by Susan Paige
It happened when I left my ex-husband and we ventured down the road of divorce. Everyone talks about how divorce can create serious financial issues and I had no idea how right they were. I felt like I was completely starting over with nothing to my name except my car. I had moving expenses, and I bought some furniture and kitchenware on credit. I had to pay deposits at the apartment complex and on my utilities. I also had a cell phone bill. I had to take care of all the necessities for me and my children until legal matters were handled. It was tough and I found myself using a lot of credit lines to get by. I used more than I should have. I suddenly found myself with rising legal costs and not enough income to make ends meet.
Made Moving Easier
I should have used a moving company, like Allied Van Lines, to help me rather than do it little by little and on my own. I created more stress for myself, spent way too much on gas going back and forth, and would’ve had a lot more help. My problem was, I didn’t ask for help and depended on myself entirely. Even if a moving company is unaffordable, do yourself a big favor and ask someone you can trust for help!
Took Financial Courses
Aside from things I should’ve done, I did what I could do to fix my issue. Firstly, I went to a local non-profit organization and learned more about how to correct my financial situation. There were excellent classes that explained credit and credit scores, learning how to deal with emotional spending, finding extra money to save, and even a homeowners course that helps you leap from renter to a homebuyer. These courses were a huge blessing and each person is treated as a respected human being. Some avoid these classes out of embarrassment but there is nothing you can present to these organizations that they haven’t seen and heard before!
Tweaked My Budget
I had already had a budget in place, but I allowed my emotions of the change to take over and I went off track. Now was the time for me to sit down and make necessary adjustments. It wasn’t easy, but I certainly had to make immediate concerns the priority and lessen some of my entertainment and lunches with co-workers until I could get back on track. The great news was, six months later I was able to get a few things paid off. I could sit down and re-adjust the budget once again so that I could still meet all my financial goals and stay on top of bills.
I Found An Accountability Partner
It may sound odd, but having someone that I could check in with made all the difference in my motivation to stick to my budget. I was also able to lower the stress that comes with the single mom income. My person was through a non-profit organization, but if you adopt this idea, it can be anyone you feel comfortable with. What we did was meet up every couple of weeks to once a month and just review my budget to see if I had stayed on task. If I didn’t, what was the reason and was it something to be avoided? People make mistakes and go off on the budget on occasion. Your accountability partner shouldn’t shame you, but help you figure out how to avoid making that same mistake again. I do recommend that you partner up with someone so that you can help each other. When you are mentoring each other, compassion steps in and can really help support one another.
If you feel overwhelmed, take a moment to take a deep breath. Focus on the thought that this is something that will pass. It is fixable and you will get through it!