Friday, March 11, 2011

The Choices We Made

I was reading another blog, and the author asked his readers what they sacrificed in order to get out of debt. He explained the sacrifices he and his wife made, and how it enabled them to become debt-free.

I started thinking about the things we've given up as a family, as a couple, and as individuals.

But I don't think of them as sacrifices. I think of them as conscious choices.

Instead of buying a Timmie's every single day, I choose to only buy on days I work, and keeping that money in our cash flow for bills and debt repayment.

Instead of going on a lavish, all-inclusive resort in the Caribbean, we chose to use our vacation savings to pay down debt, and spend only a smaller amount on a couple days away from home.

We chose to move from a three bedroom townhouse to a three bedroom apartment, to reduce our housing costs while we focused on our debt.

We chose not to continue in recreational activities that we enjoy, so that we could get back on track financially.

We eat at home more, I'm learning how to cook, and we look for ways to keep as many of our costs down as humanly possibly. We budget, plan, save, and spend consciously now. We don't stick our heads in the sand anymore, and wish for the Financial Fix-It Fairy to come and save us. We took action when we realised the damage we were doing.

Our goals are the results of choices we've made as well. We could spend every single fricken penny that we earn this year, but I know that there are places that I would like to visit someday, kids to send to university, and things that I would like to do, when finances permit. We'd like to own a home of our own some time in the future, with a veggie patch in the back yard, and a fire pit to sit around in the evenings. These are the things we chose to have in our future, instead of choosing to live that way now. I'm sure with the improvements we've made to our financial well-being over the last couple of years, some crazy bank would give us a mortgage. But we aren't ready for that just yet.

To me, a sacrifice is something that you give up regrettably. Of course, I would love to spend all willy nilly on anything and everything that I wanted to. But that isn't realistic. The only regret I have about the changes we've made in our lives is that we didn't do it sooner.

Yes, I suppose the choices we made could be considered sacrifices.  I think they were more like adult decisions made to ensure a better future.


  1. I like your take on sacrifices. Like you no one forced me to make the changes I've made, I've made them willingly, even happily and the results are self-reinforcing. I don't feel like I've given anything up that meant much to me - I do from time to time look longingly at a pair of shoes or boots but then I think of all the pairs I have that I don't really wear much and I can't really justify another purchase. It's common sense really.

  2. I love this post and totally agree!! I CHOSE to be a SAHM thus living on a smaller income than if I were working FT. We all make choices in life, we just have to make sure they're the right ones! ;)