Working towards a dream is not a concept I spend a lot of time contemplating. I am also not someone who will plan things years in advance. .
In a previous post I mused about different kinds of dreams a person can have. The dream I’m writing about today is a little bit different.
If you ask me where this dream began I’m not sure that I will be able to tell you. Thinking back I can recognize that some experiences in my past most likely helped to shape it. I might even have thought about it at a much younger age, and then forgot about it because it seemed like an impossible dream.
Let’s face it. How many ‘ordinary’ people’s dreams ever see the light of day without the pesky necessity of coin? Lots and lots of coin if you don’t have much of it.
So how did this happen for me?
The short answer – I’m blessed. The long answer: I’m… not exactly sure…
You always hear the financial gurus tell you that you must save. Be smart about the way you spend money, and where you spend it. Don’t buy something that you don’t really need. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish. All of it is good advice. Unfortunately some of these lessons a person learns the hard way.
I certainly learned those lessons the hard way. Hey wait… let honesty rule! I actually had to re-learn those lessons a few times.
Can you remember what you did with your very first pay check? I can’t. I really can’t. And doesn’t that just say it all? My first job (after finishing school) paid on a weekly basis. Wow! I felt rich. RICH, I tell you! At first I went on wild spending sprees every weekend. And yet, I can’t tell you what I bought. After a while though I got used to having some money and I managed not to spend it all before the next pay-day. I even got to a place where I could invest in myself by taking some long distance courses.
When I changed jobs, so did the pay cycle. Once a week turned into every end of the month. That first salary had a much bigger WOW-factor than my first pay check. I felt richer than ever before! Somehow though I ended up spending more than I earned. It took me a very long time to learn how to budget a monthly salary. It took me even longer to learn how to stick to a budget. To this day, and probably for the rest of my life, it will remain a challenge for me.
Through the years of my working life and many a budget mishap, I actually managed to put away a few rand here and there. The phrase “all your eggs in one basket” must have sunk into my subconscious. Or maybe all the dire warnings about the risks of doing it did. It just so happens that I don’t put all my eggs in one basket. I tend to put money a lot of different somewheres – for example investing in a policy – then make it part of my fixed budget and forget about it. Since I learned that I can’t spend what I don’t have – I just love hiding my money from myself :P
So even while I struggle to stay within my budget sometimes, in the end all the little tricks helped me to save just about enough. Enough to shop for a piece of land, design a house, get a building loan approved and contract a builder.
All going well, my dream will be a livable reality by mid February 2014, the 365 day mark.