Trade The Journey

Trade The Journey

Weekly Progress: Sometimes Things Happen!

Where is my money going? I caught myself obsessing over this question as I drove to my co-working space. My Co-working Space is one of the significant expenses for the month. Almost a car payment to work in an area among others.

Is this expense worth it? Sometimes the cost amounts to 10% of my income. At first, the rates were manageable. Then the rates went up after two years of membership. They went up with limited warning as well. It was an unexpected increase in an expense that had not been budgeted.

What are my options? I could go to Starbucks, Coffee Bean, the library, or work at home. All viable options for me to consider, considering that my income is half of what it could be.

The distractions are what keeps me away from working at these free options. The internet connection can be a bit slower. Also, these places are only open for a specific time throughout the day while the co-working space is open for 24 hours, seven days a week.

It’s a subtle luxury I’m able to afford while living at home.

To be around like-minded people working towards their goals of starting a business is inspiring. At home, Starbucks, the library, and coffee bean, I’m often the only person working continuously throughout the day. At the co-working space, everyone else is working throughout the day as well.

I remember looking at the person next too me eating their lunch while working, and I thought, “I’m in the right place.”

But…

If my money were limited, free would be my only option. Working at these free locations would have to work for me. But so far, I’ve been able to save for the year by making some severe cutbacks. And this will be the first year I will be able to write this location expense off as a business expense.

In March 2019, I entered the business world officially. Owning a business means increasing risks and capital opportunity cost. Now money is either going one of three locations: Towards necessities, Savings/Investments, and Business Expenses. Finances tend to be tight around this time.

It may be a while before things truly begin to improve, which means that emergencies should be kept to a minimum! An emergency could mean possibly dipping into my savings. But you can’t always prevent an emergency, and you don’t know when it might occur. You also don’t know what the costs will be.

The Remedy…

Well for the last couple of weeks, I’ve been keeping my discretionary spending to a minimum. Cutting back in all areas of my life as mentioned. Painful but it gets easier with time. I’ve also begun to check my checking account or have an update be sent to me daily displaying my balance.

Rather than try to avoid looking at my bank account because of embarrassment, I look. Like everyone, I shy away from looking at my bank account when I know the balance is low. It may help me avoid feeling bad, but it doesn’t help in the long run.

I constantly have to make adjustments on what I thought I could buy to what I could afford. The key for me is to think about “What-Ifs.” If my car were to break down or something significant happen:

  • Do I have any reserves I can get to?
  • How long would it take for the money to get to me?
  • Do I have to pay a penalty to withdraw the money?

Sometimes things happen. Life doesn’t care what you’ve got going on, what you were saving for or anything else. So I say all that to say, this is why I opened two savings account at the bank. The money I have left over and the small amounts I receive from cashing coins/bottles go into this account.

Fees for the account? Of course. There are other options like a money market fund, but this could involve high minimums or other factors. Although the savings account isn’t the best in terms of returns, in regards to peace fo mind, its second to none.

This is money that’s extra for me, so putting it in an account where I have access too it is the most important thing to me. Its been tremendously helpful for my stress level and level of preparedness.

This week I ‘d have to give myself a “B”. I did my best to eat home, save, and hold off on investing until I was ready to invest.

Simple disciplines help to produce small wins along the way.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Corrections?

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