I finished my MBA in September of 2015 and have spent the past few months learning what it’s like to have a normal life. I just got Netflix for the first time ever over Christmas (welcome to the 21st century, girl). And while it’s been nice for life to be a hair less crazy, life is still pretty stressful.
I work full time as a marketing manager in Atlanta and hubby works full time as a process engineering tech (don’t ask me what that means, because despite being together for EIGHT YEARS, I still don’t really know). We have two young kiddos (ages 3 and 4), and both commute upwards of 45 minutes each way. Plus, for the past two years, I’d been in school in addition to working/parenting/wife-ing.
And You’re Looking to do More… Why?
Because I’m a bit of a nutcase? And also because I’ve got big dreams. And those dreams don’t happen to involve being in debt forever – more like traveling the globe stress free, drinking fabulous wine, and generally doing all the things I love to do with a whole lot less stress.
I want to be able to take actual vacations. I want to be able to visit my girlfriends in DC and California and Vancouver. I want my kids to see the world and get an international perspective.
Ergh. Writing this part makes me feel like I went to work naked by accident. (Then again, who goes to work naked on purpose? You know what, never mind.) I mean, for real, wouldn’t ya’ll rather smell my dirty underwear, because it’d be less embarrassing for me than letting ya’ll in on my finances.
(Sidenote, I totally get that that mindset contributes to more problems than solutions, but right now I’m that’s how I’m feeling, so let me have my feelings!)
Here’s the breakdown, as of 1/19/2016:
- Credit One CC – $0 (because I paid this bitch off on the 16th – BAM!)
- AMEX CC – $598
- Chase CC – $17,059
- Discover CC – $14,507
- Car – $15,167
Which adds up to a stunning $47,331. Not including my student loans, which are hovering somewhere above $80k, right between oh-my-god-I-need-to-vomit and what-the-hell-was-I-thinking.
Good thing I like a challenge.
So for 2016, my life revolves around a few major habits/goals:
- Move for 20 minutes every day
- Eat something green every day
- Clean something every day
- Pay off as much debt as is freakishly possible
(Full disclosure, these are not my only goals, but that’s a topic for a future post.)
You’ll notice that the first three goals are aimed at un-MBAing my life, since during my MBA I got super lax about eating out, doing anything other than driving/studying/commuting/other seated activities, and participating in the maintenance of our household. Don’t get me wrong, it was super wonderful to have a husband who was willing to cook, clean, do all of our laundry, wrangle the kids, and pack my lunches FOR TWO YEARS, but it’s been six months since I graduated and I still haven’t done more than fold a load of laundry and wipe down the occasional countertop. My honey loves me, but no honey should have to love me that much.
The last goal is aimed at getting an insane amount of debt paid off. Thanks to my wonderful new job, I’ve already made some progress in this regard, but my student loan payments kick in at the end of March (booooooo), so having an extra grand to throw at debt without any extra work is coming to a sad end (too) soon.
I get that the last goal doesn’t really follow the smart goals template, but my mind was recently blown when I came across a blog called Dream Beyond Debt. This incredible woman paid off over 40 grand in debt – in a year. Initially, my goal was to pay off a credit card, but now I’m wondering if I can do more. Like, a lot more. With our oldest kiddo starting kindergarten in the fall, my new job, and my love of extra-curricular projects, I feel like I might be able to make some big things happen this year. So, I’m ditching the smart goals formula and leaving that last goal wide open.
Bring it on, 2016! I see greatness ahead!