- 12 Months of Happiness: Getting Started
- Happiness Journey – January, Off to a Great Start!
- February Happiness Journey- I Choose More Prayer
- Daily Journaling in March Makes Me Happy
- Reading Brings Me Joy
- Happiness Journey: Update for May, June, July, and August
For May, I chose to focus on exercise. Now, does exercise make me happy? No, I still hate it, but what it does do is make me feel better when I do it consistently. I must say that this part I have kept up fairly consistently. I try to do something 7 days a week. If I shoot for 7, realistically, I’ll probably do good to get in 4-5 days. Although, I’m not losing weight because my stress has been high, and therefore, I’m eating everything but the kitchen sink, I do feel better. If you want to know more about the benefits of exercise, check out this earlier article, “Benefits of Exercise“.
Let me preface June report by saying my husband had been off work since the end of February. This is enough to steal anyone’s joy. By this time our savings was getting very low and there was not even a hint of a job. You see, he works in the oil and gas industry…need I say more?
For June, I knew it was time to take drastic measures. I had to get really creative with our finances, to make the rest of our savings stretch. Oh, how does this make me happy? I am a weirdo that loves playing with money (on paper)..usually other people’s money, but this time it was my own. I spent the month looking for ways to cut back, or save. I found a website I’m in love with, called everydollar.com . It’s the easiest way I’ve ever found to set up a monthly budget. This helped me tremendously. You see, I am a control freak. No big news there, for my friends and family, but I’m claiming it and owning the title for the rest of the world to see. In a strange, but miraculous way, by knowing exactly where every dollar was going, and feeling like I was on the same page with my creditors and hubby, I gained back some control, in an otherwise out-of-control situation. This makes me happy. Fortunately, we never got behind on anything, but we did cut back services on our cell phones and cable. Plus, we had to let our lawn mowers go, and our bi-weekly house cleaning services. For car payments, we moved one month’s payment to the end of the loan. For those of you who do not know this trick, you can usually do this at least once a year, and it will not affect your credit. We were also able to put holds on some services, even though we are in a contract, without hurting our credit with them. Additionally, we went back to clipping coupons and meal planning. We did not allow ourselves to buy any extras at the grocery store. Another thing we did was to start cleaning out junk and put it up for sale in our daughter and son-in-law’s yard sale.
Fast forward to now, I’m happy to report my hubby starts his new job on Monday, and we survived with our credit scores in tact. However, now our finances are in better shape, we see how wasteful we could be at times, and we have less junk. Plus, for once, I feel that my hubby finally understands what I do with our money and knows it’s not always easy to pay all the bills and save for a rainy day, unless we are working together. Although, I wish we still had our nest egg, I’m grateful for having gone though this experience. The lesson is to never take anything for granted. It can all be taken away from you in a heartbeat.
This brings us to July. In July, I was blessed with a lot more work, so I focused on work. Yes, I’m a weirdo in that area too, because I LOVE to work and feel productive. Since my hubby was still unemployed, he was constantly interrupting my work, so I decided it was time to clean out my office again, and get back into the office and shut the door. I also finally got my pictures hung on the wall. Sitting at my desk and looking around my office space, makes me happy. Although, it seemed like my only option then, it is a move that I’m glad I made.
Finally, we’re now into August. The first part of August has been very busy. I have had surgery and some new health issues, but I will get through them, one by one. One of my new clients has hired me to do some ghostwriting, so for the rest of August, I will focus on writing and trying to get back to a normal routine, with more writing for work and updating the blog, as well.
That’s about it. Thank you all for sticking with us during these difficult times. Please let me know what you do to keep happy. I would love to hear from you.Google+