Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Money on Monday: Sacrificing now for later

This post should have gone up yesterday. But alas- life.

I am really having a tough go of it lately. Not like a pity me, my life is hard, feel bad for me kind of way. Just a tough go in which I question a lot of the decisions I am making, because who doesn't do that for from time to time in their early 20s?

My travel philosophy, and life philosophy has grown from the idea that society trying to convince me I need a steady job, a stable life, and to work now for fun later is complete B.S. Therefore I believe in doing what you want when you want, and that should have nothing to do with what is expected of you. Just cast off and take the chances you dream of. Live for the moment. Enjoy things. Why dwindle away at work forever just to save up for something later. It doesn't have to be later. It CAN be now. (read more about my philosophy here)

So I was reading an article the other day about happy people. And this was in it:

" The real trick is that these individuals know better than to wait to live the lives they want to live. You live life whether you accept or ignore the fact, how you live it in the moment determines how happy you are."

And I figured out that, at the moment, I'm not particularly happy.  And that fact made me even more unhappy.

I live for adventure, I live for travel, and I never wanted to find myself wasting away trying to make money to eventually live the life I want. So how did I find myself in that situation?

First of all, it is partially because I cannot be traveling at the moment. But I do love my uni and my friends here, so I have gone through this before and been happy while doing it, enjoying the occasional spontaneity of hanging out with friends, going out, and adventuring in my town.

This time it is just so.much.harder.
Here I am, working 46 hours a week (yes I worked 46 hours last week ON TOP OF BEING A FULL-TIME STUDENT?!?!?). Work is all I do. It's all I have time for. And it's all I think about. And every day I go onto my spreadsheet of savings, and tell my it's for travel, it's for travel, everyday gets you closer.

Today- I was supposed to be nannying for my typical 11 hour Tuesday shift. And last night the mom called saying she was sick, not going to work, and would be staying home with the kids. I had a whole day free. A whole day free? I haven't had that in over 3 weeks. Hell I worked 46 hours last week I should be thrilled about the free time. But after I hung up the phone I burst into tears. Here I had an entire day to myself, to catch up on sleep, to watch TV, to do school work, to see my friends, to go out and do something fun and new. And I just cried. I cried and cried. I was losing $130. And I had no desire to do any of those things I used to enjoy on my day of freedom. I just wanted to be working because that was my purpose right now. Since when did this become my life?

 I feel like a complete sell-out to everything I have said I would never do. Live a life I don't want now for a life I DO want later. That's not the recipe to happiness.

So why am I doing it? Well I am also aware of using your opportunities correctly. And here I am with a lighter course load, jobs that I really do mostly enjoy (even though they are exhausting!) that pay really well, and no living expenses. I felt like I'd be an idiot NOT to use this time to save up for my future travel.

I don't really know what the point of this rant is. And I didn't write this to detail some plan to get me to feel better now, to cut back now, to be happier now, because honestly I don't know what would make that happen. But I wrote it because it's how I feel.

I guess the test will be to see if in 3 months when I leave for a few years of continuous travel and discover how long my money lasts and how much it gives me in life experiences I will be able to determine whether this was worth it. Whether these 4 months were worth it. But I do know, that even if I decide it was worth it this time, I never want to find myself sacrificing the now for the later ever, ever, again.

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