When I graduated from college it felt like the sky was the limit! Nothing could stop me…then real life happened. College didn’t teach me the about the situations I would encounter in the workplace or work/life balance.
However, during that time, I learned how to work on projects with others. I learned there is always that one person who just doesn’t pull their own weight but managed to complete the project with my reliable team mates. You also learn how to compromise and negotiate. Don’t get me wrong, I learned some valuable lessons that have helped me throughout my career.
When I graduated from college it felt like the sky was the limit! Nothing could stop me...then real life happened.
As I was starting out, I was all about making money. Money was the most important. I didn’t care too much about free time during the week. Overtime…sign me up! That’s just more money in my pocket. Whoo hoo! But with that extra money, I didn’t manage it too well. I felt like it was my money and I deserved the things I bought. I worked hard enough, so I deserved to buy that purse that was really outside my budget. Then a family member convinced me to purchase a condo. If I could afford rent for a certain amount, then I could afford a house. The difference is that I would be “paying myself” instead of someone else. So at the tender age of 24, I purchased my first home (condo) in Southern California.
RUDE AWAKENING!!! Remember that thing called life I mentioned earlier?
Even though I purchased a home, I still felt like I could still spend money like I wanted. RUDE AWAKENING!!! Remember that thing called life I mentioned earlier? Yeah, I learned VERY quickly that I could no longer spend like there was no tomorrow and selfishly. I learned that scary word (at the time) called budget very quickly. All it took was a honest, fair and firm talking to from my daddy and mommy. But I got on track.
Now, I felt like, I have purchased a new home, now I need a new job with more money. So I set out to find another job making more money. Landed another job paying more than my first. I thought I was happy. I stayed there for a while moved to another job…another salary boost.
In my 20s, I took the time to find out what I wanted to do. I moved around quite a bit, but as I did, so did my salary. By my late 20s I was making more than my peers who chose to stay the previous companies and try to move up the corporate ladder. Moving up the corporate ladder was important, but getting paid was even more important. If I didn’t like the job after a year or two, I would move on, but I still needed more money.
In my 30s, my perspective of life changed. I started to realize, my life, family, and health were more important than a paycheck. I wanted to settle down and start a career. During my 30s I decided to move back to The South (Dallas, TX) to be closer to my parents, who lived in Louisiana. I knew they were getting older and I felt better being near them. Once I got settled in Texas, my life started to change. Life was slower here. It gave me the time to reflect on things that were important to me. Don’t get me wrong, I like to make money, but at what cost?
Life was slower here. It gave me the time to reflect on things that were important to me.
When do we as women and men finally decide what is really important in life?
Having money is great. It is a great tool to use to allow you to live your life and take care of yourself, family, or travel, etc. It’s not a bad thing, but when does humanity mental health become more important? Could you be brutally honest with yourself? Would you take a new job that would pay you the same as you are getting paid now in your current position (lateral move) or could you take a job with lower pay and title but you would have a better work environment, benefits and work/life balance? Remember that time waits for no one. In the end, the memories are what is important. Not how much you bought them to make up the time you were there because you were working.