Grow Your Wealth

Money Feels: The 28 Year Old Whose College Project Propelled Her Career

Now she has $10,000 savings in the bank, $50,000 in the stock market, and $30,000 in crypto.

Illustration of sad boxes

Here you are. Back in your Money Feels. Ready to be open and honest about money stuff.

Three things you need to know about where you’ve landed:

👩🏻‍⚖️ you’re now in a no judgment zone

🎙 there’s no tip-toeing around numbers here

🙏 you can get involved, too

This week, we spoke with Christina*, a 28 year old Senior Product Manager living in New York City.

*not her real name.

Before we get into Christina’s money feels, it helps if you’ve seen her weekly spends (give them a quick read here. There’s ways to get great discounts in there, too).

Here’s a recap of Christina’s details

Pronouns: She/Her

Location: New York City

Job: Senior Product Manager

Industry: Entertainment

Yearly Salary: $250,000

Rent: $6,200 (shared with her boyfriend. They both pay $3,100)

Utilities: $200

Subscription products: $500 (includes Hulu, Netflix, Soho House, and Nutrifall)

Christina’s savings

In the bank: $10,000

in the stock market: $50,000

In crypto: $30,000

Quick note from us before things get real: Christina talks about crypto and investing in this interview. All views expressed are hers. If you’re thinking of investing, make sure you do it responsibly. Mwah. 💋

You’re in a pretty comfortable financial position, Christina. How did you get here?

First, I majored in business at a pretty prestigious college. That made it way easier to get a job.

But a huge part of my financial success came because I founded a start up in college. It was luck: a school project spun out of control, and I ended up with a great product.

Ultimately, it failed (writer’s note: those are Christina’s words. In our eyes, the whole experience sounds like a huge win). But while it was doing well, I was able to build a team In NYC. I closed a round of venture funding and everything. It opened a lot of doors for me in terms of jobs.

Once I got those jobs, I would try my hardest to be positive and hard working. In the pandemic, when we all switched to working from home, I took on a load of freelance work, too.

Those side hustles brought in a lot of cash and levelled up my work experience. I’m the youngest Senior Product Manager in my company. Everybody else is in their 30s/40s with kids. I’m in my 20s and don’t have children.

I feel really lucky to be where I am.

Anything else?

As I said, I’m lucky. I’ve never had debt: my family has always helped financially, so I didn’t have a student loan.

Do you have any money tips to share?

🥣 Food: eat out less, cook more

📊 Invest: investing a small amount of money weekly into an index fund will pay off over time

Can you tell us more about your index fund investing?

Sure. My bf works in finance and is super into investing, so I got into it through him. He believes compound interest is, like, the 8th wonder of the world.

He showed me John Boggle books. They say if you put away a tiny bit every week, you're gonna have a ton by the time you're 40. So I’m trying to be patient and put away $50 every week.

If I didn’t invest, inflation would make my money shrink.

If you could start over, would you make any different money decisions?

I didn't start investing until I was 26. I’d go and back start as soon as I had an income.

When I started investing, the stock market was a bubble, and now it’s crashed. If I’d started 10 years ago, even just tiny amounts,  I’d be in a much better financial situation now.

Finally, what’s your relationship with money?

My relationship with money is a lucky one. And a privileged one.

But I also believe that if you work hard and are smart, it will come.

Aaaaaand that was Christina.

We appreciate her so much for getting involved.

If you’d like to speak to us about your money, go ahead and hit me up at alex.s@meetcleo.com. It’s $60 for your time, and as anonymous as you’d like it to be.

Wherever you’re at with your money, keep going. You got this.

Enjoy this post? Def give it a share or send it along to a friend. You never know, it could make a big difference. And of course, if you want to try the best money app in the world for free, just hit this link right here.

Big love. Cleo 💙

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