Want to Buy Some Cookies? (No, not Girl Scout Cookies)

Are You Poor or Are You Broke?

~

cookies

We all have said it.

“No, you can’t buy those cookies, we’re poor, what don’t you get?”

We say it out of frustration. We are frustrated that the other person / child doesn’t “get it”. They do not realize there is no money for that toy, those cookies, the movies.  We are frustrated that is it so pathetic we are even in the position to not buy a bag of cookies. If you are reading this, you might know what I’m talking about.

The problem is, we say this out of emotion. Inside we feel helpless in that moment.

The reality is, take the emotion out. You can’t buy those cookies because you have no cookie money.

You are broke. Broke is a temporary state.  Poor is when you spirit is broken as well.

Broke means – Today I have no cookie money. Now tomorrow, I plan on having lots of cookie money!

Poor means – I have no cookies money and I doubt I’ll ever have any cookie money.

For me, this stop is only temporary. I have no plans or desires to spend the rest of my life without money. poor-vs-broke

If I want cookies darn it, I want cookies!

🙂

Here is the biggest take away. DO NOT see yourself as poor. You will get out of the mess you have made. You just have to believe, work your ass off and keep moving. But you MUST believe it deep in your soul. This time in your life with no cookie money is temporary. There are lessons you are learning, there is work to be done.

So next time someone you love wants to buy some cookies, just say…”Today I can’t buy you some cookies, but some day soon, we will have enough money to buy all the cookies you could want!”

Till then, keep paddling, the shore is getting closer

T

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You Take My Breath Away

I Wish it was Love

breathe

Someday’s I look at what I owe and it takes my breath away. Not like a lover you are excited to see, more like the archnemisis that wants to crush you.

It can feel so overwhelming when I step back and take it in. When I look at it all in one shot I realize the mountain I have created for myself to climb. However, I can live with that daunting task. I can take on that challenge.

What takes away my breath is that bill that shows up for $500 that I was not expecting. OMG, how will I do it? I’m running out of Peters to pay Paul. I thought I had enough on my irregular income and now I find out I don’t. I went from feeling good that I can make the money stretch to how the hell will I make it stretch.

Suddenly I’m fully aware of my deep breathing, my nostrils taking in as much air as they can. Calm myself. I must not panic.

I will make it work. I always do. I have no idea how, but I will.

Tomorrow brings new hope. Tomorrow the sun will rise and I will tackle this mountain again. I will win. Even if I must remind myself to breathe….

T

Saying No ~ Being the Bad Guy/Girl

NO

What Part Don’t They Get???

On your journey to get out of debt, the one word you get to say over and over is NO.  No to yourself and NO to those you love. No, we can’t afford that movie right now. No, you will need to wear those shoes a little longer. No, you can’t have McDonalds, yes, NOt even off the $1 menu. 

We become the “bad guy”. We are the one depriving those we care about the little things they crave so much. Why can’t they just see the vision we do? The life without debt. Don’t they realize how many Chicken Nuggets they can have in the future!!??

I feel bad saying NO. It gets old even to myself. I want to say OH HELL YES!! But where would that put us? Even further in debt or worse.

Besides, it was all those “yes”s in the past that created this monster and these “no”s.

Just this morning my other half and I were discussing how they wanted to spend $20 something we really didn’t need. They couldn’t understand why the $20 was such a big deal. Why? Let’s see… $20 is 1/3 of the waterbill, it pays for milk and cereal for a week, $20 will pay off a bill that much faster. Well you get my point. Money is money.. It has value. It accomplishes goals. There is a reason casinos use poker chips. They don’t want you to see it as money. They want you to be emotionally unattached to your money.

Why must I be the only one that “gets” it?

Is there anyone in your life that just doesn’t get it? Is there someone you have to play the “bad guy” role with?

 

T

 

Having a Debt Free Business ~ Or Do You Really?

In 2008 I purchased the business I’ve had for the past 5 years. I was going to be one of the smart ones, I was paying cash. No financing for me. I sold my stock and bought my business. This was the fall of 2008. While sitting in a hotel room at the training for my new found bundle of joy, I watched as the stock market tanked right before my eyes morning, noon and night. I was losing everything. OMG, what did I do? I just left my solid job over over 20 years for this small business opportunity in my town. I left a high paying gig for one that didn’t promise me a penny. (another long story one day).

I have worked hard to not go into debt. However, right off the bat, my franchise expected me to pay for a new machine that was madatory. Boom, dang, guess that $10,000 visa card will have to used since I didn’t have a few thousand to pay that nice tab. A year later, boom,  I was required to buy a new register system they required with another few thousand $ price tag. Slowly that credit card was maxed out due to the little “emergency needs” that popped up. Just like in our normal life, Murphey was a calling and I never set up an emergency fund. There were no profits to pull a salary never mind pay for new equipment.

One of my large vendors allowed you to pay a week or two into the future. Slowly that also crept into having 2-3 weeks of debt.

emergency fundSo while I may have orginally purchased debt free, I really didn’t truly stay debt free. My debt monitor shows a debt of $153k. Hmm, lot of debt for a debt free company wouldn’t you say? My “true debt” is probably around $25k but I am including the remaining time on my lease. I owe them no matter what happens (open or close). So until that lease is paid off and I am no longer in business I will owe.

The lesson I’m trying to share is, if you are going to be debt free (which I highly recommend) please, please make sure you have an emergency fund. Things will break, you will be required to buy stuff, crap happens. Just like in real life, our business is the same. So be prepared!

T

Owning a Business vs Buying a Job

Owning a Business vs Buying a Job

(and a bad paying one at that)

open

Dave Ramsey is always trying to help new business owners realize there is a differnce between owning a business and buying yourself a job. Unfortunately, I was a little too late for this nugget of wisdom. I bought a 5 year “job” that paid nothing and cost me everything.

Maybe it sounds melodramtic but I don’t mean it too. It is just the truth. My truth. My ultimate stupid tax was buying my business.

Being the optimist that I am, I try and step back and focus on the true lessons the past few years have given me vs feeling the empty pit in my stomach. LOL.

I’m sure I’ll talk about this decision in several posts. I really need to help others realize how dangerous it is to “buy a job” vs owning your business. Working hard to build something that can become very successful is awesome. I plan on doing that with my new business. My new direction. The place I’m using all the knowledge I gained from the previous 5 years.

I have worked pretty much every day the past 5 years and took zero income. Yes you read that right. I lived off the money I worked 25 years to build. Now it is all gone. Lets do the math, it took me 5 years to lose what 25 years took to build. Hmm, that is some bad retirement plan.  LOL. Not to mention the no days off part again. I laugh now, but if I think too hard I could cry.

Just chalk it up to another life lesson. One I plan to help others with and one I plan to rebuild stronger, faster and even larger.

The journey of getting out of debt is only partly the financial side of it, the other side of the coin is to take moments to reflect what got you there and how to change your mindset to form new habits and grow stronger. Not to mention to help others.

More on this part of my journey as we move on. For now, just know that if you are planning on buying a small business, slow down turbo and make sure you think this through. I’ll keep sharing my thoughts and what I learned…

More to come…

T

Positive yet Bummed…The Impact of Debt

I’m Positive I Will KICK Debt’s Butt!

Yet, I’m Still Bummed About It All

I’m sure it is normal. 

We get so fired up to accomplish a goal and then for a brief moment we stop to look at the hill we still must climb. Then we get bummed. Bummed that we got here in the first place, then bummed that it feels like forever until we get out of it. Deep sigh…..

But dispite my feelings at the moment, I know deep down I will prevail. I just want to have a 60 second pity party for one. Then at one minute and one second I’ll go back to superperson mode and kick some more ass.

So if you don’t mind…

I’m going to go enjoy my last 37 seconds before I must put the cape back on….

 

 

T

Stupid Tax – Paying My Fair Share

Courtesy of Dave Ramsey

Courtesy of DaveRamsey.com

Stupid Tax ….

No, not the tax I pay the government (although I’m not a fan of that either).

No Stupid tax is the tax I pay on my stupid decisions.

In 2003 I went to one of those RV shows. Now, mind you, I’ve been camping once and never had been in an RV. I walked aboard these traveling homes and was hooked. What a cool idea!  I always wanted to travel the US of A so why not in my own RV? So stupid me buys a 55K RV that I was excited about for only 50k. Yep, the show model. I was going to be a world traveler. Collect all those states on my map I was stopping at RV World for. Eventually I’d figure out the issue with driving my new toy to Hawaii. But that is another story.    🙂

RV Stupid Tax

My RV Stupid Tax

Oh, we traveled locally for the first year or two. I did collect 4 states. But in the end, my new “toy” mainly sat in our dirt lot. Years went by and I kept letting it sit and I kept shelling out my $500 a month “stupid tax”. Yep, $6,000 a year for nothing. This RV will end up costing me almost $80,000 by the time I’m done. This RV was the first item I had to let go of my perfect payment record. This RV cost me more than money. It cost me my sense of pride. The pride I held for never missing a payment.

When it came time to realize I couldn’t pay it all, the RV that sat in my yard for 3 years with no movement due to my stubborness to let it go, was the first item I knew I had to let finally bite the dust.

I’ll write about that more later, but let’s just say… When I waste money, I do it with zero’s on the end!

This isn’t my only stupid tax. I have a few stories to share along our journey. Just know.. you are not alone. We all do stupid!

T