Postponing A Pay Rise

One of the benefits, or challenges, of being your own boss is that you can decide how much you get paid. The difficulty in the early years is that every £ you take out of the company, is a £ that you don’t have to put into growing the company.

Over the last few years, I’ve always taken a salary in line with what I need to live. When I stayed at home, I didn’t pay much rent, and didn’t pay myself that much. When I moved into a flat, I paid myself a bit more, when I bought a car, a little bit more.

However, for the last few years, my salary has been pretty steady. It’s not really changed since November 2009 – nearly 3 years ago. I did get an 8% payrise in December 2011, but it was really something to make me feel better and help cover increased living costs in London, rather than a reflection of the value of my work, or an adjustment for the lack of change since 2009.

Last week I decided to give myself a pay rise. I mainly did it because I was deleting the weekly standing order (which can only be amended over the phone) and creating a weekly recurring payment (which can be managed online), so it seemed like a fine time to adjust my salary. I gave myself a 45% pay rise.

However, by Saturday (2 days before the first payment), I had decided that I didn’t really want it. I have no immediate requirement for more money. My currently salary covers my living costs, and I don’t spend that much money on my self anyway. Unfortunately my fob to log into the bank was in the office, so I had to let Monday’s payment go through at the new rate.

But, this morning, I logged in and rolled back the pay rise. My logic for doing so is that I prefer to take money as I need it, rather than take money and then find a need for it. When you make more money, you almost always spend more money. I don’t want to spend more money just because I can.

I have a couple of ideas on what to do with the difference though, and when I’m ready to act on them, I may change my salary.

I must admit, rolling back a pay rise feels even better than getting one!

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