Ebb and Flow

After writing about personal finance for the over seven years I’ve learned it is entirely natural to have periods of time where I’m not all that interested in writing about money.  Previously I would feel guilt over not writing, but now I accept the ebb and flow of my mind on the topic.

I also believe when my mind is fairly occupied with money tasks like taxes and thinking about a few other money issues in my life I tend to have less energy left to write here.

So what’s new in my money world, not too much at this moment to be honest.  I’m waiting for my raise for last year to be finalized, but I came to an interesting conclusion on that score.  I really don’t care much about the money from the raise.  I suppose what I care more about is how well did I do compared to my peers.

The actually money itself usually isn’t huge amounts so it is hard to get excited over a few hundred dollars more in a month.  I’m making so much more than our spending that I can’t really get that excited about that anymore.  After all it will all go to more savings anyway and at this point it hardly makes much of a different to my plan.

What I do care about is the implied worth of the raise compared to others.  I rarely get much feedback on how I’m doing compared to my peers so if I know the average raise and then I get a sense of my value compared to my peers.  It’s vaguely juvenile to care, but I still get some of my self worth from doing what I deem a good job so it is nice to have that validated in some way.

In other news I’ve been making good progress on both my next non-fiction book and a novel I’ve been working on.  The novel is a bit over a 100 pages so far while the non-fiction is just to the point of having enough material together for me to pull it together (I’m writing the first draft in Evernote) and get a page count going.  So a large part of my morning writing time has been consumed by those projects lately, which isn’t helping not writing here.

So overall, no I’m not dead, just busy with other things.  How are things in your money world going?  Any milestones to share or tricks you have learned?

3 thoughts on “Ebb and Flow”

  1. “I really don’t care much about the money from the raise. I suppose what I care more about is how well did I do compared to my peers. …What I do care about is the implied worth of the raise compared to others.” <– Wow Tim, massive disconnect there. That's the one thing you shouldn't be worried about *at all*. They do all those studies which find people would rather make $70K and be the highest paid in their office over making $80K and being the least paid. That's just craziness.

    You ever heard of that one where there are two people deciding over the fate of $20? One gets $20 in $5 bills. The other is told that he can take as much or little of it as he wants up to $15 but the other always has the right to veto the deal. However, if veto happens nobody gets anything. They've proven that if guy 2 takes $15 leaving guy 1 with only $5, guy 1 will almost always veto the deal. He's doing this for his own pride or in order to punish the other for being greedy. So, they both get nothing. I never understood why the hell *zero* is better than $5. That's not mathematically sound or logical at all. Emotion is best left out of all money-think. …Or maybe that's just me?

    I am aware that there's a generational difference. GenY and Millennials were raised on a very fair playing field. One where everyone was important, bullying was discouraged, and everyone got a trophy. GenX were brought up feeling generally cynical and feeling screwed. Most of us never expected to be treated fairly at all (let alone get our foot in the door.) Seriously–in the 80s most of my graduating class thought we'd all go on to fantastic careers in burger flipping and dishwashing. The bar for our expectations was set so low that anything other than minimum wage is gravy.

    Good article though–can't imagine how brutal it'd be to write regularly and to keep up an ebb and flow.

  2. I agree, money stops being important in the middle of the plan. I think of it as just another chore at times. Although I like seeing the balances grow, it really doesn’t effect my daily life. Intuitively I know I need to finish my taxes, but I also know there’s no consequences if I put it off for a few weeks.

    The challenge is to find new ways to keep motivated, It’s hard to feel excited about an event 10 years from now. Financial Fatigue is a problem.

  3. Interesting article. I too suffer from the ebb and flow of the want to write. Also, because my financial needs are so low, I find it unnecessary to worry about a few dollars here and there. That is really the trick right? Most people don’t have money problems, they have spending problems.

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