Backing Out a Budget You Can Live By

One of the easiest ways to get stuck in scarcity mode is to leave needs and wants unspecified.

All you can feel is I never have enough, and as long as enough seems unimaginably far away, you don’t do the relatively easy work of imagining it.

You don’t have to connect too many dots to make some rough calculations about what it would take to feel you have enough to live with. Pick a place, find the average rent. Pick a job, find the pay. Pick a goal, put a number on it. Pick enough, you’ll have budget.

Then work backward: it’s not much of a leap from there to figure out what you’ll have to earn for the number of hours you’re willing to work to support the life you want.

Don’t throw out the calculations, though — once you’ve made enough, you can start taking less money for opportunities to make a bigger difference.