Category Archives: Employment

Practicing the 3 D’s

In the summer of 2016, Hubs and I had just moved to Colorado and settled into an apartment in Boulder while searching for a home to buy. We had decided prior to moving that I would take a break from paid employment. We didn’t determine how long this break would be, however.

We busied ourselves with the job of finding the right house, exploring the wonders of Boulder, and shopping for new furniture (we had a massive garage sale before leaving Wisconsin, greatly reducing the amount of stuff we had accumulated over the years).

Then once we found and moved into our new home at the end of August, we busied ourselves with unpacking boxes, finding the perfect placement for our new furniture and wall art, and familiarizing ourselves with life in our new townhome community.

Over the following several months, while starting this blog, joining a new church, settling in to a new weekly volunteer gig, and making new friends, I found myself referring to this period in my life as my “gap year”. And I wholeheartedly admit that I have milked this time for all its worth. If you find yourself financially able, unsatisfied professionally, and middle aged, I highly recommend taking a “gap year” to sort yourself out. 

The big epiphany here, for me right now,  is that my “gap year” is beginning to exceed it’s time limit. In other words, I have come to the conclusion that it is now time for me to expand my horizons. 

I’m going to start my job search, folks. In earnest.

Making this decision brings to mind words I found written in pastel colored chalk while on a morning walk in August 2016, while still living in Boulder.

Desire. Determination. Discipline.

I do believe these big and important words were submerged in my subconscious this past year. I had a great desire to pursue blogging. I had the determination to go ahead and start this blog. And I had the discipline to pen posts on a regular basis-3 times per week, with the exception of the weeks when we were out of town or hosting company in our new Colorado abode.

Now is the time for me to move these big, important words from my subconscious to my brain’s frontal lobe on a daily basis.

Do I have the desire to find employment? Yes.

Do I have the determination to find employment? Most certainly. In fact, once this post is published I will immediately be checking for jobs on Indeed.com. Fact is, my ulterior motive for creating this post is to enhance my personal accountability for this endeavor. 

Do I have the discipline to find employment? I like to think I do. I believe the fact that I’ve made the decisions to get my arse in gear, make a daily to-do list upon waking each morning, and then complete each task before the day is done (top on the list is searching for jobs and filling out applications), exemplifies my self-discipline.

 

Monday Money Musings

There is a multitude of tracks I could take this one on. This may or may not be a regular feature on this blog. But it is a topic on which I have much to say, truth be told. Thoughts in my head re: money right now…..

  1. ) How much do I want and for what? And why? Always remember that how you use money shows what you value, what your priorities are.
  2. ) Smart financial moves/timeline for me and the Hubs.
  3. ) Totally bi-polar thoughts about winning the lottery.
  4. ) Compare current national budget/priorities and what I would change if I had the POWER
  5. ) Money as a means to an end.
  6. ) Somewhere in the Bible it says that money is the root of all evil. And I will not be evil. Spiritual lessons/deep theological thinking of money and it’s place in my life.
  7. Follow the money (you’d be right if you suspected this was related to the current shit show going on in our nation’s capital).
  8. ) I want to have just enough money. Having too much money would just make life unnecessarily complicated.

Okay, I have decided to pick #8. It’s my favorite number for a boatload of reasons. The best version of myself, the one that is emotionally intelligent, humble, and peaceful at heart, fervently wants “just enough” when it comes to the almighty dollar.

But the question is what, for me, is “just enough”? Is it enough for all the monthly bills to be paid with a bit of spare change left over to buy the simple things in life, like a reasonably priced bottle of vino, or a cup of coffee and a cupcake to enjoy while chatting with my new Colorado girlfriends? Is it “just enough” to fund all of my fanciful vacation dreams (Hawaii, Germany, Canada, Cuba, Sonoma, I could go on and on and on)? Is it “just enough” to financially contribute to causes I believe in that need the cash now more than ever (i.e.,Planned Parenthood, the millions of Go Fund Me campaigns for folks who had the misfortune of being poor and sick in Trump’s America)?

These are all questions, for me, to struggle with.

I think it is highly important that I am honest and clear about my privilege when it comes to money.  First off, I am a white American. That is an advantage that I believe I may never fully comprehend.  How I was raised and the trials/tribulations (aka good and bad choices) of “adulting” have informed my relationship to these pieces of green paper. I grew up in a middle class household. Both of my parents worked. Hard. They had iron-clad work ethics. They were great at saving, so much so that they were able to fully fund 4 years of college for me, for which I will be forever indebted to them. I married a guy who is a very smart, hard-working scientist who over the course of about 25 years has worked his way to a very comfortable salary. Because of this, I was able to be a stay at home mom for the better part of the first 5 years of our children’s lives. As a family, we went on a few nice vacations. We have had the financial ability to purchase 5 homes and sell 3 (making a profit each time). My primary reason for obtaining paid employment for myself was because I wanted to. I enjoyed learning new things on the job, making new friends, and my confidence as a woman grew tremendously from bringing home a little extra bacon. I’ve been so, so lucky.

At this point in my life, however, I have the luxury of being unencumbered by paid employment. I get to make my own daily schedule. Essentially, I am time wealthy but not financially wealthy. It’s hard to say which one is better. Honestly, it depends on the day.

Yet, the thought of raking in my own dough again is totally beckoning me right now. I know that sounds gross and greedy. Two things I don’t wish to ever be called. Maybe I should just increase my volunteer hours at the food bank and/or find another volunteer gig. That would be so rewarding.  But then I may not be able to fulfill my vacation fantasies. This is a first world “problem” obviously. I come from a place of privilege in comparison to my peers in most other countries. And that I must not forget.

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