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Is a Dream Job worth it if you can’t save any money?

by J. Money on Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Do what you like. Like what you do.
I got asked a question yesterday that kinda stopped me in my tracks. I knew what the answer was right away, but for whatever reason it really HIT me when specifically asked. Retireby35 asked me if I was accumulating any savings with my new paycheck system? And the answer?  NO. I’m not.

Wow. No savings. I’ve been telling myself all year that if I can just break even every month I’d consider myself a success (and so far so good!), but man… what a difference in thinking over the past 15+ years.  Can I REALLY be happy for longer at this rate? And if so, is that even GOOD? haha…

Honestly, I’m pretty damn happy right now :)  There are a ton of stuff that sucks about self-employment for sure, but at the end of the day I’m doing what I want when I wake up every single morning.  To me that’s worth way more than extra savings in the bank.  But that’s also because I already HAVE a lot saved up from over the years too.  It’s not enough to stop me from worrying about it altogether (not even close!), but def. enough for it not to phase me going a few months, or a year, without adding anything significant to the pot. Eventually though – like, within the next few months – I’m gonna need to start upping my game.  Not necessarily for the money itself, but for the GROWTH factor.

The one part I hated about my previous 9-5 was that I stopped learning and I got complacent. I knew the bare minimum I had to do to get by, but it pretty much stopped at that toward the end (Bad J$!!!).  When you’re working for yourself though, that doesn’t fly.  And it’s a GOOD thing too!  You start getting lazy or stop looking at the “big picture” and you’re liable to start rolling downhill.  And that’s the part that scares the bejesus outta me.  I want to ALWAYS have a game plan for the next 6 months out – whether it’s for increase of money, projects, or just overall lifestyle.  To me, failing would mean going back and being a drone.  I can’t let that happen. (I’m not insinuating that all 9-5′s suck, btw – some are awesome and totally inspiring!!!)

So for me, savings is just another part of the ultimate goal at the end.  Of course I want more of it, and have plans for hopefully making this happen, but in the trade off of “perfect job” to “crap job w/ more money,” I’d pick the former every time.  Especially now knowing the difference :)  I may have to adjust my lifestyle a bit to keep it going if things start running amok, but at least I’d be doing what matters the most to ME at the time. And right now “life happiness” comes before “bank happiness” in my world. (Although we can check back up on this later and see how it’s going, haha…)

But what do you guys think?  Anyone else debating this at the moment? Would YOU give up some money for the perfect job too? Or am I plain crazy??

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(Photo by Lizard10979)


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{ 48 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Juana May 11, 2011 at 7:32 am

I’m in a really similar spot. I went out on a limb and took a low-paying job with, arguably, my dream company. I make enough to make ends meet each month and pay a little bit toward my credit card debt (racked up during a few months of unemployment) and the minimum on my student loans. Savings? Absolutely out of the question, even though I have a pretty frugal lifestyle. But I knew this going in. I took a low salary in an expensive city because I knew, at the end of the day, I’d regret making any other decision.

While this probably makes me a little bit crazy, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with not being able to put money toward your savings for al little while. What I do think is important is making a long-term strategy as to how you plan to be able to save in the future – you pick the timeline. Our situations are really different, but I’m taking my need to be able to save a little bit of money into consideration when I go in for salary negotiations within the next year.

Also, I find that there’s this idea that “savings” has to mean stockpiling several hundred dollars each month, and I don’ t think that has to be the case. When I was in college and squeezing in shifts between lots of classes, I considered saving $20-30 out of each paycheck a win. Sure, it’s not a lot, but every little bit helps if you have an unexpected expense/emergency/just want to spend a few dollars on yourself.

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2 Bonnie May 11, 2011 at 7:36 am

I also made this decision at the beginning of this year. I’d been working somewhere that I cried in the car on my way home almost every day, and the boss was an awful man. So I was offered my current job for just about $3K less every year. This comes at a time that we are paying off some pretty significant credit card debt, trying to build savings, pay a mortgage, student loans, and plan for a baby next year! So that $3K could have gone pretty far. However, because my husband and I agreed that my sanity was worth way more than $3K, we created a more strict budget and we really stick to it now. In fact, this year we’ve already paid off two of our smaller credit card debts. So not only do I love my new job, but it made us step up our financial game, which is awesome. I have zero regrets!!

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3 Steve May 11, 2011 at 7:43 am

I agree with the statement “The one part I hated about my previous 9-5 was that I stopped learning and I got complacent.” I think that is where I am in a job that has been the same for going on 20 years, and certainly for the last several. Perhaps the complacency is overshadowed by the relief of having a steady job and income altogether. However, as a middle aged white guy somewhere in the management chain, starting over or trying to get a new job is virtually impossible. Maybe that is driven by personality, place in life and where I want to be.

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4 Beth May 11, 2011 at 8:49 am

I can definitely understand how much a question like that can rock the boat. I only started trying to understand how to manage my own financial situation in January. I haven’t had what could be considered steady, reliable employment in over 5 years. I am a theater-geek: I have about 4 different freelance “as we need you” gigs that pay decently, but I don’t work any one particular position often. I also rent out a house that my grandfather left to me because if I don’t, I can’t afford to have it. Selling it would cause me to lose more money than keeping it and trying to make money off of it (I was told there would be no math, but unfortunately, math has smacked me upside the head more than once this year.)
I either lose money or break even every year when it comes to renting out my house, so I constantly have to parse out what little funds I have carefully, and I have to set myself up mentally to Never Have Enough When I Need It. I’ve been working towards I Do Have Money When I Need It.
Between y’all and me, despite the efforts I’ve taken so far, I honestly don’t think I’ll actually achieve this by the year’s end. This is rather disappointing no matter which way I slice it. The only thing that keeps me continuing my effort is the long term picture and my long term goals. I *have* to be satisfied that I am going to fail a little to get there.

That being said, the one MAJOR short term and long term goal I have without question is taking even a meager portion of whatever money I bring in and saving it. I realized that no matter what happens come the end of the year, I absolutely must have some money set aside, or any efforts next year to be even close financially solvent are futile. Money will not magically appear when I need it if I save nothing, and unfortunately, the trend in my life for the past 10 years is a steady track record of *something* major going wrong requiring money at least once a year. It’s happened so consistently that it’s become a dark joke between my husband and me. I am a little thankful for it, oddly enough, because I’ve been reminded that whether I want to or not, I have to save for a rainy day, because there will always be at least one rainy day. Not a lesson I would have preferred, but a good lesson nonetheless.

I’ve watched my mother and her family live from paycheck to paycheck for the entirety of my life, nearly 30 years. Thirty years. Three decades. In three decades my own mother has not managed to save anything substantial, and whenever she does, it goes out the window for a huge debt that never gets paid off, or for another family member in need who never pays it back. My mother is not in good health, and if she or my stepfather end up ill, injured or inform for longer than a week, their livelihood is gone. They can’t retire. They will lose their house…. It’s the same story so many other people have.

Watching my mother, other family, and hearing so many many stories of people trying to overcome financial setbacks of every flavor, I decided this year that no, getting by without savings is no longer an option for me so long as I have some modicum of control over it. I MUST save something, even if it’s chump change.

In my mind, ultimately, even if right now my husband has a nice job and takes care of me, even if on paper my non-liquid assets make me freaking rich, even if I will never have a traditional steady job, I have a responsibility to make sure that I can provide for myself and my husband on my own if/when that time comes. If I don’t, I will end up exactly like my mother and her family: working non-stop to pay off debt that only seems to accumulate, and never having leeway to care for oneself for fear of losing out on a paycheck.

The flip side of my decision is that I’ve chosen to pay off what debts I have MUCH more slowly that others might advise, and that achieving some goals will move at a crawling pace. After weighing the alternative with this realization, I decided for myself that I was willing to take things slower if it meant that I would have a better chance of being financially stable.

Thank you for talking about this- money and finance are far more emotional than people realize and can be just as intimate as our most personal relationships. This kind of question is so linked in with my own sense personal pride and sense of self worth that I’m surprised I was willing to share it here- it’s not something I willingly talk about with others.
I really hope that working your dream job and being self employed brings you more than Just Getting By. I have decided that for my own sanity and stability that I’m willing to risk a little, test my patience and fortitude, and go without a LOT, by paying myself a little first. I can’t do Just Getting By, because if I do, working my dream job or doing what I want to do with my life will never, EVER be an option- and the acquisition of money for survival will be my only job, whether I like it or not.

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5 Trinnie May 11, 2011 at 8:56 am

I got lucky. My dream job included a higher salary and better benefits. Granted, with this dream job I’m also working my a$$ off, but it’s well worth it! :) Love our membership! I feel like my husband is kind of in this boat, though. Being complacent in a job that doesn’t appreciate him, works him to the bone, and pays him less than the average in his field. (IT). I think, though, it’s definitely the fear of the unknown when you leave that comfort zone.

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6 No Debt MBA May 11, 2011 at 9:02 am

I think with no other savings stress about money would just replace stress about work if I took an ideal job that didn’t allow me to save. I don’t think I could make the jump.

However, if I had a good nest egg saved up and had the expectation that within a year or two my income might increase at the dream job so I could have a bit of a buffer and save I would definitely take it.

I think the problem is that it’s never that clear cut in reality (what’s a good nest egg and how sure are you your income will increase?) and I tend to worry a lot about big changes no matter how prepared I am.

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7 Uncle El May 11, 2011 at 9:05 am

J. Money I think if you can refi to a 15 year fixed which is about 3.80% right now and take out only 125 from the ATM a month, that you can def save about 200 a month towards retirement, the savings with the interest rate reduction cancels out the higher payment in relation to going for a shorter term. The 200 a month is 75 from your cash money saved, a new side hustle of 50 a month saved that you implemented this week, and scrapping your beer budget. LOL. What do you think?

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8 Serenity May 11, 2011 at 9:16 am

I love these last two posts of yours. I may have to write about them today while I’m feeling inspired ;)

My whole thought is: do what’s right for you when you can. I left a “dream job” for my current job, but I’ve never been happier AND more financially secure. Though I believe the happiness comes from the financial security. Once I have a good amount of savings, I could see myself possibly going back to teaching, but not right now. I’m having a blast learning something new and advancing in a new (and sometimes scary) field. You might think the practicality of having a good job is more important (as far as saving and investing) but don’t discount the added bonus of having peace of mind :)

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9 Financial Samurai May 11, 2011 at 9:17 am

It’ll probably always be like this in the beginning. But, after a year or two of being like this, I think you’ll shift into a higher phase out of the necessity to earn more and save.

Just takes time.

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10 Emily May 11, 2011 at 9:34 am

I totally would. Sometimes it makes life harder – but if you are doing something that you love, you learn to deal with the hard stuff. I feel like it also comes down to timing though. For you, I feel as though the timing has worked out. Others may not have that. But, if your dream job comes calling, and it’s right there for the taking, even if it doesn’t have the same pay as your current job – you should go for it. Happiness doesn’t come from having money. While you need to be smart with your finances and be able to take care of yourself (and your family), sometimes you need to do some sacrificing in order to be happy. People can survive without have 1,000,000 TV channels.

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11 slug May 11, 2011 at 9:38 am

Yes, it’s hard to be break even for a while, but just give yourself a break and give it time.

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12 Kevin @ Thousandaire.com May 11, 2011 at 10:10 am

Yes it’s worth it, but don’t trap yourself in the idea that you can never make enough money to save. Figure out a way to increase your revenues and get it done!

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13 LLF May 11, 2011 at 10:48 am

I am wondering why people always ask this question like you can only have one or the other. Maybe I am in the minority that I have a job that I like and I make a decent living. I think people make the mistake that they can only focus on one. Why not find a way to make your dream job pay? Be creative. You may have to take a pay cut for a little while, but you could definately make your dream job pay enough to have savings.

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14 Harri @ Miss Moneypenniless May 11, 2011 at 11:14 am

I left a well-paid job with secure career progression for something that it at once unstable and less well-paid but constantly changing and interesting. I didn’t like the direction my previous role was heading in and found my misery in the workplace was adversely affecting my performance. I have subsequently been much happier and regained my passion and enthusiasm for work. I agree that it’s important to have a long term goal in mind. This is a stepping stone on a five year plan by the end of which I should have a couple of bucks to put away!

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15 Jennifer Lissette May 11, 2011 at 11:51 am

On my end, I definitely have chosen perfect job over a paycheck – I’m a stay-at-home mom! I love every aspect of my job and the freedom it provides me and my family. My husband is now about to interview for a job that would mean a $60,000 pay cut. However, it would also mean no longer working for a giant Fortune 500 company, which he doesn’t particularly care for (the start-up he worked for was acquired several years ago).

Living below our means definitely helps with all of this. Our house is small, our cars are used and business lunches for my husband usually take place at the $4 taqueria, but we get to make choices that make ourselves happy. You really can’t beat that.

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16 Katie May 11, 2011 at 12:00 pm

I have taken a, well, to put it nicely, a $3400 a month pay cut.

And that part sucks. It really, really does.

But you know what DOESN’T suck? Not having to work every night of the week. Not having to work EVERY Friday and Saturday night (which totally ruins the ENTIRE weekend – not just the evenings) Being able to go to my children’s after school events. Heck – the fact that they can participate in after school events because I am there to bring them and pick them up!

Sometimes I think about that extra 3400 a month and think I am crazy. Then I look at how my QUALITY of life has gone UP beyond measure.

Then I realize that I am not crazy for giving that up. My priorities just shifted into a different direction.

At first, we weren’t really saving much, either. It was hard. But after a while, we got our plan in order and we are saving some cash. Some of it does come from lifestyle changes (only going out to eat once a month vs. 4 times – using netflix instead of going out to the movies, etc) but those lifestyle changes are also contributing to our quality of life improvements.

Our biggest hurdle now is my husbands upcoming retirement in 18 months. Our income will be dropped by a couple thousand a month AGAIN. Which means I gotta start looking for a higher paying job, paying off the debt, saving the money, and he needs to start looking for employment, but no one is going to hold a job for 18 months (although networking can help – except he is thousands of miles away right now, deployed).

But, we have made adjustments once, we can make them again. I think the key is to be flexible and focus on the solutions rather than what are perceived as “problems”. :)

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17 David Shaw May 11, 2011 at 12:06 pm

How amazing.

Only last night was I sat debating with my girlfriend whether I should move jobs!

I am currently working in a great job, great people and enjoy coming to work everyday. The problem is that the pay is around £5,000 a year less than what I could be earning just around the corner.

We are currently saving for a house and the extra money would be a massive plus for us. But would I still get the same job satisfaction?!?

It is a really tough call and one I am still not sure about.

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18 Katie May 11, 2011 at 12:22 pm

I made this move almost 2 years ago and the money has more than caught up… I think if you follow your dreams and commit fully to them, the money will follow. It takes work and time but I personally think the financial upside of a job you’re passionate about is always higher.

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19 MacroCheese May 11, 2011 at 12:27 pm

A hybrid approach is how I want to tackle it.

Spend early professional years building experience, a resume, and a bank account.

Then make the shift in your 30′s to something more rewarding after your financial momentum has already been well established.

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20 retireby35 May 11, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Everybody has a different path/plan and I don’t think any one is any worse or better than the other. Each one has its own merits and downfalls.

For me personally, I am working a job that I am okay with (I don’t particularly love or detest it) and saving as much money as I can. That might be why the lack of a “savings” fund stuck out like a sore-thumb for me cause it is something I currently value a lot. Part of the reason is because I am walking a similar path to Jacob from Early Retirement Extreme and so I am trying to reach my inflection point where I can live off my savings.

But that might not be what is most important to you. And I respect that. I think it is very courageous what you are doing cause I wouldn’t be able to take the leap right now. Maybe I can once I retire :P

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21 krystalatwork May 11, 2011 at 12:28 pm

I recently wrote about nearly the exact topic on my blog. (http://www.givemebackmyfivebucks.com/2011/03/09/its-your-job-but-is-it-your-passion/).

When I was in school, I always thought I’d take the dream job knowing that it would be low paying. I figured I’d make it work somehow. But when the dream job presented itself, I realized that all the happiness a job would bring me, wouldn’t be enough if I couldn’t accomplish the other goals in my life – like buying a home, saving cash, retiring early and traveling. So after much debate, I turned down the dream job that I had been thinking about for literally 10 years. And, 3 years later, I couldn’t be happier with my decision.

I disagree with what Katie commented – that if you follow your dreams, the money will follow. That’s just not always the case. Sometimes you have to make compromises in life because not every job will bring you the money you desire. That’s just a fact. And, not everybody can, or wants, to be passionate about their job. To some, a job is just a job. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I’m one of those people. I’m not passionate about my full-time job, but I like it enough to want to do it every day because I find it fulfilling. And I know that by following this path (and not my dream career), I am ensuring that I will reach all of the other goals I want for myself. Which to me, is the perfect balance between work and play.

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22 Jacqueline May 11, 2011 at 12:56 pm

I am right with you. I would rather do what I love, than make ton of money and hate it. My current job as stay at home mom pays in hugs and kisses which I love but when my crafting begins to bring in more income and grows my savings even its not a a fortune I will be happy. After all we might as well do what we love, do it well, build memories, and change lives. Because when we die we won’t be taking our savings, job, or anything we can grasp in our hands with us.

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23 VInny Financio May 11, 2011 at 1:08 pm

Miserable with Money is still Miserable!

I’d be much happier with less money & a job I love than have a bit more money & facing down a miserable job situation with little purpose everyday – esspecially if you still have ‘enough’ money.

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24 Jennifer May 11, 2011 at 1:39 pm

Absolutely the dream job!

I make about $15k per year less than my brother, who works in insurance claims. Several of the above posters have taken cuts MUCH greater than my total income!

Around my office, we say, “You get paid in fun.” And it’s true! I would hate to spend 8 hours a day somewhere I wasn’t happy!

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25 Kelsey May 11, 2011 at 1:42 pm

I don’t think it’s that bad. You already have emergency savings and you are putting in retirement. Because you already have those things, I would only have savings for something you are saving up for, like a new TV or a trip. I think it is way more important to have the job you love than large savings, especially you already have emergency and retirement like I said!

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26 Crystal May 11, 2011 at 1:50 pm

I actually posted about this today sort of. I am trying to build up my income now so that when I leave my job, we won’t have to cut back too much in any one area of savings, but I am worried that I may become lazy at home…or that blogging will be less popular in the future…lots of little worries. BUT, none of them are big enough for me to stay at my day job. I really should be working at home full time by the end of this year. Go J. Money!!! I love seeing you do it as proof that it can be done!!! And yes, crap job for better money completely loses to perfect job. :-)

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27 Liz May 11, 2011 at 3:25 pm

I finally got to work at my dream company last year, and it pays significantly less than my previous job field (IT). I make half as much as I did three years ago, but you know what?

I’m okay with that.

I no longer wake up stressed up about work in the middle of the night, I’m not on-call with a phone, my health is recovering (slowly but surely), and I’m re-prioritizing my budget and finances, including finally setting up my 401k. My co-workers are awesome, and I love the field that I’m in.

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28 Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager May 11, 2011 at 4:24 pm

I think taking a lower paying dream job is worth only if there is potential for growth. And not being able to save is definitely something to consider when making that kind of career choice. Saving for retirement, buying a house, supporting a family all come into play.

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29 retirebyforty May 11, 2011 at 6:15 pm

Working in a job that you don’t care about will eventually come back to bite you. When you’re not interested, you don’t want to learn anything new. You just want to get through the day and get out of there. It would be great to be able to make even money doing something I love. I think you made the right choice! We’ll see in a few years though. ;)

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30 Yana May 11, 2011 at 6:31 pm

That’s a hard question, because of the “if you can’t save any money” part. I’d have to say no, because saving money is essential. However, I would far prefer making less and spending less than suffering a worse job. The first part of the question is easier for me to answer, sort of ;) There is no dream job or perfect job, unless collecting passive and plentiful income can be called a job. My husband and my best girl friend both hold the same opinion on promotions, though the friend works for the county and my husband for a private employer. My husband has been offered a promotion many times, and he won’t take it. The difference in pay is minimal, but the higher position would make our lives much worse. His work hours would be different and he would be required to leave town for meetings or working in other facilities. My friend did take one promotion, to supervisor, and she almost regrets that, because it is nothing but a headache and higher expectations. Though she is salaried and not hourly, she has been offered another promotion that would amount to $3.00 hourly if it were hourly, and she will continue to decline. Do we love our jobs? No, we hate our jobs less than if they were worse, we know it, and we say our jobs are as perfect as they can be. Because what we do is the best thing we can imagine doing, if we have to be in the workforce. And yes, we love our jobs because they are as lovable as jobs can be :)

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31 South County Girl May 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm

For me, if my family can survive on the smaller income without debt and loans, AND we can still be on track to save 15% towards retirement, then i’d take a dream job…

If not, I wouldn’t because the worry over how we’d make ends meet would drive me crazy.

I don’t work over 40 hours a week unless I elect to at my current job… so for me it isn’t about being over worked to the bone. If i had to pull 80 hour weeks i’d quit no matter the compensation…. but because I don’t get over worked, i’m able to volunteer with the agency that would be my passion/dream job…

My goal is to retire early and then volunteer with the agency full time and just not take a paycheck…. one day… but for now, I’m holding out, forcing learning, and crossing my fingers for the promotion I want in 5 years.

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32 StackingCash May 11, 2011 at 7:18 pm

It all really depends on the specific situation. Your situation makes it easy, you have a significant FU fund that you prepared before taking on your current job. Many people don’t have a FU fund to take on that dream job that pays less. An old friend of mine told me too always “make hay when the sun shines” and I truly agree with that. You did the same by milking your 401k out of your company (Bravo!) and by saving a nice FU fund. As you can tell, I’m a big fan of the FU fund hehehe!

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33 Tyson May 11, 2011 at 7:20 pm

I have some money put away and starting a bookkeeping/financial coaching business. So far, its very thin, but I love it. I am much happier career wise, but I know that it cant go on like this forever.

I will either need to really push this new business and grow it, or find another job. Working 9-5 for someone else just doesn’t sound appealing, and I think what I want to do can bring value to others. So, I’ll push it. It’s fine for now, but my family, and our goals, cant last forever on what I am doing now.

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34 eemusings May 11, 2011 at 7:55 pm

Some – but not all. I knew I would be taking a pay cut for my next move, it was just a matter of how much. I live in an expensive city and have big financial goals so I think if I could not save at least $100 a week at bare minimum that would be my dealbreaker.

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35 rainbowfish May 11, 2011 at 7:56 pm

I work at a job I love. But will NEVER be rich. In fact, this year with benefit changes, I am going to lose 2K in salary off the top.

However, I love my job. I get great satisfaction from doing it, most days lol. I could have gotten a different degree, I could go back to school and get a master’s in something else, but I don’t want to. I know those other things wouldn’t make me as happy.

That being said, if I were single or my spouse’s situation were different, I might feel differently. Life is funny that way.

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36 Ginger May 11, 2011 at 8:30 pm

I’m in the same position as you. However, I agree that keeping yourself in check as a self-employed person is better for the spirit.

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37 J. Money May 11, 2011 at 9:42 pm

Liz brought up a great point I hadn’t considered before – That crap jobs can REALLY take a toll on your health! Poeple get heart attacks and break down all the time, physically, due to their jobs. Ain’t no amount of money worth that $hit. (although, working 16 hour days that you’re passionate about too, like I do sometimes, can also do that to your system. but just not AS bad ;) right? right???)

@Juana – True! Every little bit DOES count. And, more importantly, keeps you on track and saving skills sharpened ;) Congrats on the dream job!
@Bonnie – AWESOME!!! Crying in your car every day = Not good. Smart move ;)
@Steve – Wow, 20 years? That’s pretty impressive in this day in age :) Do you get a pension?? Haha… I’d be curious to see what you’d think of other jobs out there if you looked around for maybe 10-15 a day? I’ve never actually found a job I knew I wanted going in — they’ve just popped out at me during random searches!
@Beth – Thanks so much for sharing this with all of us! I know how hard it is for some people, and I think seeing others do it makes us feel more comfortable. I know I started to once I stumbled upon blogs! Keep saving that money, and keep hustlin’! Theater-geeks always have a soft spot in my life :)
@Trinnie – I’d be loving your job too! Haha… USAA = DOPEness.
@No Debt MBA – Yes, exactly. That’s a great way to put it for me really — realizing that it’s okay for me not to save right now, with the expectation of saving down the road when it’s time. I’m sure I’d be singing a different tune w/ out any savings in my bank! :)
@Uncle El – Haha…. 15 years??? Do you think I’m made of money? :) I can barely pay off my 30 year mortgage, haha… but I do like the way you think. I could most certainly cut down more if I got hardcore about it. But for now, I’m not worried. I’d rather spend the time building out projects to bring in more down the road and keep my lifestyle up :) But I AM in the works of refinancing! More on that later… don’t want to jinx it.
@Serenity – Thank you!! I’ve put a lot of heart and time into these last 2 posts, so it means a lot :) And I’m so glad to hear you’re so happpyyyyy with your current gig! Rejoice!
@Financial Samurai – 1-2 years? haha… I’m gonna start getting antsy in 3-4 months ;)
@Emily – 1,000,000 TV channels, sure. But 999,999? Never! :) (and good points)

@slug – Thanks! I def. need to give myself a break… I like that.
@Kevin @ Thousandaire.com – Already on it, son!
@LLF – Oh, I TOTALLY agree with you! And actually, I was surprised not to hear too many “I have both! Money & the job!” Just not as salacious to blog about ;)
@Harri @ Miss Moneypenniless – Rock it out yo! You can do it!!!
@Jennifer Lissette – Oooooh that is damn interesting! If your husband ever likes to write, tell him I’d be happy to host a guest post of his on this site about it ;) He can go anonymous so no one will ever know!
@Katie – I was smiling the entire time I was reading your comment :) YOu talk (aka write) like me! haha… nice and casual, I love it. Keep on doing yo thang!
@David Shaw – Welp, the important decisions usually aren’t the easist ;) I’d stay put until something REALLY moves you or convinces you to do otherwise. Although, I also don’t know you at all! haha… the cool thing about life is that you can ALWAYS make a change ANY DAY. So if you pick wrong, ust pick again!
@Katie – Me too! As long as that “hustling” gets put toward finding ways to make more money at your job/company/etc ;) Some people are good at working hard at things that don’t translate to anything, haha…
@MacroCheese – Perfect! Cuz I just got into my 30′s ;)
@retireby35 – Look what you inspired today! :) And actually, Jacob’s been an inspiration to me too. At least when it comes to minimalism. Now that I am doing what I love to do, it’s time for me to focus on ridding myself of nonsense and growing my biz even more so I can get to that lifestlyle I ultimately want. Which, in a perfect world, is lots of cashflow with limited work ;) Haha… that actually sounds pretty damn lazy, doesn’t it?

@krystalatwork – Ooooooh good point! “not everybody can, or wants, to be passionate about their job. To some, a job is just a job. And there’s nothing wrong with that.” I like that young lady! :) Keep inspiring everyone on your blog too!!! Always a fan of your stuff, as you know.
@Jacqueline – hehe… I’d take hugs & kisses anytime too!!
@VInny Financio – Yeah, no one likes being miserable either way!
@Jennifer – haha… I like that. I want to get paid more in fun too :)
@Kelsey – Thanks! :) It def. makes my decision of staying self-employed easier.
@Crystal – Blogging become less popular???? OMG my heart stopped for a hot second, haha… I never ever even considered that EVER! that’s bad, huh ;) probably in 5-10 years blogging and websites and everything else will all be some weird mash up anyways. so if we stay in the game as things change, we’ll adjust accordingly ;) and don’t scare me ever again!
@Liz – You know, I didn’t even consider the health part of it all. That’s so true! People get physically battered down at crap jobs, great reminder!
@Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager – Agreed. Potential for growth is def. an important aspect.
@retirebyforty – Haha, that we will good sir. That we will.
@Yana – You’ve got a good head on your shoulders, girl :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us!

@South County Girl – Awesome! I hope you get it in 5 years too! I def. work 80 weeks sometimes, but most of it is fun compared to “work” – and it includes charity stuff too! (Love Drop – haha…) Keep it up, my friend!
@StackingCash – Haha, Fu’s are great!!! And speaking of 401k stuff, even if I never see my $17k owed again, it was STILL worth it! :) Although you better believe I’m fighting it to the very very end on that one. Have a great week!
@Tyson – Yeah dude, for sure. I say keep pushing it until you’re just plain exausted! I always think of parts in “phases” – and that first phase of getting started is always the hardest and most frustrating. But once you overcome that hurdle, it gets easier and smoother going forward! Or, at the very least, you have the FREEDOM to cut back on your hours or customers once you’ve “made it” :) Keep us updated!! I want to see you get there all the way, brotha.
@eemusings – I think that’s GREAT, having a set goal like that. Or at least a minimal goal like that. Nothing sexier than a woman who knows what she wants! :)
@rainbowfish – Agreed :) Having loved ones in your life def. adds some better perspective.
@Ginger – Thanks, girl. Every month we tweak and work on ways to improve our biz!

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38 Rafiki May 12, 2011 at 1:25 am

I’m kinda late but I believe I would trade the money for my dream job, So long as it gives me freedom. If I feel free doing what I love then I will do it for any cost.

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39 J. Money May 12, 2011 at 10:41 am

Yeah! I hear that! Which is why so many of us chase the money – cuz it gives us the freedom too! :)

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40 LB May 13, 2011 at 2:14 pm

I want both money and a dream job. I would sacrifice one for the other, but only for so long. Then my competitve side steps in and I have to find better, do better or be better. Plain and simple.

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41 J. Money May 13, 2011 at 3:39 pm

I can totally see that. Once I accomplish something myself, I can go a cple months being happy but then I feel the urge to 1-up it and keep pushing forward. I love that about myself (as I’m sure you do to!), but I also hate it ;) Sometimes I feel like I can’t appreciate what I have at any given time unless something crazy puts it i perspective for me.

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42 Kathryn C May 14, 2011 at 12:16 pm

go for the dream job, but don’t complain about not having money if your dream job doesn’t entail making $$$!! There’s nothing worse than someone who chose a job because they’re “passionate” about it (but it pays little $$), but then they snark at you when you take a nice vacation because you chose a career that pays more, but you’re a little less passionate about it. I’m getting heartburn when I think about this……can’t write any more.

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43 Yana May 14, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Kathryn reminded me of that line, “Do what you love and the money will follow”. I find that totally not true. If you want money to follow you, you have to follow It – and doing what you love might not be according to the rules of money.

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44 Little House May 14, 2011 at 3:02 pm

Been there, done that and still alive to tell about it. ;) Over 10 years ago, I quite a 9 to 5 job that I hated. I helped my husband build up a business and then went on to working part time as a substitute teacher. The only drawback was that I HADN’T saved up a ton of money before making my decision. Which led to a bunch of financial disasters. However, now that I’m much wiser, I’ve figured out how to save money on an erratic income. It just takes time to adjust and get a budget in place (tracking and averaging out income and expenses over a couple of years helps.)

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45 J. Money May 15, 2011 at 11:25 pm

@Kathryn C – Oooooooh yeah that would be super annoying! sucks someone’s treating ya like that :( very interesing issue though – haven’t heard that one before.
@Yana – This is true! And you can always take on a side gig too to bring in some extra cash if the main gig you love doesn’t do the trick. Just a matter of priorities.
@Little House – Yup! For sure… MUCH better to make the switch with some hefty savings in the bank. Let’s you be a bit more risky with the perk of being more comfortable.

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46 Yana April 7, 2012 at 6:16 pm

J. Money, your absence is conspicuous! I would be so content right now if I’d had access to your controls so I could have annihilated all the spam posts. I have an old blog that I largely ignore, but on occasion I get a notification of a post that turns out to be spam. I love being such a disappointment to the spammers. They don’t last long anywhere that I have control. You need backup staff!

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47 J. Money April 9, 2012 at 2:16 pm

I know! I leave and then get slammed by these spammers – they’re getting better over time ;) But I have a few tricks up my sleeve – we’ll see if that fixes it. Sorry for the annoyance! I’m deleting them all now…

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48 Norberto James April 12, 2012 at 6:22 am

As a new Newbie, I feel always searching on the internet for articles which will help me. Thank you

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