I feel like I've hit a roadblock (with my attitude)

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-2001
I feel like I've hit a roadblock (with my attitude)
25
Wed, 02-29-2012 - 5:08pm

I've been at this for three months, and have had almost laserlike attention to the details of meeting my financial goals.

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Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997

I do think there is trial and error involved.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-2001

Thanks Kelly,

That's is exactly!

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-28-2009

What you're feeling is so normal, especially in the beginning stages when you are super aware of your debt journey. Every dollar takes on more meaning.

I think a great way to combat the highs & lows is budgeting. A lot of members on here have their "blow money". It's money that is accounted for in your budget, an amount that is unique to you. Maybe at this point in your journey, you can afford to set aside $10 a week just for you, for some guilt free spending. Or maybe it's $50 a week. It depends on you & your situation. I think it's better to allow this every week than not, and risk burnout & total debt journey failure. Does that make sense?

So, maybe one week you spend your entire amount at the mall. on starbucks. Or - you save for weeks, for those lamps that you want to buy free of guilt.

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997

I'm glad you explained further.

Funny that you mentioned hearing "DENIED" in your head when you spend money.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-19-1998

I know the feeling. We're in the process of buying a new stove (the oven doesn't function and one of the burners also died). Now I could get it used from Craigslist but after having lived with a crappy stove for 20 years I feel that's one thing I would like to not compromise on. We got a bunch of money come in at once and while I plan on socking most of it away as emergency fund this is a necessity and will add value to the house. I found a floor model at Sears they were willing to give me for a great price and it's just what I've always wanted.

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Avatar for poorboy2011
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-02-2011
Thanks, Kelly. It helps me to hear your story. I still want those dance shoes, though. ;)

Avatar for ddatepj
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-2003
Funny this is exactly what happened to me in the fall. I had laser like focus from sept 2010 until August 2011, and then started "sliding". I have that same thing about hearing "denied!". I have a hard time denying my kids classes and lessons and vacations that are not a necessity. But part of me can hear suze or Dave saying "your kids will benefit a hell of a lot more from you not losing your house/not being able to care for your own self in old age," etc. I don't have the answer but I know exactly what you mean. The only good thing I can say about my experience is that as bad as I feel spending money, especially spending more than I intended on something, which always seems to happen, is that I did shift my overall way of looking at what money is available for us to spend. I used to think it was okay to write checks from our heloc to cover living expenses. Then after I got wise to what an unfathomable horror that was, I thought it was okay to use a credit card as long as dh's bonuses within 2 years would cover it. Then after I realized how disastrous that was I thought it okay to spend all of dh's bonus on household needs and vacations. Now I wouldn't even consider doing the above three. It's like a paradigm shift. What I consider "blowing" money now is nowhere near what I used to do. I recommend Dave Ramsey's books if you have not read them. I remember reading some great chapters about why you are doing this, what is the end game? Because without that you will never get there. Also I feel more pressure now having three kids. It isn't just about me anymore. And I don't work. My dh has always made a larger salary than he or I would ever have dreamed of, and while he is making it, it's easy to get sucked into the illusion that it will last forever.
One other thing that has helped me is to keep an area where you are succeeding separate in whatever way it takes. For me it is using cash only for groceries and keeping those savings separate. I tried couponing for one year and my success was staggering to me. I didn't just save 5 dollars here or there and have that savi gs get absorbed into my budget. I saved 3200 dollars out of 9600 I would have spent for the year, and I have what I saved in an account. And that 9600, or 800/month was optimistic to begin with, I normally would have spent waaaaay more than that. It also included all household products, toiletries, cosmetics, greeting cards, Easter, Halloween, and Christmas candy, and holiday entertaining meals. And this doesn't take into account all that I have stockpiled right now. My actual average savings rate was 70% at the stores. For every 30 dollars spent I got 100 dollars of food! And I am getting better at it every day. My point is that even if spend 200 on a dress for myself it doesn't cancel out the good I did by saving with coupons on groceries. Because if I hadn't couponed I would have spent the extra 5 dollars AND still spent the 200 on the dress. So overall, my household is still better for my having saved, and acquired new saving habits. Things don't cancel each other out.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2007

Hi bumblingalong,

Oh boy, can I ever relate to this post.

Kate


empty purse

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2008

Oh dear!

Norma


"Patience is the best remedy for every trouble"- Plautus


Avatar for ddatepj
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-2003

This was a very interesting article. I think for me, it comes down to time management. Even if my debt were gone right now, and I had my 42K efund in place, and had my sinking fund set up to manage the flow of money through the months and years, my real problem is not just about whether or not I define myself by debt, but whether I fight to keep that "flow" from eating up my efund. It's about getting to the point of "nope! Out of money for this category for this month!" Or "denied!". Even if I was out of debt and have money in the bank, lots of money, I still have to be able to make that "no" statement because that was not how I "planned" my budget.

I have read a lot of books about money and happiness. One theory places value on experiences over things. The memory of that event keeps triggering happiness.

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