January Review- My Way to Financial Independence

As mentioned several times before. Money has been a huge source of stress for me the for a long time.
This changed this past year.
I made a very conscious decision year and a half ago to change my situation and to work toward financial freedom. It has helped me tremendously!
From being a basket case whenever I have just been thinking about my financial situation, and the feeling of hopelessness to where I am today.
I can do this.

I have decided that I will reach independence and that is it. Not in a week. Not in a year. Not in 10 either. But I will. I will live safe and comfortable. Actually I already am. Budgeting had really helped me with that. I already chose what I want out of life and my budget is just helping me reaching it.

How I start and go about my budget


So at the beginning of my financial month I posted about the start. Let us now have a check how things actually went.

As I wrote I do not go filling in my budget as I go. For each income I receive, I spread them out in my budget and how I want to spend it.
Even if I know I will get the money, I do not add it into my budget as I have learned from the past, that even if you are expecting the money something might happen and it does not come.
So I only add it when I can see them deposited into my account.
Then I assign that money into my categories. I always pay my needs first, and once that is covered I cover my half needs and the last my wants.

Needs Vs wants and that odd half need
  1. Needs- The first I add money into. These are the expenses I need to pay to cover expenses which I cannot chose to pay or not.
    This is such as Rent. Phone. Health insurance. Social insurance.
    I cover these things absolutely first as then I know I am done. In worst case scenario I have at least roof over my head and if I get sick I can get well.
  2. Wants- These are the things I want to pay for. The things I do not need to cover my life but to add that little fun in life. The ones which makes life fun to live. These are things such as Clothes. Bags. Phones. Books.
    All the fun fun fun things.
  3. Half- needs- so what is this about then? Well these are the things that I might not have to do or maybe not always want to do but a little bit of them both at the same time.
    Food is not something I maybe want to do, neither is it something I maybe have to get either every month a lot of as I do have quite a big pantry and freezer.
    Savings are maybe not either something that I do want to do every single month, but I do it anyhow. Workout is the same. want tor need? A half need 🙂
savings- what i do to get rich

OK maybe it is not right now to be rich but for a future independence for sure. I try to manage it that way so I can save about 30% of my income. More than that is not really feasible as I do want to live as well. I enjoy to go for walk and have a coffee of a hot drink. That is all we can do, and I do not plan to skip it. unless I do not reach the 30%.
I did great this month with this, and my emergency fund is almost fully funded. I was able to put in some 10k(czk) into it and I am extremely happy.
House payment- which is for a down payment is still empty but I want to get my emergency fund full before I add into this category.
Sinking funds- Not really savings in the long term but more for the short term and this is not really into my financial independence but I somewhat count them in here anyhow. They help me live stress-free so anything that does that, goes for me.

the real independence building

This month was the first where I actually planned for and executed my new plan. I have officially started investing in stocks and signed up for a retirement plan. I know. I am 35 and I have had nothing like that.
The plan was to live for free in the flat we purchased in Bolivia and much further than that we did not come in our retirement plan. And anywho, that plan failed miserably. Finally did I feel I had enough of saved things and steady income to be able to really do something.

When is enough?

I am extremely happy with January- February result. So when is it enough? When will I feel independent and safe? I ask myself this very often.
I do not know. I am constantly scared that something will happen and I will be left living on my savings and then it is not long before it goes away.
Therefor am I looking into how to save more and better.
I have a number in my head, that when I reach this I can start relaxing and not stress out over losing work or how to survive.
It is 1 000 000 czk. Then maybe. I will aim for this. I need to work hard and be focused but I will reach it.
And now we erase this and start all over for Feb-March

What is your goal?

If I Skip It Once I Should Just Skip It Forever- Why?

This is me. In so many aspects of my life and it really frustrates me. I do not understand where it comes from and why I have it. It is not procrastination, as I do have issue with that as well.
So what am I talking about?

I am on a roll. It can be whatever. Exercise, writing, reading, learning.
Now lately it was this- writing.
I said to myself that I want to have a plan of creating a post every 3 days. I think it is the track I can follow. I think that making more post a week will water down the blog. I will not try to make nice writing, make some sense in my writing, and I will be just stressed by it. I do this for fun and love of writing and not because I want fame or money.
I do want people to read, as I honestly think people can benefit from my words. But that is the point.

So every 3 days, to keep some track and so readers feels that it is enough of post coming and knowing that there is something new coming up.
It makes sense.

What happened to the plan?

Nothing. And this is what happened. It was not procrastination.
The definition of it is this:
Trouble persuading yourself to do the things you should do or would like to do. When you procrastinate, instead of working on important, meaningful tasks, you find yourself performing trivial activities.

I have read about it over there : What is Procrastination And it is not what I did.

So came the day of posting my blog. I had it planned. I had a topic, I had photos I had the text done in my head. It was just to write it. It was not that I did something else instead. It was just a busy busy day.
I am single mom, in a lockdown pandemic and I do have a lot to do. So Tuesday last week came and it went.
And that is the problem.
I did not do it due to procrastination, I did it due to life. Life came in the way and I had no time.

The Voice in my head then goes like

You will not have time tomorrow either. It will be really busy and you have too much to do anyhow. The day after that as well. And then Friday comes and you have a plan already then and you will not fit this blogpost in. There is no time. And then it has already been 6 days since the last post, and then you have ruined your plan of blogging every 3rd day.
People will not be interested in someone who is wishy washy with their publications. So then it makes no sense writing one and it is better to just skip it all together.

This is not just about blogging.

It is about everything.

  • I skip my language learning for 1 day and I feel it is pointless to even do it the next day, as I have failed myself once and now it is all ruined.
  • I do not do my exercise for 1 day and the same story again.
  • Not eating right, guess what? I do not need to do it again as I ruined it for ONE FING day.
Photo by Alexas Fotos on Pexels.com
this is not working anymore

In the past I have maybe been comforted by this. So this has might been helpful for me in the past, as I felt overwhelmed by life and I was trying so many things and struggling to get anything of the table so it was a helpful habit. Negative but actually still helpful.
I did not really want to grow. That is the only idea I have about it.
– Why else?

The things is though. I really want to grow now. I have a urge and ambition to go somewhere in life. Not professionally but personally. I want to become better and evolve. I have this feeling of being stuck as the same persona and I need to move on.
This habit is really not working for me anymore. It is so engraved in me though, that it is extremely hard to change. As I do not know what it is. It destroys so much in its way. It leaves me so unproductive and almost lethargic.
It frustrates the hell out of me. I want to go somewhere in life. I have plan in action and retrospectives and reviewing what I am doing. Daily planning etc etc.
So why do I feel that if I ship it once, I should just keep skipping it?

Why do I reinforce this? What do I keep on feeding myself this stupid stupid idea?

Moving forward?

I do not know. I am happy I did write this post, as in my head I had abandoned this blog and it was a story of the past.
As so many times before.
As I mentioned before, this is not my first blog rodeo and the mentioned reason has been the only reason why I have stopped in the past. Nothing else.
Failing my language learning has only been due to this. I have been over it for ages already but I just do not seem to change it on a profound level and I do not know what to do.

All I know it just has to change.

Sinking Funds and How They Helped Me Overcome Stress

Sinking funds work like this: Every month, you’ll set money aside in one or multiple categories to be used at a later date. With a sinking fund, you save up a small amount each month for a certain block of time before you spend. – Dave Ramsey

One huge stress factor in my life has been money and my finances. I might not have had the best ideas of finances but I did get by. Then I got married, for our standards today young at 25, we put all money in one basket so to say. We had the advantage that we earned quite some money so the idea if budgeting and tracking was not needed we felt. We were able to live like we wanted and felt like.
Funny thing is that that money that we so harmoniously shared at the beginning of our marriage, turned into only one persons possession once the separation was clear. Not just the money, but what we had use the money for- acquiring of a flat, furniture and our life.

I was not that lucky person.

I was left with absolutely nothing. Zero. Null. Zilch. All my financial stability was taken away from me, from one second to another. From having a flat, a car, furniture, and food in the fridge I was left with a flat that had a borrowed mattress, pillow and duvet. A cup and a instant coffee, sugar, kettle and a spoon.
This was it. For a long time I lived on without anything.
More than once did I need to ransack my bags, and pants, and check under the sofa to find few coins for bread and transportation for my child and myself to work.

Needless to say, I struggled financially after the divorce. And it created a huge stress and burden on me. Knowing that my daughter had to witness her mother in tears and stressing out, from the fact she needed to eat as there were no money, still makes me sad.
The shame of not having enough money to send her to school with the required equipment. Not knowing if we would be able to pay the rent or not. If I could have her living with me as I had no money for basic needs.
The thing I should have done I stopped doing and what I should have stopped doing I started doing. I did what I do best in stress. Eat. My weight started creeping up.

Starting Back from scratch again

I was able to return to Europe a year and a half after the divorce and the situation was not very well either. I had arrived with 4 suitcases and a scattered life and needed to restart again. But I was able to start to work on my finances after some time here. I sorted out a proper job that eventually could lead into better earnings. Slowly but surely did I go from bad to better situation. I did not need to live from day to day in my life anymore, but I could start live at least paycheck to paycheck which for me was a great improvement.
Living from one day to another is not a great way to live, then a month to month is considerably better.


But even though it was better, it never really improved on a real scale though. Even though I had better job, and better income. It was always something that happened, which drained all the small savings I had started. Always one emergency away from chaos. And as it was all together in one pot, I was never really sure about what I was actually saving for.
Beginning of school year expenses, yearly ticket with public transport, winter seasons and its clothes. And let us not think about Christmas and birthdays. I had a bit of a financial chaos back home as well. Would it never stop? There were quite some times when I did think I would need to surrender and just give up. One thing I am expert in doing when in stress is what?- EAT
And eat I did.

Something had to be done though. It could not be like this for the rest of my life. Always living in this angst world. There just had to be a way.
You might say Universe provide, I just say luck or that I was actually opening my eyes for a solution. And the solution came in the shape of a blog post. I came across The Financial Diet

Getting my first sinking fund in order

Right around November, people start saving rapidly for Christmas, Hanukkah, etc. But what if you had been putting $15 or $20 a month away, for a no-sweat holiday season? This, in essence, is the value of sinking funds. Minimize the stress you feel about large, predictable expenses through small, long-term savings goals.

This is exactly what I read. And it hit a cord inside me. I did budget to some degree but then those yearly expenses came. Or the unexpected expense that comes with a broken phone. Anyone that knows me can testify that I am expert on this field.
So why not try something new.
I started my first sinking fund to fund Christmas 2019. My plan had been to leave to visit family in Sweden and I had stressed about the idea, of how I would afford it. So 4 months ahead I started to, quite aggressively, put away some money.
I hit the goal and we went for a Christmas trip up to Sweden. It was a strange feeling as it was the first time I did not totally stress out about what we spent. I knew I had the money and it would not affect next month.
Maybe I was onto something.

  • I decided to continue that fund for Christmas 2020. And every month I put away 500 Czech crowns– 20 euro. In the end it was 6000 which would more than cover the expenses for my girl and I.
  • In the end of February my yearly ticket was up. I needed to get a new one. I had to get a small loan for it. I knew what my next Sinking fund would be for Transportation pass.
    I added 250 czk every month and by the end of this month I will get a new yearly ticket, with money over which will be my base for next years ticket.
  • My daughters birthday would come, as it does every year somehow in the past I would always get so surprised by it, by the end of October. Why not get one for that too? So again, an amount of 500 CZK over the course of 8 months, did end up with quite something.
  • I went freelancer last year, and income tax would be paid by me once a year. Even though it might not feel too much fun to remove an amount every month, 500 CZK was not that much compared to 6000 in one go.
Life with sinking funds vs without


I keep adding on Sinking funds into my Bank app. I have free accounts and it makes it all so much easier. The money are clearly divided and I see exactly how much I have, or need. To have a big chunk of money with no destination was so intangible for me. How did I know if I had enough money for everything?
I did not.
Now it is all so clear.
I just received an invoice for my freelancer address which I had totally forgotten about. I had the money but needed to play with my budget to be able to pay it. I needed to deprive myself from something this month to be able to get that big payment made.
I directly opened a new fund and will put a small amount every month so I will have it covered next year. This way I do fund all the things I want to have money for and want to do by a little every month nd without depriving myself from living during I save.
Some funds are long term goals and I only put in money once in a while or when a short term goal has been reach, not to send too much money to the sinking funds either. Dentist and house payments are not needed to add to every months whilst Summer vacation 2021 get a bit more attention now.


In many ways, even though it feels bad to say it, 2020 was the best in my life. I overcame the adversity with money. I have not been this financial stable since before the separation. This has reduced my anxiety immensely. And no anxiety means less overeating. No overeating means no weight gain.
I stress so much less. I stress over other things yes but my financial stress is decreased by the handful. I know that slowly but surely all those goals and needed payments are getting funded and I will have the exact or more of the amount needed.
That has had an immensely positive impact on my mental health, where I can sleep at night and I do not stay up wondering how I will be able to get that extra money.
And what I do when I am stressed is to eat. Over eat and overfill myself. I still sometimes do today, but at least not because of my anxiety over my upcoming invoices.

January Has Come to and End- How Did I do- Life Transformation

I am a Agile Coach, not working as it but have certification in it. I really got hooked on it, as it is so structured and as my life was fundamentally unstructured it was great for me.
One thing I really like in Agile is the idea with retrospectives.
So what is a retrospective? Simply put it is this:

What went well?
What did not go so well?
WHAT CAN I DO DIFFERENT TO MOVE FORWARD?

You obviously need to have a look at your sprint plan and what was the stories that you planned to have finished.
So that is what we are doing today! January sprint is over today so let’s have a look.

So what was the print plan?

What was the plan of the month?

  1. Read on average 1.5 books
  2. Working on my self-love
  3. Keep putting my health first– meaning mindful eating, and work out a min of 5 times a week.
  4. Working on my Czech, a min of 4 times x 30 min a week.
  5. Keep budgeting and adding investing.
  6. Learn something new or improve an a skill, ideas such as an instrument, drawing, handicraft, sewing, on the amount of min 30 min per week.

WHAT WENT WELL?

  1. I did read a book- Good Omen.
  2. Have said no to people I do not want to deal with anymore and work I do not want to be a part of.
  3. Kept the min of 5 times as week. I have done a mix of work out, to my ability in this lock-down world we are living in. I did my fastest and longest run so far.
  4. I did work on my Czech in various books and have spoken at home as well.
  5. I am budgeting, tracking and I added etoro so now I am investing too, which now is divided between two stocks and one cryptocurrency.
  6. I did work on an SEO course.

WHAT DID NOT GO SO WELL?

  1. Had hard time to make the time for this. I read on my phone and I did not like that so much.
  2. I made the task very vague so I find it hard to really see what I need to do in order to work on it.
  3. I cannot really say anything that did not go so well. I have done the best I could do with my abilities in this situation.
  4. I could have been better speaking at home. I do not leave the home very much as we are in lock-down so there are not so many other places to work on it right now.
  5. I have done all what I can do at the moment.
  6. This one I could have worked much more with. The SEO course was quite shit, so I cannot say I learned anything new. I could have worked on sewing and drawing which is free as I have the tools.

WHAT CAN I DO DIFFERENT TO MOVE FORWARD?

  1. Bring the book in my bag as I do not like reading on the phone. Add 30 min before bed. I do enjoy reading.
  2. To make it clearer. What does really self-love mean? I need to rework this plan in general.
  3. That I can do much more than I believe. I can measure more for the future.
  4. 30 min 4 x a week is really doable so I think I will just leave it like this for now and make no changes for following month.
  5. Make a clearer plan in how I want to invest and how much. Write it down so I can see what I am actually investing in and for.
  6. This one is my absolute worst one. I can add much more time. I do a lot of brainless scrolling where I could work on something new instead.

In general I am quite happy with the month. I am quite excited of what February will do for me.
How are your plans and resolutions going so far?

Workout for Weight Loss a la Manka

What do you do for weight loss? Work out or diet?
I do both. And today I want to show you what I do for weight loss.

– How have you gotten this routine, are you a trainer?
You know what? I am not, nor did I get it from a trainer. I have had a trainer in the past, and I am watching an obscene amount of training videos. So I have made my own little routine together and I think it is a full body routine.
If you do not think so, please let me know and what I could do to change it up.
I have just used my own sense if mind, and with the idea that something is better than nothing.

Warm up

We all know how important it is to warm up- don’t we? Truth to be told I never did, until quite recently but I have to say I am totally in for it now.

Warming up helps prepare your body for aerobic activity. A warmup gradually revs up your cardiovascular system by raising your body temperature and increasing blood flow to your muscles. Warming up may also help reduce muscle soreness and lessen your risk of injury.- Mayo clinic

And it is really true. It helps me so much. Slowly adding speed or weight, and fully work out when your body is warm is a game changer.

  • 12 minutes of jumping rope. Trying to run on the spot while jumping.

Main Workout – Resistence & Flexibility

Round 1

Walking down in plank, push up and then jump back up to my feet.

Lunges- crossing the patio of mine while switching leg.

The traditional sit ups x 15 times. I know people say that sit ups are no good, but you know what? I like all exercises I do, and I think they are all good if we do them. All better than nothing. Or?

I this all x 3.

Round 2

Side way plank walk. Not even close to such a plank I, in my imagination, have. To be honest I was slightly shocked how bad plank it is. I have quite a lot of improvement space here. I mean it looks like a upward facing dog, not really as a plank.

Crossing leg x15 times. And yes, this is the same day I just removed my top sweater. I was warm even in the 0 degree Celsius.

Crab walk, again I crossed the patio doing this. And this round I did x 3 again.

I did have a Round 3 as well, but truth to be told the photos were terrible. I was trying to get these better too as they are not the best but it was what I could do.

I am not the best in this field but I am looking into how to improve.

Cool Down

I did not do. I do not understand it really. But I guess it is as important as the warm up, just not getting it. They say stretching is good for the muscles and the soreness afterwards. OK I can see that, but I just feel like I prefer few more minutes of workout than few minutes of cool down.
Anyone has a though on this?

So guys, that was my routine. I really enjoyed it, and it is quite like this I do it.
Will work on my photos so it is easier to actually see what the bloody hell I was doing.
I can tell that I have seen more improvement doing this for about 3 months, than my 5 months in the gyms with weights.

How and what are you doing with your weight loss?

I Challenge You 2021!

95 Kilos Before Weight Loss Front Picture

This is me- Lock Stock and Barrel. 95 Kilos and a BMI of 32.

When I do think about it, I do get stress out. I have to remember that I have lost quite a lot already and I am on a amazing path.
I started last year in May, this health-weight-fitness-life journey I am on. It was a great year, as I lost 20 -at least- kilos.
I went from thinking I would die in my sleep to feeling full of energy.
But- That was 2020.

This is 2021!

And I challenge you 2021, who will win- You or Me in this journey of health-wealth-life?


Theses photos were taken January 15th and just like last year, I will take photos every 2 weeks, but these ones are the start of this year. The bar of which I should work away from, hence me showing them.
I want to work towards being accountable on all fronts and I think to put it out there can help.

I have a blog post about what and how I will reach my goals. – read more here
This is just an accountability post to show you all how I look like right now and then we can have a look by the end of the year, how I will look like.
Yes and I do know it is not all about looks but truth to be told I want to look better too. I have the health plan embedded in this, but showing how my blood sugar is decreasing or how my oxygen is increasing, will most probably not be so interesting.

So- Lock Stock and Barrel. Here I am 2021 let’s see what you throw at me. I challenge you!

  • How will you challenge 2021? Let me know!

A Day in a Random Non-famous Persons Life

I know everyone claims that the personal blog is D E A D and all we want to read is blog articles about one subject over and over again. From 500 different angles and then do it all from the start again, when all the angles have been covered.
Unless you are rich and famous and we want to indulge and envy their life.

You know what? I do not C A R E.

I enjoy writing, have always done, and guess I always will. I have also always had this feeling of wanting to be heard and tell a story. So- Voila! Here we are. So here are photos from my lovely day today. Just me, Manka , a random non-famous or rich person who just wants to share life.

07.30 AM– I do not eat until lunchtime, so for me my morning coffee is so special. I love coffee but I try to only have this one. My sleep really get compromised if I drink more. So this one cup is quite holy for me.

8.05 Am– As we are in lockdown, my daughter has basically not been in school since March, I need to find things to keep her and my life as “normal” as possible. I try to take her out 3 times for proper training and then the rest of the days just to be outside. I need her to have great routines from small already. I bought a basketball yesterday and we tried it out today.
It was a hit.

02.30 PM– I live in Czech Republic, but I am not from here. I did move here 2008 but never got around to learn the language. 2014 I moved with my then husband and daughter to Bolivia which went straight to hell and I came back 2018 with my daughter. I made a promise to learn how to speak it. It has not really happened so much. Making it happen I made the decision to study 4 times a week for about 30 min. Today was one of those day!

04.00 PM – Before daylight is over for today, I went outside. I try to walk for a minimum of 1 hour a day. I think it is really important right now especially as it is dark already at 5 PM and as we have to be home from 9 PM.
I try to head out with someone so I can keep up with them. I do not enjoy speaking with them over chats or messages.

My neighborhood!

And now it is 07.10 PM and I am finishing this off. I have obviously worked too but took no picture of that. Will have to be for next time. And yes there will be a next time.
I do not care about the idea that blogging is dead, or that no one wants to read my personal journey. Well I do this for the few who do wants to read. And for me!
And I do believe that somewhere there are people missing this equally as much as I.
I am so tired of reading the blogs from the rich and famous. I cannot relate. I do not want to read blogs only talking and writing 500 articles about how to do keto.

So I will do this my way. Whatever people say 🙂

Newfound Energy and a Premonition of a Future Life

“What has been the biggest personal change this past year?”

Everything! Is has immensely changed in some ways. And you know. I love it!

I have been and am struggling with both physical health as well as mental, and 2019 was quite terrible in many ways.
I came into 2020 thinking I would change, but I did not. – Of course.

March and Covid came and I think that was my real butt kicker. I knew that if I would get it, it would be it. I would not make it and that has been a huge revelation.
35 and not believing to survive a disease. What the hell is that. It is out of this world. Unreal but really really real for me.

I remember the idea of what I wanted to do and feel. How my idea of living meant. I had this urge and longing of living in a different way which I have felt for many years but never done anything about. The idea that it is too late anyhow. I am 35 and it is too late to do any change. I have screwed up so many years of my life anyhow, so what is the point anyhow.
I think the urge and longing won over those thought of it being too late.

Why do I say so?

I say this as I had such a active weekend. We went sledding and I went running and then I went walking and had some more sledding on that.

I realize that I have started to really live that life what I was urging and longing for. It is no longer an idea of something I want to do, but something I am really doing. And I realized that I both enjoyed it and I had the energy for it. In spring, when Covid first hit, I would try to do these things and the excruciating loss of energy and pain stopped me to do quite some things.
What should I skip doing to manage the things I really wanted to do. What would I need not not doing, to have the energy to do the things I wanted to do.

This weekend I realized that I have that energy now. I am living that dream life a bit more everyday. I can do so much more things. I have energy left in the end of the day. I can move better and easier.
And this is only 8 months of work– imagine what will come in the following 8 months as I will stay equally or more committed to this Life Work of mine. That idea of handstand, cartwheel, pushups, free running, good blood work, pressure and less medication is not a world away.
It is in my world now.

I am already living it, I will just keep moving and I will get there.

Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck- Working Towards Financial Security

Living paycheck to paycheck: For many, this act of using most or all of your monthly income to cover your monthly expenses — with no money left over and none for savings — is a fact of life.” – Read more here

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

I used to have huge problems with my personal finances. Especially after my divorce. I spiraled down into this black place of borrowed money and panic over paying rent. 
I once had a washing machine dysfunction and my entire flat was covered in water, leaking down to my neighbors. I ran to the janitor in the building complex to fix it. He had to turn off water in the building and to turn it on, I needed to repair the connection with my washer. It cost 200 Bolivianos, 30 dollars or 25 euros. 
I did not have it. 
This was not the last time something like that happened, but at one point in life I was exhausted by this. Exhausted by living one small accident from chaos. One tiny incident away from eviction. I had to do something. 

How to Not to Budget and Failing to Keep On Track

This is my first-ever budget. It is not a fancy program that you connect to an app that is connected to your bank account. I had KISS in mind.

Keep It Short and Simple. 

There was no point in adding fancy things and complicating it. I needed it as simple as possible, to actually do it and be successful. I have more categories now, and few more tabs now. Tracking all kinds of different things.  
And truth to be told, even this was too boring and complicated and the first 2 months I did not really know what the heck I was doing and mostly did I not do it.
I added some arbitrary number ideas to my excel sheet, expecting it all to come together. Deciding I would spends this and that amount on this and that category.I had really no idea what I had previously spent, but it sounded great to spend 100 euro on food. That is about right, right? 
It was all just a mess and I felt many times I would be better off just stopping. I kept on though and practice become the master.  At this point it was Youtube and blogs I watched and read to understand what I needed to do. 

 And with this structures and processes happened. It helped me understand how I can budget, with my type of income, better. I am a freelancer and I get paid a bit all over the month, so it is hard to think about my paycheck as my monthly income. I want the money to work for me, not me for my money. I need to create the life I want with my money. If I do not want to spend 100 Euro on money, why should I put this arbitrary number into my budget? 

Realizing that a budget is not one thing fits all was the big thing that helped me. I can make it do and work for me, how I need to to work.

One Effective Way to Budget to Make the Money Work For You.

Instead of budget for future money, and adding in some random numbers into random categories I decided to budget with the current money I have. I decided to go from 15-15 each month, and everything that was leftover would be treated as extra money and be added to savings and anything that came into my account after the cut-off date would be counted as the new month’s money. I also decided to only budget the money I actually had received and not money that would come in. 
I also sat down and looked where I wanted to go in life. What were my life and financial priorities.  When these were defined I looked if they were actually in my budget and what amount did I assign to this priority. 

I wanted health and active activities, but I, in my budget had 0 allocated for this. So I always felt short of money doing just this. On the other hand, did I have a HUGE category which was for entertainment and drinks.
Where were my real priorities?  All this is crucial to define. This can obviously change over the course of time, and I look at this every month. What do I want to do? What is my focus this month?
Having these defined I set up the plan on how to allocate the money received and nothing else. 

 

  • I have only received two payments this month and it is only these two I will budget out
  • The most crucial expenses are listed out and how much I need to pay for these. If these are paid first, I know that my obligations are fulfilled and I can sleep better at night.
  • You budget clothes and no food? I have a full fridge for another week and I know there is coming in more money for this, in one week. And I have to get snow protective clothes for my kid! This is what I mean by having the money work for me. Why put money in a food category if I do not need it now?
  •  After paying them, tracking them just by adding them to the right category.
  • When I get a new payment I will add this into the budget and give the money a job in the categories I feel and know needs to be contributed to. 

This way I have a clear view of what I can actually afford and not and at what time. 

Will This Make You Reach Financial Freedom?

Absolutely not. 
This is the first change and decision I made to create a better financial life and stop the vicious cycle of living paycheck to paycheck. Creating wealth and financial freedom is a lot of work, but one has to start with the first step.  It was far easier and better than I could ever have excepted.
It is now clear and obvious what I have to pay, what I want to cover, and how to get the money create the life I want. 
This has resulted in far less stress and anxiety which has left me with a feeling of relief that I did not for many years. This order in my finances created the space how to add new levels to my money and make them work even
It is sometimes strange not to stress over my finances and the disorder it used to be in. Strange but amazing more for me. 
Overeating and stuffing myself due to poor financial control is no longer my problem.
This is why it is so important to have a holistic view of weight loss, as it is all connected. NO machinery works well without all its bolts and gears. 

Fat to Skinny and Back- Body Dysmorphia- Is This What I am Suffering From?

I have been an extreme weight pendulum for almost as long as I know.
The first time I shed a substantial amount of weight was in my teens. I think I was 13 almost pushing 100 kilos and over the course of one summer got myself down to the higher 70s.
That was all regained in few years.

The next time I was around 18, leaving high school and again I started around 100 kilos and got myself down to a really low number in the higher 60s. I am 174 so for me, that was a really low number.
All regained in few years.

Now I had had a baby and for the first time had I crossed the 100 kilo mark, and beyond. I vividly remember standing on the scale showing 105 kilos thinking it must just be something inherently wrong with the scale. It went most probably even higher because after that I did not stand on a scale again for a long time and I know for sure I gained some. Before losing it and I shed quite a bit.
Same story again- regained it all.

My Incapability to See Me and Myself In a Body

And now I am here again. 116 Kilos and pushing for a weight loss. I desperately need a different outcome.
The weight gain has to stop.
30-40 kilos up and down cannot be healthy in any sort of way. The fluctuation and stress it causes the body cannot be good in any way.
On no scale can I claim that I have a healthy relationship with myself, nor my body.
Why is that?
I am trying to understand my issue, and fix it. I deeply believe that this is more than just an issue with eating too much. Which obviously is an issue, but this fluctuation is due to something more.
I need to fix something, for this to work this time. Understanding what is wrong and how to heal or deal with it is the key to my success.
I am not calling it a holistic view out from nothing. I have to transform into a being that is more in line with herself.
I really enjoy analyzing myself, and I constantly do it. I have discovered one thing.
I cannot see myself.

Do not get me wrong. Of course, I can see myself, I do not think I am some sort of vampire who does not have a reflection in the mirror.

What I mean is- I cannot see how small or big I am. I just cannot.

I vividly remember how I used to ask, my now ex-husband about people and their bodies, to get a reference point.
Am I as big as her? What about this woman? Is this the size I am, what about that?

He would, understandably, get annoyed and thinking that I was just trying to tell that I was I was fishing a bit too often and much for compliments and wanting remarks about my incredible weight loss.
I was not; I honestly could not see my own body and how small it was. I just saw myself as fat and big.

This would shift though. At one point, I would realize that I had actually lost the weight, I was not pushing 100 kilos anymore. The notion had finally sunken in. Then when I started gaining weight came the same issue but opposite way.
I could not see my body again. Now my body was small. Now my body was skinny.
10 kilos extra on scale was an incorrect scale. I was still skinny. 20+ still skinny. 30+?
Yes you are right still- ok not skinny anymore, I had realized there had been some gain but not how much. I would look myself in the mirror and see a skinnier person.



I vividly remember the moment I realized I was not the smaller size me anymore. Like really realized it.
I was in an intimate situation with a man where I proudly proclaimed my victory over weight gain and how I had lost 30+ kilos.
I clearly remembering his surprised and really unbelieved eyes and the doubt in his voice.
– Aha OK, right.

That was it. The words and the doubt threw me off my pretend cloud and dropped me down in reality. I was fat again, and boy was I really fat. The scale had pendulum to 116 kilos and the gain was a true horrible fact.

This is not the first time though. Looking back, all my gains and losses has been like this. Me not realizing that I am losing or gaining. I cannot see my body for what it is. It is the same now. I know I have lost 20 kilos, but I cannot see it. Because I cannot see it, I dismiss all evidence that this is the truth.
And as happened in the past it will hit me, and from that moment I will identify as a smaller person, and I will not see the gain, that will creep up. And the never ending cycle is a fact.

Body Dysmorphia and What It is

” Body Dysmorphia Definition- Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), or body dysmorphia, is a mental health condition where a person spends a lot of time worrying about flaws in their appearance. These flaws are often unnoticeable to others. People of any age can have BDD, but it’s most common in teenagers and young adults.”

I have been reading about Body Dysmorphia- read more here– and leaning towards this. I do not think it fits me really, as I do not obsess about it. Neither is it only about flaws. When I am smaller- I am really loving it!

So what can it be, that make me not able to see what I actually look like? I do not know. I will need to look more into this though as I really think this is what needs to be healed in order to be successful for the long run.

If you have suffered or are suffering from the same. Let me know what you did or are doing to heal from this.