Vulnerable post: I’m almost 30 and have nothing to my name. I have 35k student debt and nearly 15k debt across things like credit cards & personal loans. I’m watching my father get old after almost 50 years of working and not be able to retire and … I’m afraid I’m on the same boat not for recklessness with money but for things like not being paid enough to sustain and support myself and 5 others and no one makes enough to separate really. If you were in my shoes, what would you do?

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I’m a similar age and have the same feelings - agree on a lot of this - try and streamline your expenses as much as possible and enjoy being frugal - reduce your debt and take advantage as much saving support (eg 401k) as possible- time is still on your side if you build good habits


Thank you for your advice and encouraging words 🥰

At 30 years old I was making 50k and had 80k in debt. I changed my circle and friend group and am now 33, with $0 debt, and making 140k a year. I’m by no means rich but I turned my life around in 3 years. Change your circle.


Read how to win friends and influence people and practice. In all likelihood you’re annoying. It’s a mean comment, but it also works and I’ve been in the same boat.

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Start working through Dave Ramsey baby steps at least until the debt is gone. Then reevaluate.


Dave Ramsey is the very best plan out there. It works. I’ve personally become wealthy following his plan and podcast and I’ve seen hundreds of others do the same. With all the layoffs, several other executives and I talk regularly and one of the things multiple of them have mentioned is how glad we are that we found Ramsey’s plan. We are all years in at this point, but the freedom you gain is worth more than anything. You do not worry about the corporate CFOs slashing you because you know you are in a position of leverage. The only people who push back on his principles are those who pushback on self discipline.


The good thing is that you recognize you want to get serious about your finance and you still have time to grow your wealth by saving/ investing before you retire. You can do this!


Thank you for you encouraging words!

Marry rich


Lol thank you for lightening the mood


Cut your expenses if you can. How much do you make? Put a budget together. Put money in a 401k. Hard to suggest anything with no information


I would either look for a second job if you can manage it or look for a better paying job.


1. Sign up for so you can track where your money is going and what debts you have in one place.

2. Hire a fee only fiduciary financial planner after signing up for mint (mint can provide a source of data that informs the conversation with the planner). Not a financial advisor or insurance salesperson, a financial planner.

3. Look into the snowball method of debt repayment.

4. Beyond cutting expenses, think of earning more money. I don't mean any scheme you see on YouTube ads like MLM, dropshipping, or some crypto stunts. A better job, perhaps after a graduate degree, could help you earn more money in the medium and long term.

You're not even 30. You have time to turn things around.


Thank you kindly for your advice I will look into this :)

When I was your age (20 years ago) I remember spending my very last quarter on refilling my coffee. Even though it feels like you may be at rock bottom, you can turn things around. You have to make a plan. Our plan consisted of a move across the country to getting better paying jobs. I’ve had that student debt as well and it’s now paid off. Who are the 5 others you are supporting and can any of them work?


1. Do your parents not receive social security?

2. How much do you pay for all the other expenses for your family?

Little brother should be on his own to support himself because he needs to man up.


Start your own business. I was broke at 30 and now I have over $1.2M - takes time and hard work but it can be done. Good luck.


It sounds like you have 2 big challenges - low income and many others to support. No amount of pinching pennies is going to change that fact. Honestly I’m impressed that you’re not in MORE debt. Plenty of people making $100K+/year are in worse shape than you.

If I were you, I would focus on 1) networking and researching to get a higher paying job, and 2) doing some hard thinking and conversations about what support you can give your family and for how long. There’s a lot we don’t know here, but if you don’t want to be dependent on others when you’re retired then you’ll need to make some hard decisions now.


Good on you! We've all got to start somewhere. Dave Ramsey is NOT for me as I don't respond well to people trying to shame me. There are tons of folks around on socials and with books who take different approaches- The Hell Yeah Group (great intro to managing finances), Make Real Cents (budgeting and debt payoff), Broke Millenial (lil bit of everything with helpful worksheets), Dumpster Doggy (getting started with investing in an approachable way), Her First 100k (job search/salary negotiation and more). GOOD LUCK YOU CAN DO IT!


You have to go a bit deeper- where is your money going towards? Rent is typically the biggest expense, can you move in with your parents or get roommates to save on rent? Learn how to cook your meals if you’re constantly eating out, there are a ton of YouTube videos that can teach you how to prepare healthy, nutritious meals. Work a 2nd job if possible and just grind and save. You shouldn’t let life happen to you but make life happen for you


Just putting it out there maybe with rent so high but salary low, have you thought about moving elsewhere with your family?

If you can’t save, and we accept your assertion that you aren’t spending recklessly, then by elimination it sounds like your income is the problem. “Account executive” sounds like a sales role, which can be great or terrible depending what you’re selling and how good you are at selling it. If it’s not working out great for you, have you thought about other professions or companies?

Aso even without being reckless, supporting 5 people is a lot. Are these your SO and kids? Relatives? Others you somehow feel responsible for? Can they work?


Personally I’d just work two or three jobs for 1-3 years, build more marketable skills


If your income is truly that, low and they are not private student loans, then an income based repayment plan is an option if you're in the US.

As for the credit card debt, you have choices, it's about as much as a car note. If you are paying more than 10-11% interest, you can usually get a personal loan for a lower fixed rate of interest from a credit union, and get a payment schedule to pay it off in 5-7 years.

Then stick the credit card in a block of ice in the freezer for a week or two and really really look at your expenses.

In some cases, it is not possible to cut more, and you need to use local supports like food banks and charity programs to get breathing space. In others, you really might need to learn about crock pots and avoid eating out for a year. Reddit has extraordinarily good forums to help with this sort of thing.

Dave Ramsey is good for only the very baby steps of personal finance. Don't listen to the advice on used cars and renting housing forever if you can't pay cash. Housing is more complicated than that.


Corollary 2. The cards all get deleted from digital storage at the same time.
While working on the budget, no apple pay, no google pay,delete your autofill settings for Amazon and PayPal.

The goal is to make it just inconvenient enough to break reflex spending habits while you examine your spending.

Look for a higher paying job, cut your expenses to only what’s necessary. Focus on repaying your debts but also on having some emergency funds. Get a side hustle

Look up jobs on LinkedIn and only apply to jobs that list a salary range, so you know you’re not wasting time on another low paying job. Apply to those jobs that pay $100k. For example, many “marketing manager” or “product manager” jobs pay $100k.

Take free courses on LinkedIn or Coursera to gain new skills and put that newly earned “badge” or “completed course” on your resume, in things like Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Data Analysis, Tableau visualization, sales, negotiation, marketing, product management, etc.

Thank you for this post, you are not alone. I’m 33 and I have realized that I have no retirement and missed the boat on a lot of things. I’m planning on moving to another state. And possibly starting a business to build an asset. Homes are stupid right now. Look at the bright side that many have and can build toward a retirement and future. We have time left. But not enough time to waste. Let’s do it!

I also got a financial planner. Best thing I did!

Everyone starts somewhere and good news is you have plenty of time!

Near term: cut expenses and start saving

Next: Make more money. This is important. Work for a promotion or find a higher paying job. If there’s a ceiling then consider switching careers. While you’re searching, make extra income on the side by side gigs or even doing Uber Eats or Doordash.

Long term: once you save enough to pay off your debt, for an emergency fund, then look into 401k, and then diversifying.

Personally, I'd start with prayer asking for guidance.

Then I'd start looking for part-time jobs depnding on your availability:

Day time availability -Bartender,server,cashier,cook,retail clerk, temp mall shops for example fix smartphones

Night time availability
-Supply stocker (warehouses like home depot/hospitals/grocery stores), janitor, call center or helpdesk role

Varying availability
-Rideshare driver, delivery driver (uber, lyft, amazon) babysitter/house sitter/dog walker, collect metal/glass (like copper/soda cans or glass bottles) and turn in for cash.

Once I secure a part-time gig, I'd look at all my expenses and start cutting out the wants vs needs. For example, remove any and all streaming platforms/subscriptions and cut down on shopping esp at expensive stores and remove all non-essential costs. Lastly, I'd try to sell anything I don't regularly use (furniture, electronics, equipment, games, clothes/shoes) on fb marketplace, craigslist, any preferred site.

1 Increase income via work or selling stuff
2 Cut out non-essential spending

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