I love Instagram. I love all the baby pics and the silly Saturday night Instagram stories and the behind-the-scenes snaps from my favorite celebrities, and I don't care that it's all a little (or a lot) fake. But sometimes when I spend too much time mindlessly scrolling, I'm left with a bit of a social media hangover and the feeling that everyone is doing cooler stuff than me. I also frequently wonder how the hell everyone can afford these cool lives, whether they're regularly eating out at some trendy restaurant or vacationing at a luxury resort. And no, most of my friends are not influencers, so I know they aren't getting shit for free.
This feeling of FOMO mixed with jealousy mixed with a genuine desire to know how our friends afford their awesome lives is the inspiration behind this week's episode of Money Diaries: The Podcast. My co-host, Paco DeLeon, and I chat with a 32-year-old woman — we're calling her Susan — who lives in South Dakota with her husband and hasn't taken a real vacation in more than seven years.
I love this episode because Susan gets really honest about those jealous feelings that most of us just try to ignore (or express only to our very best friends), and she's so relatable in her concerns that she's not hitting certain milestones at the so-called right time. But this is more than just an episode about FOMO — we tackle topics like discussing money with your spouse, prioritizing your own financial needs, and how to figure out if you might be overspending on retirement.
Speaking of which, during the episode, Paco recommends running retirement projections to make sure you're on the right track in your savings goals. I highly recommend everyone do it — Vanguard has a great calculator, and so does MarketWatch. You can read Susan's original Money Diary here, and join more conversations about vacation FOMO (and all kinds of other money-related queries) in our Money Diaries Facebook group.