Desirae Odjick is one of our 30 Inspirational Women in Canadian FinTech and Finance!
Desirae (@half_banked) writes about millennials and money at Half Banked, the blog she started when she realized she would have to save half of her income to meet her financial goals. Now she has over 6,000 followers across social media. Here, she shares her best financial advice, speaks about her impressive career, and honours the women who inspired her along the way.
What are you most proud of accomplishing in your career?
DO: I’m most proud of the skills I’ve taught myself, and the opportunities they’ve unlocked. I loved my formal education, don’t get me wrong, but building my own projects and learning the required skills on my own has been the key to creating a career that I love, and it’s something that I think is all too easy to skip over in favour of more formal, structured learning. Both of them have their place, but building something of your own and figuring out how to make it a success? Absolutely irreplaceable.
Who were the women that served as role models to inspire you in your life?
DO: It’s a total cliche to say this, but my mom! When her traditional career wasn’t fitting into the life she wanted, she took a leap and built her own very successful business, at a time when “freelancing” and “consulting” weren’t as mainstream as they are today. She really taught me that you can do a lot if you believe in yourself and take some (calculated) risks. (Oh, and she’s a total personal finance boss too!)
What was the best financial advice that you’ve ever received?
DO: If you can’t buy it in cash, you can’t afford it. Now, there are definitely some things that I’ve bent that rule on, like my house and my car, but overall it has served me really well in terms of avoiding debt! It’s way too easy to think that you can just “put it on your card” but doing the harder thing—saving up and waiting until you can afford it—has been one of the most key things I’ve ever done for my finances.
Thanks for sharing your story, Desirae! To learn about more finfluencers, check out our 30 Inspirational Women in Canadian FinTech and Finance.