Saturday, October 11, 2014

Time is on our side


I'm a big Rolling Stone's fan, though I have certain favorites, where the words and music seem ageless.  Paint it Black, Satisfaction, and Time is on our side are three favorites.  I've been thinking a lot about where, how and who with I spend my time, in fact, it is one of the main reasons I started this blog. We all have the same 24 hours and each of us splices those hours up based on their own necessity, and priorities.  I believe there is a relationship between money and time, that goes beyond the "time is money" cliché.  After necessities, where we choose to spend other dollars reflects our priorities. When those get out of balance, say a person is working more and more hours to earn more and more money beyond what is needed, but then have little free time to do anything meaningful, life is out of balance.  Similarly with those that load their calendar with more and more obligations, then they lose out on simple and of the moment experiences, because they are too busy.  In the last year I saw my life spiraling in that work longer and longer, over committed treadmill, and I didn't like what I was seeing.

This week was the final shaking I needed to confirm my calendar and budget needs a good rattling.  I won't share much as it is not my story to share, but a lifelong friend lost her husband following a two decade on and off battle with illness.  Barely into his 50's, hearing the stories and experiences about this life shared, one knew he didn't let constant worry over shadow a happy life.  He put time on his side, and while I am heart broken for his family, I know they know he put them first on his priorities.

My husband and I celebrated our 27th anniversary yesterday.  I don't know where the time went, because some days I feel about as immature and stupid as I did at 21!  On the way and during dinner, too often our conversation centered around work, and what was going on mostly at my office.  We had to enforce a no work rule, but even then references crept in.  I don't want to spend my 28th anniversary talking about work-I want work to be a side note on my life, not the all consuming bear it has become.  It is harder to do that when you work in an industry that also mirrors personal passion, but the issues I work with can be discussed as societal, and the office workings can be left there. l am exploring other opportunities that while may end up with less pay, should result with less hours of actual work and being "on call" and more room for where to I'd rather be. Of course take home pay will be less, and we don't want to reduce three financial priorities, retirement investment, support for college, or a little travel now and then, so the tips on frugality will really be followed in the blogosphere. I don't think my contribution to the world will be any less.  I'll keep you posted.        

So the weekend should be a good one.  It s cool, but sunny, perfect for getting some long walks and hopefully some apple picking done.  I've just had a couple cups of coffee and DD #2 and I devoured 1/2 a tube of Pillsbury cinnamon rolls.  She has an event to help with at the public library, so I may spend an hour or so perusing the stacks and reading magazine issues I don't subscribe to.  Supper is in the crock pot-kind of a pasta fagioli soup that I made with what I had on hand, so  a fair amount of tradeoffs and substitutions.  Cross your fingers.  What about you all?  Any advice for keeping control of the calendar and clock?  Have any of you taken a step back in career and salary in order to create more personal time?  How did it turn out?

4 comments:

  1. Three years ago I went from full time to three days a week and it's the best thing I've ever done. We now have weekends back as they are no longer filled with domestic duties. Our money has reduced but we've cut back on our expenditure and the reduction isn't as noticeable as we thought it might be, In the end it's a very individual decision about whether you can afford to cut back on your hours both short term and long term.

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    1. On paper, it wouldn't be cutting hours, but the type of work would be different in this case so truer to 40 not 50 hour week norms. I agree that working more usually costs more, quality of life and money wise. I type this surrounded by mounds of laundry being folded and clogged drains hopefully clogging because too much running out the door to bother getting things cleaned out after a.m. showers.

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  2. When my son was diagnosed with autism (he has complex needs) I decided that I wouldn't be going back to work like I originally planned. As he grew and his needs (we also have another child) my DH felt he should be at home more and reduced his hours significantly. It took us years to go from talking about it to actually doing it. We worried about money but actually it has been fine. We changed our lifestyle, we rethought what we need and what we want. It has not been a hardship, just different. We now kick ourselves that we left it too long. We will never regret the long summer holidays as a family.

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    1. It is reassuring to know others have made these changes and in the long run for a better quality of life. The ironic thing is my work is about helping families and children and I am still 100% behind the mission. When my older were young, I actually did work part time hours, but then my career kept moving forward. I realized lately though that where I thought I was heading wasn't going to happen and that I was now just building other peoples career path at the expense of my family and personal well being. I'd rather spend those extra hours with my family perhaps volunteering together.

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