My Fourth Net Worth Overshare

Have you been through periods in life where taking a few steps backward were necessary in order to make a giant leap forward? That's how I'd describe my fourth quarter finances.

My expenses exceeded my income for four whole months and I topped that off with a decadent month of overspending in December. Despite all that, my net worth dropped less than $5,000. If you don't count the seasonal decline in my home value, my net worth actually increased during this period by $374.61.

Overall, I'm proud of how I managed to protect my savings by picking up a part-time job and living off my bare bones budget during my four month career transition.

A New Approach To My Finances

For most of 2014, I focused on living as cheaply as possible.

Before I quit my job, I was saving close to 45% of my earnings by barely spending anything on clothing or entertainment, attempting to keep my monthly food budget between $200 – $300, and only traveling if I was able to utilize credit card points or frequent flyer miles.

Prior to that, I made deliberate choices to cut back on recurring expenses by dropping cable, finding less expensive health, home owners, and car insurance, getting rid of my home warranty, getting a less expensive cell phone plan, and finding ways to workout for free.

I've realized that cutting back further isn't the answer. I've spend money on things like wellness, gifts for others, and occasional trips. These aren't things that I'm willing to cut out of my life. I believe that allowing yourself to enjoy certain indulgences leads to a more sustainable long-term budget.

While I'm still planning to keep my monthly budget between $2,000 – $2,300 per month, I'm consciously working on earning more money for the first time ever.

I've got a side hustle that allows me to work anywhere between 4 and 28 additional hours per week on top of my day job. I'm currently in the process of experimenting with what works best for me. I've also transitioned to more fulfilling career that I believe will be more lucrative over the course of my lifetime.

As attractive as the extra income is, I'm also committed to learning from past mistakes. Not prioritizing my health by constantly overworking is what caused burnout last time, and I never want that to happen again.

Readers: Are you prone to overworking? How have you managed to find a healthy work-life balance?

Enjoying my posts? Keep up with Cashville Skyline on Facebook, twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

Related Post

Share:

Discussions — 20 Responses

  • Dee @ Color Me Frugal January 19, 2015 on 6:38 am

    I so hear you on the overworking! I’ve definitely been there. The thing that really helped me keep my sanity during the years that I was working way too much was exercising every day. I took up running (even though I always used to hate it!) and ran every morning no matter the weather. It did wonders for my mental health. These days I’m a stay at home mom, so the line between “work” and “life” is much more vague- but I’m still making time to exercise, which is my “me” time.

    Reply
  • C@thesingledollar January 19, 2015 on 8:01 am

    Congrats on keeping your net worth stable through all of that! Yes, I’m definitely prone to tunnel vision — sometimes that means overwork, sometimes it means not enough work, alas. I’m trying to figure out how to balance things better.

    Reply
  • Income Surfer January 19, 2015 on 8:06 am

    Finding that life/work balance is really hard for us too. Our society is tilted toward either overworking or no working…..there doesn’t seem to be much middle ground. As silly as it sounds, we have found that turning off the electronics after 7pm, and scheduling couple (or family) outings have gone a long way towards restoring the balance. Intentional living may be something you’d enjoy. Have a great week
    -Bryan

    Reply
  • writing2reality January 19, 2015 on 8:15 am

    So tough to balance the desire to earn more with maintaining a healthy lifestyle. So often I want to tackle everything, and fail to realize that I’ll toss myself into the deep end if I do take on everything I want to do. Patience is tough for me in this regard. Find ways to distract yourself or motivate you to step away and just plain enjoy life, even if it is at a cost of a few hours of billable time.

    Reply
  • Kirsten January 19, 2015 on 9:39 am

    I am prone to overworking, for sure. When I worked for NASA, I loved my job and didn’t mind working extra hours and I did a lot of that from home. Though, I have to say, I was mindful about it. I didn’t just do it “because” – there was a specific reason for it. And now, here I am freelancing, blogging, investigating other online ventures, AND working full time and then some. I still try to find balance but it’s hard!

    Reply
  • Tonya@Budget and the Beach January 19, 2015 on 12:43 pm

    My body is super sensitive to being burned out and overwhelmed so I try to find as much daily balance as possible or my body starts falling apart. Or maybe that’s being a 44-year-old. lol! I try to work as hard as I can for as long as I can, but always my #1 priority will be my health, so as long as I can get good quality sleep and daily exercise, then I’m all good. Just experiment and see what works best for you!

    Reply
  • Lauren January 19, 2015 on 1:49 pm

    I see work/life balance as a fluid, ever-changing thing. Sometimes you’re in a great groove, then something changes and it gets switched up again. It’s a work in progress!

    Reply
  • Shannon @ Financially Blonde January 19, 2015 on 2:10 pm

    My work life balance is in constant flux; however, over the last year or so I have made a conscious effort to really enjoy and appreciate my free time while I have it and not get concerned about getting busy again because the busy always happens. When I enjoy the downtime more, the busy times don’t seem quite as crazy or destructive on my personal life.

    Reply
  • Fig @ Figuring Money Out January 19, 2015 on 2:27 pm

    Work and life balance can be so hard! This year I’m focused on both reducing my expenses and increasing my income, which will be both in finding better full time work and upping my side hustle as well. I do enjoy my free time but I expect to have a lot less of it this year and I’m really ok with that.

    Reply
  • Debt Hater January 19, 2015 on 9:35 pm

    It’s great that you were able to keep your networth within the same range even with all the spending. And like you said – without the house “losing” value you actually gained networth. If you aren’t planning on selling the house anytime soon, I’d say you are still making forward progress.

    I agree with you that there’s only so much you can cut back on, you still have to be able to live and enjoy yourself.

    Reply
  • Jenna January 20, 2015 on 9:08 pm

    Our budget is pretty slimmed down at this point: $2500-$3500 per month for the two of us. We’re also focused on really bringing up our income at this point.

    Reply
  • Jacob January 22, 2015 on 12:03 pm

    Great work on the net worth.

    And I’m definitely prone to overworking. I’m definitely a driven individual, which doesn’t help. Our society definitely either works far too many hours, or not enough. I’m attempting to find balance but it’s tough!

    Reply
  • debt2retirement January 25, 2015 on 11:39 pm

    Nice! You’re doing really well on increasing your net worth. I also can feel the effects of overworking at my job. But I realized to make the best cash gains, I should decrease my spending and increase the right investments whether in stocks or real estate. If you want to check out my story of how I’ll get out of 200k of debt, visit debt2retirement.weebly.com, I’d really appreciate it!

    Can’t wait to read more blogs!

    D2R

    Reply
  • Sam January 27, 2015 on 9:28 pm

    Definitely agree with you Kate. Cutting back is crucial, but not at the expense of your friends, family or your own state of mind. I faced similar expenses this past quarter (bachelor party for one of my best friends was a big one) but they were worth it. Thanks for sharing. I look forward to your future updates 🙂

    Reply
  • Mel January 30, 2015 on 12:23 pm

    I think my whole life is a balance between overworking and not working at all – but I think that’s normal in entertainment contract work. This past week we actually had a show cancel on us, so we’ve had an entire week off – sans driving from Omaha to Boise. I am so not used to that. I have trouble switching between go-go-go and relaxing.

    Reply
  • Amos January 31, 2015 on 1:13 am

    Work and life balance can be so hard.Great work on the net worth and thanks for sharing this article.Its tough to balance everything!This year I’m focused on both reducing my expenses and increasing my income but I still have to be able to live and enjoy myself.

    Reply
  • DivSaver Digest - January 31 2015 January 31, 2015 on 4:03 pm

    […] Cashville Skyline Net Worth Update I love net worth posts. It’s just so much fun to pry into the finances of others and compare them to your own. […]

    Reply
  • Karen February 1, 2015 on 11:01 am

    I am quite prone to overworking. It comes from a lot of reasons. The fear that I won’t have enough money, from past periods of low and no employment and feeling like I have to play catch up.

    Lately, it’s starting to catch up to me. I worked through the Christmas break (wasn’t able to get time off) and now I feel pretty burnt out. I am looking forward to a weekend getaway next weekend so I can force myself to unplug. I may have to turn off my cell phone in order to do that. Lol.

    Reply
  • The Net Worth of Personal Finance Bloggers February 2, 2015 on 11:40 am

    […] Cashville Skyline @ $141,857 […]

    Reply
  • The January Monthly Budget Review - Cashville Skyline Cashville Skyline The January Monthly Budget Review - Cashville Skyline | February 16, 2015 on 5:04 am

    […] Most popular post: My Fourth Net Worth Overshare […]

    Reply