I’ve been thinking about this whole idea of “balance.”
I don’t know if it can actually be done. Or if it can…I don’t know that it’s something that can be sustained.
I don’t know if I have any clinical psychological disorders to speak of…but I can tell you this…I’m neurotic. It’s a fun word, when you think about it, isn’t it? Neuro…and tic. As if my neurons, when they fire, have an odd sort of short-circuit or “tic” in it.
It surfaces in all sorts of contexts.
- I need to get a certain number of steps
- I track my sleep score (because…obviously…why not?)
- I track the amount of water I drink
- I track the number of vegetables I consume
- I have my finger on the pulse of how much time I spend staring at screens (sidenote…aren’t you super excited when you see your phone say “your average screen time has gone down by some percentage?)
I can go on and on.
Well…I recently turned that neurosis on my finances. It was time. After the move, I gave myself a well deserved break. I don’t spend a ton of money, as a rule. And I had money in savings. So I just wanted to NOT think about it for a second. Or a month. Or…in this case…a year.
No shock, here…I have been spending more than I make. I need to stop.
So I got busy making a budget and mapped out all the things my money is going toward. I am pleased to admit that it’s not being spent willy-nilly on don’t-need items. BUT I am still overspending. I tried to reign it in (on paper). For the first time in my life, I just…didn’t want to. I don’t want to pinch pennies at the grocery store. I don’t want to worry about whether I can afford a pair of socks when one pair has holes in it. I don’t want to cut the amount of money I spend on hosting my website or on hosting my podcast. I just…don’t want to.
I also want to be totally clear, here. I am NOT complaining. I work 30 hours at a hospital. That’s it. And I can afford to live on those hours. That’s a pretty amazing thing. But the honest truth is…it’s juuuuuust short of enough.
So, I got busy looking for ways to make more money.
I tried insta-cart. It’s actually kinda fun. I like it.
I signed up for Door Dash (I’ll let you know when I try it out).
And then an opportunity to work as a full time remote wellness coach popped up. Now THAT is what I am TALKING about!!! I went through the interview process. I got hired. Now I can work two jobs…BOTH in a field I care about. Pretty sweet situation 🙂
This is my first week of juggling the two. So far, I can tell you my body is tense from the juggle. My brain feels like a saturated sponge by the end of the day. My resting heart rate has crept up a smidge. All the signs that this is a kind of imbalance.
But I love it. That’s my dirty secret. I don’t know if it is sustainable. I may end up deciding to dial it back. Or I might get lucky and get full time status at the hospital and not need the second income. All of that might be a possibility.
But still…I love it. I love that for the first time, my hustle is just because I wanna. In the past, when I worked this hard, I was working and going to grad school (so I was amassing debt faster than I could pay my bills). Then I was working two or three jobs to pay OFF that student debt.
Now I get to do it just because…I can. Because I want to see how far I can take it. Because I want to know what it’s like to work hard…and be able to enjoy the fruits of that labor.
It’s probably an odd thing to write about on a blog about being a highly sensitive person. But I think it’s important to mention it. Because so many people think that being an “HSP” means you can’t hack a hustle. It means you have to limit yourself. It means your system won’t tolerate it.
I think it’s worth challenging our assumptions about what we can and cannot handle. I think it’s worth being willing to try new things and experiment.
Maybe being willing to dive into something that we know is an imbalanced approach can be part of living an…one-the-whole…balanced life.
Or maybe not.
What do you think?