Life is more than money. I know this may seem weird coming from a personal finance blog that has the word money as half of its name, but sometimes the decisions we make on what to spend or not spend just isn’t about money. We manage our money for other reasons – it’s more than the numbers.
Believe it or not, money is secondary or simply a way for us to accomplish or acquire something. Let me give a couple of examples.
Working from Home
The main reason I wanted to work from home is for the freedom. I like having some flexibility with my schedule and my projects. Money wasn’t a motivator – I take home about the same pay.
However I’m not going to lie and say that money doesn’t matter with my work. It does because if I don’t make money, guess what? I’m going back to the office to work. We have bills to pay, a child to provide for, and goals we’d like to achieve and money is needed to some degree.
To get to the point where I could make the switch from being an employee to becoming self-employed we had to adjust finances. Living on one income is not accidentally. Let’s be honest, there are so many ways to spend your money and I can see how people get sucked up with keeping up with the neighbors. However, for us, being able to live on one income was an important goal. We made choices that helped us stay the course.
Are we perfect with the budget? No, but most months we reach our goal and we’re happy with our decision. In fact working from home has opened another opportunity - watching our little girl during the week.
Watching Our Little Girl at Home
When we found out we were going to be parents, there were PLENTY of discussions about what we wanted to do and how we wanted to do it. One of the big questions was about childcare. Our goal was to have one of us stay at home with her without sacrificing the second income if possible. Easier said than for sure.
As she’s growing up, I’ve had to adjust my work schedule to balance our goals. Last year I took on fewer projects for work; while not killing income, it was a slight decrease.
We love to get out of town from time to time. So we do weekend getaways and trips as it fits our schedule. We usually pick the destination and afterwards look at how to finance it. Having a debt free vacation is important to us, but we’re also looking for a way to recharge.
Using sites like Priceline to get a great deal is helpful, but it’s just a part of the process, not the motivation for the trip.
Thoughts on How Money Fits In
I’d love to hear from you about your family. Why do you manage your money? What are some of your family’s goals? What is motivating you to save, invest, and simplify your finances?
Ironic note: I couldn’t find a category to put this in, so it’s under the general budget topic, lol.