"There are thousands and thousands of people out there living lives of quiet, screaming desperation who work long hard hours at jobs they hate, to enable them to buy things they don't need to impress people they don't like." - Nigel Marsh
Ahhhh, consumerism. Why do we buy into you?
Accumulating things does not lead to long-term happiness. It's so disappointing. The momentary pleasure of getting something NEW is soooo fleeting...and then you're left with mounting debt and mounting regret.
DEBT FREE. Let's all get THERE.
Here's some inspiration... Watch this.
I have to say...Life is all about EXPERIENCES. And the experience of attending grad school will be one I know I will NEVER regret investing in.
That's why I am 100,000% willing to give up my "cushy" day-job with retirement package security in order to be able to live the life of a working actor and do the thing that I am most passionate about. That makes me want to jump out of bed in the morning! That is my idea of FREEDOM. The freedom to fearlessly do what I love: act (and get paid).
Now, I must say...since I am writing a post about debt...that I am very aware that grad school is not FREE. And NYU and Juilliard are both veeeeery expensive, even with financial aid.
Yale, however, is a different story. I must give kudos to them on the money issue. The financial aid package at Yale is beyond wonderful. And by wonderful...I mean, you can graduate with veeeery little debt... (They're not as enlightened as schools that actually pay YOU to study there, but nobody's perfect.) When they explained the details of the financial aid opportunities at the Yale Visitor's Day, I audibly gasped with JOY! don't want to quote actual numbers for Yale, because I know that I'll probably get it wrong, but let's just say that their financial aid package puts NYU and Juilliard to shame.
I know NYU is making an effort to endow more scholarships every year, so they're getting there. I've gone to a couple of their fund raising events and they are making progress! The faculty and administrative staff are keenly aware of the stresses of the financial burden that their recent graduates are dealing with daily. And I am sure that Juilliard is doing their best as well, though I am not as familiar with the financial assistance opportunities they offer for MFA students since this is my first time applying there.
But Yale...WOW...they have got it figured out. They really make an Ivy League education affordable...and that's really admirable. Because debt is REAL. Those student loans are NOT going to pay themselves off. Yale's financial aid package allows people (such as myself) that don't come from money and have had to pay their own way...the freedom to be able to consider Yale as a viable choice...regardless of economic background. Bravo, Yale, bravo!
(Please do not take my word for it...when it comes to all this financial stuff. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid at each school for detailed, accurate and current information.)
Anyway, I look at grad school as an investment... an investment and a life experience that will forever transform me. So...no matter the cost...I know it will be worth it. And I'll pay off the debt eventually. But less is more in this arena...for sure.
Be free to do what you love and love what you do. Never fear. Money will come.
P.S. If you ever want to make a social situation reeeeeally awkward, just start up a conversation with someone you hardly know and ask them about their MONEY. That'll make them uuuuuncomfortable. Talking finances is the new TABOO. "Shhhhh! Don't talk about THAT. We can talk all you want about sex, but money? I don't think so...that's personal." Ever encounter that attitude? The logic escapes me... Just makin' an observation... Our society is weird. ;-p
"Riches, when they come in huge quantities, are never the result of HARD work! Riches come, if they come at all, in response to definite demands, based upon the application of definite principles, and not by chance or luck." - Napoleon Hill, Think & Grow Rich