I didn’t achieve my somewhat lofty savings goal for 2020. I got sidetracked by the need to get new mattresses for everyone in my household of 5 (and it was truly a need.) I also got sidetracked by the emergence of a latent predilection for online shopping to combat the panic that the pandemic created in me. In truth, it had probably been there all along, but last year was the first year I could actually technically afford to do anything about it.
I’m humbled and embarrassed by how far off track I got. Truly. I look in the mirror and see weakness and a lack of self-discipline. I do not want to be that person anymore.
So therefore I’ve recommitted to my goals again for this year. All is not lost. I have to confront the part of me that believes shopping is a good distraction from some feelings I’d rather not sit with. I have to focus more on appreciating the many good things I already have, rather than thinking that just one more thing will make me truly happy.
In a weird sort of way, every new thing I buy takes me further away from that grateful mindset. Plus, shopping just adds to the clutter in my house, and I find that clutter leaves me feeling just as unsettled as it makes my husband feel. I have to deal with the emotional issues that make me want to shop.
I’d much rather have some real things to show for it, like being debt-free and having a sizable bank account. As much as I like renting right now, I know that this is not where I want to be forever. I’d actually really like to buy a condo in the city of Dallas and it’s not that unattainable.
In addition to doing more with the resources we already have, I also have to decide if I want to try to get a full-time job working from home or to build up a business. Building a business requires a lot of dedication and self-discipline which don’t come easily to me at all. My mom thinks that I just can’t work full-time and shouldn’t give up my Medicare, which I just became eligible for. I don’t know if she’s right or not.
I also have a lot to learn about managing personal finances, which I’ve never really done before. Part of that was because we never had enough to pay our bills before. But now we do, so there’s no excuse not to learn.
So my plan for 2021 is to get my financial shit together. My husband is rightly concerned that if I don’t, when I get the life insurance money after he dies, I would blow right through it. I have to develop a healthier relationship with money and healthier coping strategies for fear. I’m facing it head on and I believe I can do it.