What a great February! All non-negotiable bills (mortgage, gas and electric) were paid on time, my credit card was paid in full and no one asked to borrow money. So, I’m looking forward to sharing this update. But first, I’d like to share the fragments of a financial situation that I overheard while I was having lunch in my car:
“Yes, I’m working again on a Saturday,” the woman next to my car said. The person on the other end of the phone must have asked her where she got the energy to work on Saturdays, because she said, “I don’t know. I just do it. I guess I’m used to it now.”
I thought, how quickly we adapt to doing things that are “unpleasant.” I even challenged myself. I could be doing more in the way of part-time work or side hustling to ease the income fluctuations that I experience from time to time. I applauded her work ethic and imagined her finances being better off for the extra work she was putting in.
As I finished my lunch, the woman on the phone was telling the person on the other end: “I can’t. Because all of my credit cards are maxed out!”
What?! What’s the purpose of a side hustle? Is it to keep you treading water? Or is it to put you on solid ground so you can build? The regular work week is draining enough, so to add another job—or in her case, another day of work because she seemingly can’t bring her finances under control—is insane.
You will never be able to outwork poor money habits!
I had friend that found himself buried in debt and took on a part-time job to climb out of it. He was right on target with his pay-down strategy but somewhere in the fourth or fifth month of his plan he started spending again. He ended up needing the part-time job just as much as he needed his full-time job. It was a vicious cycle that didn’t end well.
A side hustle should only serve two purposes:
- To help speed up the process of bringing all debt to an end after you have made the mental shift away from poor financial habits.
- To accelerate the building process—the building of your emergency fund, the maxing out of your retirement accounts and the building passive income streams. Money made from a second job or side hustle should be used to improve your financial standing and not be squandered.
Okay, I’m done. Time for the net worth update.