If you’ve ever lived paycheck to paycheck, then you understand the root of many of my struggles. There is something truly humbling about realizing that you have a fixed amount of money coming in, and you’ll have to make due with that sum for a designated period of time without exception. There is no one to back me up should I fall short on paying some bills or in case of an emergency when I suddenly need rainy day funds, so I’ve learned to portion out my paycheck perfectly to last the entire month. Occasionally, however, things are miscalculated. That’s why I often end up going without HVAC usage for the last third of the pay period. The first three weeks of the month I can live comfortably, and I freely operate my indoor heating and cooling system as needed. If it’s summer time, I’m basking in cool and dry air straight from my central cooling unit from the safety of my home. I keep the AC moderately cold, and I look forward to entering my cool paradise every day after experiencing the heat outdoors. In the winter, I’m able to happily run my furnace and combat the chill of the outdoor air. That is, until I reach the end of my paycheck and reality hits; I have to cut back on my energy expenditure for the rest of the month, or I’m not going to make ends meet. The last week of each pay period is far less comfortable when I can’t even think about touching the thermostat.