May 22, 2017
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Hiccups, Haitus and a Featherless Bird
Wow. The last six months have been quite a wild ride. My life went from laying the ground floor to becoming a licensed financial advisor to now working in web design, closet installation and a soon to be mortgage loan originator. I’ve never been one to be interested in one career or field of work and some may view that as a down fall. But I honestly think that the term ‘career’ may be a term that’s on it’s way out the door for most people. That’s not to say that someone can’t focus on one thing, I think we need that, but I’m a believer in having the freedom to make sure that one thing is what you really want to do. The time away also helped me prepare for baby #2 (who is here! ) and figuring out my next career steps and desires for my family.
As some may have noticed, during that time I took a short break from blogging and social media. Since this blog was finally up and running smoothly and I was happy with the design, I knew that now would be the best time to take a break and figure a couple things in life out. Keep in mind, this new experience of having freedom to choose my line of work, to stay home more often with my wife and kids, and to have financial freedom is quite a new experience for me. I definitely learned a lot on this short journey that can help so let me share some of it with you.
Life Is About Hiccups
You will experience life changing moments. They may be short, they may be long, they may be beautiful and they may be terrifying. They can also be annoying like hiccups themselves that never seem to go away. The way that we handle these bumps in life determines what kind of person we are. I had a friend recently tell me that he feels that my life is always under control. That may be true now on the outside but my mind can be a flurry of feeling out-of-control most of the time. I’m always looking for the next fun project, the next solution, the next idea to tinker with and sometimes life tells me what I’m going to do instead. As most of you know, our seemingly biggest hiccup in life is income. I would argue that instead, it’s spending. We fight and fight and fight to make money only to let it slip through our fingers.
There is an intriguing and sad story of Josef Stalin on his deathbed as he makes an analogy of how to hold a bird so that it doesn’t fly away. You can read it on your own but the gist is to pluck the feathers from the bird and then open your hand. Doing so leaves the bird cold and helpless but the bird is thankful for the warmth of your hand and therefor doesn’t try to escape. I’m not sure that the story is true but I’d like to use the analogy for money instead. Money has a stronghold on us and often causes the most hiccups in life. But if you were to remove the ‘feathers’ of money then perhaps it would lose it’s stronghold on your life and allow you to live more freely. So what are the feathers of money and how do you remove them?
Getting Back On Track
Getting back to what you really want to achieve in life can be a daunting task. We are surrounded by distractions and the ever-present notion of escapism. When we’re done doing what we don’t want to do for something that we need; i.e.: working for money; we then spend that money to escape the thought of returning to that task tomorrow. It’s a cycle of personal depravity. You spend most of your life trying to catch the bird and when you clock out at the end of the day, you’ve finally caught the bird! Then by the time you get home, you let the bird go or you’ve crushed it because you’re exhausted and your motivation is spent on someone else’s great ideas. So how do you hold onto the bird, in this case finances, so that at the end of the day you control where it goes?
In order to get on track, you need to figure out what track you want to be on. Where do you want your finances? Do you want to follow your own great ideas? Do you want freedom from debt or creditors? Freedom to tinker in your mind or spend time with your family more? Then remove the feathers of money that causes you to stumble. Take it one feather at a time. Start cutting out small debts or small memberships that you hardly use. Start setting aside more savings every month to reach a goal by the end of the year. Start laying out a plan to remove the power that money has on your life so that you can control your own fate.
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With BeardedBudget, I have developed a number of financial and merchant relationships; some of which are affiliate relationships. The opinions expressed here are mine alone and should not be construed as professional financial advice but honest reviews and recommendations based on my own experience. For more information, read the disclaimers and disclosures.