Hi Everyone! Audra here. Thanks for joining me on my journey as I transition from Day Job to Retirement. Today, I thought I’d tackle BUDGET.
I was in Sam’s Club the other day. I love to stop by the warehouse store when I have time and browse through their, at times, surprising inventory. Who would have thought I could plan and purchase a vacation through Sam’s? The thought had never occurred, LOL. But, that’s besides the point.
Today on my wandering, after grabbing the necessary fruits, vegetables and paper towels, I spied a display of tired looking plants over by the freezer section. Hmmm, could be a deal here. When I arrived, I checked out the bedraggled species of plant on sale.
Pachira aquatica —> Guiana Chestnut —> affectionately known as the Money Tree
|Image by Tumisu at Pixabay|
Huh. Money growing on trees. Is that a fact.
Well, the leaves on these wealth buckets looked a bit short on cash. And no wonder. They thrive in the swampland of South America. These poor plants looked frayed and curled. They'd been innocently enjoying spa weather in the deeeeeeep south before being uprooted, flown through countless climates, and deposited in a cement floored, air-conditioned warehouse at an altitude of 5300 ft.
|Image by Frank Wittkowski at Pixabay|
Needless to say, they didn’t really inspire confidence in endless bounty, but the reality would have come in handy at this point in time!!
We were a two income family for 16 years. When my husband retired last year, we didn’t really feel the pinch of a reduced income having prepared in advance by reducing our spending. That’s all well and good when you think of the expenses for the household.
But my writing budget was about to take a substantive hit.
|Image by Kevin Phillips on Pixabay|
The dream of writing full-time is somewhere in every author’s mind. I had started putting a portion of my paycheck into my “Writing” account when I first began planning for retirement. It wasn’t much, but over the months, my writing nest egg grew to a point where I knew my day-to-day expenses could be covered without dipping into our household fund.
Unfortunately, this was the only proactive positioning of finances I had in place, which means counting pennies and weighing options for any workshop, conference, educational tool, etc. has taken on a whole new meaning for my author journey.
|Image by Deidre Weedon on Pixabay|
In my defense, I did retire a year earlier than planned, something else to always keep in the back of your mind.
A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.
Do I regret retiring a year early even though I might have been a bit more financially stable if I had waited? Absolutely not! God gave me the opportunity to write full-time (which I’m slowly forming the habit) and lack of apparent finances does not dampen my spirits one bit. I retired to write, write, write - not buy, buy, buy.
|Image by Gerd Altman from Pixabay|
If you’re thinking of retiring from your day job in the next few years, talk to a financial planner in regards to your years ahead, in general. As far as your writing career in concerned, I recommend you keep these costs in mind:
- Writing supply costs
- Replacing equipment
- Educational opportunities
- Conferences, chapter dues, subscriptions, etc
- Possible editing, cover art, audio narration, etc
And the list goes on. Start thinking about your expenses now. Look through your check, credit card, Paypal purchases. What writing books and materials have you purchased on Amazon or other online venues? Make that list! Expenses you feel might be nickel and dime right now, might become bones of contention when on a fixed income.
You’ve waited years to sit down at your writing desk at 8:00 am (or whenever) instead of your day job desk. The dream is about to come true. Plan for it financially now so you can attack your writing projects with a smile on your face.
Until next time, blessings to you!!