I’m finding as I get older that it’s getting a bit harder to be flexible in some ways, like touching my  toes without bending my knees. There seem to be many changes that happen gradually, but while I may be losing some kinds of flexibility, I’m trying to gain in other areas.

Over the last year, I’ve been doing a local paper route two days a week to earn extra cash to support my self publishing career, and my (flexible) goal is to keep it up until I make an equal or greater amount from book sales.

The paper route is a modest, incredibly unglamorous job that does not take big egos along for the walk. There are some challenges like dealing with territorially protective dogs jumping at me, occasional nasty weather, slippery paths, and papers stuffed to the gills with flyers galore.

When I started the route last year, I thought I would set an exact approach that I would stick to each delivery day. But with the other factors thrown in, especially the varying thickness of the papers, I’ve found that I need to be super flexible. Sometimes I can carry a block’s worth of papers at one time and be efficient, and other times I’m lucky to be able to hold one bulging paper and actually get it through the mail slot without tearing it to shreds. (Did you know that every mail slot is very different?!)

Sometimes I don’t need to drive, sometimes I do. Sometimes I can’t park where I usually park as it may have turned into a construction zone. And where I park affects where I start.

You get the idea.

Basically, I’ve learned that every day is different. When I peek out the window at the stacks of papers awaiting me, that’s just the start of figuring out what my approach will be on that specific day and I ultimately have to go with the flow, including how to keep papers dry when it rains!

I’ve ended up being nudged into being a flexible paper gal, and more and more I realize that flexibility in other areas of life can be very rewarding.

In yet another new neighbourhood for me and my husband (we go through houses like there’s no tomorrow) we’ve found we have to be flexible about where we shop or else we’ll pay for it. If we do all our shopping at one store, we spend quite a bit more than if we spread the love around.

Just off the top of my head, four things we save on if we buy them at the smaller local grocer’s are apples, oranges, salad, and tortillas. Some of these items can truly cost half as much as they do at the larger store. Like the apples for $.69 a pound vs. $1.69, oranges for $.79 a pound vs. $1.39, tortillas (a plainer bag with greater grams) for $2.99 vs. $4.99, and mixed salad $5 for 454 grams instead of $5.99 for 325 g. (Not to mention easy savings on avocados, potatoes, carrots, spices, etc.!)

Just those four items purchased at one store instead of the other can easily make $10 difference in savings each week for walking a few extra feet down the street, adding up to over $500 saved in a year.


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