No no, not literally on a roller coaster (those photos they take of you right after the biggest loop are always ghastly, aren’t they?) but my financial life and progress lately. “Roller coaster” is actually good, very good – I’ve been in a slump of stagnant valleys this past year so having some intermittent peaks lately means things have been looking up!
I was tempted to start a post yesterday called something along the lines of “recovery stage” or “I’m officially on my way” or something else entirely optimistic. I had worked a few side gigs the past few weekends for cash, sold some clothing and books and resisted spending temptation better than I ever have before. I was able to get at least $500 bucks in cash from my hustling into the bank and have it stay there. I was elated. I was over the moon. I said no to invitations to spendy social events and deleted sale notification emails with finesse. I really thought to myself, hot damn, I’m killing it! I am spendaholic no longer!
To show you how tenuous my position is, I woke up today feeling icky (strep throat) and all I wanted to do is sit in my pyjamas and browse online shops. I got an email with the heading that my favourite natural beauty line has new products at my favourite shop just down the street and I want to skip over there to check it out, I thought about how I really could use new sandals for my upcoming family vacation and I could really go for a green smoothie with ginger and lemon from the juice bar up the street because I’m sick, after all. These aren’t just whimsy, fleeting thoughts. They are strong, powerful urges that make me want to cave in and scream out “I want this, I need this, I deserve this, this will make me happy!!” Only the want statement would be correct, though. The rest is complete malarky. I don’t need any of my cravings, what I deserve is financial stability and it sure as heck won’t make me genuinely happy.
So that’s where I’m at. I’ve had some really good days lately. I’m really proud of myself for holding on to my money and spending very little as of late, while also making some side cash that I’ve held onto. The issue is that it doesn’t take long for a new urge to hit, and when it does, it still hits hard. I’m really doing my best to think of the beautiful brick home I’d like to live in one day, being able to purchase my very first car which will help me further my career (something small, simple and definitely used), and re-sensitizing myself to what “treats” really are. That coffee once a week with a friend or relative will be so much more special than the daily java fix I get from Starbucks. I want to be enamoured by what really matters, unclouded by what to buy next, detached from material goods. I want to love the little things again.
What does everyone else do/think of/visualize when the urge to spend comes on strong?