It’s late at night and you are sitting worrying as the song “Money Makes the World Go Round” rings in your head. You look at the mountain of bills sitting on your kitchen table and feel like Sisyphus from the Greek myth, pushing that boulder up the hill just to slide back down when you get near the top—you are climbing a hill that you can never get to the peak of.
An internal argument rages in your head. Why can’t you make this work? You are doing everything you can, including working overtime at minimum wage whenever it is offered. Is this it, your life? A battle week by week, sometimes day by day?
Your days and nights are consumed with the fear and anxiety running in the background of everything you do. How am I going to pay this, where’s the money going to come from for that? You don’t know where to turn, and even if you did, you can’t borrow anymore money because you know you don’t have money to pay it back. Your health is starting to reflect your state of mind, stress bringing on all manner of ailments you never had before.
In desperation, you search Google looking for a solution. Maybe you could make some money on the side to supplement your income? Or maybe you go through all your belongings looking for something—anything—of value to sell even if it is another short-term fix. You want to do something else but you don’t know what.
Could you start a small business on the side? Yes, you could, but what would that business be? Stop worrying and start thinking about the possibilities. Look at your skill base, what skills do you already have that you could sell to someone else? What do you offer that could help them? (One of the single mums in my community group started really small. She cleaned other people’s houses while they were at work. Another baked goodies for families for the week. While these seem like very small jobs, they brought in an extra $100 to $200 a week for these women, money that helped them get back on their feet.)
When you are in a financial bind every extra dollar is like winning the lotto, everything’s about money—how much you don’t have and how much you need—so it is very hard to see anything else.
The first step is getting some help with your budget. This is scary because your instinct is probably to hide your head in the sand—but you cannot move forward until you know where you stand. There are organisations out there that can help you with your budget (and who can also send letters to people you owe money to).
Get inspired by others. One podcast i highly recommend is Think Enriched by Amy Robles – Her podcast will keep you motivated and on the right track with sorting out your Finances. She also has a very engaged community – where everyone supports each other in their financial journey. Join here
Once you have taken that first step, stop and give yourself a pat on the back because it is incredibly hard to put your hand up and ask for help. Then keep moving forward. You will be surprised at how much weight has been lifted off your back and how much easier the walk is. You will feel like you are in control and you will be able to move ahead.
Second step, create your support crew. This involves thinking about the people who inspire you—friends, family or even online personalities or Facebook friends. There are some amazing groups online who will not only support you but can also teach you what you need to know.
Third step, start researching. Research everything you love and everything you might need. Get a folder and print out the inspiring articles, photos of the items you will need, or lists of supplies, etc. Go to secondhand stores and dig for books that will help you in your quest. Don’t know which authors to look for? Ask your friends for inspiration.