Living Paycheck to Paycheck? How?

I don’t know about you guys, but most people live paycheck to paycheck. Well, honestly, most people live paycheck to five days to paycheck. Does this sound familiar? If so, you are in the right place!

A little back story for ya. I was working for quite some time, barely making over minimum wage. We’ve all been there. It was a job I was good at, but the benefits weren’t really anything to be desired. And the salary, well, if it hadn’t been for my husband having a good job, we would not have been able to make ends meet. Nowadays, households have to have two incomes to make it through. It’s kind of sad when you think about the fact that there was once a time that the head of the house made enough money to cover everything and still have enough left over for the fun stuff, like going to the drive in. Sodas were only five cents kinda of time.

Well this job, while it was a job I enjoyed for the most part, and it allowed me to take my kids to and from school (their bus stop is over a mile from our house), it just wasn’t cutting it financially. I worked at a school as an hourly employee. Any time there wasn’t school, I didn’t make money, and we would go a month up to three months without me making anything. So, I started looking for another job. I found one too! I thought it would be perfect! It paid well, had excellent benefits, all adults. I thought to myself, I can totally do this. Bonus, it was a work at home job once the training was complete. Training was only supposed to be 8 weeks.

WRONG!!! The weeks just seemed to keep piling up, and there was mandatory overtime every week. I was tired, stressed, still not working at home, and to top it off I had lost 20 lbs from the stress. I was getting yelled at day in and out from customers on the phone. They would get irate when I couldn’t tell them something, not because I didn’t know the answer, but because I wasn’t allowed to. My supervisors weren’t much help either, which tore me apart. A customer would ask for a supervisor and I was supposed to basically tell them no. My morals didn’t let me put my heart into my work, I simply hated it and it was affecting not only my health, but it also affected my time with my children who are still young.  My husband and I discussed it and decided my health was more important than having the job that would make it look like we had received a tax return every two weeks into our bank account. It killed me to do it, but I walked in and quit the very next day.

Which brings us to now. I am now in a household again living paycheck to 5 days before paycheck. It’s a real struggle, and I know that I am not alone. But, we’ve managed to find a way to keep everything paid that needs to be paid. We have a system to organize our payments based on importance. We pay the necessities first (rent/mortgage, electricity, water, gas, food), then the things that keep the house a float (trash, car payments, insurance), then our credit obligations (credit cards, loan payments, etc.) Then once all the important stuff is taken care of we see what’s left. Often there isn’t much and we have no spending days.

I’m on a mission at this point to pay off as much debt as possible while still having only one income providing for our family of four. So it leads me to these questions: How do you keep your family afloat while still living on only one income?  What do you sacrifice to be able to provide what your children need?

Let me know in the comments how you do it? I will be sharing more tips and strategies as this blog progresses. Hopefully we can all help each other out with our own personal bits of knowledge!

Thanks for stopping by!


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