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Why Dave Ramsey thinks you should live like a broke college kid

CNBC logo CNBC 5/23/2018 Emmie Martin
Dave Ramsey, financial expert and author of "The Total Money Makeover" © Jackson Laizure/Getty Images Dave Ramsey, financial expert and author of "The Total Money Makeover"

Graduating from college and entering the working world come with a lot of firsts: First job, first apartment and, for a lot of new grads, first time managing their own money.

But that doesn't mean they need to be apprehensive. According to Dave Ramsey, the financial expert and author of "The Total Money Makeover," "There is no reason why anyone graduating from high school or college can't enter into a winning process."

In 2017, Ramsey shared his best advice for newly minted college graduates, and it's just as relevant for the class of 2018 and anyone just starting out. Here's how to set yourself up for a financially successful adulthood. 

1. Budget

Ramsey advises making a budget on day one and sticking to it — no matter what.

"I tell young people who call our radio show that you're already used to living like a broke college kid, so keep living like one until you start making grown-up money," he tells CNBC Make It.

"That way you can clean up any debt you might have, build up your emergency fund and start saving for the things you want and need down the road like a better car and a down payment on a house."

2. Be patient

Ramsey also warns new grads that the first few years in the workforce aren't the most glamorous. You're probably not going to land your dream job right away, and you're probably not going to be getting rich, either.

This is the time to buckle down and learn from those around you.

"Remember, you don't have experience right now and that you're going to need to work like crazy, learn everything you can and make yourself a valuable team member," he says.

3. Hustle

Hard work now will pay off later, Ramsey says.

"Will there be struggle? Oh yes. Guaranteed. There really isn't a yellow brick road. You need that struggle in order to succeed. Embrace it. It's part of the journey!"

Read Ramsey's full message to the class of 2017 below:

Congratulations! It's an exciting time. The good news is there is no reason why anyone graduating from high school or college can't enter into a winning process. To do that, you need to have a budget and stick to it. You need to take control of your money so that it doesn't control you.

You need to start at the bottom and work your way up. I tell young people who call our radio show that you're already used to living like a broke college kid, so keep living like one until you start making grown up money. That way you can clean up any debt you might have, build up your emergency fund and start saving for the things you want and need down the road like a better car and a down payment on a house.

Hopefully you've already chosen a field you can be passionate about — something with a good track record of success in the marketplace where you can actually make a living. You're probably not going to find your dream job while the ink on your diploma is still drying. Take a deep breath. You are going to find a job.

Remember you don't have experience right now and that you're going to need to work like crazy, learn everything you can and make yourself a valuable team member. Will there be struggle? Oh yes. Guaranteed. There really isn't a yellow brick road. You need that struggle in order to succeed. Embrace it. It's part of the journey!

Related video: Here's what you can do to save money in college

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