Broke, but not broken
By Marianna Michael
Photography by Kevin Michael Klipfel
Scroll through your Facebook feed, skim through Instagram, spend hours on Twitter and look at your favourite websites; new openings in your city seem enticing. New bars, quirky dessert cafés, illustrious events and late-nights at the museum. We're so incredibly lucky to have a multitude of great thinkers creating wonderful events for the folk of today.
But calculate the cost of traveling there, the event itself, drinks, dinner or anything that goes with the day and what does it cost? Rent. A day's pay. A year's worth of electricity.
For those who are getting paid very little or sometimes nothing at all, social media poses even more of a problem. Boohoo.com and DitchtheLabel.org have collaborated on a short video highlighting the most common lies that people tell on social media.
This trend is one that fuels many issues amongst our generation. It seems that everyone else is having fun, whilst we sit on our rented-flat sofas, eating cereal out of mug as we watch. We get caught up, losing sight not just on what's masqueraded as reality, but also on whether much of what we see is even what we want for ourselves. It's a vicious cycle.
The crux of the point is that we need to be honest with ourselves. We may not always be able to differentiate between what's reality and what's not. We may not always be able to afford certain things, or be like everybody else. But what we can do is find the things that matter most to us. The things that will make us happy.
Don't follow the crowd.
Rooftop cinemas. Craft-beer events. Immersive theatre. It all sounds great and so much of it is. But where do you really want to go? Forget FOMO. Forget what everyone else is up to. Don't fall into the social media trap because, more often than not, it's not what it appears to be.
Perhaps you like long walks, skyline views or exhibitions of underrated artists. Whatever it is you're into, find it. Though it's great to experience different things, and events that are perhaps out of your comfort zone, or something you wouldn't normally chance doing, you could really surprise yourself by looking outside the most coveted.
Not following the crowd may just save you some money.
If you happen to like long walks, then guess what? They're free! Even if you're into walking tours, get yourself online, find the hotspots you want to see and go on an adventure yourself. No need to break the bank. Online maps can be your friend.
Dare to be the person who reads reviews. Countless times I have gotten myself into a frenzy over eating THE BEST burger or having THE BEST coffee. I'll do what so may of us do - you go to that one place that everyone mentions and more often than not, it's expensive and not as good as you expected. A little research can go far. I've found some of the best food, drink and places by looking at review sites. A little research never hurt anyone.
Coupons. Vouchers. Deals.
Search for them. It may be 20% off a fancy meal or a free haircut. You don't have to go down the extreme-coupling route, but it may be worth trading your nightly Facebook scrolling for a promo-code.
Make the most of home.
Embrace your homebody. Get your friends round for a themed game night. Binge-watch the worst rated films on Netflix. Throw a cheap, albeit substantial, dinner party. Don't be afraid to stay indoors.