What are you willing to give up to free up the time to chase your dreams? And are the significant others in your life who would be affected willing to give up as much?

That’s the dilemma I’m facing at the moment. I do believe, as I’ve indicated in past posts, that the universe gives you what you need – to learn, to grow, to stretch yourself. So when I received a notice that my job was targeted in the layoffs in New York State, my first thought was “holy cow – I’ll have time to do what I want to do now! To finish my second book, to pursue life as a full time writer, not one who has to squeeze it in around job and commute time” (totally roughly 12 hours per day when I don’t have to travel for work).

But I’m also a realist. I have fixed expenses, and an unemployment check isn’t going to cover all of them.

I have options in this. I can use my seniority to bump someone with less seniority and take a job that is less enjoyable and less convenient – in other words, make my life more complicated, not less, less enjoyable, not more. OR I can figure out how low I can go in my expenses – determine what can I eliminate, what am I willing to sacrifice. How much will I save by not commuting nearly one and a half hours twice a day (by car – so I can’t do other stuff during the commute)? In gas, in wear and tear on the car? In the cost of parking? I need to itemize all of the ways I would save just by not working.

And then confront those bills that come in monthly. What am I willing to delete? Satellite TV? Netflix? High speed on-line service ( nope – need that for all the social media requirements of the writing life).

Have you had the need or choice to file your living expenses down to the nubs? What went and what stayed?

What are you willing to give up to pursue your dreams? I really want to know!

About Dawn Essegian Lajeunesse

I, like so many others, am a novelist struggling for recognition. My last three novels, THE EYES HAVE IT, IN HER MOTHER'S SHOES and STAR CATCHING, are available in e-book format through Amazon and other formats by request here or on my website. AUTUMN COLORS was my first novel and is still available through Amazon and B&N in multiple formats. My early writings are women's fiction, one also suitable for YA. My work-in-progress is a historical fiction about the Armenians who settled in Troy, NY in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Come visit me at my website:
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2 Responses to HOW LOW CAN YOU GO?

  1. Mary E, Healey says:

    Hi Dawn,
    As you know I have been there and am still dealing with the grief of not having gainful employment. I gave up going out to eat, take day trips, red meat, pork and any food that is too expensive or not necessary. I have not been able to buy new clothes in years, I try the thrift stores for clothes and sometimes get lucky. We no long buy coffee and we limit showers to save on water and heating the water. I buy only what is on sale for foods, and not one bit of junk food. Just the necessary items needed to fulfill a good balanced diet. Lots of fish and plenty of chicken. Walk when I can to the Rite Aid and don’t use the a/c in the car to save gas. Also, our home a/c’s run on energy saver settings and only come on when it is just too unbearable. We got rid of our home phone too. I cut back on tv stations and am down to basic cable. Still with all this, we cannot make ends meet.


    • mtnwriter77 says:

      Hey, Mary – you may be reminding me why I should be grateful I at least have a shot at an unpalatable job and should not whine about the drive or seriously consider giving up my dependable income. Thanks for your comment!


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