Stress about borrowing money is a lesson that took me 2-3 years to effectively learn. Being a breadwinner in the family and someone that can be easily turned to by some relatives, I thought it would be normal for me that I would apply for short-term loans like multipurpose loan or sometimes our neighborhood’s huluga, until it stressed me to the point that I am no longer excited for paydays, I can no longer enjoy mall’s sale and other small and happy purchases because interests keep knocking on me (and I felt like I have to prioritize such), and I can no longer sleep because I was always thinking how to resolve my issues. However, the worst is how loans deprived me of my mental peace. I am someone who values inner peace, something that I would enjoy in my quiet times but this financial difficulty made it hard for me to enjoy my space. Instead, I kept thinking hard about how to get out of my awful situation.
I am still on my way to overcoming a problem on my short-term loans, but let me share with you my personal points on my journey towards being financially managed, and also things that helped me to be mindful of being a responsible borrower. This took me a lot of planning. Sticking to it was very challenging but I pondered it is not really hard at all.
Decreasing expenses or simply degrading a lifestyle might be a big phrase but once you start it, you will know life can be easier, life can be simpler like this. You will never know, and I did not even know that it is here that I would learn contentment and it is here that I will be happy. Sustainable is a wonder. Just to know that you can sustain your needs without having difficulty is a thought that made me excited to live each day of my life. Hence, I am sharing my few good resolutions. These might also help you in minimizing your debts.
a. The very first thing that came to my mind is to cut unnecessary expenses. I am commuting to and from work, and I was used to riding a taxi. I realized that indeed there are other cheaper forms of transportation that I can use such as buses, jeepneys and motorela. Right then, I stopped riding taxis and it made me really happy.It also taught me to achieve my “early morning club” goal and enjoy my time at the bus like I am in the movie. Indeed, if you are able to do something good, the wave of goodness keeps coming on your shore.
b. I also limit my coffee shop visit. If you have been following me in social media accounts, you will see a lot of coffee. Maybe because I made it as a stress-reliever. Having them near our office, I visit coffee shops 2-3 days a week on average. I decided to limit this and see to it that I only have 1-2 visits in a month. I made it as a reward to myself after working on my tasks successfully, paying on my loans or saving some.
This decision lead me to enjoy my coffee time at home with my simple coffee. I was also to use the coffee filter that I did not know was lying in my drawer for so long. I bought it months ago in a Japan store because I was so curious. I was also able to consume coffee blend and coco sugar that I have been keeping for a long time. The set was a gift to me by our manager and her team in Bukidnon. (Look, how timing was so good to me.) Having able to secure as well a cheaper gooseneck teapot and funnel to form the filter, who would know I could already brew my own coffee.
I have been eyeing also that manual coffee grinder I saw online, and I would save up for that. That would complete my cute coffee corner at home. Hehe. See, there are more things you would discover with yourself if you acknowledge change.
c. Aside from this, I stopped sending my clothes to laundry shops. I washed it myself already. My blogger bff, Johanns, shared to me her old conversation with her aunties back in his university when she initially mentioned about sending her clothes to the laundry shop. Her aunties told her if she can wash, then why would she send it to the shop. That justified my decision more.
Being in a complex family set-up where there are a lot of people to divide household chores with, laundry was not a problem for me, until I started living in the city. I depend my laundry at the shop for a long time, for years actually and it took a chunk of my money. Perhaps it saved my energy, but I think it is time for me to do it already.
I learned to budget my receivables. This was really tough but doing so taught me the art of foresighting. This means when I have the money, I erase this “rich for a day” mindset and already think of my payables such as bills and those important purchases that are necessary such as of course groceries. I was also mindful already with my groceries. Mind you, it was really tough since if you are that impulsive, everything you see at the grocery store will become a need but might as well have the win-win situation. Choose your needs first and second, if budget allows, choose what you need and make you happy at the same time.
My Lesson: Always mindful of due dates. Due dates were really wake up calls. Paying on time will save you from interests, penalties and so on. Dealing with these was really an experience that taught me hard. Long ago, I was carefree because of the small amount of money and I was waiting for the billing even if I know I should be visiting the store and really, paying for something not nice is very, very sad.
My Lesson: Keep track of the payables. Keeping a logbook of the payables will help you prevent of paying bills twice. There was also a time that I deposited in my bank through its online facility and later on I found out it was not credited. Thank goodness to my logbook for saving my money.
Hence, there you have it. Some simple but effective tips that you can base your resolutions from. I am also still learning through attending or watching financial management webinars or vlog that I could find online. If you want to learn more, click here. The site can provide you a very good counseling.
Here’s to our goal of being financially free. Claiming it!