The Power of Laser-Focus

It’s 2012 and I started a blog.

It is regularly updated, my finances are scrutinized, and for 9 months there are bonus payments of around $2,000 being hurled at a crumbling mountain of debt while I am actively searching for ways to do more damage.

 

Fast forward to April 2014 and the goal is to be complete next month. I make a chart.

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Every small square vertically is $1,000. Every three squares horizontally is a month.

 

What happened?

My focus and primary purpose altered. Not into another singular defining purpose, but into many half-thought out, ambiguous avenues that over 14 months led me right back to where I started from. My sole goal of crushing 90k into submission generated a successful side-gig. I foolishly allowed myself to think that my money was more secure in a checking account that was being rapidly turned over into growing piles of phones and cash because it’s rate of growth was far greater than the interest rate at which my debt was growing. I figured that more money would create even more money, with the hazy end-goal was to accumulate a $70k stash and just pay off the loans in a lump sum. And for a while, this worked GREAT. At one point early on, I had working capital of around $9k.

But unfortunately the feigned security of this method was no match with the finality of committing a few thousand to a loan. Money that would have been instantly and forever paid back and no longer adding interest to the balance was put at risk. My aim to create large piles of cash turned into the push to find a multi-plex in my new city to owner occupy… which actually was a pretty awesome idea. After the reality of rental property price tags in my area and the lack of any 3 or 4 unit properties in town, I had a small sum of cash with no purpose. Dollars with no name. So I figured I would grow my business. I got greedy and got scammed. I tried new things (small clothing ecommerce store, web-design outsourcing, Akron, Ohio Snow-plow outsourcing, resume designing) but didn’t fully commit to any of them. I made some money, but lost more than I made. After all is said and done, the total money and assets of my “business” are now roughly equal to that which my brother loaned me last summer to get things back off the ground.

 So yes, I am effectively back to square one.

But square one is better than the aimless alternative that I have been drifting in. My purpose is renewed, and only needs to be applied to my current circumstances. It is not a coincidence that within 3 months of my last “progress report” in November of 2012 all debt reduction was stricken to the minimum. This trend will be reversed with some soon-to-be-written posts of in-depth analysis of current budget and spending that will give me a direction from which to go from here, and a revised, more realistic timeline than May 2014.

 

$2500 in tax-refunds and April music gigs are going to get this party started again.