Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Vote Often Vote Early- Coop Credit Union

If you are a member of the Cooperative Center Federal Credit Union please consider voting for Tim, Mike and Tye. We are running together to bring a focus on local business creation, especially worker cooperatives, which help create stable jobs that won't outsource and leave the community when we need them most.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Going Green- It's More Than You Think

Going green is so much more than just thinking & doing.

The green movement, most of the time, comes off on a very superficial level that does very little good and actually undermines the well-intentioned goal.

Going Green typically means, adopting a set of practices or lifestyle choices that consider the environmental impact of those actions. This includes making better choices of what products to buy, car pooling, and planting a tree. In a nutshell, Do this and that and you can save the Earth.

But what is this really? A new corporate branding, a clever marketing scheme, a naïve idealism, a momentary reprieve of guilt and gluttony, or an oversimplification to make sense of a daunting reality. Well, it can be a lot of things, but none of it is helping.

These sets of practices pastiche over the old sets of practices to save paper, cut down less trees and pollute less of the environment. Meanwhile, we continue our hurried, over- scheduled and under-appreciated lives. If we have time we add recycling to our to do list of things we should do. ‘Should’ and there is the rub, the well-intentioned act now becomes an obligation, a busied compulsion. And guilt pops up again polluting our dreams and aspirations, as dirty and murky, as our rivers and seas.

Somewhere deep down inside us is a restless soul haunting our own lives, a ghost in the machine, beckoning for deep fulfillment, wanting nothing less than a cup runneth over, vibrant dynamic life out in the world with people and nature. No compensatory purchases, no coping mechanisms, no sell out. No membership fees or fine print legalese. Not separate and equal, but together intermixing our dreams, raw and open, ripe with potential. This to me is the true Green Movement- embodied and alive- singing and dancing, living out our life’s purpose in touch with all life.

And truth is this fully open living and loving is often paralyzingly scary--true freedom is, otherwise we’d all be living it by now.

But as we give and receive the courage to open our hearts, so too shall the people around us. As we heal, so too shall the planet. If we were fully actualized, living the beautiful life we love, we would leave the job we hated, cut all the needless expenses and penchant prideful indulgences and not allow the clear-cutting of a rainforest. There’d be no need, no room for it. We would come home and love our spouse and kids and undoubtedly shine radiantly for them. The showering of limitless love and tenderness would be enough. Each of our own desperate measures to make a quick buck would cease. Gazing deeply into each other’s eyes we would know. We would stand in our mature paternal instincts and stop these 'kids' from running amok in our world and resolutely declare “ENOUGH.”

Don’t get me wrong, the bulldozing of our rainforests, natural gas fracking, deepwater drilling, outsourced overseas smoke stacks, and the contamination of our precious water supplies are devastations, deluging Mother Earth’s ability to heal Herself. These are systemic problems that require systemic solutions-- Systems Thinking approaches. Just as our own immune system becomes overburdened and overstressed, we too must not suppress the planet's symptoms with teaspoon after teaspoon of cold medicine, but rather respond to the root cause before the recurring coughs and colds crescendo into an incurable disease.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Do you need to file an extension for taxes?

Have you been scrambling to get everything else in your life done, but have been putting off filing your taxes?

Below are the links for CA state and federal and a brief explanation of the consequences if you don't apply for an extension.


Fill out the extension form with the pertinent information Name, Address, SSN, etc. This will give you a 6 month extension to file your tax returns. You still need to pay now or you will be charged interest on the amount that you still owe. These forms extend the period you have to file the paper work.

If you know you owe and send the estimated payment in with the form. If you don't pay April 15th you will be charged interest on what you haven't paid.

Hope this explanation helps.

Tye Kirk

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Money Fast

So, how is it going with starting a budget? and tracking what you spend?

Recently, I've had some huge breakthrough's with my budget and i think sharing them could help all of us.

Last weekend I did what i would call a "Money Fast". My goal was to keep from going over budget for February and since it was the end of the month and i was soooo close (and a little obsessive!), I decided to not spend anything from Friday-Tuesday. It was amazing!!

I cooked at home, read a book, went to a free spiritual talk, meditated, went for a walk, ate what i already had in the fridge, had potluck at a friend's house and watched a netflix.

And it worked.

As always, these excercise are fertile ground for learnings, awareness, and deepening...
  • I realized i could go a weekend without spending a dime.
  • I realized that there are times when i spend money to make myself feel better and not indulging this reflex weakens its power and actually loving this "devil", hearing it and thanking it seems to be what it needs most.
  • I further realized that spending money is not necessary for fun, intimacy or romance.
  • I realized more ways to live simply and have BIG fun.
Obviously, if you are in a relationship, this is not something you can do on your own. It does impact the other. Your lives are intertwined in magical wonderful ways and money is a part of it. If you are single I guess you could hide away easily and watch what you spend, but i recommend the opposite. Open up let people in. So what if you don't have much to spend! Guess what, there are a lot of us in that same boat. Through being honest and opening my life up to my friends we are all the more closer. I felt an empowering partnership with my girlfriend when I chose to communicate and enroll her in joining me on the Money Fast.

The biggest gift of all, I realized that being tight with money does not create what psuedo-spiritual, new agers claim "focusing on the problem creates more of the problem". Actually, the Money Fast had the opposite effect. After living on a tight budget for a month at the end of the month I felt rich, abundant or whatever you want to call it. I had money leftover to do what is most important.

I wasn't living in scarcity or feeling like the cup is half empty... afterwards I saw my bank account and it dawned on me WOW! i have all of this leftover for my life goals & dreams- paying down my school debt & saving for a trip abroad!!!

Don't get me wrong, it was challenging throughout the month and this weekend. And many deep-seeded, difficult emotions came up, but it was good to observe them and move through it and really feel what was there.

This is a bit of a paradox: Expansiveness from Contraction... and a buzz kill for people who think that they just focus on making more money to solve their overspending problems. (Under-earning and overspending are two separate issues that require totally different approaches.) Budgeting is a good dose of reality for people who are stuck in magical thinking... no judgment, i have been there too. Sometimes its hard as hell to look at this stuff, but to look at it everyday is soooo vital to moving through the muck.

May we grow and realize we are strength and beauty together...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Giving Up My Cell Phone


More to Come

Giving Up My Cell Phone

I have made a personal decision to empower intimacy and presence while taking another step in simplifying my life.

I felt the urgency as texts, emails, and web pulling me in each and every direction.

Now i am committed to be present with the one I am with whether they are clients, family, friends or my brothers. I am committed to respond with 24 hrs.

Not having a cell phone now emboldens me to plan ahead and prepare for the day. This I also ask of you, when the need arises, reach out to me as soon as you can... to avoid "Last Minute" Situations.

I now only have a landline.

I will check voice mail daily- and check email at 9am, noon, & 4pm.

Best in growing, expanding and realizing our full potentials together,

Tye Kirk

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

30 Day Completion

Continuing in my commitment to transparency, I want to share the results of my own 30 days of tracking what i spent. Both as a learning tool of the technical aspects of coming into balance with your spending, but also I share this to inspire greater openness and freedom in others through letting go of my fear and shame over my personal finances.

So after 30 days of tracking what i spent, was it helpful? was it worth the daily effort?

Well.... I would say without it I wouldn't have taken the steps that I have, such as:

1) Cut needless spending
2) Invested $1,100 in a 2nd laptop for my business
3) Saved $1000 for our trip to Spain
4) Paid down school loan $911

Bottom line though, I spent more than I made:
($4,875 - $5,069= -$194).

Yes, I accomplished a lot with saving money and the investment in my business directly helped me earn more this month, but I did spend more than I made. In effect, I took from my cash cushion for credit cards.

There are tons of learnings I have gleaned from this exercise, at the same time, it is not helpful to get anal and neurotic over the minutia, nor head trip into self condemnation and judgment. Moving forward, I feel clearer and more able to make reasonable choices in line with my dreams and goals.

Additionally, now I have the raw info to create a budget for the coming months in preparation for Spain. When I know my monthly averages, then I ask:

Was this a typical month of income?
Was this a typical month of expenses?
Is there anything missing?

These are some of the basic questions to ask when generating a Personal Balanced Budget.

Probably the greatest reward has been intrinsic, as the program has inspired new ways of relating with money that I will continue to explore in the coming weeks, such as transcending past the numbers, past the quantification of life, from a place of scarcity, deprivation and over-control into a place of peace and organic flow in tune with natural laws. How can we move beyond the small self, individualistic way of living into an expansive, collective sense of self?

I realized that a profound sense of peace comes from letting go and surrendering. Having a sense of what you're spending, assists this process, so that you are not letting go into a magical world, free-for-all of spending (if that has been your prior default), but rather are letting go in-tune with your actions and choices, seeing their inter-relationship with everything else. What is absolutely essential is feeling more of what you are doing. Everyday, throughout the day. We need more gateways into a deeper felt-sense of ourselves and each other. It is what we are hardwired for.

In my life, I want more connection, community, collective support and intimacy-- less techno-babble, gizmos, expert consultants and quick fixes. The first group is free and deeply enriching-- the second costs $1,000's and has left me feeling empty and craving more.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

After 30 days...

How did it go? This has been a creatively explosive month for me. The exercise has helped me be conscious with what i am doing with my money, but even more it has taken me to a whole-other level as it has helped me re-evaluate where i put my time and energy in my life.

I see a new door opening for myself and my work- one that is directly helping people take stock of their lives and helps people who want to make a change, simplify and quit all the stuff that is no longer fulfilling.

Imagine a life rich in relationship, abundant with quality of Life, where our baseline of fear, worry and doubt drops away, and it's all here already...

Tye Kirk
Live Beyond the Numbers!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

30-Day Challenge: Update 1/9

I deeply respect other get out of debt way-showers who have demonstrated a high principle of openness and transparency, such as Man vs. Debt's Radical Financial Transparency. I found his example to be both inspiring and an invaluable great learning tool.

So... after my first 3 days of “Logging What I Spent”:

I observed myself spending less on groceries this weekend. I checked my bank balance before i went to the store and estimated what i could spend. Knowing i would get paid on Monday, I decided to hold off on buying the extras that i love but are not a necessity. This way i could keep a comfortable cushion in my bank account. It felt quite empowering to be consciously checking before spending!!!

Also I noticed at the beginning of the month with rent and utilities there are more expenses then income, seeing this also helped me to slow my spending on non-essentials.

I encourage others on the program to post your comments on your awarenesses, observations, learnings, wins, challenges or anything else you want to share or ask.

Maintaining a neutral place within while watching your actions will help you make more self-empowering choices and help you move out of negative habits sooner and ease-fully. You can make mistakes and learn from them without beating yourself up about it!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

30 Day CHALLENGE- Log What You Spent

In the spirit of transforming in the New Year, I propose a challenge to everyone who wants to partake…

In the spirit of making a difference in our lives and in our world, for the next 30-days let's track our daily expenses vs. income and calculate the net for the month…

This is a practice of bringing heightened awareness to how you are relating to the money you already have, so that we know definitively what we are doing, observe the trends/habits/addictions, and move into a balanced budget where we begin touching our dreams.

1. Every day write down in a log, excel spreadsheet or quicken what you spent money on and what you made (when applicable).

2. Determine whether you are positive or negative

3. Check off the days on a calendar

4. Email me (or post a comment) each week as your progress, hit snags, rough patches. The trick is to keep picking yourself back up.

Tips: you can keep a little note pad or keep your receipts so you can remind yourself at the end of the day what you spent. Don't take it too seriously, have fun!, watch what shows up. Invite a friend to do this with you or share this with them and ask them to hold you accountable.

Honoring your commitments to your self is ground zero for so many things in life. Personal Integrity is the life spring of lasting peace and joy!

If you want a sample spreadsheet and/or financial sobriety worksheet email me at:

If you have any other tips or questions please email or post as a comment on the blog.

This can work for your personal finances and/or your business to bring you into greater awareness and transition you into making conscious choices that better serve your higher goals, dreams, family, community and on outward.

The greatest need in our financial system is oversight and accountability and that starts from the bottom up. We can make more with less, live brighter lives more simply, together, free of all the poor habits that no longer serves us.

Blessings ahead… Tye Kirk

PS. One of the greatest obstacles is the rationalization/misbelief that we will start saving when we get more money. As reported in The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley- that rarely ever happens. Start today with what you already have and build the habits and practices that lift you out of this what Paul Krugman recently referred to as "Deep Hole Economics".