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Living the Freelance Family Life

My freelance family life is a little unconventional. When my husband’s full-time job disappeared less than 10 years ago, he went freelance. And this is still not an understood way of life. The days of trusting the corporation to take care of the family through pensions and retirement are long gone, vanished with the unions and plowed down by corporate trading less than 30 years ago. Yet freelancers are still regarded as oddballs without a 9 – 5 lifestyle.

Freelance means that my husband has multiple sources of income. He accepts jobs and works them. He brings his own tools and makes his own schedule and payment arrives according to the agreed upon contracts with the contractors. We pay for our (unpaid) vacations and we worry about our workers comp . We have to save for our retirement. We pay our taxes plus those that the employer would have paid. When we can’t pay our taxes, even after throwing as many deductibles into the mix as we can, we just plain owe. Living the Freelance Family Life on Shalavee.com

And we pay our own healthcare, or not depending on if we qualify for state assistance. We use a different line on our tax forms when determining what sliding scale fee we need to pay at the Y or to determine our eligibility for State paid healthcare. When I discovered we were eligible for the State insurance, our first reaction was happy. No more $500 healthcare bills ! But my husband had to relinquish his primary care physician who did not take that insurance and we felt the pinch of having privilege stripped.

The upside to being freelance would be that you can create your own schedule. My husband can help me out on days when he would otherwise be working. It also means that he has to be available at the drop of a hat. He truly enjoys the challenges of the different opportunities and the camaraderie of working with other freelancers. It’s a creative way of living and it’s what we know now.Living the Freelance Family Life on Shalavee.com

There’s a sleazy trend for employers to call their employees freelance when they’re truly not responsible for the what, when, and where of the job. By denoting them as self-employed and refusing to give employees full-time hours, the employees must pay their own taxes and healthcare. It’s a loophole that is being obscenely stretched. There are lawsuits beginning, workers are fighting the companies who are taking advantage of their employees’ fears. My husband is currently represented in a civil suit against the government for just this.

The world is based on a capitalistic system. And as long as greed is present in man’s heart, everyone must fight for their own justice and fair treatment in their workplaces. Our family would not say no to the right full-time job were it to come along for my husband. But until then, we just have to keep the faith that the freelance jobs opportunities keep presenting themselves and that the company he started to supplement those opportunities continues to grow. As my husband says, “You’re only as good as your last gig.”

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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Perspective Saves You From Feeling Sucky and Unlucky

During the first week of school, Eamon’s teacher told the class that Bullies don’t know, or care,  that you are very important to someone in your life. You are just not too important to the bully, who in turn wishes those people in his/her life who supposedly love him/her would act like it. It’s your perspective of your worth that can stop the bully from coming after you. You matter whether you recognize it or not.

People are mean to one another. Empathy and compassion are missing in many places, in many people. And that’s where we need to fill it in for ourselves. Yes we need others to care for us and take care of us. We desperately need to matter to the world and let those people whose job it is to help us take care of us. Besides parents, these can include health service people, police, and government employees. But even when you are out asking for the help, sometimes their own life problems get in the way of helping you through and you feel your worth get consumed by the system. And you may be left wondering WTF? They never called you back from the doctor’s office or the budget billing got screwed up. Your check honestly  got lost or the coupon expired while you weren’t looking. It’s not fair but it’s not personal.perspective will save you from a sucky sentence on Shalavee.com

Here’s the trick. Their reactions and non-reactions don’t have anything to do with you. Just as it’s so hard not to interpret the bully’s actions as a reflection of you, it’s also hard not to see the system dropping you on the floor as meaning you are not worthy of support. But you are worthy of it. Because innately we know everyone is worthy. And your opinion here is the only one that matters, the only one you will believe in the end. How will you reassess the situation to see your benefits, your options, and gain your perspective on your worth?perspective will save you from a sucky sentence on Shalavee.com

So when you start looking for more signs that you suck, please stop. It all depends on which way your mind wants to tell the story. If you knew that the bully got beaten by his Dad everyday, would you feel differently. Or that the government tax person or nurse that messed your paperwork up have children who are dying or drunks, would you feel differently? There’s too much mind reading going on that has you as downtrodden persecuted heroine. Perhaps that story needs to be rewritten. No one cares as much about you as you can today.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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The Opposite of Scarcity is Enough

I can hear myself saying more more more, not enough. The house is never clean enough, fixed enough, or redecorated enough. My body is not thin or young or tan enough. My efforts to succeed as a writer, blogger, online maker are not ever enough. And so every day I come up short and scared. If I am not enough, I am plain afraid you’ll find out.

I have lived my life at a deficit for years. All of those thoughts have been real and gone through my head. The standards by which I am comparing myself to are randomly based on an American ideal. The successful outcome will guarantee my happiness for the rest of my life. Except it will be the rest of my life I squander being unhappily fearfully not enough. Enough is the opposite of scarcity on Shalavee.com

I certainly come from a fearful scarcity mindset. Like the Great Depression settled into my family’s bones, it is a ghost in my nursery that I can’t shake. Always be ready for the worst. Hold tightly to what you’ve got. “You will always never have enough and knowing that will keep you wise” kinda stuff. I spoke of this phenomenon a year ago and The Unqualified Enoughs are a cruel trap no one should have to endure.

But while I live that anxious lifestyle, I’m missing moments just to relax with my world, my children, my bounty, my luck, and appreciate it. I can not see what’s in front of me for searching the future for more. If I am to stop living the anxiety riddled life of scarcity, I’m going to have to refocus my lens on my today. And it’s going to have to be enough. Enough is the opposite of scarcity on Shalavee.com

Fierce gratitude is necessary to accomplish this I think. Thank your maker, your world, and everyone in it for everything. Give thanks at your meals for the food that passed through all those hands to get to you. Be thankful for the trees that give you air to breath. Be thankful to your parents and your grandparents for getting frisky and begetting you so that you could have your own beautiful children. And write it all down everyday until you really start to know that you have enough every day. And then start looking to put more love and light and wonder in your life. Because that’s where the abundance enters the picture. Or maybe just the Enough for now feeling. I’m good with that.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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Addiction Pimps Out Your Anxieties to Feed its Need

Fear, anxiety, and addiction work together in a hooker and pimp relationship. In order to quell the fear of death or abandonment, an addiction was created to cope. Not the truth necessarily but our primitive brains think it is. The addiction is then an alleviation of the fear of something that isn’t true. Often the substance or act releases the calming hormones in our brains that we are also addicted to releasing. So addiction relies on anxiety to amp up the fear trigger and give it a reason to feed. Fear’s lie is that if you don’t quell it, you’ll die. A shortcut and circle has been made. Anxiety equals feed or die and repeat.

Fear’s lie is that if you don’t quell it, you’ll die.

Breaking the cycle however, may actually be the only way to in fact survive. Quelling the anxiety medicinally with an anti-depressant helps immensely to clear the brain from rapid fire lies but the battle to retrain these repetitive malicious thoughts is the true war winner. Augusten Burroughs, in his book Dry, referred to the addiction as a sort of hungry beast that will always seek to quell itself and recreate reasons to be in peril. Always. Until the fears that cause it stop. The image he created struck me as the addiction is a dark beast with a controlling mind of its own. It makes nice normal people do crazy things because they are convinced they will die otherwise. Refuting the lies is the only hope. And that is where I discovered the beauty of Cognitive Therapy. Conscious and mindfulness used to their greatest potential. Addiction on Shalavee.com

Practice Cognitive Therapy on yourself. Refute one lie, one cognitive distortion, at a time. Be wise.

Will you always be a loser?

Will you never get what you need?

Does everyone you meet think you are a bad person?

Look hard at those thoughts. It’s possible that occasionally any of those thoughts may be true but they’re not always true. Tell yourself the truth that you find. Believe that feelings are not always facts. What do we achieve by swamping ourselves with tsunamis of self-hate and judgement? When the truth may be a trickling brook that you may be able to easily step over and continue your life journey. Why is cruelty and condemnation our first thought, our default? The quickest route to wrapping up our worth on earth and delivering ourselves to the garbage heap every day by noon.

What do we achieve by swamping ourselves

with tsunamis of self-hate and judgement?

Fear, anxiety, and the addictions they create keep you from living, from hoping, and from moving. You are standing on the shoulder of the road of life while people are passing you who owned their choices and chose life over death or misery. You wouldn’t wish that fate on anyone so why are we living this fear loop for years? Because we don’t recognize our choice to choose hope. Addiction on Shalavee.com

Your life is what you choose to do with it. And know that when you choose misery and hopelessness, that is still a choice. When I realized that’s what I’d been choosing for myself, that I’d served a life’s sentence and incarcerated myself for having a soul unworthy of love, I grieved. Hard. And then I went about figuring out the choices I could make that would be the opposite. Like happiness and adventure and family. And tons of Hope. I gave myself permission to hope. And I’m still high on it. I believe in it with so much of my heart that I hope it spills out onto other people. And that is one of the few best reasons why I write and try to do any and all of what I do. For you to find one small spark of hope that can light the flame under the worthy fire of your hopeful future.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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Unethical Electrical Supply : A Horror Story

At the beginning of the year, I say to Mark,” We got this notice in the mail about switching to an ethical electrical supplier. What do you think?” He says, “Well it’ll cost a little more. It’s up to you.” I say, “Well it seems a good idea let me just do it and be willing to pay a little more.”

How I wished my husband hadn’t been so easygoing that day. That he’d been a cheapskate and said for me to forget being ethical this time around. But he didn’t proclaim “change is bad” like any other control freaking out husband. No. He had to let me make a decision about our electricity supply coming from renewable resources. Good intentions do not always work out. And I have had a renewing sense of upset ever since.

First thing we noticed after I made the change? Our $800 electric bill. Kinda hard to not notice. See, the power company had us on budget billing. We pay $315/month for our disgusting old uninsulated house. Well we did until I decided to be ethical. The electric company and the new supplier don’t really talk to each other or to you to let you know there’s no budget billing with ethicality.

And when you freak out and start calling the electric company wanting to do anything you can to amend the mistake you just made being a liberal hippie silly-head, they try to accommodate you as well as they can and set you back on the right path. The unethical path back in their system. But there’s a debt you’ve accrued that will need to be paid. You busted your happy budget billing bubble.

Meanwhile, the ethical suppliers begin to write you letters begging you to return to what you now know to be the the dark side of the electrical supply and distribution business. It is only 2 or 3 cents more per kilowatt hour. Please? And at the exact same time I suddenly had people knocking on my door asking me to consider signing up with their ethical supplier right now. I asked, “Budget billing?” and dude started to dance. Said he couldn’t help me with that.UnethicL Electrical on Shalavee.com

My husband has called the power company multiple times about the remaining balance and they assured him that we could truly not pay it until our budget billing got re-calibrated. Yeah, until today I got a yellow envelope in the mail. It’s a turnoff threat envelope from the power company. We still owe that pesky $246 to those ethical supply bozos and, even though I’ve been throwing a little extra at them, it’s not been enough.

Another call and another check later, the woman advised us to go off of budget billing for these couple months that we’re not using lot of electricity. And that done, the next bill had us with a credit on our electric bill. Sigh.

My advice to you : Do not buy this product especially if you have budget billing plan (A set amount you pay every month). Your well meaning ethics mean nothing. If it causes you any concern or query, walk away. If some kid or lady is standing on your porch trying to sell you this alternative, walk away. Hopefully they’ll be figuring this all out and making it easier soon enough. Until then I’ll still drive my gas guzzling car and live in my uber electric consuming uninsulated house and I’ll be happy in my ignorant oblivion.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit. If you Sign up for my newsletter in the sign up box over there to the right, you’ll receive a first look-see at my Creative Mothers’ Manifesto!  Heartfelt impassioned words on the need for expressing creativity for your soul and being a better mother for it.

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