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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Minimalism - in your job

Or not...  it's actually Tuesday... but do you resonate with TGIF????
Can you not wait for the week end to come? For those 2 days off?
Do you start planning your next vacation/time off as soon as you return to work?

Why do you get up for in the morning???  A job that gives you the money you need to pay for the stuff you don't? Or to do work that you love and is meaningful to you?

Have you ever wish you could be elsewhere when you're at work?  That the building caught fire so you'll have a few months off?  That you get fired so you have another chance to start over? Be honest... the answers are for your ears only...

If you're anything like I was prior to June 2012, you're getting up in the morning to get a salary... to pay mortgage/rent, car, debt, vacations, stuff, clothes, gifts...  and the list can go on endlessly... You're doing work you're good at and get an income you judge sufficient or close to... You're doing work where you can move up the ladder to increase your income and improve your situation...

If you're anything like me now, you can get up to do work you love and is meaningful... to you and others...  work that brings a smile on your face and on the face of others that stop by every morning... You're doing work you love... that makes the day go fast...  work that provides, on top of a small nearly sufficient income, other forms of happiness: like people being happy to see you... people being happy to connect and chat... you give people what they want...  and you see the smile on their face. 

Now you may think that no every one can be lucky enough to do work they love (I use to think that too)... bills, rent/mortgage and utilities need to be paid... and not everyone has a husband making enough money!  Well, this is where you're wrong!  My husband also does work he loves... and it is NOT enough money to pay for food, shelter and other cost of living by itself... and this is why I work too... part time...  BUT, we've made choices long ago... we made the choice to find a way to decrease our cost of living, to find a way to slowly go debt free and to find a way to do work we love and can do for a while without having to spend money on useless things to de-stress...  without having to pay for a vacation to run away from it all...  without having to wait for TGIF to have a smile on our face! We wanted to do work that we'd not spend the rest of our life waiting for retirement...  work we could do for a long time if we're lucky enough...  Work that could be done anywhere if we choose to move again... Work that allows us to stay fit because it is also physical work...  and we do not drive to make it to there. And we save in gym membership!

Was it easy?  hell no!!  Was it worth it?  Oh yeah!!!

We made what some may call "sacrifices"... but we like to call "choices".   We call it choices because sacrifices imply you lost something in it... and we really didn't!  We actually gained so much!

We are both:

less stress

Our relationship is stronger because we allow ourselves to grow in it...  not to make more money out of it... We allow ourselves to each do work we love...  and figure out how to pay the bills nonetheless... while paying debt AND saving money for our next move.

We decided to work closer to home - less commuting fees.  I walk or bike to work...  my husband takes his bike or public transit. - He's looking into carpooling for the winter. Commuting fees are, roughly, for both of us, 30$ per month...  Nothing else!

Did you know that working close to home - less then 1/2 hour commute is worth 10K on you pay check... in expenses not spent... and stress not lived! Calculate how much your car cost you really?  And all that time spent in traffic jam?

We decided to do work we love which means, when we have time off, we do not feel like we have to run away from our lives... on a vacation or anything/anywhere else...  Time off can be spent simply at home, or around our home doing free outdoor activities.  Do you have any idea how much you spent in money to relieve the stress from the job you hate?  How much clothes do you buy?  Wine? Restaurant? Vacation? All that because you need to de-stress...  And how often do you get sick as soon as you have a few days off?  Do you have any idea why?  Because you are too stress....  all the time! When your body is feeling stress going away, if takes this time to heal... and to do so, it makes you sick!

Did you know that doing work you love is also worth 10K on your pay check...  in expenses not spent to relax, run away or forget...

We haven't take a "real" vacation in almost 3 years as a family... and a little over 4 years as a couple...  and our couple is really strong... because we can connect at home...  in between work days...  we do not need to wait for a vacation to do so because we are not stressed! Life is much nicer when there is no stress... you can communicate and connect with others more freely.

Now if you can find work you love... close to home... you just added 20K to whatever salary this might pay you...  of course, you'll need to address the other issues like cost of living... because if you take a pay cut, something's gotta give! And this is where all my posts from the previous Tuesdays on minimalism in your home, diet, wardrobe and social life come in handy... because if you've done the work, you know what you can let go off now...  if you've done the work you have an idea of how you can decrease your cost of living... which is often times directly related to being able to do work you love.

And next post, will be on budget... so if you do all the work by next Tuesday, it will all fall into place!

Now, on top of your regular 9-5 job that you may or may not like, and may or may not take hours to get to and from...  how many of you do overtime?  how many have a second job? how many consider taking a second job or increasing the number of hours they do? how many choose to do a longer day to avoid traffic?  All this means less time doing things you like with people you love. All this means more stress.

Of course, this might be a temporary measure... like if you want something special for a specific reason (a pool for eg - assuming this is essential to you) and your budget does not allow for it... or if you want to work on going debt free faster...  however, this cannot be a long term thing!  You cannot work 50-60h a week all the time!  It is insane... and dangerous for your health:  physical and mental.  Not to mention detrimental to your family... and if you have no family, detrimental to the one you could have.... or friendships... 

Most times (I would actually say all the time, but...), working more is NOT the answer... not in the long run anyway...  the richest people are those who can live with less...  not the one with the highest income!  You can have all the income you want...  you can double/triple your income, you will always fall short!  Because there is always more to do/buy.. there are always nicest things to get... nicer places to see... nicer restaurant to try...

If you're happy with what you have... you no longer need anything... and you no longer need so much money! If you learn gratitude... if you live simply, you'll need less money and therefore will finally be able to do work you love...  and be less stress... and healthier!  You'll be able to enjoy life's little pleasure without having to spend thousands of dollars on a trip to Cuba...

In order to live the life we wanted and do work we love that does not stress us out... work that we do not have to wait for Friday or the next Holiday or the next vacation to be happy, my husband and I had to decrease our budget by 3 folds...  and where we were not saving anything and creating debt on top of that, our "new" budget, even though 3 times lower then it used to be, provides for saving and paying off debt! And some fun time to!

It is possible...

And I hope you can do it...

And the budgeting post from next week will also help...

Perhaps you are already doing work you love...  and that does not stress you... or you may think you do...  really think about it!

This question might help you figure it out for good:

If money was no object, how would you spend you day?

This is what you should do as a job...  nothing else... figure out how this can be done and you'll be happier then ever! After all, roughly 1/3 of your day is spent working... if not more! You gotta love it!

thanks for reading!
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