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Diana

Money Management

What I Do When I Don’t Reach My Goals

What I Do When I Don't Reach My Goals

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Last month I didn’t reach the goal that I set for myself. Going into the month, it was a bit of a stretch. But, I really wanted to cross that off. I love setting big goals and seeing how far I can go.

My goal was to get under $70k in student loan debt. It didn’t happen. And I missed it by about $150. Of course I was disappointed in myself, but it happens.

I’d never reach any goals if I let it get me down. There have been so many times that I could have given up. I know there will be so many more as well. It happens and we need to know how to deal with them.

This is what I did last month when I didn’t reach my goal.

1. Got upset.

At first, I definitely was upset and I let myself be for a bit. When you’ve been on this journey it’s inevitable to get down on yourself every now and then. Personally, I love challenging myself and seeing how far I can push myself.

I knew my goal was going to be a stretch for me, but I wanted to do it anyway. That’s the thing about goals, they gotta be a little scary to make real progress. It killed me that I was short by $150.

Immediately I started thinking about all the “if only” things in my budget. If only I worked a little more in my side hustles, if only I didn’t use my eating out budget this month, if only I didn’t budget my hair appointment this month.

I let myself take sometime to be upset that I didn’t reach my goal. But, I didn’t let myself stay there.

2. I reflected on the last month.

Once I actually looked at my budget, the reality was that I just didn’t make enough in my side hustles. I got paid from my April after school program hours. April was spring break for my school, which meant I worked a lot less than normal.

May was also weird for my babysitting and tutoring. I love babysitting and tutoring, but the reality is that you work for your client. If they don’t need me one week, I don’t get paid that week. This unfortunately happened a lot more than I expected.

And being totally honest, I was anticipating my retro payment on May 15th. In my current district, we haven’t received a raise since 2016 and were told that we’d be getting retro pay from the last two years. Things happened and it still hasn’t been processed.

This was disappointing for me, because I wanted to make a massive debt payment. But, this is why you should never anticipate money, wait until it is actually in your account. Even though I know I can make that payment whenever the money hits my account, I was excited to do it last month.

3. Make a plan to continue towards your goals.

I know I’m going to get under $70k next month. Just my minimum payments will get me there. So, I’m excited for that. It will be especially nice since this summer is going to be so up in the air for me. And I still hit a huge milestone of paying off $130k, so I can’t dwell on the bad too long.

I am moving out and switching jobs in June. It’s going to be a little crazy for sure. But, I have planned for this and I am confident that I will be fine throughout this summer.

I honestly don’t have any plans in my budget to make extra debt payments in June, July or August. My plan is to try my best to only use incoming money throughout the summer. If I need my summer sinking fund, I will obviously use it.

Once September rolls around and I get my first paycheck from my new job, I will empty my summer sinking fund and my moving out fund to make a debt payment. My current school doesn’t offer 12 month pay, only 10 month pay. So, I would rather have more money stashed away throughout the summer, than make extra debt payments.

You have to keep moving forward  to reach your goals.

The important thing to remember is to just keep moving forward. Whenever you make big goals, you’re risking the chance of failing. But, if you let that failure hold you back, you’re never going to improve.

Failing is a part of life and it helps us learn. I learned the hard lesson of not tracking my side hustle income more closely and anticipating funds before they come in. If I had tracked my income better this month, I would have seen that I was short in this area.

Take failure as an opportunity to grow and learn. Don’t spend much time sulking about not reaching the goal, keep pushing forward with a different outlook about it. I have outlined my plan that I use in my financial life in my ebook, it will help you get started on your own path. How have you navigated not reaching a goal?

Debt

Debt Free Update: $130,947 Paid Off!

Debt Free Update_ $130, 947 Paid Off!

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Whenever I hit a milestone like this, I like to reflect on my journey. It’s not easy paying off $201k in student loans, especially on a teacher’s salary. But, I have paid off $130k in 3 and a half years. So, it obviously can be done.

I still have $70k left to pay off, but this feels like nothing when thinking about where I was. I panicked when I hit my financial breaking point and received my first bill in the mail for my private loans. While in grad school, my minimum payment was $1,400, not including my federal loans or grad school.

Of course, I got things squared away so I didn’t need to pay that at that moment. Since I was in school full time, I could defer my loans. But, I knew this would be my reality on graduation day.

I’ve completed changed my priorities over the years. Some of them were definitely sacrifices solely for paying off my debt. Like moving back home to my parent’s house. At first, I moved home because I had no other choice. After my student loan minimum payment was paid, I’d only have about $1,000 leftover every month.

This was with me earning a New Jersey teacher’s salary, which is typically higher. But, that is because cost of living is so high. I would never be able to afford to live on $1,000 in NJ and move out.

After paying off some of my debt, I have stayed to pay off even more. As my income grew from teaching and my side jobs, I continued to throw more and more at my debt. I have now lived at home for almost 4 years and I’m getting ready to move out in 2 weeks!

This will obviously slow down my progress a bit, but I am now ahead of my goal by about a year. I am confident that I will still be able to get my loans paid off by my 30th birthday in 2022.

Here’s an update of where I’m at in my journey.

Private Loans

I am destroying these things with everything I have. I want these things out of my life so bad. Generally, I don’t hate them as much since I refinanced with Earnest, use my referral link to get $200 when you refinance! Earnest is a thousand times better than my previous provider.

But, since private loans are near impossible to get rid of, I want them gone ASAP. This month I was able to get them down to $17,500. I still can’t believe that when I refinanced, they were at $46k, just in September. The lower interest rate that I got has been allowing me to put so much more towards my principle.

When I first started my journey, these were about $142k, with very high interest rates. I was making very little traction because of it. That’s what motivated me to refinance and I’m so happy that I did.

These will continue to be my focus account until they are gone. I originally wanted these gone by the end of the year. Now that I am moving out and have a new job for next school year, I just don’t know if that’s possible.

Federal Loans

My federal loans minimum payment increased this month by about $50. I am currently on an income based repayment plan to lower my minimum payment while I pay off my private loans. This means that every year I need to re-apply and I get a new payment based on my taxes from the previous year.

No matter what my payment is, I always pay off the interest every month. This is because I don’t want the interest to capitalize into the principle. When this happens, my loan principle grows, which means I’ll pay even more to interest. You can read more about this in my post all about making blind student loan payments.

Having my minimum payment is actually great for me. Now, my minimum payment covers the interest the accrues each month. I no longer need to make an extra payment to pay off the interest.

I will continue to do this until my private loans are paid off, then I will use the avalanche method to pay off each of my federal loans.

Debt Free Plan

My plan is a bit up in the air at the moment. There are so many changes coming in the next few months. I’m super excited for all of them and I have created a mock budget, but I won’t know definitely how it will change my journey until it gets here.

In the next two weeks, I will be moving out of my parent’s house and into my boyfriend’s house. This will obviously increase my expenses. Also, the school year is ending at my current school and I will be the reading specialist at a new school for next school year.

All of these changes impact my budget and my debt payoff. I know my debt payments will be decreasing, especially because I am going from 10 month pay to 12 month pay. This I am very excited about because I will no longer need a summer sinking fund and that money will be able to go to debt.

But, it is definitely an adjustment getting paid less each month. I’m excited to see what happens with my debt free journey and plan to track it closely in undebt.it to make sure I still pay off my debt by my 30th birthday.

Money Management

How to Balance Multiple Financial Goals at Once

How to Balance Multiple Financial Goals at Once

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

When you are first starting to tackle your finances, it can be overwhelming. There are a lot of moving parts. And you need to find a way to manage them all. The good news is that there is an easier way of doing all of this.

You need to find a way to slow down and not get ahead of yourself. This was very hard for me. When I want something, I want it yesterday. This has been especially challenging throughout my debt payoff.

I couldn’t just get rid of my debt and there was no quick fix to $201k in student loans. No matter what, I’d be on this journey for awhile.

That’s where managing it all comes into play. It’s still not easy, but you can learn from my mistakes and tackle this a much better way.

1. Find what you truly value and start tracking your expenses.

As hard as it might be, it’s important to take things slow. Don’t dive in and put yourself on a budget. I tried doing that and guess what, I failed. Set yourself up to more likely be successful by tracking your expenses first.

This allows you to truly see where your money is going. You should never create a budget just by randomly thinking of how much you want to spend. Your budget needs to be realistic.

Another benefit of doing this is that you see your spending habits. I know I got so angry when I saw how much money I was spending eating out and on coffees. Of course, these two categories aren’t going to make me rich, but it was a decent amount going to these two categories each month.

Once you see where your money is going, you can decide where you want to cut back on.

2. Create a list of your goals.

Your goals are obviously going to change. Some of them will have strict time constraints and others will be broader goals for now. I suggest you put everything on this list. Even as small as getting your eating out budget under $50 each month. Or, increasing your income by $50.

The reason you want those small goals on there is because they are moving you towards your bigger goals. It will help you feel accomplished when you are working on massive goals, like paying off $201k of student loans. You’ll be able to look back on your list and see all that you have already done.

Figure out what goals have time constraints on them. For example, I need my summer sinking fund full by July 1st. If I start this in September, that means I have 10 months to reach this goal. I can put aside $300 every month until then and have $3,000 saved for the summer.

$3,000 seems very daunting, but $300 is much easier to manage. Plus, this can easily be added to my budget. I like breaking my bigger goals into smaller monthly goals. This makes it easy to add to my budget each month and easier to reach.

3. Align your budget and your goals.

When you create your budget, keep your goals in mind. You’re going to have to figure out what needs to take priority for you. Of course, you can’t work towards all of your goals at once, you won’t feel any traction on any of your goals. I have shared the spreadsheet I use to create my budget and track my expenses, if you’re a Google Sheets person, this is for you!

My suggestion is to always have a budget in place with sinking funds and then get started on your 1 month emergency fund. This sets you up for success while you tackle your bigger goals. I’m currently working towards paying off my student loans. It is by far the largest expense I have right now.

I’ve been working on this goal for almost 4 years. It’s a long road and I’ve had to slow down a few times to focus on other goals that needed to get done first.

Every journey is different, but you need to make sure that your budget and your goals are aligned. As you complete one goal, remove it from your budget and start working a new goal into your budget.

4. Re-adjust your goals and your budget.

Most of time, life doesn’t go as we plan. Sometimes these are good and sometimes they are bad. What’s important is that we adjust for them. I have always struggled with this, but I know it’s important.

While working on my goal to pay off my student loans, it’s really hard for me to slow down. I want to always put the most amount I can towards my debt. The reality is that it can’t always happen that way.

This is when you have to adjust your goals and your budget. The reality is that sometimes other things need to be a priority. The one that usually gets me is filling my car sinking fund back up after I get work done. The reality is that I need to maintain my car and I have a sinking fund for this. It wouldn’t make sense to not fill this back up because my car will always need maintenance.

To manage multiple financial goals, you need to stay organized and keep an updated budget.

Having multiple financial goals is a good thing. With a little bit of organization and budgeting, it is easy to manage it all. When you’re first getting started, I suggest to only have one goal. As things come up in life, you can add more as you feel they are needed. This can easily be done by figuring out when you need the goal to be completed and how many months you have until then. This monthly number will be added to your budget.

When you’re just getting started with working on your finances, it is overwhelming. Take it one step at a time and try not to overwhelm yourself. As always, I’m here to help if you’re struggling to get started. Do you have multiple financial goals? How are you managing them all? 

 

Money Management

May 2019: My Current Financial Goals

May 2019_ My Current Financial Goals

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Your goals will always be changing. Whether it is because you met the goals, or because you needed to adjust for life. It’s our reality. We need to change and adjust for what life throws at us.

I’m not saying I give up on my goals. But, I have had to slow down on my goals when life throws a curveball. It doesn’t make sense to throw thousands of dollars to my student loans in a month when I have unexpected medical bill or car repairs.

This is a perfect example for when I usually slow down on my student loan payments and cash flow those expenses. I do have sinking funds for my car and medical. But, in certain situations I have added more to each of these funds, even when they were fully funded.

One example was when I developed an allergy to multiple antibiotics I had been given. After the fourth one made me break out in hives, something that had never happened to me before. My doctor would no longer prescribe any antibiotics until I went for allergy testing.

They also told me that during this time, if I needed to have antibiotics, I would need to be hospitalized. Of course, I was hoping this wouldn’t happen, and my health insurance is pretty great. But, I did know that I would be going regularly for allergy testing that cost me $40 each time.

I started adding $100 every month to my medical fund. I figured that covered at least 2 allergy tests a month, with some extra for the prescriptions. Once we found safe antibiotics for me, I stopped contributing that $100 every month.

We can’t just ignore what life throws at us. Of course I wanted to throw that $100 to debt, but I also didn’t want to get stuck with a drained medical sinking fund. Especially in the midst of dealing with all these allergy tests.

Right now, my goals are pretty slim because I have been spending the last couple months adding more to my sinking funds. My life is changing a lot in the next month and I want to be prepared. In June I will be moving out of my parent’s house and in August I will be starting at a new school.

I’m super excited for all of these changes and I have definitely made sure that my budget reflects it.

1. Summer sinking fund. Goal End Date: June 2019

I am so excited to finish this sinking fund. I have had a summer sinking fund for the last 4 years. In my current school, I am a 10 month employee, so I don’t get my salary in the summer. To manage this, I add $300 every month to my summer sinking fund.

This sinking fund covers my minimum student loan debt payments for July and August. I do work in the summer, but it isn’t consistent income because I babysit, tutor, and work for VIPKID.

After this summer, I won’t need a summer sinking fund because my new school pays 12 months. This is definitely an adjustment for me. But, I am excited to get a paycheck in the summer.

2. New Emergency Fund Amount. Goal End Date: December 2019, or July 2019

In my emergency fund I typically have at least 1 month of expenses while paying off my debt. This has been the case for the last 4 years while I lived at my parent’s house. Since I am moving out, my expenses each month are increasing. Currently, I am putting $100 every month to my emergency fund.

The end date of this is uncertain currently. If I continue to put away $100 every month, it will be fully funded in December. However, I filled a moving out sinking fund a couple of months ago.

I hope that most of that fund will not be needed. If that is the case, then I will move that money into my emergency fund and be fully funded.

3. Student Loan Debt. Goal End Date: June 2021

This is very up in the air. My end date is based on the payments I have been able to make for the last 4 years. With my new monthly expenses, this most likely won’t continue. I’m okay with that because my plan was to pay off as much as I could while I could live at home. The time has come to move out and I have paid off a ton of debt in the time I’ve been home.

I have now paid off most of my high interest debt. Once I have paid it all off, I will be starting to contribute more to my retirement accounts. Currently I contribute very minimal. Right now, my minimum payments to my debt are $1,167.

I am currently focusing on my private student loans, which have a minimum payment of $865. Once this debt is gone, it will free up a ton of money in my budget.

Your budget and goals should be aligned and changed.

If you align your budget to your goals, you will see them get accomplished. When you don’t tell your money what to do, it’s not going to go where you want it. I suggest having multiple accounts for different things.

For example, I have different Ally savings accounts. This allows me to have a line item for my emergency fund and summer sinking fund in my budget. As soon as I have the money, I make a transfer to those accounts. This ensures that the goal is being met each month. It can be tricky when first starting, but I’m here to help you. Do you align your budget to your goals? 

Money Management

How to Budget by Paycheck

How to Budget by Paycheck

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

There a ton of ways to budget out there. You need to take the time and figure out what works for you. It’s going to take time, but once you find a system that works for you, you’re going to be so much happier.

For the most part, a budget just needs to track your income and expenses. As long as it does those things, it works! Don’t be afraid to find your own system that works.

I personally use a zero based budget and am working on getting a month ahead. It works for me to use a zero based budget.

The reason this works for me is because it allows me to put a name on every single dollar. Every dollar that comes in, goes out by the end of the month. This has been especially helpful during my debt payoff of $201k. My zero based budget has absolutely been a major part of me paying off $127k in 3 and a half years.

When I first started budgeting, I tried to budget by paycheck. It didn’t ultimately work for me, but I know so many people that it has helped!

This is how I did it. It is great for people that are struggling to start or are having a hard time figuring out an entire month. I think this is a great first step to ultimately getting to a month ahead with budgeting.

1. Map out your pay schedule and how much you’ll get paid in each paycheck.

If you’re on a salary, this is relatively easy. Find out your pay schedule and then how much you’ll make. If you’re on a variable income, this will be a little bit trickier.

Whenever you’re on a variable income, you need to be prepared for lower months. I always recommend people on a variable income to either have a sinking fund for this, or a larger emergency fund. Honestly, I would use a sinking fund.

What this means is that in higher income months, you throw extra money into your sinking fund to be used during lower income months. I do this currently for my summer months. In my current school district, I am paid 10 months of the year. I add to my summer sinking fund every month that I am paid my salary to be used throughout the summer.

2. Make a list of your bills and due dates for a month.

My recommendation is to list out all of your bills and due dates. Even if all of your bills are due at the end of the month, you can still use your first check to pay them. My suggestion would be to evenly spread your monthly bills across your paychecks in a month.

For example, if you get 2 paychecks a month, you can spread all your bills across those two paychecks. You just will pay some bills very early and some bills may be paid just before the due date. It’s just important to pay them a few days before they are due.

3. Make a list of your variable expenses.

This would be anything that varies or can be changed. These are things like gas or groceries. Once you have these expenses listed, you need to figure out how much you’ll need per paycheck.

For example, if you’re paid every 2 weeks, you need to figure out how much gas money you’ll need for 2 weeks. I personally give myself a bit extra for my gas and groceries. The reason I do this is because I’m now at a point where I spend minimally and am naturally frugal.

By having a bit extra in these two funds, it means that I will usually come in under budget. This also means that I’m usually not over budget. When I get paid again, anything extra from that budget gets put towards my financial goals. I replenish my emergency fund and sinking funds, if needed, and then everything goes to debt.

4. Create your budget for 1 paycheck.

Once you have your income figured out and your expenses, you can put it into a budget. I personally use a spreadsheet to track my income and expenses. For me, zero based budgets always work best for me. I would still do this for a paycheck budget.

The reason why I love the zero based budget so much is because by the end of the budget period, all of my money is dealt with. None of my money just sits in my checking account. By the end of the budgeting period, it all has a new job.

This doesn’t mean I spend all of my money, it means it all has a job. This could mean going to savings, or going to paying down debt.

5. Implement your budget and track your expenses.

Just writing out your budget is a great first step, but you need to actually track your expenses throughout the budget period. This means tracking all of your expenses and updating your budget throughout the period.

You can do this daily, or less frequently. If you’re just starting, I recommend doing it daily. This allows you to check in with yourself and see how you are doing with your budget.

When you check in, you can also see if you need to make any adjustments to your spending in your variable expenses. If you’re getting close to your grocery budget, you may need to see how you can stretch what you have for the rest of the budgeting period.

6. Zero out your budget when you get your next paycheck.

WOOO! You made it through your first budget by paycheck, this is so exciting! The game changer will be what you do once that budget is done. Everyone needs to check in on their budget at the end of the budgeting period. Even when you budget for years.

The reason this is so important is because you may have gone over budget, or gone under budget. If you’re over budget, you need to figure out how you’re going to deal with getting that money. If you’re under budget you need to figure out what you’re going to do with that money.

Some people roll over the extra money, some pay off debt, some add it to savings. It all depends on what your current goals are.

Figure out the system that works best for you.

Every person will have a different budgeting system. You need to figure out what works for you. It’s so important to budget in order to reach your goals. Take the time to find a system that helps you to reach your goals. Do you budget by paycheck?

 

Money Management

How to Get a Month Ahead in Your Budget

How to Get a Month Ahead in Your Budget

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

I have always zero based budgeted. Zero based budgeting completely changed my life. It made me go from thinking my debt was impossible, to something I could actually get rid of. That may sound crazy, but that is how life changing a budget can be.

It’s incredible what happens when you start giving every single dollar a name. You will be shocked by how much further your money goes when doing this. When I first started this journey in 2015, I didn’t have enough income for my expenses. I was completely drowning.

That was when my zero based budget really helped me. It made me have control over where my money was going. It also made me realize that I would never make any traction on my goals unless I increased my income.

Now that I have increased my income through my many different income streams, budgeting is so much fun for me. At the end of the month, I get to zero out my budget and decide where all that extra money is going. I’m totally joking, there is no decision to be made, it’s pretty much always going to debt (for now!).

Up until now, I have had a very consistent income. I am paid 10 months of the year by my teacher salary. Then, I have my side jobs and I have my summer sinking fund for when I don’t get my salary. This has always made budgeting extremely easy for me.

Also, let’s be real. My bills are pretty minimal since I am living at my parent’s house to pay off my student loans. This has allowed me to play the very risky game of budgeting money before I have it. I don’t recommend anyone to do this. Honestly, it was stupid of me to ever even do this.

But, here we are. I have been budgeting this way for the last 4 years or so while living at home. It has worked for me up until this point. But, I need to make a change.

I am moving in with my boyfriend next month and will now be increasing my bills and expenses each month. This means that I will be back to a very strict zero based budget. I plan to get myself a month ahead this summer. Here’s how I plan to do it.

1. Utilize my summer sinking fund.

I always use my summer sinking fund in July and August. Even if I don’t need it, I empty this sinking fund by the end of August. And by emptying it out, I mean I throw whatever is leftover to debt.

Even though I do this every year, my new school pays me 12 months. So, I won’t even need a summer sinking fund next summer. Yes, I get paid less during the year because of this. But, now I’ll get a paycheck when I’m not even going to school every day.

What I plan to do is use this fund to help me get a month ahead. I will budget out this money for July and August. For July and August, this will be $1,500 of my income.

You might be wondering why I decided to create my summer sinking fund of $3,000. I chose this number because it is just above my minimum student loan payment. I can cover my monthly expenses with my side jobs. Or, I can always make my monthly expenses less, if needed. I’m always concerned I won’t be able to pay my student loan minimum payment.

2. I will use my “leftover” money in June.

In June, I will need to pay half of my rent, $400. Since I will still be living at home for most of the month, my expenses will still be lower and I will still have my salary. Currently, I usually have a lot of money leftover at the end of the month. This money always goes to replenishing sinking funds and then an extra debt payment.

For June, I plan to already have my July budget made. This will allow me to know how much money I need to set aside to pay for July.

I do still hope to make an extra debt payment in June, but the reality is that it might not happen. I’m okay with this because I am setting myself up for future success.

3. My VIPKID income will add to my summer income.

At the end of April, I started working with VIPKID. I didn’t get a paycheck for April because I didn’t work enough to get a paycheck. However, May isn’t even done yet and I already know I’ll have a $151 paycheck coming in June. This will get larger since I still have the rest of the month to work.

This paycheck will immediately be one of my income lines in my July budget. I plan to work VIPKID every morning and some nights this summer. This will be my main source of income over the summer.

4. Cutting my expenses.

In order to get a month ahead, I plan to cut my expenses a lot. Since I will be working from home this summer, my gas expense will be very low. Luckily, where I am moving, everything is very close and won’t require a lot of driving.

Recently, I have been trying to cut my grocery expense down a lot. This is done by not eating meat, or stretching the meat I do buy with other cheaper food items. For example, whenever I make taco meat, I throw 2 cans of kidney beans in. This allows us to make many more meals out of the same base.

Another way I cut my grocery bill down is by being very conscious about my portion sizes. Especially if I am eating meat.

Get yourself on a strict budget to get a month or paycheck ahead.

I am very fortunate that I have leftover money currently to help me get ahead. If you don’t have this, I recommend just getting a paycheck ahead. Honestly, this will probably be what I will have to do once I start working at my new school.

My plan is to try to stay a month ahead, but realistically, it might not happen. I currently budget monthly, but I am okay with changing it to paycheck, if that works better for me in this new season of life. That’s what is so great about budget. You can do whatever works for you. Are you a month ahead? How did you get there?

 

Making Money

How I Have 5 Income Streams

How I Have 5 Income Streams

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

It really is hard to only have one source of income now. It just doesn’t cut it for most people anymore. I know for myself, as a teacher, it definitely doesn’t. Especially when you haven’t received a raise in 2 years.

If it wasn’t for living at my parent’s house and having multiple income streams, there is no way I’d be able to afford everything. My salary just doesn’t support the cost of living in New Jersey. Luckily, I have paid off $127k of my debt, so my minimum payment has gone down.

When I first started my financial journey after grad school in 2015, I added multiple income streams out of necessity. I didn’t have a choice. Even with living with my parents, my budget was in the red or just barely in the green with just my salary.

So, in 2015, I started brainstorming how I could make extra money as a teacher. I was a first year teacher and totally overwhelmed just from my teaching job. But, I needed the extra money if I ever wanted to pay off my debt.

When I first started my journey, it was hard to figure out how this was all going to work. That’s why I offer monthly money coaching to help people get their money right. In that month, it is designed specifically for you and what you want to get out of it. We’ll figure out a game plan to increase your income and get you on the path to build your wealth. Starting out is hard and sometimes a little accountability can help.

I had to make a lot of sacrifices on this journey. Including deciding to hustle a lot to get myself to my goals faster. It all depends on what you are willing to do. I’m fortunate that I enjoy being busy. Of course, I make sure to have time for me, but I also love working.

That’s the thing. Find income streams you love working on and it won’t be as draining. Yes, I have 5 income streams, but I enjoy them. This makes it so much easier to actually do the work.

Here are my 5 income streams that I regularly work and count on for income.

1. My full time teaching job is my main source of income.

This is the income that I can count on the 10 months that I teach. In my current school, I get paid my salary twice a month from September to June. This means that I don’t get this paycheck in the summer. However, I do get all of my health insurance benefits throughout the summer because I pay more during the 10 months for 12 months of coverage.

This source of income is the one that I use to budget every month. All of my other sources of income are considered extra and are used to reach my financial goals. My current goal is to pay off my student loan debt.

By only budgeting my teaching income, it allows me to reach my goals so much faster. I don’t even think about my other income streams as money to be spent. That money goes strictly to my debt.

2. Before and after school programs through my school.

This is a great source of income for me. I enjoy it because I don’t need to go anywhere from my full time job. It’s super convenient to just stay for that extra time helping the kids.

I do need to submit an extra time sheet at my current school for this position. But, my pay is included in my direct deposit I get with my salary as a separate line item.

This is easy for me because I don’t need to worry about taxes. In my new school for next year, this position is included in my salary. This means I won’t have to do a time sheet or anything. I just need to show up to the program every day.

I would consider this type of position similar to if you work a job that offers overtime. Overtime pay would be considered an additional income stream because it is additional money. It fluctuates depending on if you work it or not.

3. Private tutoring.

I really enjoy tutoring privately. It allows me to work with a child one on one and really work on the skills they need help with. My favorite tutoring is working with the little ones who are learning to read. By far, it is my most rewarding tutoring time.

The crazy part is that there is nothing better then when a child no longer needs to be tutored. That’s why I love tutoring them. They are so excited when they see me and get to tell me that they are now reading on grade level. It is such a wonderful experience.

Of course, that does mean I lose my job, but the parents and kids are so wonderful and appreciative of the help I provided. It really is the best feeling in the world to teach a child to read.

However, this work is a bit more challenging when it comes to pay. The challenging part is mainly the taxes, not that challenging, but you need to track your income and claim it come tax time.

4. Babysitting

Babysitting is such a great way to make some extra money. For me, it’s so easy, especially when it’s for a date night. Once the kids are in bed, I literally get paid to sit on their couch and do whatever I want. It’s awesome!

It’s also great to just relax and play games with the kids. When you babysit, you basically just need to keep the kids entertained and put them to bed. I really enjoy the time I spend babysitting and have found families that have been awesome to work for.

Once you find a few families to babysit for, it really could be a consistent income stream for you. One summer when I was home from college, I worked 7 days a week babysitting. It was a lot, but it allowed me to save up a lot of money.

Babysitting is similar to tutoring in that I need to track my income and save for taxes. I do this all in a simple spreadsheet. You can get your own copy of my spreadsheet here.

5. VIPKID

My newest income stream! I am totally obsessed with teaching these classes. For the longest time I was super hesitant about working for VIPKID. But, I have to say, I wish I had done it sooner.

If you’re a teacher, this is absolutely something you should consider, especially for the summer. It allows you to just be a teacher and have fun with the kids. You don’t have to worry about all the things when you’re a public school teacher.

And the lessons are provided for you! I definitely think that if you’re not a teacher, it would be a little more difficult to get comfortable with it. There is an adjustment to online teaching, but the hardest part, actually teaching, is something us teachers find easy.

I am an independent contractor with VIPKID. This means I will need to pay my own taxes. This will just be added to my current spreadsheet and I will track it that way.

Multiple income streams allows you to reach your goals faster.

It can be overwhelming at times to have so many income streams. But, if you enjoy them and they get you to your goals faster, it’s worth it! You need to find a balance, but there is such a great peace of mind from having money coming from multiple places.

There are ways to make it easier to have this many income streams. Try out adding an additional income and see how it goes for you. I love my side jobs and that makes it so much easier to do the work. However, you do need to listen to your body and what works for you. Do you have multiple income streams? What are they?