WHERE DID ALL THE MONEY GO?
I suppose there are people out there that have not had to change their lifestyle due to the economy. I’ll have to leave it at suppose, because I sure haven’t come across any. Those folks I speak with have cut back on their spending, either voluntarily or due to lack of funds.
With rapidly escalating unemployment, I’m not sure my job is going to last and if it does, it may come with a pay cut. I have had to do what I wish the government would do cut back on my spending. I’ve also pursued a second job, another revenue stream if you will, and have found that I enjoy this.
I thought that the cutting back on spending would be easy. I’d stop my morning coffee, read my news on line, drive less, cancel some magazines, and so forth. The second job was supposed to be the hard part. Having to pull another 4 or 5 hour shift after my regular job is done was not initially appealing. Wow, did I have this backwards.
THE CUT BACKS
It’s harder than I ever imagined to give up my guilty little pleasures. I never realized how much I enjoyed reading the sports section over a cup of Starbucks. This small ritual had become a relaxation point to begin my day. Reading the news online was an easy one, I discovered I had really been doing this all along, but how people know that libraries won’t let you check out magazines? You actually have to read them there! What a bummer.
I do drive less. Since I live rather close to two supermarkets, I now walk when I can. The exercise is great, but I don’t relish making that walk when the weather turns hot. This has also had a secondary, positive effect in that I turn down some evening invitations to go out. Not only do I save money on gas, but I’ve also come to realize just how much I was spending eating out and/or having cocktails. Every dollar is precious.
THE NEW JOB
While this was the part I initially dreaded, I’ve really come to enjoy it. I work in a local coffee house and the fact that I never have to worry about this job outside of their walls is a real relief. My coworkers here actually enjoy their jobs! What a welcome relief from my normal gig where folks begrudgingly show up every day just because they feel they have to. I won’t lie, the extra money is nice too and I’m saving it just in case, but the unexpected enjoyment has become of equal value to me.
I’m pulling big time for President Obama, but if the economic road in front of us is longer and more difficult than it already seems, I’ll put myself in the best position I can. I do wonder though, if good times come soon, which job will I keep?