“There is a great work/home life balance that you need to achieve. If you let your home life eat into your work life, you lose motivation quickly and if work life imposes too much on your family time, then your family time becomes less satisfactory”. — Dane Taylor
This right here …
Growing up we’re all taught that success is defined by our work; what we do, how we do it, and how much time we spend doing it. Some of us work so much that it becomes normal. Some of us work so much that we look down upon those who work less. Some of us choose to work through our vacations. Some of us never actually take a vacation. Some of us legitimately work so much because we actually love what we do. Any of these sound like you?
Why aren’t we taught that success is built by finding a ‘balance’?
I talk pretty significantly about debt and the decisions debt forces us to make. At the core of a solid work/home life balance is the family who is debt free, or at the very least has minimal debt. This is a family who refuses to ‘keep up with the joneses’, tracks their expenses, and knows every penny coming in and every penny going out. Most importantly, this is a family who discusses finances openly and honestly.
More work than play…
Those of us ‘forced’ to work greater than 40 hours usually aren’t doing any of the above. They might know what’s coming in, but have no clue what’s going out. Those of us that work heavy hours also develop the mentality that “I work hard so I deserve this” when making purchases, even if that means borrowing more money to get it. Not once do we stop and question that this debt ONLY causes us to work more. Maybe it’s the debt we carry that causes the imbalance? What if you didn’t have that debt?
I know what you are thinking…but isn’t having debt NORMAL?
In 2018, we had several discussions. Our work/home life was terribly imbalanced. We lacked time together and the thought of having a family seemed impossible. We were working so hard chasing an American Dream that was made up of Debt being NORMAL. We’re taught credit scores are as essential as having a drivers license, we are taught that the only way to buy a home is to finance it, and that credit cards are for “EMERGENCIES”. Man, I hate that last one so much. In 2018, we finally realized that we were out of balance and our debt controlled so much of it.
No more tears, no more debt…
4 months. That’s all it took for us to sell a lot of our stuff, donate others, buy a RV, put our house up for rent, and hit the road fulltime. From 2400 square feet to 400, we minimized our life, but we maximized our ability to pay off our debt. In 12 months time, we waved goodbye to $137,000 of that debt. Another 4 months later we kissed goodbye to another $30,000 and after 20 months of living tiny we said NEVER AGAIN to a total of $182,000 of debt. Once the layers of debt disappeared, our work/home life balance became much more clear, other priorities became in focus that we couldn’t see before, and the time we had for each other was finally available.
After 28 months…
We started a family. Something that didn’t seem possible 2.5 years ago. This journey has given us so much more than we originally set out for. We’ve learned that success isn’t built from credit scores and having to work until we’re dead. We’ve learned that success is built on knowledge, changing your status quo, finding your balance, and owning YOUR time. Debt isn’t normal nor is it’s control over every fabric of our lives, it’s the toxin that taints our work/home life balance.
We’re so thankful to have ridden our system of that toxin and blessed to be parents to our beautiful baby girl. Rest assured, she’ll 100% know the balance between work/life when it comes time for her to build her success.