My bank account is, to say the least, terrifying at the moment. But still I spend most days thinking about ordering food, or about the money that I just spent ordering said food.

It was Sunday evening when I got the message from Cleo. 'Is it time time to activate your survival kit?'. I think so, yeah.

I went in-app and typed 'survival kit'. Here’s how the first five days went.

🌪 Monday

Cleo gave me a quick breakdown of how I used my money last week. Easy, only slightly painful, and it meant that I didn’t have to open my actual bank account and deal with the existential crisis that comes with that.

She asked me to set a target for how much I wanted to spend this week – I'm making a real effort to lay off the online shopping, but I wanted enough for groceries, an upcoming phone bill, and a takeout for Friday night because I’m not out here trying to make myself cry. I set it at $100.

💄 Tuesday

Not my finest of days. Accidentally spent $10 online on hand cream because my cuticles were threatening to collapse. Not an essential, and I broke my no-online-shopping rule but DW, Cleo was watching.

She hit me up with some self reflection and asked how I felt about my money today. Deep breaths. She also came through with some useful stuff about how to negotiate rent with my landlord. Cleo knowledge: check. Cleo sass: working on it.

*If you want rent info, literally just type ‘negotiate rent’ to Cleo.

🚮 Wednesday

Today, I really glowed up. I didn’t spend anything online (thank you) and I had an update from Cleo on my weekly spending that didn’t make me want to shave my head. I also played Spendr which is basically rating your previous buys so that Cleo can help you get rid of your toxic spending behaviours going forward.

💦 Thursday

Nothing from Cleo today. Kinda missed her so used Hype mode just before I worked out in my living room. I did some grocery shopping – it set me back about $40 but got me a lot of chips. Salty self-care is important rn.

🌶️ Friday

Heading into the weekend, I feel OK about my money. Cleo sends me a category breakdown of my weekly spending so far – it’s looking pretty slim, and given the sheer amount of time I’ve had to online-shop, I’m pretty proud.

I have a $25 phone bill to pay off this morning and concrete plans to order takeout tonight. That means I’ll have $15 left in my budget for the weekend. I’ve got my groceries and some absolutely huge Netflix plans, so I’d say I’m pretty well set up.

Final thoughts

I find myself jumping between calm and utter panic at the moment, so it’s nice to have Cleo regulating my emotionally-charged hand cream buys. It also feels good to step away from the big picture and focus on what I can control right now: my week-by-week spending.

Was also nice to have someone checking in throughout the week now that my friends have all taken to sleeping through the days.