Though he grew up in a frugal household with parents who stressed the importance of saving money, Mayowa Alaketu has always preferred to spend.
The 25-year-old's philosophy toward money is simple: He makes sure his bills are paid and then gives himself the freedom to spend the rest of his money if he wants to. He doesn't keep a budget, describing himself as "pretty relaxed" when it comes to setting limits.
"My brother is one of the most frugal people I know, but for some reason, I've always been that one black sheep when it comes to saving money," he tells CNBC Make It. "A lot of my financial knowledge tends to be centered around making and generating income as opposed to properly managing the income that I have."
Alaketu earns $85,000 a year working in multimedia production at a legal nonprofit, as well as an additional $17,000 mining Ethereum.
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But Alaketu doesn't let himself get carried away. He makes most of his purchases on debit cards instead of credit cards so that he never forgets to pay something off.
"I'm not the most on track with trying to build my credit," he says. "I'm not that diligent, so I just avoid it altogether and use debit."
Alaketu spent a week chronicling his spending for CNBC Make it in September 2021. He challenged himself to keep his weekly spending around $400, even though he usually spends around $1,200 per week. He ended up splurging on restaurants and going to the movies, spending $1,000, but was still pleased that the figure was below his average weekly spending.
His spending varied from day to day. One day, his $281 total included dining out and going to the movies. Another day, he spent a total of $65 and his biggest expense was buying snacks at 7-Eleven.
Alaketu says the experience of tracking his spending helped him realize that he was happier on days where he spent less and spent his time doing free activities like playing baseball in the park.
"I know it sounds terrible coming from me, but I realized that you don't need to spend a lot to have a good time," he says. "I want to make some changes and see if I can make my way down to my original [$400] goal."
Watch his full spending breakdown for the week in the video above.
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