When we decided to go, I quickly realised that this idea was going to take Balls.
Big Hairy, Not Very Attractive Balls and a Class A Budget
It may be Glaringly Obvious but running away takes Money, Planning, Perseverance and Pain In the Arse Hard Work.
Hey Cinderella Wake Up – Forget the Prince, if you want to go it will take hard work and tough options on your behalf and the buck stops with you. (For those of you smug and lucky enough to have a fortune land in your lap and you’re off with little or a piss poor effect, I salute you and am totally jealous if I must be honest)
Now for the rest of us normal everyday not as good looking as the people on telly how do you do it?
What you need to continue:
Leave the bullshit outside.
Question: Are you fair-dinkum about change or are you a tyre kicker?
This is a place where you are safe to tell the truth. Just imagine it’s you and I over a glass of cheap red and we are going to talk about how much you earn, how much you spend and all the horror and crap in between.
Pen, Paper, Calculator will be essential as well as a few tissues, once you realise the waste that may be happening at this point in your life.
Let’s Discuss Your Worth
Not the way you feel when you look at your pretty self in the mirror but what’s your real $ value.
Imagine if your significant other was kidnapped by bastard pirates and you had one month to sell up everything to pay the ransom all on your lonesome what could you come up with. That is your starting point – your base, foundation, are you proud of me Mum? I did better than you thought, or fuck this is a horrible starting point. Whatever your current assets, the ones you own and can sell in 30 days, this is your current $ value.
As that short actor (the one I don’t like) said “Show me the Money”
What figure do you get every pay packet in your hot little hand. Now go big picture, what are you worth each pay, each month and each year. The easiest way to do this is to take your pay in the hand figure, then times by the number of pays you have in a year. If its weekly x 52, fortnightly x 26 and monthly of course its 12 times.
If you have a side income and make any money make sure you add this in.
If you have a business then this is harder again, but every business owner should be able to pay themselves first. Having run a business I know this is easier said than done but have a go.
WARNING – When telling me your income do not tell me your contract figure, you know the one on the piece of paper you signed way back on day one. I don’t want to hear what you earn because this bullshit figure sucks, in half the population believing they earn more than they do. This figure fails to mention TAX
Now now, you can stop whinging I know TAX is personally hideous but every time you drive on a road, take your kid to school and visit a hospital (in most countries) your tax is paying for the greater good.
So Get Over IT!!
My tax rant over how are you going to get an income figure?…..
Well done, lets continue.
Didn’t Your Mother tell you Lying is very Unattractive – Time to Confess
So your month has gone dry and your eyes are starting to glaze over.
Well STOP – This is the moment you need to stand up, go on, put your hand on your heart, and say
“I [insert name here] Promise from this point on to tell loving mother the truth about what I really spend each and every day, and live with a workable budget and goal.
WHY so I can have a red hot go at living a life that when it is nearly done I can say well that was worth it.”
Tell me how much do you spend?
What you put in your mouth to eat and drink, wear on your back, slip those Cinderella toes into, drive on those tax paid roads, also “I deserve it” treats and entertainment. Then move on to what does my accommodation cost me, is there a mortgage, rent or are you bludging off your parents or some poor other who is paying. How much do you spend on your house making it look pretty or just keeping the rain outside.
Now throw in the bills that make you wince when they come in the mail. I’m talking about insurance, registrations, land tax, rates, there will be others – these are what I call the grown up accounts. The bills that make you realise you have passed the point of being a kid because kids never think about council rates and insurance.
Loans, Credit cards, Store Cards and Credit in general.
(These babies are just so precious they deserve a blog article all to themselves.) If you use credit cards and don’t pay off the balance every single month there will come a point of knowing. Once this happens you may have a tear-jerking mental breakdown when you realise just how much these little bits of plastic are actually costing you. Remember your not the first credit sucker and you certainly won’t be the last.
As well as the obvious debts now would be a good time to tally up any debts to family and friends you may have. If you owe your Auntie, Best Friend, Wine Merchant $500 bucks now is the time to write it down on your list.
Are you writing this all down?
What about coffees, magazines, books, music, games, cigarettes and I can really tell the difference with a bottle of red from the top shelf. Add all these darlings up in your expenses. (Champagne darling!, did you remember to add the bubbly?)
Make sure you include all the costs.
Your car for instance has a heap of additional costs besides petrol and oil (oops I must remember to do that!). There’s insurance, maintenance and registration not to mention that if you buy a new car it is now worth around 25% less than the moment before you signed the contract. If as part of the new car you organised finance, I won’t slap you because sometimes you don’t know, but yes you deserve a slap for wasting money. Your new car is costing you a fortune.
I tell my children they should drive the cheapest safest car their ego will allow them to drive… If they can’t afford the car without a loan then they can’t afford that car.
People Who Cost You Plenty
My final consider the cost of are the people you hang around with or live in your home. Do your friends cost lots of money to be with, socialise with and keep up with?
If you have an adult child or children who may or may not be working and are living at home with you, the honest truth is they are costing you plenty. I am yet to see a family where the adult kids pay their way. (This includes working or not working children. If your Adult child is still trying to work out what they want to do take them for a drive to a homeless shelter and ask if they can see finding themselves yet.)
You might be happy supporting your children and that’s OK if you like living on the land but if you need all your cash to go sailing it may be time to tell your children to get out of bed before 11, have a shower and go get a job and welcome to the nasty world that awaits outside the front door. If there are no jobs then they have to work for you to earn their board and breakfast!
(I know this all sounds very tough and I don’t know your circumstances But Tough Love Works and we are talking about Living Your Dream)
Have I forgotten anything?
This Is Not A Walk In The Park
If you thought working out your budget would be easy – well sorry sailor you’re in the wrong bar.
This working out how much it all costs is time consuming, confronting, boring, pain in the proverbial. Who said this quest was going to be easy. You will need to have the evidence / receipts, bank statements, pay slips and a long list of the things that pop up when you don’t expect them.
At this finding out point in a budget plenty of fine people have lost their way and given up because it takes time, honesty and energy to work this shit out. So here are a few words of encouragement to help you continue with part one of the budget journey.
If You Can’t Measure Then You Can’t Manage
Everything That Is Worth Doing Takes Effort – If It Was Easy the Oceans Would Be Full of Sailors
Being Scared Is Part Of The Equation So Toughen Up and Make Change
Modern Life Tells Us To Spend More, Own More Stuff & Marketing Is Clever – We Are All Suckers At Some Point
Budget Is Not A Dirty Word – Budget Is BOSS -
Part One – is all about you having an honest idea of where you stand financially. It is about knowing your financial worth and getting ready to work out how you can live your dream and afford to go cruising.
It is about being in control of where you are so you can go where you want to.
….to be continued. Credit Cards are next on my list