Thursday, April 22, 2010

What's Enough?

I left my full-time salary-with-benefits-job to pursue a career in the industry that truly interests me. This particular industry is a blast to work in; I have fun almost every day. The hours are all over the place. The clients are interesting. And I get to dress people in fabulous clothing and accessories - pretty sweet!

Since I moved back to the Midwest, money has been a huge concern for me. Living in FL, I was starting on the path of financial hope - hope that my bills could get paid, I could money in savings, and my debt would be finished. My job was steady, so it was completely feasible to accomplish all of these things. However, I love to shop, eat, go out for the occasional beer/cocktail, and travel. So saving real amounts of money was difficult for me. Then I moved home for 6 months with no living expenses, a car to pay for, and a credit card and apartment fees to pay on less than half my previous income. Totally capable of taking care of myself financially in the comfort of my parents' house, yet it still didn't happen. So, moving to a new, steadier job seemed like the logical thing to do next. Living at home with no living expenses wasn't deterring me from spending on silly things, so living on my own working my way up in a company made sense.

Now I'm here. And it still doesn't feel like enough. I work hard, things are progressing well. I tell myself weekly that financially, I should be good to go within a year. Once I'm making more money, my concerns for finance will cease. My credit card will be taken care of, I'll have money in savings, I'll even make enough to live in my own place again. But I can't shake the nagging feeling that I'm going to be poor forever. (Ok, that was dramatic, maybe not forever). When does this feeling go away? How much money does it take to not feel poor? Is it a specific number? Maybe when my credit card is paid off, will that mean I can relax a little? And will I really be able to do it in a year?

Perhaps it's time to make myself truly accountable by using the internet to budget for myself. By sharing my credit card progress, maybe I can keep motivating myself to keep up on my finances better instead of just paying bills because they're there. I try to tell myself that I don't need to go out all the time because I'm still paying off probably 2 years of fun on my credit card. Shouldn't that be enough motivation?

Maybe there's never enough. Enough money, time, motivation, energy...maybe it's all about doing the best you can with what you have. Maybe that's the question I should start asking myself: am I truly doing the best I can with what I have? If we ask ourselves this question regularly, I wonder what kind of answers (and excuses) we can come with...


Sally said...

Get and read "The Richest Man in Babylon" (didn't I give it to you for graduation???) It mad a huge difference in my life.

Meredith Evans said...

Yes in fact you did! I read it again last year...maybe that needs to be an annual read :)