Monday, December 29, 2008

Needs, Wants, and The Safe Zone for 2009

I was digging through my computer the other day and found this post. I don't think I ever posted it, but if I did, here's a repeat with some changes. I think what I wrote in June is very appropriate this December day.

I posted one time that I need a nemesis. Actually, I need some goals to strive for that will challenge me AND give me some satisfaction. Right now I feel like I'm sort of going on auto pilot and in Safe Mode. I'm making some progress, but honestly, I don't feel like I have any goals that really motivate me to make me make drastic changes to my life. The odd situation with my full time job bothers me, but not enough to motivate me to make a change. This is the time of the year when people set goals, make New Year's Resolutions, they formulate SMART plans, they formulate KISS plans. They at least make plans. I am (at the time of this writing) struggling with a needs/wants and goals list for 2009.

I've been using these past couple days to look at my true needs and wants. I have very few needs at the moment that are not met. I have several wants, but they are not big ones and I can live without most of them. I have work that pays my expenses and gives me some extra money. I have very few wants that really drive me out of my Safe Zone. I am not bouncing back as much as I think I can or should be. I should be doing more with my life and my skills.

After my discharge, my biggest want was trying to find a way to get a new to me car. It ended up being easier than, and not as, humiliating as I thought it could be. I am paying a double digit interest rate due to the bankruptcy, but I have a manageable car note and more importantly, a reliable car that works. I've been slowly working on my Emergency fund goal of $2,000. I've been close to that goal of $2,00 a few times this year, but have dipped into the fund for true emergencies and some not so true emergencies. Probably the biggest motivation I have righ now is to fully fund the Emergency Fund account.

Honestly, being in Safe Mode is very comforting. I'm not taking chances, I'm coasting and it's safe. After spending most of 2007 and part of 2008 stressing over the Bankruptcy (pre, post and during), I LIKE the Safe Mode. Safe Mode is not going to make me a better person, Safe Mode is not going to challenge me to be a better person post bankruptcy, Safe Mode is not going to let me grow. BUT IT'S SAFE.

I think a lot of people who are post Bankruptcy like the Safe Mode. Let's face it, the phone is not ringing night and day with collection agencies and credit card companies looking for you, the mail is not full of dunning letters and final demands, hopefully you still have your home. There is some semblance of peace and quiet and that is safe and comforting, but this needs to change so I can bounce back even more.

I am in Safe Mode and I need to be out of it. I don't want to be in Crisis Mode, I want to be in Positive Action Mode. I am working, no struggling with a new needs and wants list. I need a new baseline to work off of and from to get out of Safe Mode and into Postive Action Mode

So, what's next? I need to sit down this weekend and look at where I've been and where I want to go. I need to look at that list of needs and wants and find what can re-motivate me to tackle the list head on and make 2009 a much better year than 2008.


Anonymous said...

great post, made me realize I too have been in "safe mode" for quite a long time.

I look forward to reading about what you come up with for your postive action plan.

Just Another Alias said...

For the first time ever, I am really making some new years resolutions, and not the chinsy ones (work out more, eat better), but ones that hopefully will make my life better (strong savings plan, paying extra to student loans).

I look forward to seeing what yours are.

I think I'll have to go back and see what you wrote about when you were going thru the bankruptcy, I just had my trustee meeting last week. So I have about 3 months til discharge.

Thanks again for making me feel not so alone in all this.

Dawn said...

"safe mode" is not a bad place to be. It sounds like you needed it. When the time to go into action mode is right, I have no doubt you will take it by the horns - it sounds like you are already getting that urge.

Maria said...

Safe mode doesnt sound like bad of a place but I know what you mean. You want something to light a fire under you but kind of like feeling comfortable.
Maybe it's not the right time and you'll feel it when it's right.

Debtfree2009 said...

Good luck with whatever goals you come up with for 2009. After what you have gone through you needed a period of "safe mode". Maybe 2009 is the time for "positive mode.

Good luck.