Today I begin my book writing course. I am trying to make sense of my journey to becoming debt free and maybe telling my story will help others not feel so alone.
Debt is lonely. It is claustrophobic. It narrows your life. It limits you and your options. My life became smaller because of debt. In the end I had to make peace with the fact I was unlikely to have the big life I wanted and I would have to learn to live a small life in a big way. I have actually become happier in myself because of it and I do feel that I have the life I want now. It took a long time to gain that clarity.
I never fully learnt about money and how to manage it from my family. They did try. I don’t blame them. They did teach me to be frugal. My Dad taught me how to find the cheaper option. My mum instilled in me a love of charity shops. I remember very clearly my mum trying to teach me as a child that if I saved my money I could afford bigger things, and that if I spent my money it would be gone.
So it’s not that I didn’t learn anything about money from my parents, because I did learn some valuable lessons. But what I mainly learnt was how to survive on the bare minimum. I didn’t really learn how to make money, I didn’t learn how to scale up my finances. And I don’t blame my parents for that. But what it clearly makes me think of is the beginning of the book ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ by Robert T. Kiyosaki. It took me a long time to like that book and the author. I read it a couple of times before it really sunk in, and although I would say me and Kiyosaki would disagree about a lot of things politically, I have come to learn good messages from this book.
I need to work on my pensions. I have a couple of pension pots from old employers that I want to look into merging and maybe then paying into on a monthly basis. My pension with my current employer is very good. So good that I am reluctant to ever leave this employer without good reason. Due to the way the pension works there isn’t necessarily a benefit to merging the other pots with my current one. But I do have some admin tasks for my current pension to take care of such as appointing who would receive it if I died in service. Not a matter to take lightly during this time.
I have done some shopping today, and hopefully that will keep me out of the shops until the later part of this week. I have enough to be getting on with.
87 days to freedom.