This is a sad week for me.
My parents who were here visiting (and babysitting) for two weeks returned to their home in Cincinnati. LD started daycare. My first paycheck since maternity leave was MUCH lower than anticipated. And my part time job as a personal trainer which I adore, told me I need to train a minimum of 15 clients a week to maintain my employment.
All of these things came to a head last night and I had a minor (okay, truth be told it was a major) break down! Having my parents here for two weeks was amazing. Knowing my son was spending his day with two people who loved him, played with him, and cared for him when he was sad, gave me such priceless peace of mind. Leaving him in a new space, with new people, is scary. Seeing my lower than expected paycheck and worrying about paying for his exorbitantly expensive daycare is even scarier!
All of the above mentioned items made me sad because momentarily I felt as if I was failing. Failing my son, my family and myself. I want to train at the gym because I love it. Helping people achieve their fitness goals and pushing them harder than they would on their makes me happy, but I just can’t train 15 clients a week on top of my full time job. I have a son whom I love more than training. A few hours a week at the gym was perfect, but missing 15 hours of smiles, giggles, and cuddles is just not an option.
I felt like I was failing the financial goals I laid out for the year. How could I have miscalculated my expenses and income, and how am I ever going to save any money when literally every cent is accounted for?
After a reassuring hug from my husband and a big grin from my baby boy I was feeling better. I just needed to change my attitude and outlook on the situation. Every obstacle is an opportunity. It’s going to take a little creativity and dedication, but I WILL achieve what I’ve set out to do this year.
So, enough of the pity part and on with my savings plan! Step 3 of my plan was to open a brokerage account so I can buy stocks and exchange-traded funds. As I have mentioned before, I work for a financial company and was fortunate enough to open an account with them with no minimum balance, free trades, and a discounted fee. Since I already have a 401K account with them adding this brokerage account was a breeze. When opening your own brokerage account look for perks that many companies provide such as free checking or trades. Most brokerage gives you the option of automatically having withdrawals taking from your checking account or adding a lump sum. For more information on brokers click here.
Step 4: creatively reducing my monthly expenses and adding funds to my brokerage account.