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Ditch Your Day Job

Lesson 6 of 24

Your Breath Easy Number

Michelle Ward

Ditch Your Day Job

Michelle Ward

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Lesson Info

6. Your Breath Easy Number

Lesson Info

Your Breath Easy Number

Okay, I appreciate you coming back because I told you at the end of the last segment that we're doing the scary money stuff right now. So big gold stars for just showing back up and not running away screaming into the day or night wherever you are in the world. So it's time to start ripping off the band aid by conquering the money stuff first and what I like to refer to as the breathe easy number. Ah, this is what you dio You've jumped in the air like these happy people. When you see this amount of money in your savings account that you know is for addiction your day job, right? And I just have to say again, facing her numbers, Yes, it's gonna be scary, Might want to go and hide, But ultimately it's really empowering. And it's really motivating to know exactly what you need and what you're working with and what your goals are. We will not be spending the segment huddled over expense calculators. I'm This shouldn't be too Torture is I'm not a money coach on, And I know that where adults...

and so you know, you could probably know in your head. What? What are your basic expenses every month? What do you need? Um, you know, more gigs, cellphone, gym membership, whatever kind of comes up food feeding yourself in order to get around about number. So we could look at our breathe easy number as as that number, and we're gonna go into that in a second. Or we could look at it another way, which is just your salary and what you make now. So for me, that's kind of what I did because I knew that the money that I was making as an executive assistant paid for everything that I needed and then some. So when I saved five months worth of my salary, I was able to say, Oh, if I'm not an idiot with this money, I could structures out to seven or eight months. So if you don't want Teoh kind of go through your expenses or anything like that, you could just think of it in those terms, it's also worth the worst. Worth saying that I don't want you to deprive yourselves either, right? I think that the breathe easy number a lot of times were like I could never go to Starbucks again, and I could never, you know, take those yoga classes that I like, and I could never you know, I should cancel my gym membership and do all these other things. I think that there's a middle ground we're gonna explore that middle ground together. It doesn't have to be, you know, Starbucks everyday or no Starbucks ever on. And, you know, this is what makes life enjoyable and fun. And so I don't want you to cut things off in a way that, uh, you'd have Teoh worry about, you know, going out to eat with your friends and paying for it. Uh, because then, like there's there's no reason to have this plan. You could just fix your job and go into that survival mode right away. So either way, you want to look at it, we need to figure out the money that you need to have coming in every month, right, and multiply it by what you need to breathe easy. This is going to be different for everyone. I've had people say, like I don't care. I only need a month, and then I'm gonna make it work. I'm gonna hustle unlike that's who I am. Amen. And hallelujah. I have people that then say I need a year. I need tens of thousands of dollars in the bank in order to make it work. S o on Lee. You know what it is that's gonna make you feel comfortable and confident and get we're gonna go through this together. It just kind of get going to give you an overview now, Um, but if you're if you're really stuck with this, I think a good baseline is six shoes. Six months. That's usually what you know, finance People who know about this stuff se to have, like, an emergency fund. That's six months of expenses. So if you really don't know, you could think in that six months arena. So the lovely Heather has volunteered to do something very vulnerable and scary by going over her finance stuff with us, and we're gonna get to know Heather's finances of the intimately because we're going to hear what your expenses are every month, and then we're also going to go into and a few moments how we could save more money for you, how you can make more money for you right, Because this breathe easy number, we're gonna revise it by the end of the segment, because it's probably going to need to be revised. Uh, because we don't think about oh, those birthday checks we got every year and, like, we could have a garage sale and make you know, some money. Like, what are the ways we can bring more money in and save more money? So tell me, Heather, about like what you think of when you think of your expenses every month. What are the numbers that you have that you need to be hitting? Uh, do you want, like, just the whole number? Do you want the specifics I would love? Like I like my mortgage is $1000 a month like, let's do it kind of line by line because I think Heather's expenses I start to God, I have really nice handwriting. And when I write on these things, it's like I'm a child serial killer. Uh, so it so tell me, line by line, what you think of when you think of like, I know these are the things that I need to have covered. So for rent $655. Okay, great. What else? Electricity is $100 K and then phone, Internet. And my cell phone in my daughter cell phone is $150. That's a good deal. Great. Ah. Then insurance for my car and my house. Um, $127. Okay, gas for my car. um, $200 for food. And that leaves me $48 of my take home pay for anything else, OK. Oh, my goodness. A lot of padding there. So no, no, that's that's for fun. For close for repairs. If I need new tires, whatever. Okay, so that's really interesting since it it, like, works out that way. Well, I did it that way on purpose. That's how a budget it. But it's great, because I think it's so It's such a great example cause it's so cut and dry that, like the money that you are taking home, you can't take any right. It's all there, it's covering. It's only leaving you with $48. So it's great. We could add these all together. Did you have these all together? Yeah, so just that would not. The $48 is three 1352. OK, and then it comes to a total of 1400 which is my take home. Great. This is really great because then we know directly this is what we're working out with the breathe breathe easy number for I Love and I love to hear from the chat. If there's anything that isn't mentioned here, that it's part of someone else's expenses that they know they need to be doing. Liz, is there anything that you could think of that you spend every month that you'd want? It considers part of the breathe easy number of the needs. I think that covers it. Gordon's great eso I like this. This is what we are looking at. So what do you think about the number of months that you need to breathe easy? There a number in mind? Well, my first instinct, when you asked. First asked, that question was three months. Then you said six months and I thought, Yeah, that's probably way. Let's do this and I should have brought a calculator, but okay, so 4200 is three months of expenses when you see when you think of 4200 in your bank account, like let's let's fast forward six months from now or a year from now, you see that 4200? How is that going to make you feel when it comes to quitting your job and just having that be your question? I think that I would still be like, But what if, uh, my transmission goes out or what? You know, So I think it needs to be a little bit more than that. It doesn't need to be six months, because then six months. Is that right? Yeah. Is that right? I need a calculator. 18. 8400. Thank you. So this is three months care. Concede that pen is a little bit weak. Oh, try that other black one there or the blue one so we can see a little bit. Great. Let me always A red is kind of look, So this is three months is and six months is 8400. I have a feeling or number somewhere in between. Heather, what do you think I was going to say 8000 would be a nice number, huh? do you want to like, Sit at 8000 for now? Yeah, let's do that. It's probably gonna just want to let you know. So, eyes $8000 is her breathe easy number. And we know that that covers a little lesson. Six months of your needs. It's a good number, tohave. I'd love to hear what's happening in the chat. Yeah. So, first of all, Melissa Texas says, thank you. Hear Heather for sharing your actual numbers. People are scary. It s scary awesome for them to be able to connect with you. Um, and there are other line items that are coming in for people. That would be great for for us all to think about, um, we have. And also a tip from Eire h who says Excel has templates for household budgets, and I'm sure this could be found anywhere online. If you Google, you know, expense calculator. I think actually, Tim Ferriss has a really good one, um, that I meant to put in the workbook. And I didn't Hayward the four hour workweek, but he's like it's at the top of the Google search, and that could be a really good tool if you want to dig into this more on your own time, But I really don't think that we need to go crazy with this like I don't. So we already go ahead. We already had. Let me just let me just write. I love to write a list of, like, rent slash, mortgage Way also had electric. We also had, um, phones. We had Internet. Uh, we had insurance and gas and food writes that I missed anything. Heather. Oh, you have that one. OK, got it Phone for Yeah, Yeah, it's a fabulous What else is coming through on the chat? So Big one is student loan. I know that one. Multi well car payments, education, health care, animal expenses, Children expenses, nation healthcare's. And then, of course, when people live in different places all over the world, some people are saying Wow, right is only $655. No, it's really not where I live, but, um, yeah, I because of my circumstances and being homeless for nine months, um, I've been able to get some some cheap housing for right now, and I think that's possible almost everywhere to I mean, New York City. I don't even want to tell you what my mortgage ends up being with my with the maintenance and stuff that I have to pay. But, you know, there's there's affordable housing and in most cities that you could apply for, um And you know, when you take this sort of transition seriously, if you know that you're in an area that is just bleeding you dry, uh, maybe it's time to think about moving a couple more of these gas, you know, whatever that gonna get that. Oh, you got gas. Okay, there you go. And entertainment, Just like I said, that's just hiding in a hole. You know, 13 men. I'm gonna have to, um because again, this isn't about deprivation. So you know something like a gym number show my, uh, not be necessary. But is something that is important to you. That's what's keeping you healthy and is a good stress reliever, that sort of thing. Um, close, Uh, maybe even not for yourself as much. You know, you could kind of do without anything new, but for the kids, I feel like three Children. Expense, maybe daycare. Um, I know that's where a lot of my money goes not to daycare yet, but clothes from a baby because she grows out of very quickly. Uh, anything else that wasn't covered here. I think it's just a lot of people Jesse L. Says must care for your body. Nurture it or else you will feel apart. So workout fitness, all of that and that's something that is often ends up at the bottom of the list away. And they're freeways getting out and walking or whatever. So really glad people are putting that on their lists. Big time. I like those. So these are the things that you can consider, and you could also do some Googling and finding spends calculators or go get Kallias course rents, mortgage, electric phones, Internet insurance, student loans, education and health care, entertainment, gas, food, car, pets, Children, gym clothes, daycare. And you know what? I just thought of taxes. Also, one more thing people are talking about is does your savings like tryingto save money factor into this as well, Or is that something different? I think that's something different. We're talking about how much you need to have coming in every month, so, like, ideally, you want to be saving a for your emergency fund. Once you make that transition and you're working for yourself, you should still be saving something. Mm. You stopped me on this one. I'm gonna put savings here and let me think about it, and we'll get back Teoh. Because what we're gonna be talking about in terms of how to save money and how to make more money could then go into the savings. Peace. Um, that could be part of that. I like this. Are people talking in the shot about how many months is what makes them breathe easy. Are they in, like, the six month round, Like Heather? Um, we have will invite people. Teoh, start putting the lead. Those numbers. It will be interesting to hear what your breathe easy number is. And how many months is that? That sounds great. Okay, Awesome. And we have great when we have people doing the calculations. Blawg. Me lovely says I would need $15,600 for six months because I live in Southern California. Uh, we have Kate has a good tip saying one thing to keep in mind when you are going to leave a job is unpaid. They vacation time going into that? That cushion. When I quit, I had two weeks in vacation time paid out, which almost tripled my final paycheck. And me up to that six month cushion. Yeah, that's great. That is a great tip. And that reminded me that when I gave my notice also, I had unpaid vacation days that were paid out to me like, Oh, you have three days that you didn't use in here Some extra money for you, B A. So I think that will go when we talk about saving money, making money that I'd be a good place to go, and so shall says. Okay, I'm still not sure how to choose the number of months. Okay. I think that that's okay. So Cheryl just picked six months for now was picked up for now. And then everything that we're gonna do right now is hopefully going to get that to you. But I think there isn't a science to this, right. I think it's a gut thing. And even if you want to start where Heather started at three months and then multiply your number somewhat multiplier monthly number by three. Does that feel good Lead still feels really scary and too low. Do it by four. How does that feel? Do it by five. How does that feel? Do it by six. Like you could You could just do it and incrementally like that. Um, and just and just see, I'm such a hippy dippy life coach. Just see how it hits you in the gut and know that. Just don't make it a roadblock. Don't make it a barrier. Please, please. For the level of all that's holy, of course, you know would be wonderful if you had a year's worth of your salary in the bank or, you know, a year's worth of expenses like that's great, but you probably don't need that in order to be comfortable and confident and, uh, quitting your job and making making you're creative business dreams come true. So, you know, we have to look now at what we can save, right? So we have to be honest with ourselves about the money that we're making in our jobs and maybe the money that we're making in our businesses already. Right? Um, I personally didn't put any money aside for my diction and a job fund other than the money I made from coaching, and that was definitely a mistake. So now what we want to look at and this is on your workbook Page 19 with the amount of money that you're going to commit to realistically putting away for this goal, When can you give notice for your job? So so looking at your expenses or knowing I bring home $3000 a month and there's always something left over So I think I could commit to putting away, you know, 100 bucks months. Uh, let's we could figure this out. So, for example, if you say $50 a month and your breathe easy number is 5000 little dig you 100 months to get Teoh or eight years, please don't run screaming into the night or demand a refund for this class. If you bought it, I promise I'm gonna help you revise it. So just gut level. What do you think you could save? Is there anything Heather like? It's so close for you. I know the $48. That's probably not something that you could necessarily save because that's all that's left over. But When you think of what you're maybe bringing in or get gifted or anything that you could do to bring in more money, we're gonna work on that together momentarily. Is there anything there? Any other income at this point isn't so. I think that it would have to be something else. You know, I had to add something out, okay? Or get a better paying job, Teoh, Right. Get a better hang jump or get something like really part time are something like that. I think that's okay. I mean, when things were really lean, Um, you know, you can't commit to anything automatically. I think that's the ideal. If you're in the situation where you can make payments to your savings account automatically every every month, every other week, every paycheck, then that's ideally what we want to be doing. But if not, then we have to get creative way. Have to get creative, Um, and we'll talk about that in a second. I've been curious what's happening in the chat. Now, if anyone's having problems with figuring out, you know how much to save and figuring out how long it will take them. Well, I think what What I'm seeing is that different people have different levels of comfort. And so being able to identify what that is for you is so important. So some people are saying I would I would need personally, this is what is coming through. I would need ah, year to feel comfortable doing leaving the day job or I'm comfortable doing three months. Um and so it really is. And then we're having some people say, Oh, this is a really good exercise, Michelle, Theo. I think emotion came out very well of And so you know, people are actually putting down numbers, Tori says. As I sit with myself, ID like 12 months at $48,000 you know, And then if that's Riel, that's really hot. So Tory like, let's look at this piece now, right? How long will it take you to get to $48,000 just based on what you could save automatically? Or that you just feel more confident that, you know is coming in? And I think our day jobs, we could use them for good. We could use our day jobs for good and and RD jobs, give us things like financial peace of mind on Let's use it while we have it and let's and let's be able to look at this paycheck and say Okay, I know. I mean, for me, I left my job. I got $10,000 more than I got at my last job. I wish that I said I'm gonna take that $10,000 on and put that all as it comes in from each paycheck, and I would do the math, which I can't do in my head right now. I'm gonna put that money. I'm gonna put that money into an injection a day job fund because that money is like extra found money to me. So it's that sort of thing where you're looking at what can you commit to doing automatically? And then we're gonna kind of try to find above and beyond ways to do this list What's coming up for you? I am working half time on. So I'm realizing that my I'm bringing in just enough money for what I want to, okay, that I want to live on. So trying to figure out how I can fudge the numbers or what I can dio um in the extra time. I wanted to devote the other half of my time to starting a craft business. But maybe I'm gonna have to actually beef up my hours or find other ways of bringing in money to get those savings that I could feel more comfortable quitting and focusing solely on the new business. Especially good transition, because this is what we're gonna see. Oh, it's like I prompted you to say that. Okay, we're gonna come back to this. Everyone. We're gonna come back to this, right? So, like, don't if you're not here yet. Don't Don't freak out on me. Don't cry. We're gonna get back to this.

Class Description

You don’t have to commit your life to a soul-sucking day job. In fact, you can drum up the job of your dreams if you have the right mindset and an action plan to back it up. In Ditch Your Day Job, career coach Michelle Ward will show you what it takes to go from bored-at-work to satisfied and self-employed.

There was a time when Michelle was wasting her days working in finance. She was miserable at work and needed a change. Over the course of two years she cooked up her escape plan and has been perfecting her approach by helping others for the last five years. In this class, she’ll show you how to prepare to leave your day job for a career you love. 

You’ll learn how to:

  • Create a simple plan for getting your business started
  • Establish an emergency fund
  • Identify your existing sources of help and support

Michelle will take the mystery out of starting your own small business and help you zero in on the details that will make it happen. You’ll develop a savings plan that will give you a good buffer before making the leap and get tips on exactly what it takes to make your new endeavor profitable.

If you are done with counting down the minutes at your day job and want to launch your own creative business, Michelle is ready to give you all the inspiration and insights you need to set yourself up with a life and job you love.

As a bonus when you purchase this class, you'll get:

  •  1 Year Membership Free to Bidsketch
  • 2 Free Hours on Breather, to apply towards booking one of their beautifully designed workspaces.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials


Bidsketch Discount.pdf

Bonus Materials

Amazing Discount Codes.pdf

Ditch Your Day Job Workbook.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes


a Creativelive Student

Fantastic course! I highly recommend it. Michelle is a wonderful teacher: energetic, passionate, funny, and encouraging. Kenna is also a great facilitator; the most natural and genuine host I've seen so far on Creative Live! Great job both of you. And a well-deserved shout-out to the in-class participants, who were engaged and candid about their own situations. Best of luck to both of you with ditching your day jobs. This class has given me the structure and several practical tools to facilitate my own transition to creative entrepreneurship and out of a soul-sucking job. Michelle shared many supportive messages that made me look more confidently at my "uniquity" and its value in the creative marketplace; as a result, I am now eager to take the action towards building my art business. I will use my S.N.A.P. to comfortably and confidently get to where I want to be, so that I don't snap at my day job in the process ;-)

Becky Pennington Arce

This course is truly AMAZING! I've been in hyper - forward motion since the first day! Thank you Michelle! This course was honestly different then any other! It gave actionable items, where to find support, and tons of yummy resources (which if very time consuming and somewhat impossible when you have a DAY JOB!) My Day Job is actually "ditching" me but by having a plan (which Michelle gives step by step details how to do), I'm totally comfortable and even EXCITED to be DITCHED! Several items that she shared I've already been able to implement into my creative business plan AND my personal life! Double whammy! I ended up buying the course to make sure I didn't miss anything! Super excited to continue and wish everyone luck on their own creative journey! ~Enjoy!

Heather Young

I was one of the fortunate studio members of this class. Wow! So much great information, step by step instructions, enthusiastic encouragement and fun! Michelle takes you through the baby steps needed to form a solid foundation to get ready to ditch your day job and do it with a plan, a safety net and a support network. A common sense guide to doing something uncommon and (to some) seemingly nonsensical. The videos will teach, inspire and encourage, the workbook will make it real for your own situation and the resources that are provided will be invaluable as you prepare to ditch your day job. You will be so glad you purchased this class!