What? I give up… it’s probably one of the hardest things I would have to decide to do or anyone for that matter. A part of us shatters when we are forced to make the decision to give something up in order to get out of a financial mess that we created or for reasons beyond our control.
When times are tough and it’s hard to make ends meet or we simply are drowning in debt we have to give something up. Sure we may NOT have to give something up and could keep juggling money from credit card to credit card or consolidating debt in order to ease the pain but is that enough? If you answered “that’s all we have left to do” the you need to find a way because you can’t live your life like that. It won’t last forever, the walls will crumble down on you eventually.
For some credit cards and consolidating debt over and over seems like the right thing to do but for others its way out in left field. For those that would do just about anything to get out of debt they would rather ‘give up’ something than to incur more debt along the way. It’s no secret that Canadians are sinking in mounds of debt we read about it all the time and for many reasons, job loss, work injury, illness, divorce the list could go on and on.
Never Give Up On Yourself
There are also many people who are in these situations that have come out on top because they didn’t give up on themselves. When I hear people say they can’t, I don’t know how, there is no way, it’s impossible. That’s giving up on you, don’t do that. We all have to grieve what life hands us if it’s not what we anticipated or dreamed of and for many it’s been a rotten life but we don’t have to continue down that path. Believe. If you have a crappy job for example make the most of it by finding ways to improve your skills to better your career with another employer. Think positive.
There comes a point though when we need to put all that behind us, move forward and figure out what we are going to do to make the money stretch or work harder for us.
I Give Up…
I was reading an article yesterday which was about asking Canadians what they would “give up” for $250 in extra savings every month. My mind drew a blank as I simply had no idea what I would give up if debt was taking over my life. A survey by ING direct provided information that many Canadians don’t think they are saving enough money each month.
I agree though that with simple planning and budgeting there is light at the end of the tunnel no matter what your income is. If you don’t make enough to cover the bills the options may be clear to you 1- make more money 2- give something up. If there’s nothing left to give then you may need to make extra money, some how, some way. The other options may be to move somewhere cheaper, move where the job opportunity takes you or start-up your own business and work for yourself.
Our friend Katrina did just that, a single mom with 2 kids who works full-time and needed more money, so she started her landscaping business to bring in more money. A friend of mine who is on disability has to be one of the smartest guys I know and also has a small side hustle. He can’t work so the family cuts down on all the expenses to fit the budget. It’s hard for him to watch his wife go work every day while he stays home to clean and cook. He said to me that “I have to do what I have to do for my family”.
If that means he gets clothes from a second-hand store or has to cut down on the groceries with no chips and snacks then they will do it. The kids don’t complain and know that their parents are doing what they have to so they don’t lose their house or their car gets taken away.
“We don’t want to be those people on that television show “Til Debt Do Us Part” as a couple at their wits end. We want to fight the battle and never let it get that far”.
They doesn’t spend more than they earn and he also doesn’t complain about his disability to anyone. He makes his life work “for him” even though he says parts of his life gave up on him. He makes extra money refinishing items he finds for free and sells them to keep himself motivated and to feel like he is giving back.
He says ” the worst thing you can do is feel sorry for yourself, that doesn’t pay the bills”. He searches online for freebies and sells them for more money. He told me there is always a way to make more money if you set your mind to it. The best part is he’s always smiling.
Get Rid Of Debt
I know many of my fans who read Tony’s debt story on the blog yesterday about how he is pulling his family out of $100,000 in debt, it gave them some hope. It really made me realize that sometimes in life we have to give things up to solve a problem. I’m sure Tony would agree that he would do whatever it takes to get his family above water even giving up stuff for a short period until they are at a happy place with their finances.
It’s harsh to say sometimes but when you’ve already spent money that you don’t have you may just have to suck it up and do without until you can get out of a mess. Some Canadians say they would give up social media for $250 extra each month to put towards their debts.
With all the available credit surrounding us like a drug it’s hard to say, No I’m on a budget or no, I need to get out of debt first before we go on a trip and blow more money that we don’t have.
Is it that sense of entitlement that creeps in here for some people?
It may make us feel better to have some liquid cash set aside in emergency savings which I think we all should have so we don’t turn to more credit when in dire need but how many actually use that emergency savings for the said purpose, an emergency.
Nearly three-quarters of Canadians say they would give up social media for three months in exchange for the chance to set aside that extra money, according to a survey released this week by ING Direct.
We Give Up ..
I was thinking about this most of the day wondering if I could give up social media and the reality is , no I can’t. Well, I could but it wouldn’t be my first pick to knock off put it that way. If I had no other choice, you bet I would, there’s always the library.
Last year I gave up smoking which was likely the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. If you are addicted to smoking, drugs or alcohol you know that you don’t really give it up for the money first you give it up to live first, so that didn’t count for me.
When it came down to the nitty-gritty If we had to give up something in our budget to save extra money we’d likely give up cable. We don’t watch much television as it is and it’s costing us around $60 a month. If we were that hell-bent on watching a TV program we could likely watch it on the computer or pretty Smart TV that we own.
That wasn’t enough though and we needed to think of more things we would give up. This reminds me of the time Mrs.CBB and I sat to do our first budget and decided to make 2 budgets. One budget was for the present and the other was just in case one of us lost our job, got injured at work or something drastic happened that we would have to survive on one income. We designed the second budget with all the things we would have to give up in order to survive and not dig ourselves into debt.
On an “I” note, I would also say bye-bye to my weekly allowance which I really only use for beer and the occasional coffee when I’m out on the road and my travel mug is empty. If I had debt that I “REALLY” wanted to get rid of I’d suck it up and scrap the allowance. Other parts of our budget we would smash is the cell phone, eating out, major renovations etc.
I’m sure we could pick it apart but the main thing is we are willing to give something up in order to have a better nights sleep and money peace in our relationship.
Love and Money
Many people ask us how we can be so happy all the time and it’s because we are so in love with each other. It’s also because we chose to give up stuff along the way together while living our life the way we want to. We plan and budget our money in order to live this life of debt freedom at a young age. It’s been a bumpy ride with lots of falls but we got right back up again. We will continue our budgeting journey because it has worked for us and it makes us happy.
Like Tony, his family has had to give things up and make choices they may not have wanted to but they did and they too are pushing forward, not living in the past, not complaining of how life dealt them a crap deck of cards. Living a frugal life while you are financially under construction and not giving up while you give up something is a better wau to build your castle than to build nothing at all.
We all deserve happiness, but sometimes we have to create that happiness on our own by giving up something to get something.
What would you give up for extra money in your budget to pay down debt?
PF WEEKLY READING LIST
Here is this weeks reading list which includes some of the best blog posts from many blogs that I interact and comment on and who also have a common interest in CBB. I hope you all enjoy this weeks round-up. There are a few more than normal that I really enjoyed so I hope you enjoy them as well! -Mr.CBB
- 1500 Days To Freedom– I Don’t Want Fries With My Retirement
- My Own Advisor- Hot Canadian Stock Tips
- Modest Money- People always ask me about How To Start A Blog and about Blogging and Advertising.. head over to check out all the info Jeremy has for you. I’ve learned alot from him. “Blog Advertising Part 2- Advertiser Tricks”
- One Smart Dollar- What To Do When You Are Injured At Work
- The Frugal Path– 5 Worst College Student Money Mistakes
- Johnny Money Seed- Would You Rather Worth 1920 hours per year or 8
- Budgets Are Sexy– Tips On How To Be A House Sitter
- IHeartBudgets- How To Use Christmas Lights All Year Long Without Being A Redneck
- The Outlier Model- Finding A Way To Say NO!
- Prarie Eco-Thrifter- How To Protect Your Online Banking Information
Recipes/Frugal Blog Posts of the Week
I made more Olive Bread yesterday although I made it with white flour. I honestly thought they were turning into the bread blobs as they wouldn’t stop rising. We were thinking about a plan B just in case they fell off the baking stone. I made two giant loaves of bread and they are much bigger than the photo shares with you. Just check it out above, can’t wait to get into these this weekend with our friends!
Top Recipe: Three Ingredient Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies – Coking Whims (check out how easy it is to make these cookies)
Inspirational or Funniest Post of the Week
Inspirational: Making Sense of Cents– “My Dad Was Awesome” Michelle share a short story about her dad and why he is so awesome. Truly inspirational and another reason to enjoy life to the fullest with those you love. Funniest: Budget and The Beach : Do I Need An Emergency Fund: One Cats Dilemma Tonya shares a guest post by her feline friend Pepe the cat. Smart, funny and just all around an important message for all pet owners to read.
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- PF Reading List #13- Good Friday, Good Food and Meeting Gail Vaz-Oxlade (canadianbudgetbinder.com)
- PF Weekly Reading List #10-Can I See Some Stolen ID Please? (canadianbudgetbinder.com)
- PF Weekly Reading List #15- Bieber Wants To Help Your Kids “Get Money” (canadianbudgetbinder.com)
- PF Weekly Reading List #11- Free Money, Want Some? (canadianbudgetbinder.com)
- PF Weekly Reading List #12- Canada Budget 2013, CBB vs RFI (Guacamole) (canadianbudgetbinder.com)
Photo Courtesy of: watcharakun/freedigitalphotos. net