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Sep. 7th, 2017 09:57 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
So, I'm three days in to my new job. It's starting off slow; my first day, almost all I did was read the Policies and Procedures manual. Today I ground through stultifying online trainings like Professional Conduct over Telephone and E-Mail and Maintaining a Respectful Workplace that exist largely so people who behave poorly can't say someone didn't explain common sense to them.

But meanwhile, I've sat in on my supervisor doing a family intake interview, and sat in on case conference, and reviewed the assessment tool they're developing for me to use and made a major revision suggestion which my supervisor said was a very good idea, and the small happy twang of my job my job my job is going off inside my chest. These early days of preparation, of grounding at home office and orientation to the work atmosphere, are important before I dive into clinical work where I will mostly be at my worksites solo, one therapist with a locking wheely-cart against a giant mountain of need. On the other hand, I'm happily anticipating the dive.

TW Money and budgeting

Meanwhile: I was looking for something crunchy and miserable to read at the local library now that The Origins of Totalitarianism is finished (I KNOW, don't look at me like that) and instead, I found All Your Worth by Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Tyagi. Oh, wow. I've been nervously chewing over the idea that I "ought" to have a more structured plan with my money now that I'm going to have some; for the last ten years my plan has been "panic a lot and try not to spend anything, inevitably fail". (It's been nice that my mother had tight money last year; she used to say, "Lis, why don't you go to counselling and get physiotherapy and buy new shoes???" and not understand when I'd explode with stress. Now she says, "Wow, you've been living like a churchmouse for a decade!") Most budget systems give me panic attacks, especially things designed by and for accountants; what works to best for me has felt like a shamefully bastardized system of spreadsheets and looking at my bank balance through my fingers. And now... I wish I'd read this book a long time ago.

The book says right up front, "Most financial advice books are about helping rich people become more rich. This is about helping people who feel panicked and out of control with their money, like they never have enough, to gain stability, peace of mind, and the ability to weather life's ups and downs."

And honestly, if there's anyone I trust not to bullshit me about financial stuff, it's the authors of The Two Income Trap, who fucking KNOW how batshit today's economy is. (My dad and older brother love capitalist self-help books and seminars; dipping into them has always been stress-provoking and unhelpful.)

Their system is really simple, really intuitive, and makes me feel calmer and happier and more in control before I've implemented a single bit of it; I can see how I've been smart about money all along, but am reaching now for some tools to be truly wise with it. I can imagine a long-term strategy. And I'm not trying to wrap my brain around a bunch of terms and concepts that feel like Greek to me. It feels good.

(I'm not sure how it would work with seriously limited incomes, like disability pensions or unemployment stipends; all their examples so far are people with full-time jobs and regular paycheques. I suppose you could take their basic sorting system and adjust the ratios, though.)

First paycheque comes down the pipe in... twenty-six hours. I'm looking forward to it.

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dopaminecat

December 2011

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