IT'S NOT EASY BEING A SOUTHERN BELLE-EVEN AFTER YEARS OF PRACTICE!













Monday, March 26, 2012

ANSWERING YOUR QUESTIONS

The last post brought a comment with a series of 3 questions and a question--why the post "Clarification" did not bring more comments. I will attempt to answers the 3 questions---in 3 posts--with my understanding as to the answers---may not be your answers--but they are mine. As to why were there not more comments----I see that many rush to respond when the comments become contentious---some coming to my defense. I had a call from sweet Barbara--urging me to not respond to the negatives--be cautious for reasons of safety--and discussing where negatives come from. I had already posted my "Clarification"--have never had a moment's concern for my safety and absolutely felt the pain of the one that was posting the comment . SO this is still my voice---I am using it for personal reflection---but I also am choosing to have a conversation with you and myself about where I am and your questions about "My thoughts".





The first question dealt with worrying about financial security. INTERESTING--that you brought this up---my number one concern--my panic button---my stumbling block--

FINANCIAL SECURITY

I will not bore you with the LONG details about why this is such an issue for me---but I will tell you what my thought procss has been about this during the past year. Just let me start by saying---I snickered to myself that you asked this first---since God certainly knows this is my biggest hurdle---He has SUCH a sense of humor!

When I finally got over the initial shock ---and heartbreak---of being alone. I began to process where I was financially and what I needed to do. I am thankful for my accounting background and for all the years that I have taken care of our family's finances as well as countless other's finances. I knew where to start!

The first step was to access where I was. I sat down-----I analyzed what my assets were---what my expenses were--and what it would take to make it financially. I soon determined I did not think I had enough assets to not work---and would be on a tight shoestring in retirement if I did not save more $s.
So I decided I would go back to work--really not much other choice. NOW----I must tell you--you are correct--I do not--at this time have any financial worries---but there is no guarantee that will always be the case. I have NO guaranteed support--and so it was not prudent to depend upon that which could vanish at any time.

So when I started thinking about "What to do", my thoughts ranged from I will work---2 or 3 jobs if necessary but I will provide for myself to finally settling into the decision after MUCH prayer of putting myself out as a "Consultant" after a LONG career of public accounting. This entailed---pulling my big girl panties up and making visits to business contacts from my previous career and business leaders within the community. NOT exactly what I wanted to do--I was still licking my wounds--had to go face those that had heard the talk about the story--BUT-I put on my war paint--dressed in my battle gear and I made those contacts--and God has faithfully honored me with work-to this point.

Work has been my "Mental Liferaft"---when I work---I WORK---I think about the job in front of me and work hard to get it done. I don't think about me--myself--or I--but only what I need to do to complete the task in front of me. I am SO BLESSED to have had my work. When each job has ended--God has provided the next---not a moment earlier than when one ended---teaching me trust. NOW I am fortunate that I took the steps all those years ago to ensure skills that were marketable--and I did work hard for MANY years before retiring for 10 years--so I do know I am blessed to have the abilities I do to earn a fair living. This began me thinking---What would I do--if I didn't have these skills?

I have mulled this over for a couple of days and I go back to where I started when I began thinking about this 9 months ago. I would do whatever was necessary to get the bills paid. I am going to babysit for a friend tonight--but there are MANY out there that need trusted babysitters and will pay you for it. I have a friend that is a great cook--she is cooking to raise money to build an orphanage--but you can support yourself by cooking for others. There are those that work full time that will pay others to clean their house--I have a retired teacher friend that is doing just that. On and on and on---I thought about working a "hotel desk" on the weekend--or working a cash register on the weekend to supplement. Bottom line---figure out what your talents are---and use them to help you earn some $s.

Step Two in the process----keep careful records of what it takes to pay the bills---and how you are spending your $s. I cannot tell you HOW important this is. I KNOW how easy it is to let $s slip through you fingers---so don't let that happen---PLAN and stay with the plan.

Step Three---SAVE!--I have my eye on the future and know that the day will come sooner than later that I will no longer be able - physically- to work---so I am monthly adding to the nest egg. The nest egg---frees you mentally from the edge of worry. You will have an emergency fund and $s for those expenditures that come from no where---but you also will have your retirement. It will be very hard to retire and support yourself on SS alone---thus the need for a fund to draw the earnings from at retirement.

MOST IMPORTANT----I have looked to God----looked to his word---there are MANY verses that address worry----my personal favorite----Phil. 4:6-7
but try Proverbs 12:25 Matt. 6:30 I Peter 5:7 ---there are LOTS of others.

Here is the bottom line on them all----God loves you----He does not want you to worry-he is NOT promising you riches--He does not say life will not be hard---He will faithfully sustain you and provide the necessities IF you look to Him and trust Him----and Worry---worry will not alter anything---it will not change one thing about where you are---but thinking about it---analyzing it---coming up with a plan and sticking to it---or ACTION---that will relieve your worries---It is freeing to know that you are doing something to make a change---it is the
Next Right Thing To Do.

1 comment:

Renee said...

excellent advice Lora! Thanks... you know organization and self control have never been my strength. As a matter of fact - I'm having my twin tummy fixed on Tuesday. Probably not the wisest use of my "emergency fund"... but you know I can justify anything. I'm bookmarking this post for future reference!
Also, if this keeps up... you may be Ruston's next Ann Landers. And believe me!!! There's money to be made in that! I recommend that anonymous take her passion and figure out a way making money doing it. I did - and it hasn't failed me yet! Love you, and keep up the good advice! We're all benefiting from it!
Renee