Releasing thoughts from my brain so they don’t control the rest of my day.

Debt scares me.

When I was a kid my family did not have a lot of money. Often we barely had enough to get by. My parents always made sure that we had food to eat., but I do remember instances where I was wearing my shoes until they had holes in them, and then continuing to wear them past that point. I do remember my siblings and I having to go out on our bikes to the nearby recreation centres and ball parks to look for cans so that we could collect enough money to hopefully put five dollars worth of gas in the vehicle so my father could get to work. I do remember a few times when the collection of cans did not provide enough and my dad actually hitch-hiked to work.

Debt scares me. I don’t ever want to go back to that place.

Now that I’m an adult, I am really good at living within my means. I’m really good at not getting something unless I absolutely need it. I’m really good at going without. I know the difference between needs and wants and I know how to stretch a dollar. I’m very careful with what I purchase. I’m very careful with how I choose to live because debt scares me.

I want a plan.

I want to know that everything is going to be okay. I want safety and security in a world that can provide anything but.

50 thoughts on “Releasing thoughts from my brain so they don’t control the rest of my day.

    1. I actually used to have one. I loved it when I did it. I kind of fell off when my mom started chemo and never picked it back up. Old habits, ya know…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Money helps, but does not entirely solve that yawning need. I grew up financially unstable as well. Putting money in a retirement plan and watching it grow provides a sort of “Well if it all goes to hell, this will keep me going for a while,” feeling. Beats the alternative.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. The thing about an anxious mind is that ‘when all goes to hell’ is always in the back of your brain! I think that’s where my motivation comes from. If I always prepare for the worst case scenario then I get to be pleasantly surprised if life hands me better.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It is a smart way to live. Flashy things don’t really impress me. What is far smarter is to afford, and be happy with what you have, no needing to compare yourself to others.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes!! We are well on our way to minimalism. You’re taking the right steps Living within your means! Debt scares me too. We don’t have any and will do whatever it takes, go without whatever isn’t needed to stay out of debt🙏🏼

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I had a different upbringing as you (upper-middle class), but my parents always taught me the value of the dollar and the hard work to earn that dollar. As well as saving more than spending. Their lessons have carried me throughout life, as I would always make sure never to spend until my bank account got negative, as well as putting away part of my earnings in separate accounts to accrue interest. It boggles my mind that a lot of people I know (Americans are guilty) do not know how to handle their money, and it’s no surprise that they’re in perpetual debt as a result. I think you’re doing fine with the habits you have; you may never know that everything’s going to be okay, but if you’re doing okay now, then I don’t think you have much to worry about. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for the reassurance.
      I also agree, a lot of people really don’t understand the harm they’re doing to themselves when they’re accruing debt. I understand that some people really have no control over the debt that’s thrust upon them (hospital bills, etc…) but a lot of people do. And it’s like living with a weight over your shoulders that makes it hard to breathe. Sounds like your parents taught you right with your upbringing.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. As a finance professional there is a secret that we dont want non finance professional to know. We want to make sure you are afraid so you will need us. Imagine if everyone was financially stable? It would destroy a multi billion dollar industry.

    The secret? Is time. There really arent get rich quick schemes. Consistent investments over time (10-40 years) takes advantage of compounding interest. Over time as your interest and balances grow wealth will accumulate. Thats it, time. It’s very hard to look at your 30 year old self and say “Sacrificing this now is going to set my 60 year old self up”

    Consistent steady investing in good mutual funds over time will produce wealth. Its going to take you decades, but you can do it, many of us have.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I actually got taken advantage of a couple of years back. For the better portion of my 20’s I was making investments in with a large investment company and they squandered my cash. I started when I was 21 and I cashed out when I was 28 after I realized of the $10,000 I put into it, there wasn’t even $2,000 in my account. It was a scary time for me. I became very untrusting of financial institutions. I’m still working on that trust. I know I should invest. Everything in me screams ‘Don’t hide your money in the mattress’. Guess it’s time for me to smarten up.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The most intelligent investors I’ve worked with my career are the ones who are educated and trust there instincts. It is OK to put your money in a mattress, it’s just not going to grow. If you can live with that that’s OK. If I were advising you I would just tell you to open a fidelity account and buy a few mutual funds on your own. What do you invest in? Mutual funds that have stocks in companies like Microsoft Apple Home Depot Amazon Apple. You know companies that make products and make profits. It’s never too late to start investing, Time is on your side.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. “I want to know that everything is going to be okay. I want safety and security in a world that can provide anything but.”

    You’re doing a fine job by avoiding debt :). I’m the same, I’d never let myself get into debt for anything. I wouldn’t be able to live with the stress. And I’ve never held a stable job, so… 😆.

    Having to collect cans though so your Dad could get to work… that is hard to imagine in Canada! Tragic but heartwarming at the same time.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. As much as I gripe about my family and how we generally don’t get along for anything or about anything, I will say that when push comes to shove, we work together to make it through whatever the world throws our way. It was a tough time. There was a good seven years there that it took everything we had, every thing we could give, to make sure that we made it through. I know I complain about them a lot, but like I said in the post, there was always food on the table, even if it meant there was no gas in the car.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah! I completely agree with that notion. My grandfather passed away from lung cancer so you won’t catch me smoking a single cigarette or cigar… ever. Sometimes fear can be a good thing.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. That is great regarding living within ur means!!!!! I’m a believer in simplicity. Enjoying simple small things through mindfulness for example is a great way of life! Cultivating such a habit will serve u as your means move up and down over the years!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. “Enjoying simple small things through mindfulness for example is a great way of life!”

      I find this a really important goal to move towards in life. I think this is really what I am aiming for in life.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Likewise, definitely! I’ve seen people with way more income than me constantly buying new “toys” like expensive cars…the joy is gone after a few months or so and then it’s another car, etc. it doesn’t scratch their itch so to speak. Like the scripture verse that says he who desires silver will not be satisfied with silver (or something to that effect)

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  6. It’s the same fear I have as well. I recently got myself out of credit card debt after stupidly bought stuff that I thought it would make me happy. Even with no job, I’ve managed to use whatever savings I had to clean out my debt. Right now the only thing I have going is my student loans but that had to be put on hold due to my unemployment situation. The only thing that’s been keeping me afloat is saving every bit of dollar I can get from unemployment insurance and only use it towards basic necessities, like food and utility bills.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Oh, my heart goes out to you. I spent the first half of this year living off every dollar I could save for food and necessities. Stay strong ❤ You will definitely get through this. And, it's times like these that will remind you of just how strong you are and just what you're capable of. Sending you some serious solidarity ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  7. It scares me too. There is not much of a buffer when it comes to having what you need and not. Some have more than others, but especially in these uncertain times, it weighs on my mind a great deal.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I feel this so hard. My only problem is that I think my childhood of not having much and having to go pick up water bottles from the dollar store so we could wash our hands when the water was cut off has led to me thinking I have to spend money as soon as I get it and “enjoy it while you can” instead of having a healthy and disciplined budget in place. Any advice?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve definitely felt that before. I think it’s about finding a balance. For me, when I get paid now, I give myself a ‘fun fund’ which is a certain amount of money I can spend on what I want and enjoy it while I can. From there, I’m diligent about ensuring my bills are paid and that I have something still in my bank account… just in case. The fun fund is important for your mental health and being able to appreciate the work that you do. Like I mentioned on your post, it’s kind of relevant towards a lot of topics, life is all about a balance. Look at me, rambling so much tonight.

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  9. I know that I suffer from exactly the same thing but actually in reverse, my childhood was a very privileged one and in terms of possessions I wanted for nothing until I left my Grandmother at the age of 14 and she cut off all of my allowances, then I had to fend for myself and even now I worry about whether or not their will be enough money to last the month out.
    I am working on budgeting and financial freedom now and find a sense of peace from not thinking about whether or not I will be able to pay my bills etc.
    I actually have a tub in which I put all of my loose change and find that helps me to save for some of the necessary things or just to have a fun night out etc.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I have one of those jars for loose change too!

      I can’t imagine what it must do to a psyche to have those things and then not have them. I’m sure that a lot of people go through it, but it’s like… the reverse of what I’ve been through in life. I think both really teach you the value of money and the things that you have when you have them. That’s for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Very wise my dear V, I myself have never had a good relationship with money and have never been financially successful as an adult on my own. This year I’m determined to change that. We got this sister😉❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. 2020 has been a hell of a year so far, but I’ll be damned if we can’t get something good out of it. I believe that you, and I, can be completely financially stable. Let’s do this!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I can relate to this. Debt scares the shit out of me too. I know how money can make or break a family. I’m glad you recovered from that phase and developed skills to handle such situations in future. Practicing minimalism makes life much easier and simple. Saving money and spending it on stuff that “absolutely” makes you happy gives a good reason to avoid a lot of impulse purchases.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Minimalism does help. When you find yourself happy with the things that you have and using the things that you have, you don’t feel as much of a desire to try and ‘Keep up with the Jones family’.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. There is good debt and a bad debt. There is no harm in the mortgage, for example. Most of the time, I take zero-interest financing because it gives me more flexibility in money management. So I take that loans most of the time, even when I technically can pay the whole amount. It builds your credit history 🙂 Just do not go into the credit card debt.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Hi V, I found this on the web: Eustress produces positive feelings of excitement, fulfillment, meaning, satisfaction, and well-being,” Lee said. He explains that eustress is good because you feel confident, adequate, and stimulated by the challenge you experience from the stressor.

        -What do you think?

        Like

  13. I totally agree with this, actually we had the same experience. I can still remember I need to collect plastic bottles on the park everynight near in my village just to sell them to the junk shop, in order for me to finance few my projects or for the extra curricular activities in school. Somehow it was such a cool experience but I would never be back to it. I can tell myself that I’m good managing my finance too. Thanks for sharing! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  14. I relate with to this very much! I grew up very poor! Poverty doesn’t care how you are! My husband on the other hand has no clue what’s it’s like to want for anything… which makes adulting and finances interesting at times.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. How do you find that happy medium? I’m having a hard time lately, trying to decide to allow myself to invest in worthwhile things. I keep telling myself to stay away.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve let go of controlling anything and prayed that God would step in. The more I try to push my way the more I fail and we fight. Then the kids are upset and nothing gets done. I have really been just handling my own responsibilities, praying and saying “okay” to everything… I’m not letting anything get to me at all. Literally nothing is worth an argument to me anymore.
        I’m struggling too… so I pray a lot… Gods probably like girl I hear you… already!
        Staying away or being still/ being quiet for A bit might not be a bad idea… then get back in there! From reading your post you’re a strong person! I have faith in you!

        Like

  15. It always feels good to be debt-free but sometimes it’s not always that easy. We also had holes in our shoes, which we ‘fixed’ with plastic cut-outs from lemonade bottles. My mum was a single parent to four kids and she tried her very best, so I don’t blame her. But like you, I’ve seen poor and I’ve been in debt. I don’t like it but sometimes, it was the only way to provide for my two sons, see them through school and uni as well as having holidays. I don’t regret that, ever. But yes, I’d love to be debt-free 🙂

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  16. Debts always feel like a burden unless you pay back them. It is always good to know the difference between need and want. You must save money because money acts like your friend when you need it and in case of an emergency.

    Liked by 1 person

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