I find myself thinking about time a lot. Not so much in how to do everything I want within a day. More along the lines I can shake the feeling that I’m running out of time. Like I don’t have enough years left to do what I’d like. It feels like it’s slipping from me as fast as ocean waves come and go.
I’m in my mid thirties and for the past 6 months, there’s a constant low level anxiety that I’m running out of time to pursue what I want and where I’d like to be financially. Not unlike many others, I came to the party late and now I’m left scrambling; I feel I need to choose between some life goals or having financial freedom sooner.
What do the terms budget, minimalism, frugality and investment have in common? They’re often the first words people think of when figuring out how to do everything you want and still save. They provoke subtle feelings of discomfort, even perhaps leaving us feeling a little dirty. All the enthusiasm we had a second ago with planning how we want to spend our money evaporates and we pack it in. Because let’s face it, it’s human nature to avoid what FEELS or IS PERCEIVED to be unpleasant. It is possible to afford being social, hobbies and still save.
Happy International Women’s Day! In honour of this day, I’m including this off schedule post to recognize International Women’s Day. The first time Woman’s Day was celebrated was on February 28 1909. A few years later, it was moved to March 8th. Between the #MeToo campaign and rampant sexual allegations against public figures, there’s been a strong focus on equality and gender parity this year. It’s clear that we’ve made some good strides but we cannot get complacent as we still have a way to go.
Have you enjoyed perusing monthly expense breakdowns or personal net worth details other bloggers have published? Most of us enjoy the occasional financial voyeurism. I know I certainly do. As much as I enjoy peeking behind the curtain, it’s always left me with mixed feelings. It’s not uncommon for it to lead to someone comparing themselves without context to what is published. Have you ever felt great about your progress, then suddenly feel like it isn’t enough after seeing another’s progress? Personal net worth and monthly expenses should be shared to provide/receive support. You should only compare yourself against YOUR previous achievement. So after much thought, I’ve decided to share personal net worth in a different context and propose an alternative.
It’s no secret that I’m passionate about intentional living (knowing what your goals are), making conscious choices (frugality) and having a plan on how to spend your money to achieve it all. I’m passionate about personal finance as a means of turning your dreams into goals so they can become reality. I’ve mentioned that I accumulated $15,000 of credit card debt. It all started with the unexpected coma and death of my 57 year old mother. Paying Off Debt was My Biggest Financial Lesson. Yes, that’s right. I call it my biggest financial lesson, not my biggest financial mistake. Would you like to know why?
I’ve been fascinated by an experiment lately, where I introduce the concept of FIRE (financial independence/retire early) in conversations where lifestyle, goals or finances come up naturally. This isn’t done in the context of encouraging anyone to pursue it or how to do it, just at a very basic:
I’ve heard of this new trend where people are minimizing their costs and saving up to 50% of their salary to become financially independent after 10 – 15 years and some even choose to retire in their 30’s.
I’ve done this with friends, acquaintances, co-workers and even a local tailor. Reactions have ranged from intrigued to predictably ‘that can’t be possible’. The act of saying we all have different goals is one thing, but having that simple short conversation has been fascinating to see other perspectives. It’s really re-enforced how important it is to spend some time having those conversations. So what financial goals and perspectives are out there?
Have you ever spent time making plans for your goals and thinking ‘Awesome, I got this!’, only to start your journey and trip over an unexpected obstacle? Something you feel you could have seen coming? In a previous post, we covered how personal finances is similar to video games where you need protection and weapons. Whether you’re at the beginning or well into your journey, there are four financial obstacles you’ll should be on the lookout for and have the right protection and weapons to slay them:
- Destructive attitudes that prevent you from learning about personal finance
- Lack of goals
- Fear of financial skeletons
- Not understanding your emotional relationship with money