Why are you working so much? Ask yourself that question. You may be able to work less and I’ll tell you how. I understand some people have mandatory overtime and some have to work just to make ends meet, which is different than what I’m talking about. Many times, families struggle and having the option to work overtime is a blessing. Other times, people are spending their nights and weekends in the office while they miss the beautiful sun outside, picnics, Saturday morning cup of coffee in bed, etc. because they have to pay for that expensive boat they don’t have time to use or for the 50k dollar vehicle they financed. I saw a commercial years ago that had video clips of all the things you’ll miss if you work overtime, like pushing your kids on the swing, enjoying a hike, reading a book, etc. The commercial said the reason why you’re hourly overtime rate is higher, is because of the important things you’re missing.
Many lives are out of balance because they are overbuying which causes overworking which causes stress and lack of time to keep things in balance. Laundry piling up, frequent take-out dinners, and no time for hobbies or life enjoyment? Reduce your spending, which allows you to work less and enjoy more. Sounds simple, right?
Expenses you may consider eliminating or reducing :
- Brand new vehicle: Even millionaires often buy used cars to avoid immediate depreciation of a new car. If you had to save up for this vehicle before buying, you would probably opt for a less expensive vehicle anyway.
- Satellite radio: I recently eliminated my subscription because free music apps are just as good!
- Pack your lunch! I treat myself to lunch out once per week but the other days, I often bring leftovers that would have gone bad in the fridge anyway (it’s healthier too).
- Stop eating out so much. You can make a delicious meal that’s healthy and it will cost less. You’re not working late anymore so you’ll have the extra time.
The expenses above that I cut were a result of budgeting. Budgeting is a great way to determine which expenses need to be eliminated or reduced. When you see where every dollar is going, you care more. Do you know where your money is going? I’ve tracked every penny for the last 14 months and I can tell you on average how much we spend on groceries, restaurants, vacations, holidays, my husband’s trips to Wawa (erghhh), etc. There are many budgeting programs but my favorite is YNAB (You Need A Budget). See where your money is going and make some changes that allow you to work less!
Overtime may be a necessity in order to pay for your basic food, shelter, and clothing. If it’s not, maybe reducing your spending instead of working more will give you more time with the ones you love. Stop overworking to cover your overspending. A peaceful life enjoying what you love will probably bring more happiness than a brand new car or expensive shopping sprees.