From The Straits Times    |

Hey you! Have you gone online recently and realised that there’s a whole new lexicon you no longer understand? Like why is the word “core” added to every fashion trend? Or what is a pick me, and why do these people want to be picked? Internet Analysis is a commentary column that helps to break down these new terms that made its debut on the internet and social media, and helps you fellow reader, navigate the confusing world wide web. Just call it your internet cheat sheet.

Karishma Jashani, a 27-year-old local sales executive working in the tech industry, earns over $300,000 annually. Each month, she budgets $3,500 for rent, $2,200 for personal and property taxes, around $4,000 for credit card bills and $1,000 for other miscellaneous expenses. She shares this exact breakdown of how she budgets her monthly salary through her TikTok (@karishmairl).

@karishmairl lets breakdown finances💰😩 #salary #payday #howispendmymoney #howmuchispendinaday #howmuchispend #finance101 #WomenofTikTok #adviceforwomen #learningisfun #spendinghabits #AXERatioChallenge #fyp ♬ original sound – Karishma 👩🏽‍💻🫶

Karishma’s not alone – on TikTok, content creators are candidly sharing how they budget their paychecks under the hashtag #paydayroutine, which has garnered more than 70 million views to date. In short one-minute videos, creators not only reveal their take-home pay for all to know on the social media platform, but also openly share how they account for bills, daily expenses, investments and savings.

Why is #paydayroutine taking off?

According to the creators of these videos, they’re making their budgeting routines public in order to help encourage others to save and invest. “[This] goes to show how making money can be easy but keeping it is hard,” says Natalie Garces, a 25-year-old full-time analyst and part-time content creator living in Seattle, in a comment under her video. “[I] just want to share my process/how I manage my money – everyone’s situation is different but I want to encourage others to save and invest.”

Lexi Larson, a content creator in Denver who earns $70,000, shares every minute detail of how she budgets her paycheck, including her credit card bills and savings. “And that’s how [I] budget [my] paycheck when the world is burning and inflation outpaces wage growth,” she says at the end of one of her #paydayroutine videos, which has more than 1 million views to date. 

How accountability can rein in your spending

Making such knowledge public also fosters a sense of public accountability when it comes to responsible spending and saving. 

@easesence

Getting paid means I get to do my payday routine for my 1.2k salary + a bonus. I use my 50/30/20 budgeting spreadsheet to breakdown my budget for the upcoming month #budgetbreakdown #paydayroutine #salarytransparency #googlesheets #paycheckbreakdown #spreadsheet #budgeting #budget #budgetingtiktok

♬ X World – Muspace Lofi

According to the Her World What Women Want survey, readers save a median of 21 percent of their salary every month currently. A recent global survey found that 60 percent of consumers reported that they live paycheck-to-paycheck, with 66 percent of those consumers being Gen Zers.

This trend not only fosters social accountability but also provides valuable insights into effective and ineffective approaches to managing personal finances. 

No gatekeeping around here

Most of the comments that Karishma has received are positive, but “there are still people who don’t believe that a woman like myself can earn and spend the way I do”. This multifaceted discourse is, in itself, a testament to the need for more pay transparency.

“Pay transparency is extremely important and I’m a huge believer and advocate for it. The trend #paydayroutine not only [offers insights into] how people spend their paychecks, but also what they are actually earning in certain roles. It helps level the field for job searchers and employees.” With more individuals willing to share their compensation experiences even on social media platforms, this could signify a larger movement towards accountability in an era marked by heightened conversations about equality.

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