I have a bad habit of overfilling my schedule. Of seeing empty space in my calendar and trying to fill in every possible moment. It's been a bad habit of mine for a long time.
Usually what this means is I end up running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I rush from one thing to another, trying to figure out how to be at multiple places at once. And usually, I look at my schedule for the upcoming week and end up being tired even before it starts.
Does this happen to you too? Overfilling your schedule. Overbooking yourself. Overdoing it.
I can tell you it's not a good place to be. I hate having days where I am literally running from one appointment or meeting to the next. And lately, it seems like many of my days are like that.
It. Is. Exhausting.
It doesn't serve any purpose to fill day after day like this. Every now and again is one thing. But when you make it a habit, you end up burnt out, unhappy, and unmotivated.
I go through these periods where I'll overbook myself and run myself into the ground trying to make it all happen. And then I literally want to do NOTHING.
It's actually super counterproductive.
Sometimes what we need is to do less and just be. Take the rest, quit running around like a chicken with your head cut off, and STOP overbooking yourself. Just because you have time in your calendar doesn't mean EVERY last second needs to be filled.
This is a hard lesson for me...one that I tend to have to learn over and over again.
I wish I could say that I don't do this, but sometimes DOING becomes more important than just being. And yes, sometimes it is a necessity to fill your schedule back to back. But it is definitely not something you should do each and every day.
Here's the thing...if someone offers a date and time that doesn't work for you, you are allowed to say it doesn't work for you and offer another date and time. You don't have to say yes simply to appease someone else.
I know it often feels like if you don't take that first date and time that it will never work out. But I promise, it does. Everyone is busy. Everyone has a calendar. And everyone will make it work for them.
Don't overbook yourself to appease someone else. Don't run yourself into the ground for the sake of saying YES to everyone and everything.
I know I need this reminder often too, but please remember that you HAVE to take care of yourself before you can effectively take care of anyone else or handle anything on your plate. If you are run down or not feeling 100%, nothing else will get your 100% either.
Allow yourself some downtime during the week, or better yet, during each day. It doesn't have to be a lot of time, but time where you literally do nothing else. Meditate. Read a pleasure book. Have a good cup of coffee enjoying the sunrise. Or a good glass of wine enjoying the sunset.
Take time to just BE.
That's my goal heading into this next week. I've added in morning intentions and gratitudes, but now it's time to add in some meditation during the day. My goal is to start with 10 minutes a day. Something short so I don't overwhelm myself. But time to just be. To not focus on DOING.
What about you? Do you have any goals for this week? Especially if you are guilty of DOING all the time. I'd love to hear them!
Enjoy your week. Take some time to just BE. Take some time for you.
With love and wellness,
So a few months ago, as well as in my post last week, I wrote about how Nick and I were working on paying off our debt using the Dave Ramsey baby steps method. Right after the first post, we found out I was pregnant and went into stork mode. Basically, we paid our regular bills but every extra dollar we received, instead of paying extra to our debt, we put into a savings account. We knew we would need it for medical bills, plus for baby girl when she arrived.
Unfortunately, that didn't happen as we wished and our sweet Kynsleigh is now in heaven. So we are back to working on paying off our debt as quickly as possible in Baby Step 2. And Nick and I have gotten incredibly gazelle-like intense these last couple months. We are tired of paying our hard earned money to debt. We are ready to live the cash only life!
We traded in both our cars at the beginning of June for a car we both wanted, a Subaru Outback. We smartly purchased the warranty agreement because, as we all know, used cars tend to have issues. Well, I guess all cars do. But wouldn't you know it...three weeks into having our car, it needed the transmission replaced. This could have been devastating news, but instead, with our warranty, it is only $100 to do this! Talk about a lucky break!
Trading in both our cars means less car insurance a month and a lower car payment, plus we finally paid off our iPhones so our cell phone bill is less, and we're working on selling our timeshare! We're not only working on paying off our debt, we're working on lowering our bills all around.
Through all of this, somehow, in the last month and a half, Nick and I have managed to pay an extra $5,300 towards our car payment, plus extra to our hospital bill for delivering Kynsleigh.
Y'all...I have no idea how we've come up with this extra money, but literally everything extra gets dumped right on the car loan! We both got refunds from Chesapeake for the personal property tax payments on our cars we traded in, and I got a refund from the warranty on my Rogue. Yep - you guessed it...paid right to the car loan!
When you start seeing the number decrease, it lights a fire under your butt! I mean, can you imagine what we could have done with $5,300 if we didn't have to pay it to debt?! Soon, that will all be extra money we can invest, go on amazing vacations, treat ourselves!
I'll tell you...it's a sacrifice. We've had to say no to things and make adjustments, but it's worth it. We know we are living like no one else now so we can live and give like no one else later. It will 100% be worth it and we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I'll be so excited to pay our last payment to the car, pay off the little bit we owe for delivering Kynsleigh and whatever other medical bills we'll receive for it, and start paying ourselves for a change!
We've made a couple of huge adjustments in how we've managed to make this work for us. We now operate on a cash basis. We pay for groceries in cash, we have "fun" money set aside for us, as well as date night and car money. If and when something comes up, we have money set aside so it isn't an emergency or an "oh crap, we don't have the money" scenario. And believe me, we've lived that way before. It wasn't fun.
We also no longer use our credit cards. When we started on this journey in February, we put our credit cards away (aka, out of our wallets), I changed all our auto orders so they are now on debit cards, and we haven't used our credit cards one time. If we don't have the money for something we want, the answer is no. Then we figure out how long it will take for us to save for it and we make it happen.
It's a nice feeling, knowing we are in control of our money. We know how much is going out every month without wondering at the end of the month where all the extra is going.
If you're interested in learning more about it, please don't hesitate to ask. I'm happy to help you and guide you in the right direction. I know it can seem so overwhelming when you don't know where your money is going or what you owe and to whom. The first step, of course, is to write it all out and know what you owe. You can't tackle your debt if you don't know who you owe or how much!
Let's chat. See how to get you started!
Have an amazing week, y'all!
With love and wellness,
When everything in my life flipped upside down in 2017, I went on this voyage of becoming a minimalist. Part of it was because I didn't want to own anything that I had with my ex-husband, especially things that had been involved in his indiscretions. And part of it was because it was then just me and I didn't want or need a ton of things.
It seemed like it was a perfect fit when Nick and I met. He wanted to live in a tiny house, something I'd heard of, but hadn't ever considered. But the more I learned about it, the more intriguing it was. It seemed like our two worlds of becoming minimalists were coming together.
When we started looking at places of our own, we considered so many possibilities. Buying an RV, converting a shed into a tiny home, buying a tiny home, renting an apartment while we saved for what we really wanted. We literally threw out all the possibilities. And we went back and forth on it all.
One minute, we wanted an RV so we could travel and not be stuck in one place. But then we started listing the cons of that. Then we wanted to rent an apartment because we could see what was out there while we were saving. Then we wanted to convert the shed or build/buy a tiny home. It was hard because it seemed like our minds changed daily.
Finally, after weighing out pros and cons of everything, we decided to look at what was on the market and then go from there. Thankfully, I have an amazing friend and realtor who was able to narrow down exactly what we wanted. Nothing too big with a garage for our gym. Darn if she didn't find just that!
We have our own tiny home with two bedrooms and one bath, but enough room to live comfortably for all of us. And even better, it has a large backyard with a large two-car detached garage. I mean...HELLO! Perfect for our family and needs right now.
It was nice finally having made a decision and having a place of our own! We've been moved in and settled for almost a year now, and we've slowly but surely made it our own.
And now, our big focus is on paying off our debt and being able to live like nobody else. We recently started following Dave Ramsey's baby steps and paid down a lot of our debt already. We went from two cars to one, which has saved us on all sorts of costs. It's been an adjustment, but one we've handled very well.
Our big goal is to live like nobody else will now, so we can live and give like nobody else can later. We are sacrificing a lot now, from taking vacations or going out, so we can pay our debt off as fast as we can. I can't wait for the day when our paychecks are paid to US and not to our BILLS. It will be a nice change from living paycheck to paycheck and feeling like we're always behind.
I haven't ever been one to try to live like the Jones', but now I'm really not interested in following in their footsteps. And I'm happy Nick and I are on the same page with it.
Debt is dumb. Cash is king.
It's really that simple!
I love our life. And I love the journey we are on to becoming debt free. We budget for literally everything. And we haven't used our credit cards ONE TIME since we started this in February. It really is very freeing and liberating to be able to say NO if we don't have the money for it. And it's so much more exciting when we're able to pay for things outright without paying for it months after the fact.
I mean, the number of times I would use my credit card and be paying for it and literally have no idea what I was paying off. I couldn't even remember the things I was paying for. And I hated our paychecks going towards paying off credit cards. It will be so much more fulfilling to have our paychecks be OURS.
Ah! Looking forward to the day when we can make our DEBT FREE SCREAM!
If you're interested in learning more, let me know. Taking on the baby steps are easy, but changing your mindset and putting forth the effort takes WORK. It takes DISCIPLINE. It won't necessarily be easy, but I can promise you, it will 100% be worth it!
I'm ready to no longer live like everyone else :) Are you?
Have a beautiful week!
With love and wellness,
Life is a series of ups and downs. One minute, everything feels amazing. You're happy. You're on top of the world. And the next, everything is flipped upside down.
The beauty of this, and also the worst part of it, is that this happens over and over again throughout our lives. In the middle of the bad times, remember that you'll get through it and the good times are coming. And in the middle of the good times, relish it, enjoy it, love it, because unfortunately, it won't last forever.
And I don't say that to be morbid; I just say it to be true.
Life will always give you trying times, just as it will always give you amazing times. Things will happen that you can't explain, both good and bad. And it doesn't always happen all at once or back and forth in rapid succession. But things will always happen, one way or another.
Take my life, for instance. I could have never imagined all the things I've been through over the past few years. I met someone who I thought was my person. I was happy and thought everything was great. Until it wasn't.
I got the most bizarre flipped upside down episode in my life ever. My person, my husband, was arrested. He left for work one morning and never came home. Talk about my life taking a complete 180. Everything I thought I knew was just...gone.
It seemed like following that, everything was just bad for awhile. It felt like the hits kept on coming. I rented out the house we owned together, moved into a one bedroom terrible situation for one month, then immediately moved into an apartment with a crazy person (whom I didn't know was crazy when we moved in together, for the record).
But then I met Nick. And things started looking up. It was like I'd been waiting for this man my entire life. He was everything I didn't know I needed. Patient. Understanding. Loving. Kind. I wasn't used to being loved the way he loved me. It was an adjustment, for sure.
Things were good. I moved out of the apartment and in with Nick. I sold the house I owned with my ex-husband, who at that time, was still my husband. It took far longer than I would've liked to get divorced, but it was FINALLY finalized. Nick and I got engaged and married.
But in the midst of my insane happiness, we had two miscarriages. It was heartbreaking and terrible, but it showed me just how much I want to be a mom. How much I want to have a baby with Nick.
With everything else going on, Nick and I bought a house together. We finally had our own space that we could make our own. However, in the meantime, we had several more miscarriages. We even said goodbye to our baby girl, Kynsleigh, at 16 weeks in utero.
Yes, life has a way of testing you. Of bringing you down when things are looking up.
I don't think it's meant to completely tear you down, though. In my worst of times, I have learned to lean on God to keep me standing. I have never prayed harder than when I felt like my life was falling down around me. I know I got through all of my rough situations because He was carrying me. I couldn't have done it on my own.
This picture I posted reminds me of His beauty. Of how He is always with me, even when things seem impossible. Even when I don't know how I'm going to move forward. God always provides a way. And He always provides the good following the storm.
I've also learned to focus on everything I am thankful for. Of all the things I've been blessed with. Many nights I lay in bed listing all the things I am grateful for. To help pull me out of a funk or to calm my racing heart.
Kynsleigh, even though it is heartbreaking she's no longer here, is always one of the things I mention in my grateful list. She taught me so much about myself and about life. She taught me about love. And about heartbreak. But she also taught me resilience. And about fighting for what I want.
Yes, life is a series of ups and downs. But I'm so grateful for every experience I've had. It's helped me become who I am and helped me be exactly where I'm supposed to be. Sometimes I wish things could be different, but then my life would look different than it does now. And I don't know if I would like that very much.
I don't know what the future holds, as none of us do, but I know that God's plan for my life is so much greater than I can imagine. I hold on to that belief and I thank God every day for it.
I hope you are able to ride the waves with God by your side, or whatever higher power you believe in. Stay strong, my friends. Relish the good times. Ride out the bad times. And know you are never alone.
I hope you have a beautiful week.
With love and wellness,