I’ve moved into my new digs – a 10ft X 10ft room in an older home out in the boondocks. It’s a big change from living in the heart of downtown, but I don’t miss the fancy apartment nearly as much as I thought I would. There is a bus stop right across the street from my new place which takes me to town and to my workplace. (I have no car, so this is awesome). Even though very few people my age would be willing to do what I’m doing and live how I’m living, I wake up every morning thinking of how much money I’m saving each month and it makes it all worthwhile.
My family, of course, thinks I’ve gone off the deep end. Giving up a great apartment, selling everything. They talk to me with concern in their voices. They know that I have debt, but they have no idea how much. And I’d like to keep it that way for the time being.
So far my Citibank credit card balance is down from $30,340.oo to $28, 469.02. Not bad, but not on target. Why?
And here comes the real world…
Reason 1: Expiration of Social Security tax cuts. I now have $100 less in each paycheck. That is, my monthly pay is now $200 less. I have lost $2,400.00 a year just like that. So, that’s is almost one month’s payment to Citibank that the government is taking back.
Reason 2: I’m experimenting with starting a side business (a third job) that may be another stream of income, but it will take time and upfront investment. Not a huge investment, but one or two Citibank payments worth. If it works, it will pay for itself and generate a small profit over time.
The good news is that my second job started last week. We have a training / orientation stage for the next few weeks and then we are on our own.
I also got another student loan forbearance approved for the next six months. My goal is too get a big chunk of this credit card down before the student loans kick in. I cannot wait for this credit card debt to die. I will have a little celebration when that balance is finally zero. If the card weren’t full of toxic chemicals I would toss it into the first bonfire I come across and then dance like a madwoman. The people already there may call the cops, but hey, it would be worth it. Hmmm, on second thought, I will likely just cut it up and treat myself to a nice dinner.
The Not So Good
One thing that I am already experiencing is a lack of time. Yeah, surprising huh? Who knew that three jobs makes you crazy busy. I will have to pace myself to avoid burnout.
Another thing that I am experiencing is lack of focus. It is difficult for me to stay focused at my first (primary full-time office) job or my second job (part-time) because I can’t stop thinking about my side venture (3rd job).
Working for myself and making my own money excites me. As I get older, I’m starting to dislike taking orders from and working for others. I’m no longer interested in advancing someone else’s agenda. I want to advance my own agenda. In the distant future, when I am financially more secure, I would like to work entirely for myself.
Keeping Perspective and Holding On
I keep these goals in my mind as I wait in the dark and freezing cold after work for my bus, which is chronically late during the afternoon rush hour commute home. Not 10 minutes late. About 25 – 45 minutes late. If the bus is already full, as it often is during rush hour, it doesn’t stop to pick up anyone else so I must wait for the next bus. Even when I’m standing there with my fingers and toes frozen and hurting from early stage frostbite, and feeling poor and pissed off, I have to cope with the situation. I keep the big picture in mind. Not only my personal debt freedom, but that in the grand scheme of things, my temporary discomfort is nothing compared to what others are going through around the world.
As I get ready for another week of work times three, I have to keep in mind how important it is to have a clear picture of what you want and the reasons why it matters to you. For me, I want freedom and control. I want to be in total control over how I spend what’s left of the limited time that we all have on this earth.
What do you want in life? Are you ready for the real world? I say, bring it on!
“Debtor’s prison is real, and opportunity cost is a bitch.” (DDSW)