I remember when I didn’t hope for much at all, financially. I’d read about folks who put $500/month or more away into their RRSPs and they seemed so very far away from me. Who were these people, I wondered, who had $500 a month to spare?
For several years during and after University (grad ’93), I experienced frustration: I was bright, educated and capable, yet somehow the life that included $500/month RRSP contributions (and the sophisticated condo and the great wardrobe and the espresso machine) seemed as far away as the moon. Looking back, I now realize we early Gen-Xers genuinely did have a rough go of it – the baby-boomers really had crowded us out as we tried to find our first McJobs; we graduated with particularly steep credit card and student debts; and on top of that Vancouver’s real estate went nuts so it was really hard to even start on that core asset.
I didn’t even know how to hope for much.
And then through a set of events most readers know, I had a turnaround. It wasn’t high drama, but it was a determination to shift things. And they did over the past 1.5 decades. They did.
Here’s one goal I’m still working on: financial independence. I have a figure in mind that I need and it’s a figure that at one point felt impossible. It no longer feels impossible – this money coach is a chunk of the way there!
All I’m saying is this, to those of you who feel stretched, who struggle to make ends meet or who are fatigued of trying: don’t give up. Give yourself permission to hope – and keep hoping. We need to live our lives, day by day, with an underpinning hope. I’m not talking magical thinking here, I’m talking hope.
It’s the first week of Advent, the week of Hope. Religious or not, I encourage us each to lift up our hearts, strengthen our spirits and live out of hope.