For the last 10 months, Brad and I have been sacrificing, saving and paying off debt. It may seem like from the outside looking in (i.e. reading this blog), we have no life purpose beyond our financial goals. Although our focus this year has been to save money to reduce our debt, we’ve also experienced a newfound focus in other areas of our life:
Career - Being focused on saving money makes us think about how we bring in that money. As artists, sometimes we have a tendency to have our head in the clouds when it comes to income. Obviously, when we set out to be an artist, we thought less about income and more about career satisfaction. I don’t think this is a detriment, but at some point we have to establish ourselves with income that can feed, shelter and clothe us. Brad and I have been fortunate to find careers that cover all these necessities, but we would also like to build up from that. We have longterm dreams and aspirations—like extensive traveling or owning a condo/home. Achieving them will require us to make more money. In the course of our year long Operation Debt Reduction, we have set goals within each of our creative careers which has also reignited our artistic fervor.
Health - Less time shopping(online or in store) and spending money in general has forced us to go outside more, especially when we’re bored or need a break—walking the nearby neighborhoods, parks and beaches. We also spend a little more time at the gym on a weekly basis. But more than anything, our eating habits have greatly improved. Being on spending lockdown and banning ourselves from the inside of a restaurant, bar or coffee shop has meant more time spent at the farmers market, grocery store and cooking at home. We eat a lot more fresh veggies and a lot less meat. We avoid packaged goods which tend to be pricey because of the advertising, marketing and branding that goes into making that so called “food” item. Brad and I are in the best shape we have ever been in.
Spiritual/Mental/Psychological - When we cut out all the fluffy extras in our life, we embraced simplicity. There is an intangible effect of not spending money that forces us to look deeper into ourselves. We suddenly began to evaluate what’s important and not important in life. And it’s really that simple.