On the other hand, it is also giving me something of a lifeline, a thread to hold on to to keep going. I spent most of February trying really hard not to fall into a deep trough of depression after the relative high of January. I could feel in January and at the beginning of February that I was getting too caught up in making plans and thinking everything was possible. I've come to recognise the slightly manic aspect to it all which shows me that it's not just a new year kind of thing (at least, it is but sometimes becomes more than that, as it did this year). So I tried to rein it in and not get too carried away, trying to take the good from it without letting it take over I suppose. And that has helped I think as I've been able to also stop myself from falling too far down a hole the past few weeks. Not without a lot of effort and I've done too much to a certain extent but so far I'm managing. It hasn't helped that I have a big choir concert next weekend so there have been extra rehearsals, including all day rehearsals last weekend to go to as well. So as well as all the activity I have been trying to purposely spent as much time as possible just doing nothing but hanging around reading, listening to music and that kind of thing. Trying to get back to the idea that what I choose to do is okay so long as I am doing it consciously and purposefully. Not just letting things happen. It's a work in progress.
On the budgeting front, I have to admit that my attempt at a variation on the envelope system was a resounding failure. I will try again but not for a few months. It is true what people say. The dark and depressing beginning of the year is a particularly difficult time to make changes. Of course now it's March already and I can nearly feel the rest of the year rushing up to me already. The weather changed a week or so ago and it's getting too warm for wearing my winter coat anymore. It seemed to go from minus five to plus ten very, very quickly and it has thrown me off balance a bit. I felt like I had some time to prepare for the coming spring and summer and now it seems to just all of a sudden be here. Need to figure out how to cope with that, I think.
I want to make a list of things I want to buy. I'm nervous that as soon as I have cleared my debt I'll just start frittering away my money on all sorts of things I just don't want or need, just for the sake of being able to. But I do need to purchase some expensive things, as well as start a proper emergency fund and plan for the myriad of long-term stuff I have swimming in my head as well. Fantasies about having my own place and becoming self-sufficient are great and while I was so much in debt I could indulge them to the full as there was just no chance of anything happening anyway. But in a few months I won't be in debt anymore and will need to start thinking seriously about the steps I need to take to get to living the simple life I want, which will have to involve some serious thinking about the reality of what I really want, how much I'm prepared to do to get it and where in the middle of those two things my future lies.
For now, here's the shopping list for this year:
- New computer, including an external hard drive (and finally getting some proper kind of back-up system in place)
- Lightweight coat (this has to happen soon - I cannot for the life of me remember what I wore last year when it was too warm for my winter coat so I need to search through the cupboard first to make sure I really need something)
- Ticket to Australia to visit my sister
- A kindle. Maybe.
- Wallpaper, paint, etc. for renovating apartment.