Duh Uh. I’m in a time of financial change (who isn’t?) and my anxiety around money has been rising. It took a while to understand the creepy feeling as I’ve only had it a few times in the last 40 years. The Your Money or Your Life program has served me that well. I’ve lived high on the hog but low on the financial food chain – and that worked for me exceptfor three times:
- After my coauthor Joe Dominguez died in 1997 several team members in our non-profit foundation moved on and we had fewer people were carrying the same work load. We had an ethic and identity before of “we do it for love not money” but had to hire someone finally to help; our staff person was investing tons of love in the work – but needed a paycheck.
- When I was diagnosed with cancer and realized I had plenty of money if well, but I could die of frugality if I only stayed within what my HMO would cover (grrr to the sickness care system). That was when I started to take a stipend myself from New Road Map for my work as Executive Director working full time til then for free.
- Now, when three stable financial realities are shifting all at once. I chose to buy a house with pretty much my all liquid savings, all but one of my little income streams disappeared temporarily and a friend decided to buy into the house and live in 1/4 of it (I live in 1/4 and we share 1/2). There’s been a great sucking sound out of my bank account (both house and minor remodeling), a trickle coming back in and … discovering my housemate has a different money style than mine (this IS the sandpaper of shared decision making).
Why am I telling you all this? Because as soon as I realized I was having financial discomfort I turned to doing Step 1-4 of the Your Money or Your Life program. I’ve spent this week doing a financial audit: what I own, what i owe (nothing – still pay cash for everything), what my enough point is (how much money do I spend month in and month out for what brings me fulfillment with neither deprivation nor excess), and how much I need to supplement current income streams to have enough – again.
I am actually going through that wonderful Your Money or Your Life shift – from fog, fear and confusion to clarity, ease and do-able steps.
Since I’m such an old hand at this approach, it’s not been hard to get a handle on it, and I’ll keep reporting here what adaptations I make to make ends not just meet but happily marry… again. I’m also engaged in an even more interesting inquiry – what happens to your “enough point” when your life circumstances change (by chance or choice)? More on that too. Stay tuned.