This is a guest post from Sheryl in Ontario, who is 40 years old with a grown daughter, and is trying to rebuild her retirement dream just 20 years too late for early retirement.
To put it bluntly, I have had a week from hell.
In my full time job, there is a person who will be leaving soon, so I have had to find and begin training a new person (which I’m finding that the older I get, the less patience I have for it), also there was an issue with another employee I had to be involved with that was very stressful. My part time gig is par for the course, but still requires a time commitment, and also my father (he’s 82 and hasn’t been doing well for the last 6 months) has been in and out and back into hospital, and being the only child local, my parents rely on me to help in these situations. Needless to say, I leave my house at 7:30 am and don’t get home to start making dinner or anything else until after 9:00 pm. I’m not whining or complaining, it is what it is and it will get better.
Something I have noticed, is that while life is crazy for a short time, I don’t feel bad about buying a few take out meals or convenience foods to take a little pressure off the maintenance of my own life. I’ve been buying store bought yogurt instead of making my own, grabbing a slice of pizza when I’m hungry instead of having something already prepared at home that I can take with me, buying ready to eat salads instead of chopping the lettuce and veggies myself, etc. I know these are small things and I’ve been thankful they are available when my time gets consumed by other events.
Where does it stop though? Where is my reminder when the crisis is over to go back to my usual ways? Previously, I think I would resume when I’d notice I was running out of money, which may have taken a month or so. This time, is almost seems like I’ve separated the money from the activity. It bugs me that I’m using store bought items. I could get used to doing it easily enough, but I don’t want to. Right now it is still uncomfortable to be doing things differently, and I’m thinking I should use that discomfort as the catalyst to get back to what is normal for me.
What causes lifestyle creep in your life? How or when do you notice it?