I get paid on Monday! Just 3 more days. I can't wait, and yet, I know I don't have much choice but to wait. I made it though! I made it through the month without having to borrow money from anyone, and that feels good. It took a bit of creativity, and a few hard phone calls. So the first thing I'll have to take care of is paying the bills I had to put off in order to make it this far in the month. I'm grateful to each creditor that was willing to work with me though. Unfortunately, I'm not sure it's going to leave me much to get through the first couple of weeks of Feb. The upside though is that from here on out, I'll be getting paid twice a month, and it appears my take-home pay is going to be about $2200 - which is a substantial difference from the average of about $800 I brought home through 2009!
What will I do differently now?
When I was married, we'd always pay the debts first and leave ourselves nothing to work with. This would put us in a position to need to borrow just to afford the basics. My intention is to reverse this and begin to pay myself first. In other words, to put money into savings and make sure my basic needs are met. The debts are important, but to continuously create scarcity for myself isn't going to create a new life, it's only going to perpetuate the same old life - just on a different scale.
I might need to get creative for the first half of February in order to achieve this intention since I do have to hold up my end of the deal with the creditors who worked with me this month. But I also know that my paycheck isn't my only income coming in - I still have the freelancing that I do, plus the child support. And I'll be receiving the financial aid money - all of which will be going into a savings account to be put toward the two terms that I'll have to pay for on my own at the end of my program.
I was reading a book recently, Overcoming Underearning, and it stated (more or less) that the key to financial freedom is having a vision bigger and more powerful than the current financial choice you have to make. That really struck me. Until recently, I've never had a very big or powerful financial vision for myself. But the opportunity to live on my own again is definitely keeping my attention!! Once I'm there though, I know I'll need a new vision for myself to help support me in continuing the make the right choices.
It's an exciting time! I assume I'll make my share of mistakes - anything new and different means stumbling around a bit. And that's OK with me. I'd rather make a mistake and learn, than to keep myself stuck out of fear.
Monday is only 3 days away!