Money, Minimum Wage, & Minimalism

It’s 11 and I’m normally asleep by now because I’m a grandma who wakes up at 7 am on my own. I just wanted to rant a little to talk about plans/what’s on my plate.

I used to work a really nice corporate job that paid shockingly well. It was my first job. I was tossed around a lot as an intern which wasn’t bad (I learned loads), but a lot of other bad stuff happened and I left my job to start working a much slower, nonpaying job at a local publishing company. It’s wonderful because everyone is so kind and there’s tons of creative freedom, but when you go from a steady survivable income to nothing, that hits pretty damn hard.

Now I work as a waitress making min wage on erratic hours, as a cook for one of my friends, as a designer, and a freelance artist on the side. And it has definitely, definitely humbled me. I used to be able to save lots of money and still have enough to buy a book, if I wanted, go out to eat with friends. (I saved a damn lot of money but I had enough left over to be okay) Looking back, it’s amazing that I could have enough financial freedom to pretty much make any roughly sixty dollar or under purchase without a big struggle. You know, it’s incredible the things we’ll buy when we have a little extra cash. (“This Funko is so cute! It’s only eight dollars!”)

The philosophy of minimalism is very attractive to me as someone who loves moving and traveling. One of my favorite things to do (this is so weird) is to pack my bag to go on a road trip. It gives me such satisfaction to pick the smallest, most important amount of things I can bring with me. I don’t think you can fail at being a minimalist, but I think when I had my previous job I didn’t have the best view of money as related to objects. A Funko of Cthulu is great, it truly is. It’s an inspiring addition to my workspace. But now I see an eight dollar Funko as an entire hour of work for something that, while lovely, I’ll eventually have to pack, whereas I could save those ten dollars and use them to buy a memorable sandwich in a corner cafe in Scotland. And even still I know that juggling three jobs plus freelancing isn’t half as hard as the work some people do to survive. I’m lucky that I’m still in university on scholarship. I don’t mean to say here that Funkos or objects in general are bad – I just think our attitude towards them are. Mindless consumption, you know? Especially for me, I used to relate buying myself something as a reward to feel better which is very, very dangerous when you have depression.

Making over minimum wage is wonderful and a dream for many people. But I’m glad that I’m in this tough spot now. Otherwise I wouldn’t have started this blog, my youtube channel, my art. It’s made me work harder and smarter. It’s given me a greater appreciation for… everything. This is a good lesson to learn, especially at a moment where I still have a safety net of a scholarship.

Now I’m going to take a bath

And pet my cat

And go to sleep

And tomorrow I’m going to work some more.



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