Monday, February 21, 2011
Baby Steps..........to big Dreams
When I decided to change my stethoscope for an apron, the ability to leave my full-time job did not happen overnight. We had debt and a lot of it. In the beginning it seemed overwhelming and hopeless. I had no idea how it would all work. But God did.
God loves the hopeless case, where His strength is made perfect in our weakness!
I want to encourage those of you with the same desire, to keep taking baby steps.............. to big dreams.
This blog may seem like a hodge podge to some. The content will run from posts on deep thoughts, (well as deep as my mind goes,... don't worry we won't be going far) to frugal tips, to store deals to homemaking tips. It is all part of the journey of "coming home"
I know as I have been on this journey , I have read everything I could get my hands on, in my quest for knowledge in any and all areas of frugal living. This hasn't been days or weeks, but months and years. Some of what I read seemed extreme, and not likely for my family to do. However much of what I have read has been very helpful. Many of those early frugal tips and ideas I learned early in this journey, I still do today.
It is now very hard for me to pay full price for anything. Please believe me when I say, that this was not always the case! I have learned contentment. I realize things don't bring me happiness, but relationships, people and financial freedom do. Being in debt was stealing my joy. I had become a servant to the lender. I am thrilled you are reading this blog, that means you have similar desires. You may even be in the same position I was. It all starts with baby steps.
Today I want to encourage you in the first baby step to financial freedom..........
Baby Step #1
Make a Budget
This truly is the first step in becoming debt free. This step is absolutely imperative!! You must realize where your money is going.!!
Early on I avoided this. In my heart I felt like if I knew the real numbers I would never have the courage to make the step to leave my job. We were just making the bills with me working full-time, let alone cutting my income in half. Remember I went from full-time to part-time to perdiem.
Keep A Spending Log For One Week
I encourage you to start a spending journal. Don't make it complicated. Remember your taking baby steps. Anything to complicated and you won't follow through. Keep it simple. Use a few sheets of paper stapled together, or a small notebook that fits in your purse. Label as follows:
Monday February 21st, 2011. Then write down everything you spend for that day. Everything. Every nickel. Do this for a week. You are doing this step to get a good idea where your money is going. If you are anything like me you will be quite surprised how many funds can be freed up by this simple exercise. This exercise is a powerful tool in helping you identify where and what you are spending your money on. That extra $2-/day spent on______________ you fill in the blank, turns into $14 dollars a week, which turns into $56 dollars a month, which turn into $672 dollars a year .If you applied that $672 to a high interest credit card debit, the savings would be much greater than that!!
When you get your weeks worth of information, this will allow you to sit down and be honest with yourself in your spending habits. The extra couple of bucks at the store you drop a couple times of week doesn't seem like much at the time, but three times a week and that's $6. If you get a take out coffee everyday that's at least $2/day so there's $14 we've all ready found $20bucks!!
Be patient with yourself.. but don't delay this exercise. Today is the first day toward your financial freedom..........I am praying for you.