Tuesday, April 08, 2008

FPU 11: Working Your Strengths

Mostly, personal finance problems are due to too much money going out the door. Overspending, high debt service levels, and disorganization are common factors. Sometimes though personal finance problems are related to there not being enough money coming in the door. In this session Ramsey looks at solving income problems. He teaches that raising income over the long-term (3 years or more) is a career track issue and raising income in the short-term means working a part-time job with the goal of attacking debt (with gazelle intensity)

I'll break my reflections on this session into two posts. This one will be about the dreaded part-time job and the next will be on career choice.

Dealing with sacrifice is what it takes to win with a short-term part-time job. The goal is to apply all the income to the debt snowball plan. I think too the key is to have a definite end date. I've been tossing around the idea of an extra job for a while now. I am hung up on the sacrifice to my family. Frankly, I am very concerned about the negative impact on my wife with me not around to help her with our high intensity, outgoing children. I keep telling myself "It will only be for six months" but I am just not confident the extra income will be worth it. We'd cut the time on our current snowball plan by eight to nine months. I guess this is where I see my real commitment level. How far am I willing to go to get out of debt? A part-time job will be an extreme test of faith for me and my family. Is it wise for me to enter so boldly into the test?

I really want the income but man I do not want to endure the pain (I think) the sacrifice will bring. As you can see, I am perseverating (one of my finest abilities.)


Kris H said...

Pat, Dave Ramsey's advice to take on a part-time job is hard for me accept. It is definitely added stress on the whole family. But maybe it's easier to endure if you know that it's for a certain period of time, say six months or so. And the satisfaction of paying down the debt sooner may be worth it too. I'll be reading to see what you decide.

Carla said...

Yes. I will be reading to see what you decide too. :)
The wife

Pat Stream said...

Thanks Kris for the comment.

I think my over-analysis may be making Ramsey look like a slave driver. He does strongly encourage people to get short term jobs to get out of a mess. He also is for people who are willing to sacrifice in order to pay off debt - although this doesn't come off as a major requirement in his teaching.