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Happy to Return to BAD

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Hi BAD community! Ashley L., here. I am happy to rejoin the site and continue to share my journey with you. I wrote a few posts at the very beginning of this year, but then stopped writing, so let me remind you a bit about me. I am single, in my late 20’s, and work in education. Currently, I am aiming to both pay down my debt as well as to invest. I am using some non traditional methods to accomplish this, such as house hacking, and hope to use the transparency of my blog posts with you to maintain my accountability and effectiveness on this journey.

In the spirit of transparency, I decided to stopped writing for BAD because I was disappointed with the blog culture here. Sharing a personal finance story on a public domain is a deeply vulnerable and courageous thing to do. I applaud Hope and Ashley for being so brave with both their financial planning and with their willingness to share. I also appreciate for the ways that their stories help others. I expected and even anticipated constructive criticism regarding my posts and planned to use the feedback productively. However, I felt many of the comments were skeptical of me and my story, negative, and void of the supportive and helpful tone that would be appropriate. My plan in returning is to share my journey, use my experiences, and the BAD feedback to continue to reach my goals and hopefully help a few others along the way.  

I am excited to share both unfortunate and good updates to my previous stories, and am happy to report that the good definitely outweighs the bad! For example, my house hacking is going well. (House hacking is a newly coined-termed that refers to an old idea of renting out living space to offset living expenses.) There have been some downfalls in the mix. I ended up having to find kick one of my roommates out. That could be a Lifetime story and post on its own. I’ll revisit. In my other home, I also experienced some very frustrating events that bled me of a few thousand dollars. I am bouncing back. I had to take down my rent in my house hacking home, but it is fine because it still covers my entire mortgage and all utilities and I have a good living situation with my roommates.

My budget is also seeing some positive changes. I have had modifications to my income, and of course, changes to my expenses followed. I was able to eliminate a recurring payment (for now)  and also added a new recurring payment. Recently, I updated both my monthly budget and my weekly budget and am now able to save more than I have since I lived with my parents.

I look forward to picking up where I left off although there are many changes. Life changes and in seeking growth, I am changing along with it.


16 Comments

  • Reply Walnut |

    Interesting strategy to criticize the readers. Last I checked, most of us have not changed, so I’m not sure what you are expecting.

    Can you link to your early posts so we can catch up on your backstory?

    • Reply amy |

      agreed…Ashley L…why do you think this is suddenly going to be different? Has your outlook changed?

      • Reply Ashley L |

        Amy and Walnut,

        One of the reasons that I decided to come back was so to share my journey and inherently the growth, or positive change, that occurs throughout it. With both good and unfortunate events, I believe the constant in all of our stories should be growth and that the power in sharing stories is that, hopefully, people inherently learn from one another. Therefore, I concluded my post by stating that “life changes and in seeking growth, I am changing along with it.”

        To answer another question concisely, I hope to ideally learn, share, help and grow on my journey and within a space that is constructive. That is why I wrote:

        I expected and even anticipated constructive criticism regarding my posts and planned to use the feedback positively. However, I felt many of the comments were skeptical of me and my story, negative, and void of the supportive and helpful tone that would be appropriate. My plan in returning is to share my journey and to use my experiences, and hopefully the BAD feedback, to continue to reach my goals and hopefully help a few others along the way.

        I wrote this to be transparent in my considerations, constructive in my approach, and clear on my intent and desires. I hope it can be received as such. I look forward to continuing to share my journey with you all, learn through your helpful feedback, reach goals, and more. If you wish to join me on my journey, then I invite you all to do the same- to help in a constructive manner, share, learn, and always, to grow.

  • Reply Janie B. |

    Could someone, PLEASE, fix this webpage?!!

    The far righthand side of the articles and comments are covered by the picture of the Bible and ads. In fact, I’m not seeing what I’m posting on that side! I’m as big a fan of the Bible as the next person, but I don’t think that a picture of it is needed here.

  • Reply Meghan1227 |

    I agree, the ads have gotten out of control. The most annoying ones are tagged with the “Powered by ConvertKit” as they are the usually unable to be closed as they are sized to exceed the webpage so the ‘X’ to close them out is out of the range of the page.

    Ashley L.,

    If you are really here to ‘blog away your debt’ and share your story, then I welcome you back. As I recall, toward the end of your prior tenure, folks were getting skeptical and negative because your posts were starting to read more like advertisements then personal stories. I hope you will be focusing on how you are paying off your debt in these stories you share and not much about your investing (there are investing blogs for that).

  • Reply Lisa |

    The ads cover my whole screen on my phone. I can’t close them at all. I can’t read any posts once the bottom ad pops up too, as I can only see the bottom centimeter of the screen in the first place.

  • Reply Lisa |

    Hi Ashley L, welcome back. I remember the first time you came aboard. I think people here are ready for new people to follow, learn from, and help guide to being debt free. Your previous posts read just like advertisements. They really didn’t have much personal info but lots of links to more advertisements. Hopefully, without those, people will be more willing to read your posts and comment more kindly… but Walnut is right. People are hard on the bloggers as that’s what they strongly believe in.

    • Reply Susan Paige |

      Sorry about that! We had some issues with Convert Kit, but you should have access now.

  • Reply jj |

    Good luck on your journey, and thank you for sharing. I think a lot of people can be judgmental as they assume anyone who is willing to blog should be willing to be withstand rude and ignorant comments. Hopefully you’ll get a better audience!

  • Reply TheBarb |

    I noticed that even now you aren’t really responding to commenters’ concerns. Answer the question directly and succintly, instead of pasting something we’ve already read. Engage the community. Your previous posts read like SEO 101. Rather than dictating how you want this community to respond to you, please make sure you are actually sharing your story, in the same way Hope and Ashley have done. If you continue to structure your new posts like your old ones, the reactions will likely be the same.

So, what do you think ?