Letting In the Jungle

Where are you and where are you going?
Mowgli
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Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:49 am

I’ve been following ERE and MMM for years, since college. I’m 26 now, and have yet to get anywhere close to the goals I periodically set for myself. There will be times where I will spend on nothing except food and necessities, then there will be times, like very recently, where I blow 2000 dollars on whatever my impulse dictates.

Why is this so? I was just diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder. This has been my biggest fear after watching my mother struggle with bipolar 1, which is a much more severe disorder. But it does explain quite a bit. My total change of character, lack of impulse control, wild spending and even wilder behavior, followed by deep depression and pits of normality in between.

That is not to say I AM normal in-between. My normal is strange to other people, and often isolating, which is why I find such comfort in blogs such as this one and the forums it contains. At my most stable, I want nothing more than simplicity. I am happy working on needlepoint, reading, gardening (although I’m awful at it). My dream in life is to own a small plot of land and live there independently. I have no grand hopes of being totally self sufficient, but perhaps a nice kitchen garden, some chickens, a wood burning stove—oh and one splurge (judge if you’d like)—a grand piano.

This is the absolute opposite of the culture in which I live. I live in Dallas—known for the thirty-thousand-dollar-millionaires. Everyone owns a BMW. Everyone wears name brand suits/heels/purses. Everyones hair is Big and Blonde with large curls at the end that make you want to yank them right out. I have yet to find the enclave of people here that are like me, but I do expect they exist. My bouts of depression have often left me isolated and with little energy.

However, my hypomania is usually a rejection and rebellion from both my normality and depression. I spend money on the most frivolous things. I spent 200 dollars in my recent bout on a betta fish and betta accessories, a 300 dollar throw, a 200 dollar bath curtain.. the list goes on.

I have never wanted my disorder to be an excuse, but as soon as I was diagnosed that is what it became. While in the throws of hypomania, I gave up to the thought that “this is an illness that I can’t control” and used it to allow the whims and impulses take me where they would. Now this is normal, but not to the extent of the last round. I will say that the medication they put me on also magnified this to an extent never felt before, but again, I do not want to excuse everything with all of the strange nuances that come with having a label for myself.

Usually I will splurge 200-500 dollars on something here or there as I cycle—,But never like this. I currently have 2000 dollars on my credit card. I can pay that off easily, but think I will suffer as a lesson to be ingrained in my memory, and only use my income to pay it off. This may be the first time ever that I am a month late on my payments.

I gave myself the name “mowgli” as I feel myself transition between two worlds—the wild, irrational civilization of hypomania and the fruitful jungles of stability. (I encourage you to read the book if you have only seen the Disney movie). I hope this is an interesting look to the ERE journey as the setbacks will be many. And I hope to show my stability coming back to me as I begin the process of treatment, and see, hopefully, how that will evolve into an early retirement. Maybe not as early as I had hoped, but early.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:57 am

I suppose I should give a quick rundown of where I am

Savings 15k
Retirement( 401k)--40k
Salary: anywhere between 55-65k
Debt: Car, 12k

Budget
Rent:750
Car loan: 400
Car insurance: 85
cellphone bill: 50

I will not even try to budget anything else right now. Sure, I can write down numbers, but I am too afraid to even look over the past two months of hypomania to see what I spent. I will come up with an ideal pretty soon.

But as far as basics I can cut down on: rent, I am not willing to live with roommates. It is too much stress for me. That will stay the same.

Actually rent is lower than that right now, but I am moving. I will now be 10 minutes from work. which brings me to:

THE CAR. THE CAR was a hypomanic splurge. I was originally going to get a used suzuki sx4--had already made contact with the seller. Hypomania hits and within the day I was at a subaru dealer, buying an outback because of all the "CAMPING AND ROADTRIPS!" I was sure I would do.

I have looked at selling it, which seems like a pain unless you have the title in hand. I'm thinking of using my savings to pay it off in full and then sell it. With me living so close, I'm THINKING I could bike to work. However, I live in the suburbs in Texas. In order to avoid the highway, the commute goes up to 45 minutes each way, and they would be rather dangerous commuting miles. However, I'm going to try it for a month or two, and if it works--I will sell the car in full. If not, I plan on keeping the car another 20 years, or as long as it will hold.

Scott 2
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Scott 2 » Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:40 am

I firmly believe everyone has some not normal in them. Some just hide it better.

I'd suggest setting up patterns that block you from over spending. Credit might not be right for you. You can freeze your credit with the big three credit reporting agencies. That will stop new loans and credit cards. You can also either reduce to very low limits or cancel your existing cards. If you do the latter, you'll still need a prepaid card for electronic transactions.

Mitigate your weaknesses, play on your strengths. That's all any of us can do.

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Dragline
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Dragline » Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:53 am

+1 -- setting up systems of regularity is particularly important for you.

I also think you should start a daily journal. There may be certain triggers that you are not fully aware of that will be revealed. Try sunlight, try exercise, try anything that may help you change your circumstances. And keep trying -- you never know what might work.

And automate your savings as much as possible, preferably to accounts that are not easily accessible.

7w5 may have more suggestions. I would guess that she has "mothered" many people like you. ;-)

Farm_or
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Farm_or » Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:23 am

You hooked me with the want for "a kitchen, garden, some chickens, and a wood burning stove"

My sentiments that set me on the path of financial independence. I now have all of that, albeit my garden is 120 acres - no big deal.

Your discipline issue can be mitigated by involving another. A responsible spouse? A father figure? Or your best friend? Everyone needs someone. Use that person to screen any significant purchase.

I would echo the advice of freezing your credit. Start a budget, write everything down.

Best of luck, stay the course. Nobody is perfect!

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:27 am

Scott 2 wrote:
Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:40 am
I firmly believe everyone has some not normal in them. Some just hide it better.

I'd suggest setting up patterns that block you from over spending. Credit might not be right for you. You can freeze your credit with the big three credit reporting agencies. That will stop new loans and credit cards. You can also either reduce to very low limits or cancel your existing cards. If you do the latter, you'll still need a prepaid card for electronic transactions.

Mitigate your weaknesses, play on your strengths. That's all any of us can do.
I hate giving up the 'cash back,' and am usually so good with them, but it only takes 1 big purchase the throw me under.

Honestly, I hadn't even thought of getting rid of them, but that's a very good idea. For the time being, I've given them to my SO for safekeeping.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:34 am

Dragline wrote:
Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:53 am
I also think you should start a daily journal. There may be certain triggers that you are not fully aware of that will be revealed. Try sunlight, try exercise, try anything that may help you change your circumstances. And keep trying -- you never know what might work.
Thanks :). While I've given up the daily journal, it was one of the things that first had me diagnosed. I was DETERMINED to overcome depression and tried literally everything. I journaled 3 pages every day, and when I read back three months later found very strange entries about me wanting to be a doctor! a teacher! Live in a van! Work on a shrimp boat!--all of those laid in-between depression, and so I went to the doctor.

I am now selling my soul fully to the big pharma companies, but I will say I gave everything else my best shot for years, and will continue to keep working at them. It sure doesn't hurt to be healthy and self-aware.

halfmoon
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by halfmoon » Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:40 pm

Mowgli, that periodic lack of control must be frightening. I feel for you. Give the medication time to work (not sure how long you've been on it), and then be open to trying another one if it doesn't.

I'd strongly suggest a support group of people with your condition, in person or online. Maybe you've looked into this already, but googling took me here for example: http://www.dbsadallas.org/. It can be really helpful to talk with people going through similar struggles.

Also: welcome! I look forward to hearing about your progress.

George the original one
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by George the original one » Fri Apr 14, 2017 3:14 pm

You're in Texas, so keep the car. Unless you move to Austin. An Outback is reasonable provided you have the economy version.

Accelerate repaying the car loan if they're charging you more than 2%-3% interest, but don't kill off your stash in order to pay it off.

OTCW
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by OTCW » Fri Apr 14, 2017 5:37 pm

I don't know anything about your condition, but I hope you are seeing appropriate medical professionals. Other than that, like anybody, do your best to define and obtain the life that is best for you. Best of luck on your journey.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:17 am

So I did what I was dreading for the past month or so, I logged onto mint.

First thing I noticed, this month was not an anomaly. In fact it's pretty standard. Spent 3000. My lowest month is 1600, and that should be my starting point, I think. I'm sure I could trim the fat even more than that, but I'm going to start there for now.

In hypomania, I enjoy making a lot of plans and lists. I think I can use that to my advantage. Budgets, meal plans, net-worth goals. The only issue is that I hate my job so much that I sometimes rely on the things that I buy to bring me joy. It's not only that--my job is in sales. Actually, I'm in retirement planning! You would think I would love it, and I do, but it's the sales culture that gets to me. Even with my salary, and less, the expectation is to have a BMW and Brooks Brothers clothing, Vera Wang this, Dior that--thankfully I have at least kept myself out of that trap. To be honest, it's just not my style. Nope, my style is the quirky, unbelievable, 'blue-capri' scented lifestyle of Anthropologie. What do they call those girls, "manic pixies"? That fits me well, perhaps should've been my journals title. It fits me so well tha that in hypomania I will go through every category on the website and pick out what I want from each one. Rarely do I buy, maybe 1 out of ever 30 visits. But keep in mind, I will obsessively visit maybe 10 time within a day, and hypomania lasts months.

Right now I am surrounded with a new comforter, a 'happiness planner, a cat shaped trinket holder--etc etc.

It really makes me gag, because in stability consumerism seems so much like an illness, I guess compounded by the fact that for me it syncs very much with my illness. But I hate that I give into it. I wish my mania would take me into asceticism, and sometimes it does. It comes, honestly, in different flavors. My favorite flavor is what I call 'spiritual'--but even that is dangerous. Last time it was waking up at 4 AM every morning to go on nature walks and feel closer to God. That led me to decide that I wanted to be a botanist, so I could always be close to God. With three days of less than 2 hours sleep, I incessantly applied to botany jobs without the experience or education required, but I was positive my letter of intent would should them what a great worker I was. I have yet to hear back.

Anyways, back to my budget.
Here is a small proposal, which I'm sure will evolve

Rent-750
Car-400 (this is already paid 9 mos in advance, so I may just let it ride out as GTOO mentioned the interest rate is less that 3% But I do like to have 6mos as part of my emergency savings, but with a little bit of interest at least)
Insurance-85
utilities-50 (sharing with my boyfriend
mobil phone-50
groceries-200
Friends/etc: 50

That puts me at 1585. This month is pretty much shot, and I'll need to just spend as little as possible. I'm going to track from the 15th on and see how close I can get the number to zero.

I will not include medical. Right now it is ridiculous as I'm on a high deductible. I had no idea I'd be diagnosed this year. I'm using my HSA, which I know is a no-no but I can't afford the medicine otherwise. One of my medications costs 600 dollars before the deductible will kick in. I'll be done with my out of pocket maximum pretty soon, so that should help. Next year I'll probably forgo the HSA and get a low deductible plan.

Anyways, there are the rough ideas moving forward.

Also wanted to say I wasn't expecting the well-wishes and support from this website. Was honestly half expecting to be kicked off since I'm obviously on the entire other world as far as spending goes. Just wanted to say thanks for making me feel welcomed.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:22 am

halfmoon wrote:
Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:40 pm
Mowgli, that periodic lack of control must be frightening. I feel for you. Give the medication time to work (not sure how long you've been on it), and then be open to trying another one if it doesn't.

I'd strongly suggest a support group of people with your condition, in person or online. Maybe you've looked into this already, but googling took me here for example: http://www.dbsadallas.org/. It can be really helpful to talk with people going through similar struggles.

Also: welcome! I look forward to hearing about your progress.

I'm a little star-struck that you posted on my journal. I am obsessed with yours, and want so badly to have lived your life.

Thanks for the link, I'm currently in intensive outpatient therapy and it's really been helping me learn how to cope. I will find a support group once this finishes up.

DutchGirl
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by DutchGirl » Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:43 am

Hey Mowgli, I just want to send some hugs. Sorry to hear that you have bipolar. A friend of ours has the same thing, and it makes her life that bit harder. She has been diagnosed years ago, though, and is on stable medication that works for her and makes the disease much more manageable.

I hope you will see improvements in the next couple of months and years, too. It's possible that the diagnosis brings medication and "tools" to help you better handle yourself.

It seems to me like you don't feel very much at home where you are now. The culture that you see isn't how you would want to live. Which probably isn't helping. Are you thinking about what you can change? (Maybe not right away, but over time...).

Ayanka
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Ayanka » Sat Apr 15, 2017 10:43 am

Hugs, you are not alone and the world is not against you. There are just a lot of people who are afraid of anything out of the ordinary because they are afraid of what they could become if something happens to them. They are afraid of their own weaknesses because they have never had to confront them as they always were too busy pretending they are perfect. Well they aren't perfect and one day they will have to face it (or have a sudden early demise which is not better). Just ignore the clowns, it isn't important what they think, it is important what you want for yourself longterm. Now if I can just act upon my own advice :p.

7Wannabe5
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sat Apr 15, 2017 11:20 am

Hi,

As Dragline implied above, there is a strong streak of bi-polar and related spectrum conditions running in my family, so I can totally empathize with your dilemma. I am cyclothymic, tending towards more manic than depressive. I don't take any medication, but I would if it became necessary. I still have some difficulties, reasonably mediated (I do not roll myself in my size XXXXL scooter chair down to the docks when the crews roll in with a keg of beer and a carton of cookies on my lap and a wad of cash secured in my exposed cleavage-not yet anyways) , due to the related sugar and sex fiend varieties of manic behavior. My mother was so out of control with her shop-fiend behavior, I kind of conditioned myself to do the same-yet-opposite at a fairly early age. In fact, it is sometimes very difficult for me to do something like go to a furniture store and pay full retail for an item of furniture without feeling like I am crazy at gut-level, almost like I have to vomit up the sofa in the manner that a bulimic needs to vomit up the cake she just gobbled. So, I think it is totally appropriate, and very self-aware, for you to be seeking balance through joining a group like this.

Another thing to consider is that although manic spending is a frequently observed symptom of bi-polar disease, it is not the case that bi-polar disease is caused by walking into a shopping mall. Something is going on with your brain and your hormones that might have had a different manifestation if you were living in some more primitive setting. So, I self-aware choose to engage in a good number of activities that are kind of like shopping, but without the downside of burning through money. Some examples would be foraging for food, trading in rare books, beach-combing, dumpster-diving and hitting a series of garage sales with only $3 in my change-purse. Same buzz, no hang-over. However, I would add the very important note that if you choose to try this, you also must engage in some sort of strict, set practice for "churning", so that you don't err on the side of becoming a filthy hoarder rather than a compulsive consumer. For instance, if you develop the hobby of dumpster diving, and you find a lovely lamp that just needs a new cord, you have to discipline yourself to almost immediately budget/schedule the time/resources to fix the lamp, else pass it on through Craigslist or Salvation Army donation.

Anyways, I wish you great luck with your journey, and will look forward to reading your future entries.

IlliniDave
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by IlliniDave » Sat Apr 15, 2017 11:24 am

My ex- was (is?) bipolar and seemed to use money as her way to deal with it. Buy new stuff to combat depression (until it got so bad she wouldn't get out of bed for days at a time), then buy even more in the out-of-control manic phase. All the "stuff" just seemed to add up as a magnifier. She also tended to combine the mood swings with alcohol which made it that much worse.

I'm sorry you're having to fight this. I'd agree that consistent medication can help a lot, the hard part for my ex- was the pitfall of dumping the meds as soon as she started feeling better. Maybe there's also a way to channel the excess into something besides purchases. Maybe an exercise regimen or something.

The last thing I have to add at this point is do not judge yourself based on your spending. Acknowledge it, but a person is much more than their spending habits. You'll never have a "perfect" spending month and it's fairly normal even in the frugal ranks to have some months that are looser than others. I would suggest checking in with Mint more frequently. The sooner you see things the sooner you can acknowledge them and put them behind you (perhaps with an adjustment to the plan going forward). There's no one-size-fits-all plan out there, and maybe something you might consider is loosening up a little planning/goals: tell yourself it's okay to be little erratic on your path to ER/FI.

halfmoon
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by halfmoon » Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:56 pm

Mowgli wrote:
Sat Apr 15, 2017 9:22 am
I'm a little star-struck that you posted on my journal. I am obsessed with yours, and want so badly to have lived your life.
What a sweet thing to say to an old lady. Warms my heart. :)

My life has also included struggles and dark times. It helps for me to be extremely focused, because there are a lot of things I may want that aren't compatible with each other. The key question: what do I want most? I feel that I've lived the life I wanted most, and it gives me satisfaction even if I never did learn to snowboard. ;)

Deciding that you want most to deal with the bipolar episodes seems to me a huge step forward. The medication expense is a small blip in the bigger picture of getting your life under control. Put all of your energy into understanding and dealing with this aspect of your life, and then you'll be free to decide where to put your energy next.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Sun Apr 16, 2017 9:54 am

I've had some great advice here. Where else but here to get tips on moderation in extreme circumstances?

My goals for the next month, financial and otherwise:
I am restarting my no caffeine and no alcohol. I did this about a year ago with great results, even before medication. So adding on medication I think will make it even better. Bracing myself for the caffeine withdrawals.

You know what else that helps with? SPENDING. My biggest 'little' expense is going to get a Dr. Pepper and a candy bar every time I'm stressed. That's like 4 dollars a day that will be gone. Although I might replace dr pepper with apple juice for the first month or so!

Tracking my spending

Yesterday I ended up spending about 30 dollars at walmart on:
cat food (20 lbs)
toilet paper
and a cat water dispenser (I'll be out of town for 5 days and my cats need water)

I think that was all reasonable spending, and I resisted going to the garden department--seeing as I haven't even repotted the plants for this year as it is.

Oh! Also going back to Dragline's advice and restarting my daily journal. There is a book called "The Artist's Way" that I'd highly recommend for journaling. I will say it is very 'spiritual' focused, but you could replace your higher power with 'science,' 'nature,' etc. It's focused primarily on creativity, so for any folks out there that feel like they've got a creative itch that hasn't been scratched, well I'd say even if you don't. The language is kind of flowery, which I feel is very opposite of this audience, so a warning ahead of time.

I've been through it before and it's truly better than therapy, (and cheaper). Pretty sure the writer has bipolar, so that makes sense.

That's it for now.

(Is it okay to update this every day?)

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Dragline
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Dragline » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:29 am

Yes, and even more often if that helps.

Another thing you might try at some point is giving up or weening yourself off of sugar. It takes some effort, but the long-term mental and physical benefits are well worth it.

In fact, its good to keep a list somewhere of "stuff I should try sometime to see if it improves my well-being". Then when you get stuck, you can pull something off the list and give it a whirl.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Mon Apr 17, 2017 8:13 am

I started researching ERE and MMM before I was diagnosed. To be honest, it was probably in a bit of hypomania, as most of my grand plans are--but this one seemed to stick.

The years leading up to diagnosis weren't necessarily all bad. Bipolar 2 is a much less severe version of bipolar. Most people think of bipolar 1--that is what my mother has, and that involves real psychosis.

It is generally frowned against when I say this, but I consider my experiences with bipolar 2 a gift. The really awful part is depression, and in general, that makes up majority of your days. Depression for me generally lasted three weeks-2 months with hypomania 1 week-3 weeks. Depression is good for limiting spending. Hypomania can also be good, I've only talked about this last bout--and there have been less severe versions of spending sprees before.

But hypomania has different flavors. Many of them people do not recognize as out-of-character. The less 'severe' flavors include constant cleaning and working out, detailed organized lists of plans. The more severe are impulsive actions and thoughts. But even if I had followed through on some of those impulses, I can't say I'd be unhappy (appalachian trail/quitting job to be a teacher/ etc). The real problem is that they were followed by debilitating depression, and the next time hypomania reared its pretty little head, there would be a new impulse to follow.

Because of these impulses, I grew up being very hard on myself, very disciplined when I could--to make up for the lows and highs in my life. I thought hypomania meant that my discipline was working, and it was heartbreaking to me when depression came back. The hardest part of the disorder isn't the ups or downs alone, but knowing that they will never last. Overtime I became a very serious person, afraid of myself and what would fall out of my mouth. I became very isolated, knowing that I would let down friendships once depression came back. I lost my sense of humor.

One thing I did gain was an extreme amount of will and, like I mentioned, as much self discipline as I could muster. This may not seem like a big deal, but there was a period of 6 months, before this last round of depression, where I managed my symptoms through sheer will. During this time I had quit caffeine, alcohol, processed foods; started to meditate, yoga, run, quit the internet and TV (overstimulating), and journaled every day. I cycled in and out of depression/hypomania numerous times, yet still kept them up. And the symptoms lessoned. But as a human, we are bound to slip. I drank during a holiday party, which spiraled me back into caffeine, became lazy, the depression came again but this time without any boundaries to hold it back and I was finally diagnosed.

I am so happy to be getting treatment now, I know it will be a long process but I want to jump up and down with the future hope of relief. This is all to say that my main goal right now is to find absolute stability. Use the discipline I've learned to increase my chances of recovery. And soon, my thoughts will be able to be put fully on early retirement. Because I KNOW I can do this. My thoughts before were "If only I can keep the depression away"--but now my medication has that covered. I find myself crying with relief to know that I have the name of the monster I've been combatting all of these years, and the right tools to slay it :)

I don't want this to become a mental illness journal, but for me, understanding why I haven't been able to follow through on all of my plans is extremely important. And being able to sit and write this and know there is a hope that I actually can follow through is enough to bring me real (stable) joy.

As a side note, I don't know if I've ever found a more welcoming, understanding community. Even in 'bipolar' communities, there is a general feeling of defensiveness. And I like that I can define myself as something other than 'bipolar.' I have bipolar disorder, but what would be a really awesome label is "I am financially independent"--at 36. (that is my goal, by the way)

Jason
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Jason » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:26 am

I would suggest reading William Styron " A Darkness Visible." Its his autobiographical account of dealing with depression. He wrote Sophie's Choice.

Being fucked in the head can be a benefit to savings. Unfortunately, my issues don't help in that regard.

Mowgli
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Mon Apr 17, 2017 5:29 pm

I have little to do these days and so it goes with constant updates.

I am on LOA for the time being as I had mentioned before the medication threw me into unbearable hypomania.

You can truly see how early retirement would need a mental shift. Only 4 years ago, in college, I had my days filled with activities. Baking, reading, gardening, biking etc. Now I struggle. This was compounded by the fact that today was the first day without caffeine. This brings on a terrible flu-like state where it is hard to get out of bed. Last time it came with intense back pain and anxiety attacks. You do not realize what a drug it is until you try to quit it.

My boyfriend convinced me to taper off instead. So for the time being, it's one cup of lady gray a day, next week will be green tea, and then every other day, and so on and so forth until I am done with the devil. It's probably ironic for me to say that I hate dependency, as I'm sure we all do. Of course, that is why I chose to stay unmedicated for so long, and there is still hope in the future that will be the case as there are cases of remission with age. But that is years from now.

Unfortunately, my will was shot today and without caffeine to rely on my appetite for sugar grew. After a handful of grapes, two bananas, and four pieces of bread--I couldn't take it. Off to the little store for overpriced apple juice and a candy bar. That is almost four dollars a day for a stupid habit that comes from lack of self-control. I'm hoping the tapering will help.

Goals for this week: No alcohol, one cup of tea a day, no spending AT ALL, finish my anthology of Rudyard Kipling novels, and finish propagating my kolanchoe that I have drying in my window sill from a sickly little plant. I will be traveling to see my family from Wed-Sun and that is when the no drinking and limited caffeine will be a real challenge. I missed therapy today due to the intense caffeine-free-flu, but have learned my lesson.

DutchGirl
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Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by DutchGirl » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:07 am

Mowgli wrote:
Mon Apr 17, 2017 8:13 am
I don't want this to become a mental illness journal, but for me, understanding why I haven't been able to follow through on all of my plans is extremely important. And being able to sit and write this and know there is a hope that I actually can follow through is enough to bring me real (stable) joy.
I was reading this and am a bit afraid that you think that you can become a perfect person who always follows through on their plans? I'd like to say that life will have its ups and downs all the time, and that almost everyone struggles with "following through on all of their plans". That's why there are shelves in bookstores with selfhelp books (how to stop smoking, how to work efficiently, how to etc etc), because everyone struggles to keep themself on track.
So please don't expect yourself to become 100% efficient. But maybe a little bit more than now, yes, possibly :-)

I hope you're feeling a bit better today.

Mowgli
Posts: 19
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 9:28 am

Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Mowgli » Wed Apr 19, 2017 11:48 am

Okay so some thought about goals and plans and what-not.

My job, as I had mentioned before is in sales. Now I am fairly lucky that these sales are not my entire paycheck. I do get an hourly rate with almost unlimited overtime, so my salary really could be flexible. with no overtime, it would (after bonuses) likely be about 55-60k but with to that could easily jump to 70k.

I do need to be careful. I cannot do a ton of overtime right off the bat, here I am out of work because I couldn't deal with it. But once I go back, next Monday, I'm looking at an hour a day. That gives me about 640 extra a month before taxes.

The great thing about OT is that the company also matches based on salary. And our match is somewhere around 17%. This is amazing and I know it.So every little bit of OT helps towards that, and OT also makes your results better--and thus larger bonuses.

But again, I can't burn out. I may spend my first month doing no overtime just to get the swing of things.

However, I have some goals that I've really begun to think about--In the next year I want enough for a downpayment on a house--40k in cash. My birthday is tomorrow, a sad affair, so I'm starting the clock then. By 27, I would like 40k in cash. I have 17k right now so that would be about 23k I need to save. That will be close to half of my take home pay including bonuses.

That's really my only goal right now. I'm starting smaller than a lot of you do, but big for me. I need to have close to 2k a month go into savings. It's hard to track, because majority will come from bonuses which are 1-5k quarterly.

The reason I want to buy a house--I do want rental property. I will not pretend to know anything about rental property, but it has always been a goal of mine. I would likely live in the home for some time, either until paid off or until I decide it's reasonable to rent, and then rent it out. My next year will be spent researching how to make good decisions in this area. If anyone has any books they'd recommend, PLEASE let me know.

My short term goal for this month is to read three more books, I have literally hundreds that have not been read yet, and donate them as I read them (except for some antiques). My other goal, of course, is to pay off the cc debt. Luckily I can return about 500 dollars worth of crap so that will help. The rest is just sticking to no spending.

Jason
Posts: 401
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:37 am

Re: Letting In the Jungle

Post by Jason » Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:30 pm

There was a recent semi-high profile murder case in Manhattan where this blue blood, librarian type was murdered by a vagrant in a hostel. It turned out he had a mental illness that forced him to spend money. I guess its could be true although it pretty much describes your typical American husband's feelings about his wife.

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