Thursday, January 22, 2015

Back from Vacation...

Ahh, a small respite from the ever demanding world is what the bf and I took and how needed it was. Luckily I had set aside some money for just this months ago and the room expense wasn't something that needed to go on the credit card (well it did, but then paid off!).

What was really important about this vacation was not only that it was paid for from a specified savings account, but that it was all about resting and recharging. Appreciating the down time and one another. We had been busy working five and six day weeks, eating whatever was available and probably not the healthiest. 

Yes, at one point I thought about it, and really questioned about using the saved up money towards a vacation instead of an extra payment towards student loans. And then those thoughts made me realize that life isn't just about paying off debt and working towards the next goal, it is about enjoying it. That is why 'extra' money was found for dance classes. These are the small wonderful things that make life worth living. 

It also made me realize the difference between cheap and frugal. There are days where we are actively working towards our goals by not buying lunch out and skipping on things we may not need. However, the pursuit of being cheap consequently makes you a miser along the way. Everything is an expense that can be sacrificed. Nothing is really that important, health and happiness are sacrificed. A balance has to be found in how far anyone should go for a healthy bank account. 

In the end it was all worth it. We were able to experience a wonderful quaint town, consume some of the best food, and not worry about a single thing, except when our next nap would be.

Have you ever thought about using a goal - specific account for extra payments towards your debt? Did you do it or did you go through with the intended goal? 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

An Un-Resolution Type of Year...

Last year, I was so interested in having goals written down and posted everywhere so wherever my mind or body wandered to, they would consistently reappear. It became almost an obsession that got me somewhat farther in some goals and pretty much nowhere in others.

And this year, my friend wrote me a letter asking what mine would be this year. And she followed with, why not just skip them altogether?

I really stopped and thought about it. Why make resolutions that you will only look at months later and go, well that's too hard or I needed to have started earlier. Why give yourself such pressure early on?

With that in mind, I jotted down what would have been my resolutions for 2015 and instead made them into daily goals or habits that would slowly but surely change the outcome of my year.

A few of them include drinking more water, practicing a skill everyday, reading for a few minutes (either morning or night). They might not seem major, but they do add up to about an hour everyday. And perhaps they still are in some way resolutions, but there is no outside pressure to go above and beyond each day to achieve some high and mighty end goal, that if not checked off, leaves me with the feeling of guilt and regret on the last day of the year.

These types of daily goals are allowing me to focus on each day and on what is in front of me and not always what's ahead of me. The end goal is easy to come up with, read 100 books in the year, but the breakdown has stopped me from procrastinating.

And in all honesty, I feel a lot happier. There is no big wall or obstacles that need to be accomplished at the end of the year. The focus on the here and now is making me stop and enjoy each and every small task. And if I fail, it's okay, the world will still be there tomorrow.

Any resolutions that you are working on, picking up or thinking about finally laying them all to rest?

Monday, January 5, 2015

Slowing Down By Being Sick...

It's that wonderful time of the year again, no not some new resolutions, but the season of the cold and flu. You know it's coming because your body is telling you there is something slightly off. You deny it, or you start chugging OJ, but it's too late. The next day, you wake up not knowing whether you brushed your teeth and fed the dog. It takes all your energy to fall out of bed. This isn't your finest moment,  but it's the best time to slow down and take in the moment.

1. Take time to take care of yourself. The reason you probably got sick (because you know it's true) is that you have been working too much and trying to do everything at once. Take a day or two (or maybe three) to take a bath instead of a quick shower. To have a salad before your main course. To really let the stew simmer.

2. Catch up on the small things you have always meant to do. Maybe you have three episodes of that tv series left. Or 50 pages in that book by your bedside. Days like this make me feel lazy and like nothing was accomplished, so even getting something small like done makes me feel that much better.

3. Have a little treat. A bowl of ice cream.  A few pieces of candy. Your body does deserve it.

What's your favorite tip for your sick day? ( I will taking all into consideration these next few days...).