Paulo Almeida

Paulo Almeida, drummer/percussionist, arranger, composer

Drummer/percussionist, composer and arranger of multiple music genres.

I feel like I should be writing something

I actually enjoy writing blog posts. The thing is, I don’t know who they are for. I’ve alway been down to journal, and from time to time, I do take the time to do so. But it seems like the main reason I don’t do it every single day is because I just “have” the time, or probably that I’m not willing to put in the time. I’m going crazy on my debt. I’m sick of it being there. I’m sick of making better money here and there and not being able to save it or buy a house because there is this weight hanging over me where I have all this money that I’ve borrowed over the years that I still need to pay back. It’s the responsible side of me. I feel it very necessary to take care of this debt, rather then just find a way to not have to pay it back. So, it’s taking me a bunch of time to spend working to get it taken care of. I work full-time at Trader Joe’s, which is a very good company to work for, but as far as I am concerned, the raises (which come out to about $1.50/year at this point) aren’t enough for me. In the grand scheme of things, they are significant because I’ve heard about so many other people who work for companies that give peanuts for raises. For that, I am grateful. But what it boils down to is, how will I make more money to pay off my debt faster. I’m not one to only pay minimums. You’ll never get on top of your debt that way. So I’ve been following the advice of Dave Ramsey since July 2017. Since then, I’ve paid off $10,000 of credit card debt, $10,000 of my car loan, and now all I have is my student loans, of which I only paid $450 last year (I put it in deferment to pay the other lower balances first) but since the start of this year, I’ve already paid $3,000 and it’s only the 2nd week of February. I’m not sure I’ll be able to pay the entire loan off in the next year (I owe $26,000) but I’m shooting for 60%. So I’m doing all the side work that I can in order to get more income and just going nuts on that debt. So I don’t have as much time to read, or exercise as much as I’d like, or blog, because I’m working so much (around 54 hours a week right now), but that what I have to do. Not sure that it matters since I have no idea if anyone actually reads my blog posts. They are more for me anyway.

Stepping away from the Social-Meeds

I am so weirded out by people getting engaged and going straight to Facebook to share the news with everyone right away.  I am weirded out by people having a new child, a new person to the world, and posting picture after picture that pretty much documents their life from birth.  

I try not to be "braggy" or do an outright humble brag, but I find that purposely trying to step away from falling into that trap has helped my recent engagement tremendously.  My now fiancé and I actively chose to tell the good news to our family and friends in person or at least by phone/video chat before posting about it on social media.  Don't get me wrong, we will do that at some point, but we also want to make sure to let as many people know straight from us possible. We've also been telling everyone that we are choosing NOT to use social media about it right now and we ask them to refrain from letting the cat out of the proverbial bag.

We are still in the process of doing this, but it's been so nice to do this at this time.  We've been able to get people on the phone and catch up with how their lives are going and every single person we've talked to (together and separately) has appreciated that we've been telling them personally of the good news rather than just sharing it on social media.  

I became very aware of how social media was effecting me when I would post funny anecdotes, news, or opinions and I wouldn't get as many comments or "likes" as I thought those posts deserved.  There's been times where I've become obsessed with checking how many likes I would get on a post that I would think would just kill, but been disappointed by the seeming lack of interest from my digital friendship world.

Not this time!  I am in a wonderful relationship where the love of my life is just as traditional as I am and wants to support my wishes of refraining for a good amount of time from sharing online until we reach out to as many people as we can.

Consider it!  How different would your life be if you didn't immediately think of going to Facebook to share some good news as soon as it came up?

UPDATE: June 18 - I just got back to the states from traveling in Portugal for the last 18 days and I feel like I'm noticing my difficulty with social media.  While in Portugal, I was not able to use my phone except while in the apartment we rented.  Now that I'm back in the states again, I'm back to checking my social media several times a day, and it's showing me that I'm not any better than the people that I judge.  I need to get away from this as much as I can to be able to live my life where I am, not just online.