Browsing "Cash Flow Generation"

Entrepreneur or Employee??

You have completed the process of dreamlining are now you are ready to fulfil your dreamlines, commit to long term travel or simply spend more time being with friends and family or doing the things you love. However, you are still unsure whether to be an entrepreneur or an employee. Hopefully this will help.

In my humble opinion the answer is to do both. Here is why:

Your day job gives you a regular income which is nice for surviving in this crazy old world. My solution to being both an employee and an entrepreneur lies in bending your day job to your will. What do I mean? I am referring to temp work. Temping is great for your income and your free time – you know the old time vs money debate.

By taking on set length contracts you can continue to have a regular income, generally at a higher rate than a permanent employee due to the nature of temp jobs. In your spare time you can build on your business ideas. Then at the end of your contract, spend some time doing those things you love before taking on your next gig.

During your break from work, concentrate on building your businesses. The break will give you a clear headspace to work from and if you can change location and free yourself from your normal day to day life, you will find the break to be refreshing and inspiring. If your business isn’t quite where you want it to be financially you can hit the next temp gig and repeat the process until you are making money from your business.

Making this work financially comes back to setting clear dreamlines and being crystal clear in your conscious spending plan. Also having a target end date will assist you in sticking to your dreamlines.

So how does this fit in with your current life plan? Leave some comments below to share your thoughts with our community.

Oct 20, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    4 Comments

Are you having a Breakdown or a Breakthrough?

 Every Problem has a gift for you in its hands - Richard Bach

I was listening to The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss the other day and this quote nearly made me stop dead in my tracks. “Are you having a Breakdown or a Breakthrough? “. You know when you have an understanding that something in your life is super tough. A time when you are struggling to find meaning. A time when people are saying things to you like ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and ‘One door closes and another door opens’ and ‘You will be FINE’ (Freaked out, Insecure, Neurotic and Emotional!). You know that these moments usually lead to something bigger and better, but in the heat of it all, you can really feel like you are in the middle of a big fat breakdown.

By the way, it has been a while since my last post. But frankly, life has been a little crazy lately. Yep, the mother of all months hit me like a ton of bricks. Long story short, on top of hubby’s little surfing accident and subsequent operation, we both lost our jobs in the same week. It is only now, a couple of months later, I am ok with writing about this. So, I was just about to go on a long awaited holiday to Malaysia and Singapore (more on these two in a later post), and BAMMMM my boss dropped me a bombshell – I would have no job to come back to. Whilst I was disappointed after three and a half years with the company, I could deal with it.

That was Monday, on Thursday, hubby’s boss rang (yes rang him) to say “You don’t have a job to come back to”. Nice to hear when you are laid up recovering from an operation. Fair? Not really. The boss didn’t even have the respect to speak to him face to face. Did we both proceed to have a mental breakdown? Pretty much. But deep deep down, we both intrinsically knew that something would change. This was the catalyst of all catalysts for change. I don’t think the Universe (or whoever is in charge) could have made the point any stronger.

Our plan prior to Breakdown has been to save a little to travel (8% of our after tax $$), and pay the mortgage off ASAP by putting every spare cent into it. The ultimate aim at the end of it was to work part time/casually while building businesses to support us down the track, and also to travel for more than 2 weeks at a time and more than once a year.

When we started thinking clearly about our situation, we both realised how trapped we felt in our jobs and by our mortgage. We thought if we put in the time now with our jobs and 110% effort then we would negotiate flexibility with our bosses later on so we could travel more. Well Breakdown has turned that right on its head. No more being controlled by our jobs. We will work on our terms, no one else’s.

So here is the new plan.

Part 1 of The Plan

Part of any income I make will be skimmed away into the travel fund at the rate of a week for week expense to slow travel. So say it costs a couple around $1500 per month to travel slowly, living in apartments rather than holidaying in a resort or staying in a hotel, then I will attempt stash $350 for each week that I work into the travel fund. Effectively this means that for every week we work, we can travel slowly at a later date. It is a big stretch and will depend on many factors, but as I have only been working part time and intend to work full time moving forward, it is a possibility that we can pull it off.

Part 2 of The Plan

Any excess income outside our expenses and travel funds from both combined wages will go to paying off the mortgage. This may mean that we are looking at a payout date a bit further in the future, but we can always decide to pay travel money off the mortgage if we feel no real desire to go somewhere. Any extra income will be as per our previous Conscious Spending Plan and be broken down as such.

The downside of this plan is that we will most likely have to relocate to achieve it due to a lack of work in our area. It is the price we are willing to pay. In the meantime, ironically, I have my job back. Albeit temporarily, but it will hold us over until such time as hubby has made a full recovery. He is getting closer and stronger every day.

 

Jun 9, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    No Comments

Holding my Ground

Every Cloud has a Silver Lining

Every Cloud has a Silver Lining

If you read my post called “The Reason”, you will remember my discussion about life’s curve balls and challenges. My apologies for being a little while between posts, but my hubby ended up having an operation and my priorities have obviously been elsewhere for the past few weeks. 

So today I wanted to discuss holding my ground. Not to get too personal but since dear hubby’s little accident, our income certainly took a nosedive. Generally, my income pays our bills and hubby’s is used for everything else. We are now in week 5 since his big wave wipeout and here is how our finances have gone. 

Week 1 – My regular income plus one full week of sick pay

Week 2 – My regular income plus just a little under one week of sick pay

Week 3 – My regular income plus a little overtime and one week of half holiday pay

Week 4 – A very lean week with about half my pay and half holiday pay (week of the operation)

Week 5 (this week) – A very lean week on my behalf and no more pay left for dear hubby

So what does all this have to do with Dreamlining? Well I have held my ground on my conscious spending plan so that future dreamlines can still be met. With dear hubby homebound and me doing some work from home where possible, our biggest expense, fuel, has dropped dramatically (like about 1/3 the normal cost), and that has allowed us to continue funding our dreamlines – in our case, travel. Sure it has been tight, but we are also not going out for dinner therefore cooking at home instead. We aren’t making extra headway on our other primary dreamline which is paying off the mortgage asap, but 2-3 months of treading water with it doesn’t make a huge difference in the big scheme of things. 

One thing that has inspired me about this whole crappy situation is that I don’t want to delay my dream life any longer. I am more determined to ensure that both our dreamlines are fulfilled. So the question is, how do you motivate yourself to continue moving towards your dreamlines when things get in the way?

May 20, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    3 Comments

My Conscious Spending Plan in Action

Welcome into my financial world. I am going to share my conscious spending plan with you. Firstly, you need to understand a little about my priorities. Outside paying my bills, I want to pay off my mortgage and travel.

My Conscious Spending Plan

5 Star Vietnam Luxury Birthday in Na Trang

 

This is why most things on my bucket list are travel related. I have a few things that I want, but they are well behind these two priorities.

My Conscious Spending Plan in Action

Pre-tax

9% Investing for your Future (this is retirement savings)

From post tax income

41% Bills and Fixed Costs

48% Extra Mortgage Payment

3% Weekly Dinner Out/Entertainment

8% Conscious Spending (Travel)

On top of that, any extra income on top of that such as overtime gets split the following ways

30% Bills Account for an emergency buffer

30% Savings for a specific want

40% Conscious Spending (Travel)

This means that any extra work we do gets us much closer to our personal goals much faster, with a little bit of common sense thrown in to give us a bit of a financial buffer.

So what are your financial priorities and how do you fit your Dreamlines in with your day to day finances?

May 17, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    1 Comment

What is a Conscious Spending Plan?

I am sure I am a nerd. I don’t read fiction, I read business books. I find business and personal finance interesting…told you I am a nerd. Many books have changed my life perspective, but one book has changed my personal financial outlook. In fact turned it upside down.

It was a book by Ramit Sethi called “I Will Teach You to be Rich”. A lot of the book wasn’t relevant to me as I am just a wee bit older than his target 20 something audience, but the Conscious Spending Plan has rocked my world. It is all about priorities.

Conscious Spending Plan

 

It has been a rocky relationship really. I implemented my conscious spending plan and loved it, then stopped it for a month or two and was miserable, and in the last few months, it is back on. My relationship with money will never be the same again and I will NOT go back to a regular budget.

So what is it? Well dreamlining is all about deciding what inspires you in life and the Conscious Spending Plan is about funding it.

The best way to explain it comes from Ramit on his blog: “I think people should spend extravagantly on the things they love…but you have to cut costs mercilessly on the things you don’t.”

Here is a quick guide to how it works. As a percentage of your income, this is where your money goes:

10% Investing for your Future

50-60% Bills and Fixed Costs

5-10% Short and Long term savings

20-35% Conscious Spending (the things you love)

Basically you set up your plan and check in every month to ensure it is all working right. Automation is the key. Check out Ramit’s book or blog for more information. In the next post, I will show you a little piece of my world – my very own conscious spending plan based on my priorities.

So do you have a conscious spending plan or something similar? What are you doing NOW to achieve your Dreamlines?

May 13, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    5 Comments

The Reason

Sometimes life throws you a curve ball. A challenge. As they say, life wasn’t meant to be easy. This week, I have had a big challenge thrown my way and it has got me thinking about a lot of things. One of those things I am thinking about is my reason for starting my business. See, my hubby had a little surfing accident…dropping down the face of a 9 foot wave landing awkwardly on his board and damaging his left leg pretty badly. That changes our income temporarily for fulfilling dreamlines and also puts a stop to many of his own dreamlines until we know the long term effects of his injury.

Which brings me to something I read and wrote down not so long ago. It goes a little something like this…

You must always have a:

  • Short term source of income to pay the bills
  • Two medium term projects that supplement that income
  • One long term project that is years away from fruition.

 

Cash Flowing into Pot of Gold

So what does all this have to do with dreamlining?

Income that’s what. Dreamlines are funded by cash flow and most of us have limited varieties of cash flowing into our lives. That is why I am starting my business whilst still working a regular job. An extra source of income would make a situation like this a little less of a worry financially.

The question you need to ask yourself is “Do I have a strong enough cash flow plan that allows me to fulfil my dreamlines now and in the future?” (or are you putting all your eggs in one basket?) My answer to that is…not quite. It is a good reminder to solidify our finances and it is THE reason I am building my side business.

Just quickly, if you haven’t read the posts on Dreamline Planning and Dreamline Planning Details, have a peek at these. My next couple of posts will go into the details of how to set up a conscious spending plan to fulfil your dreamlines.

 

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