 2021 as I didn’t really think about it in the first couple of months of 2021.

I’ll probably avoid talking dollar amounts mainly because, for me, the systems and habits should be applicable regardless of dollar amounts. My income can be pretty volatile and I don’t want a system that depends on me making a certain amount of money. I think it’s easier to adjust percentages and think in those terms than it is to think in terms of dollar amounts—I’m not what I consider to be a numbers-oriented person. Besides, the basic system and habits worked when I was living in my car and still work now that I’m not.


Section titled Conclusion

The related entries are my journey paycheck-to-paycheck. They are listed in reverse chronological order.