Today’s post is actually an email exchange between myself and one of the women currently enrolled in my confidence course. She asked me this question during the part of my course where the messages are focused around the theme of “Honoring Yourself” through self care. I really enjoyed pondering her question and thought others might have similar thoughts so read on to see what she asked and my response…
Quick question… well probably not a quick question, but I wanted to get your thoughts because I know you too are a Dave Ramsey follower. **
In the first half of the course, there has been a lot of content pointed towards not getting overloaded, learning to say “no”, etc. How do you combine this mindset with the Dave Ramsey mindset of a “Dave” job, paying off debt as quickly as possible, even if it is hard along the way and takes up a lot of your time.
I am at a crossroads of saying no to possibilities for side jobs and not overwhelming myself, but thinking the extra money could come in handy for progressing through his baby steps. I have been struggling with this mainly because I don’t have kids at home to take care of, so if I want to work extra to make money now, I won’t have to do it later once I have kids… but I also don’t want to wear myself out with being involved in too much extra stuff.
**(side note for those who aren’t familiar: Dave Ramsey is a financial guru and author of “The Total Money Makeover” who helps people get out of and stay out of debt.)
Here’s how I responded…
I read this the day you sent it but wanted to think about it for a bit and wait until I had plenty of time to sit down and respond…
“Honoring yourself “is absolutely not mutually exclusive with the Dave Ramsey mindset. In other words, hard work and good self care can and should coexist. I believe it’s all about the reason behind WHY you are saying yes to someone or something.
Is it because you feel obligated to? Is it because you want the person asking to “approve” of you?
That’s when I think we run into problems and end up running ourselves into the ground with absolutely nothing to show for it except bitterness and burn out.
I think you have to decide what’s going to serve you the most. If working extra jobs or as I like to call them “side hustles”, now will get you out of debt faster and as a result allow you to feel less stressed and give you more freedom later in life… then it IS good self care. Even if it means that some nights you are exhausted when your head finally hits the pillow.
To use my own life as an example, right now I am 3 months pregnant and teaching 12 classes a week on top of my full time job. If I didn’t know we had a baby on the way, I would have either decided not to teach yoga at the university or not to teach it at the winery. But instead I saw it as an opportunity to build up our savings account while I have the chance. I figured that teaching yoga is probably one of the healthiest ways for a pregnant woman to be earning extra money.
While I feel slightly overextended, I don’t feel resentful towards my current commitments. Because I know I said “yes” to them for the right reasons, I know it’s temporary, and I know it is something I wanted to do for myself and my family.
I can say that the times of my life where I was working the hardest and the longest were also some of the most fulfilling times of my life. I wouldn’t say they were “fun” but I had that feeling of knowing I was making progress towards my goals which can bring a person a lot of joy…even a very tired person.
Taking on some “Dave jobs” will certainly help you reach your goal of debt freedom faster. Knowing how important that is to you… I say go for it!! It won’t be easy but it will be worth it and you’ll most likely look back and thank yourself a few years from now.
But before saying “yes” to anything, take some time to self reflect and think about your goals and how much you are truly capable of as far as time and energy. We all have different thresholds and you need to honor yours. You can push up against that threshold for a period of time, with your goal in mind, but you can’t completely ignore the fact that you have limits.
One last thought… I think many of us – especially women – struggle with taking time to “rest” (or simply taking time to do something you enjoy that you aren’t paid for) because we feel guilty. There’s this feeling of shame attached to taking care of your own needs. But there shouldn’t be! Don’t just take on more more more in an attempt to satisfy some nagging need that you aren’t doing enough. That’s not honoring yourself either.I hope this helps!!!