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  • FIRST POST
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 15th Mar 16, 9:12 AM
    • 1,985Posts
    • 16,106Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    It's not a lot, but it's enough
    • #1
    • 15th Mar 16, 9:12 AM
    It's not a lot, but it's enough 15th Mar 16 at 9:12 AM
    Good day to you all.

    Can I start by saying I feel a bit embarrassed about starting this diary. Not because of my debt, but because in comparison to other peoples situation I seem to be in a better position to clear it. However Iíve been considering starting a diary like this for a while as I feel itís really been getting me down, like thereís a huge black cloud following me everywhere I go. I feel I think about money Ė or more specifically my debt - all day, every day, and hopefully having a place to come and post of my attempts to reduce it will help keep my chin up and motivate me.

    A bit about me. Iím 25 and I live with my mum for now and I have a steady and comfortable paying job. I was in a relationship for 8 years and we had a joint savings account with a view to buy a place. When that relationship ended, I went off the rails. I blew my half of the savings while at the same time took out a credit card telling myself Iíll use it to increase my credit score by only using it to buy petrol and paying back at the end of every month. That didnít go to plan. I know have 2 credit cards (just recently paid off my third); Tesco Credit Card - £2,614.19 and Barclaycard - £693.88. Both of which are 0% interest for now.

    The thing is, I know that my debt is manageable. Iím not spiralling out of control with interest. I donít have a mortgage. I donít have any kids. My expenditure is relatively low. I can and I will do this!

    Although this is a Debt Free Diary, I have a view for this to become a Saving Diary once Iíve cleared these cards. I want to feel the way I felt 3 years ago with no debt and thus no worries. To be happy again.

    My plan to clear this debt was originally to still try and maintain an element of my lifestyle that got me into this mess while being sensible. At the end of each month, any remaining money in my account would be transferred to my credit cards, this is already on top of my direct debits to meet the minimum repayments. However I found that this technique gave me too long a leash and I wasnít being tight enough. This month I actually have a stag do in Amsterdam (paid for by said credit cards) and with no savings, I had to use money from this months wages for spending money, leaving me skint for the remainder of the month, but goes to show that I can stow away a large chunk at the start of the month and force me to make the sacrifices. So thatís the plan, so put away a sizeable amount at the start of each month, the day I get paid.

    Thank you for reading and appreciate the support.

    Peace and Love!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
Page 38
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 7th Nov 17, 1:25 PM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    November Update
    Career
    Goal: Achieve my bonus targets in work
    Update: Iíve been told Iím not a million miles away but nonetheless, Iíve yet to see a penny. Meeting this Friday in which Iíll ask again

    Goal: Build a stronger network of clients
    Update: I truly felt that this was successful at the weekend there. Very pleased with how this has progressed this year.

    Goal: Attend at least 1 new training course
    Goal has been canned due to work requirements changing.



    Relationships
    Goal: Spend more 1-2-1 time with my gran - Done
    Update: Seeing her this Thursday which Iím really looking forward to. Weíre now in a routine and we see each other lots more than this time last year. Goal achieved.

    Goal: Visit my Dad at least 6 times - DONE
    Update: Iím on track to see him more than this actually. Can consider this done!

    Goal: Organise social events with my cousins - Done
    Update: Weíre all going out for dinner later this month which will be a good laugh. As always, Iíll need to be clever with my cash.

    Goal: See my friends children more often
    Update: Considering my other relationship goals are going well, this needs looking it. I will look to address this soon.



    Self
    Goal: Start learning Spanish (again) - DONE

    Goal: Live on a ketogenic diet
    Update: I went in head first to this and my knowledge on diet has increased. Iíve learned things which will stick with me forever and my diet preferences have also changed.

    Goal: Buy a house/flat - DONE

    Goal: Save an emergency fund of £1k
    Update: With so many outgoings including saving for events in the future, itís hard to put money away into savings. This will only get easier as time passed by and these events come and go. I couldnít afford to budget anything this month, which is disappointing but will look to remedy that in future.

    Goal: Read 10 books (2 out of 10 so far)
    Update: I read a full book when I was on holiday and my colleague has kindly gifted me another which Iíll start tonight.

    Goal: Eat out less
    Update: Iíve already been out for a Chinese for a leaving dinner and Iíve got my aforementioned cousins dinner later. Still, a lot less than what I used to do.

    With 2 months left of 2017, I better get reading some books. Aside from that I'm pleased with my progress so far and will aim to tick off as many as possible.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • jvr
    • By jvr 10th Nov 17, 9:06 AM
    • 420 Posts
    • 1,311 Thanks
    jvr
    Hi Speky


    Just caught up with your diary... sounds like everything is going really well. I think its understandable you haven't saved an emergency fund yet, the big thing is that you actually have the money for upcoming events that's fantastic progress
    Debt: £10,006 now £8698.38
    Emergency Fund: 456.17/ £1000


    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 10th Nov 17, 1:25 PM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Hey JVR,

    Yeah I suppose that is a good thing which I often overlook. My own worst critic at times.


    I've a busy weekend ahead in which my only un-expected spends are a boxing class (£5) and lunch with some friends on Saturday. Looking forward to a long lie!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • louby40
    • By louby40 11th Nov 17, 8:07 PM
    • 1,363 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    louby40
    I always look forward to a lie in. This morning I was awake at 5am. Typical.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 16th Nov 17, 8:59 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Jeeeeeso. Just realised it's been a while. On second thoughts, I've not much to report I suppose.

    Financially, my immediate concern is the fact I'm due a new car in January. I currently pay absolutely peanuts for a relatively nice car, so I'm hoping for a good deal again. Although I now earn more than when I got my current car, my expenditures are much higher, so I'd like to keep my monthly cost to rise no more than £50.

    Given the past 6 months have been expensive, I may have to borrow from the Bank of Mum for a deposit on said car. We'll see what happens.

    Christmas is pretty much sorted. Couple of things to get, which I might do on my lunch break today actually and get them out of the way.

    Nothing much else to say for now actually. Just ticking along nicely.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • louby40
    • By louby40 19th Nov 17, 7:38 PM
    • 1,363 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    louby40
    Speky it!!!8217;s good to tick along nicely. I have 12 months left to pay on my car and then I!!!8217;m unsure what to do. I could just drive it until it really starts costing me money and then buy another one.

    I need to dome more work on my house so that will probably what I!!!8217;ll do, and put the extra loan money towards house stuff
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 22nd Nov 17, 8:54 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Louby - There's always something, isn't there?! Feels like it's never ending at times.

    Morning!

    It's been a while. I was in Leeds for the weekend which was great. Bit too much to drink which left a physical hangover and a financial one too. Nothing I can't live with, and you only live once - although it felt like I was dying on Monday.

    I've another night out, this time more civilised, on Saturday with my cousins. We're trying a new restaurant with a fixed menu for £25. By the time I add on drinks and a train, I'll be closer to £50. Was hoping it'd be a bit less.

    Looking at my diary, December is actually looking pretty quiet as I'm working most weekends, so that's not too bad.

    Waiting to see what pops up on Black Friday for some final bits and bobs of Xmas shopping too. Needing Thornton's to do something ideally.

    Right. Must get on with my work.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 4th Dec 17, 8:53 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Holy smokes it's been a while.

    I've been rather busy actually with seeing friends and family and working. I've had a couple of nights out already this month (or since last payday) so I'm going to have to box clever going forward. Which is fine by me.

    I used to have a sense of shame in telling my friends I was skint and couldn't go out for drinks or dinner or whatever. Instead, I would either make something up or, even worse, go and spend money I didn't have. However I found a relief in being honest and saying to my pals that I can't afford it. It disarms them and they can't peer pressure me into it. They understand I've got a mortgage and bills to pay on my own, not sharing costs with someone like they do.

    I'm going to get my thinking cap on as to what my goals will be for 2018 as I've had a reasonably succesful 2017 on that front. I'll discuss this in more detail at the end of the month.

    Anyway. A standard week for me this week plus working on Saturday, so that'll keep me behaving.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • louby40
    • By louby40 4th Dec 17, 5:34 PM
    • 1,363 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    louby40
    Speky I think friends are quite understanding regarding nights out and lack of funds. I know my friends are great when I can!!!8217;t always commit. Plus I!!!8217;m a bit boring these days and aren!!!8217;t bothered about going out much these days.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 5th Dec 17, 8:47 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Ah Louby, I'm glad it's not just me that's going that way. Similarly, I'm content with a night in. In fact, I love a night in!

    Speaking of which, tonight looks to be just that. Don't have much on the cards other than ironing and might manage some meal prep too.

    Initial calculations looks like I'm in negative equity for my current car, which will impact the choice of my new car. Still got plenty of time to decide, plus the sales are coming up in a few weeks so I'll grab a bargain.

    I helped put up my mums Christmas tree yesterday. That's when I know it's Christmas! Always get's me in the mood. We're going shopping for mine next week, a real tree I think. IKEA is my first stop as you get a £20 voucher with it!

    Anyway, must get back to work.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 12th Dec 17, 9:37 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Morning all,

    I had a day off yesterday which I used to start wrapping some of my presents. I also wrote and delivered Christmas cards to my neighbours. My mum and I went hunting for an Xmas tree and we picked one from IKEA and made the most of the deal they offer in which you get a £20 voucher back,

    I'm also due a new car. I've went over my expected millage, so I've a charge of £180 (which is much better than the £2,500 negative equity the garage claimed I would have). That'll come from my emergency fund which is quickly dwindling.

    After much persuasion, my work are suggesting I might be due a bonus of £1,000. Sounds good but I think it should be nearer to £3,000. I don't anticipate that this will be resolved overnight and something which I constantly need to hound my manager on.

    It's a cold one today in the office and so I need to get another coffee! Have a safe and warm week all.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 21st Dec 17, 1:04 PM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    2017 Round Up
    It's fast approaching the end of 2017 and it's been some year. Allow me some time for reflection on all that I set out to do within the previous 12 months.

    This time last year, I had not long split up with my girlfriend and I was filled with a determination to better myself and not to waste my life, to become more kind and generous and to be as productive as possible on all fronts of my life. After reviewing my goals, I think I done that largely, although there is always room for improvement.

    This was my first year in ever setting goals and putting a plan in place to make myself accountable and to track my progress on a monthly basis - and I loved it! If anything, it acted as a monthly reminder to give it my all. As you can see from the results below, I had a fairly good year in trying to smash my goals;

    Career
    Goal: Achieve my bonus targets in work Ė Kinda Done
    Outcome: My role changed over this year and as did my bonus structure. Discussions are on-going and it looks like I should expect to see £1k at the minimum

    Goal: Build a stronger network of clients - Done
    Outcome: Iíve now clients who are more like friends, the perfect relationship.

    Goal: Attend at least 1 new training course - Failed
    Outcome: As above, with my job changing, this wasnít needed.



    Relationships
    Goal: Spend more 1-2-1 time with my gran - Done
    Outcome: I continue to see my gran every week and we enjoy our date nights every month.

    Goal: Visit my Dad at least 6 times - Done
    Outcome: I put dates in my diary and stuck to them. No excuses.

    Goal: Organise social events with my cousins - Done
    Outcome; Started the year off with an event early and then made plans for another before the night was finished.

    Goal: See my friends children more often - Done
    Outcome: Not only would I see them at special occasions but on top of that too.



    Self
    Goal: Start learning Spanish (again) Ė Done
    Outcome: Smashed this. Peaking at 26% fluent. All without spending a penny

    Goal: Live on a ketogenic diet Ė Kinda Done
    Outcome: Iíve learned a lot about nutrition. I felt really good when I was strict but my craving for sugar is too much.

    Goal: Buy a house/flat Ė Done
    Outcome: After lots of saving, I bought my flat in May and Iíve loved every second of it.

    Goal: Save an emergency fund of £1k - Failed
    Outcome: Various things keep cropping up with cost me. So, I need to do better with budgeting and saving next year

    Goal: Read 10 books - Failed
    Outcome: I only managed 3 books, which is shocking really. I find my spare time is so easily spent onÖwell, nothing really. I need to be more determined.

    Goal: Eat out less - Done
    Outcome: This was achievable as I think my girlfriend was partly to blame previously. Itís still something I could cut back on more, but I do need to live a little at times.

    Now begins the exciting prospect of planning my goals for 2018. The things in which I plan to really focus and develop on. I'll review the things I failed at and I might adjust accordingly, but I do know that I'll be setting myself goals which should be the foundation of a better me. Whatever that will be.

    I may not have the chance to say it, so I will now; Merry Christmas to each and everyone one of you who read my dull posts and reply with encouragement. I really do appreciate you all.

    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • kirtsypoos
    • By kirtsypoos 21st Dec 17, 1:27 PM
    • 3,424 Posts
    • 15,000 Thanks
    kirtsypoos
    Merry Christmas Speky! You've done brilliantly well with your goals, may next year be even more amazing for you
    PAID VERY, Barclaycard x3, Vanquis, Natwest, O/D, Tesco & MBNA x2 PAID LBM 24/07/15 - Original Debt: £0/31010.23 (100% paid)
    Mortgage - £158.500.00 (2017/2018 O/P £3491.79) PAYDBX 17 - £18,442.82
    PAYDBX 18 #006 £3850.92/£4000
    • louby40
    • By louby40 21st Dec 17, 5:59 PM
    • 1,363 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    louby40
    Merry Christmas - I hope you!!!8217;ve made your new flat Christmasy and festive.

    Here!!!8217;s to 2018 and another year of budgeting, saving and living!
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Jan 18, 9:10 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    2018!
    A belated merry christmas and a happy new year to everyone!!

    I've been really unwell with the flu over the festive period which has just floored me but today, I'm feeling much better and now playing catch up.

    So, it's 2018, a brand new year and with that, an excellent opportunity to better myself with some goals and they must be SMART;

    S - Specific
    M - Measurable
    A - Acheivable
    R - Realistic
    T - Time centred

    I've some final touches to be put on them and then I'll post them here to keep me accountable, but i'm really looking forward to this year. It feels like a blank canvas.

    So, allow me to catch up on some things and I'll post my goals in due course!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Jan 18, 3:03 PM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    2018 Goals
    And so here they are; my goals for 2018, written in black and white for all to hold me to

    Career
    - Get a wage increase
    - Monthly check on job vacancies

    Relationships
    - Increase time spent with family
    o Dad
    o Gran
    o Cousins
    o Mum
    - Find a Mrs

    Personal
    - Volunteer for the homeless
    - Practice yoga more often
    - Continue to learn Spanish
    - Start tracking my NSDís
    - Fix my ongoing knee pain through daily stretching
    - Build an emergency fund of £500
    - Read 6 books

    All of these should be do-able (even finding me a Mrs!!!) so I plan on getting stuck in pronto!!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • louby40
    • By louby40 3rd Jan 18, 6:23 PM
    • 1,363 Posts
    • 3,700 Thanks
    louby40
    These are excellent goals Speky.

    Happy new year
    • crazy_cat_lady
    • By crazy_cat_lady 4th Jan 18, 6:36 PM
    • 3,612 Posts
    • 30,970 Thanks
    crazy_cat_lady
    Happy New Year Speky!
    I need to think about setting some goals too...
    June Odessy NSD 6/10 DFD 6 Nov 15 - paid £28,447
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 4th Jan 18, 7:10 PM
    • 1,592 Posts
    • 8,671 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    Happy New Year - hope you're feeling better.
    And lovely to hear your plans, but don't rush the Mrs-bit maybe increase your time doing things that you love and see who you meet that way ( says the happily married even after 27yrs together woman who ended up marrying her childhood sweetheart - though admittedly after several years of doing our own thing, uni, work, living elsewhere etc)
    What I'm trying to say is enjoy your life and then good things and good people should come into it.
    Last edited by joeyjimbles; 04-01-2018 at 7:13 PM.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 8th Jan 18, 9:02 AM
    • 1,985 Posts
    • 16,106 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Some very sound advice Joey - thank you

    I've returned from a work trip to Berlin for the weekend, which was excellent, although slightly more expensive than I'd hoped, so I'll need to move things around for the rest of this month.

    For me, it now feel likes 2018 has started now that I've beaten the flu and had the weekend away. So I'm filled with determination to get back into my usual routine, gym in the morning, work, football at night or being productive in some way, interspersed with healthy eating.

    Been to the gym this morning and I'm playing football tonight. Got some ironing to do and I've also to go to the supermarket for some things, so I hope for a productive evening.

    Aiming for 15 NSD's this month and already bagged 4.

    Have a good week!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
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