Payday: Learning to Accept Financial Uncertainty
With change being the only certainty in life, one would imagine that humans would adapt and become comfortable in this state of constant reformation. But, no; instead we anticipate that the bad moments are going to last forever, and we try to stop time when we find a warm spot in which to rest.
Learning to accept uncertainty is a Buddhist teaching, but there’s no need to climb a mountain in order to challenge oneself with this lesson. In fact, there’s a very real-life ritual we go through every month that shows us quite quickly how we lack in this area. It’s a humbling little event along the path to great wisdom that I like to call… PAY DAY.
Pay day really takes you on an emotional roller coaster, doesn’t it? One minute you’re planning your route via the most downhill roads as to not hit “E,” and the next minute you have a big fat cheque in your hand and your boss is suddenly a pretty likeable guy. One minute your situation is so dire you’re ready to sell all your worldly possessions and move into your dad’s camper van (please don’t sell that yet, Dad) and the next minute you’re justifying that $4 coffee.
It’s not the money that makes you feel safe, because, let’s face it, you’re still one unexpected expense away from the camper van. The thing that makes you feel safe is that you’re grasping onto that moment in time. And then say that unexpected expense does pop up… the thing that makes you feel so desperate is that you believe lack is your new state of normal.
Why can we not exist outside of the realm of something as worldly as money? I know that might sound simplistic, but, seriously, we go through the drama every month and we can’t separate ourselves from the false sense of security and insecurity we feel?
Your challenge: When you feel comfortable financially, still make an effort to find the gas-saving hills. And when you feel like you’re destined for the street, resist the effort to pick out curtain patterns for your dad’s camper van. Just try to accept that both states will not last, but you will.