Let's talk about Goals a little more today.
We set them. We have grand ideas of what we want to do. often we speak to people about them, or keep them silent and swear to ourselves that we will reach those by [insert a day here].
The real question is, do you set up your day to actually reach that goal, or is that goal really just hot air in a pie-in-the-sky world?
What do I mean? Well, you have your day. Let's say you get up, go to work, maybe remember to grab a lunch for your day but you are off and working. Your goal is to crush out your debt by New Year's Eve this year. You've set your budget. It's pretty freaking tight because you want to get rid of $25,000 of debt in 12 months. You've scaled back on literally everything - called the cable company and cancelled it, changed internet providers, bare-bones planned your cell phone, talked to work about more hours and extra shifts so you can earn more, meal-planned for the next month to save money at the store, are now pouring over the flyers from your local grocers like it's the gossip column or Page 6 and talking to co-workers about the absolutely amazing deal you got on ground beef for 47 cents per pound yesterday! Your daily caffeine fix is taking a hike - you are already irritable from it. You aren't going out for happy hour until Fridays now because the daily visit is messing with your goal. You've even worked out that in the spring and summer months you are close enough to cycle to work and can now save yourself nearly $150 a month by using leg power instead of that sweet 435 horse power ride you have. And you promised yourself you'd take veggies to snack on, and a lunch to work every day for the next year so you aren't going out for lunch 4 days a week and skipping the last day. This crushing it life is going to get you to your goal and you are going to be UNSTOPPABLE!!![Insert maniacal laugh here].
And then Jenna asks you to go to lunch with the group, on your first day of this new plan.
This is called a Universal Challenge Line. It's the Universes way to checking you on yourself. Do you really want to crush out your debt by the end of the year? Or, are you just blowing steam again?
Your decision to Jenna asking you to lunch will set up a cascading number of these tests throughout your day, week, month and year, that will keep you checked on yourself.
The first day goes well. You thank them for the invitation and decline, instead enjoying your decently healthy (if you do say so yourself) arugula salad, left over steak and dressing. By Day 5, you are holding strong but the invitations are getting harder to say no too. The peer pressure is ramping up and you are starting to miss the company at lunch.
Your head home for the weekend proud of yourself for making it through your first week and go about your weekend with a little pep in your step.
Then Monday comes!
Jenna has enlisted the aid of Chase, Laura and Ian to help her entice you to lunch. You know you have a day planned closer to the end of the month, built into your plan, where you can go out to lunch because it's budgeted for and set up in your plan. Now what do you do.
Here is where some of you will cave and go and others may try something different...
Talk to the group you used to go out with. Let them know that you have a financial goal you are working towards and looking to complete by the end of the year. That you have a day in mind when you will be able to join them, and what that day is, and thank them for the invitations so far. You enjoy being asked and would love to continue to be asked because it is your daily reminder that you are part of the team, thought of, and your company is enjoyed by others. Let them also know that this little daily test is a reminder of some things you will have to give up for a little while in order to reach your overall goal. That you are training like an Olympian so you can crush out your Gold medal performance review at year end.
Some of them will think you are crazy and it can't be done. Those are the people you tell first when you COMPLETE IT. Some of them will cheer you on for a little while. Those are the people you thank, smile at when eating your packed lunch and with whom you can check in with over the next couple of weeks. Some will ask you for information, help, advice etc. Give those when it is genuine. Be careful that these people are actually fence sitters and can't make up their mind which camp to sit in - cheerleader or nay-sayer. Also watch as you continue your days 4 months from this day and see who is still cheering you on and who has changed camps to the nay-sayer side.
Be silent in your observations here though. Keep them to yourself and keep going. Sometimes it is a great SOLO pilgrimage to your goal. You'll find your sherpas along the way. Often when you most need to be reminded of your goal.
So what happens when that "huge" thing comes up and derails you because the bill is like car engine repair sized?
It's another test. The universe knows your goal. It's giving you the ultimate test to see if you paid attention to your own life and have your contingency set in place. These often come after a little consistent time with your goal and your daily reminders. Always at the least opportune times, and usually in the most unexpectedly big way. It tests your mettle. Your resolve. Your support system. Your goal. Your desire to reach that goal. And whether or not you can come out of it with that goal intact. The longer you go with the daily and weekly tests you are seeing, the more you won't see the actual Universal Challenge coming towards.
Get through that big one and it's smooth sailing until the end of your goal. Get majorly set back by it, and it will take a longer time for the universe to believe you when you say you want that goal, and to help you actually get to that goal.
Any decision that goes against what you said you wanted is a challenge given to you to test your resolve to stay on track and get it done. Get there at the end and life suddenly feels easy for the next little while! Suddenly things you dreamed of start happening and you didn't have to work for them. Suddenly happiness is easily obtained and you start having a hard time remembering the struggle and the bad times.
What is your goal this year?
Mine is to release 18% of my stuff from my life. AND clear up 76% of my owing balances.
My first challenge has already come in the form of a potential jaunt to the West Coast in February. I don't have it in the budget to do. And while I would love to go. It isn't in line with my plan this year. So, it is a no thank you for now. I have a massive goal I am working on crushing. And I'm going to go get it!
The first month of the year is nearly done.
To-Do for Jan. 27-29:
1) Clean silver
2) Put silver away
3) Review contents of 3 boxes of stuff from the basement
4) Make decisions on the contents of these three boxes - purge, keep, sell, donate
5) Review files for stale documents
6) File loose papers that need to be kept
7) Prepare a shred pile for other items
8) Source Shelving for spare bedroom
9) Review budget for when these will be in the budget to purchase
10) Review books on basement shelf
11) Release books that are no longer wanted to others who can love them
12) Put the laundry away from the folded basket
13) Wash dirty clothing, fold washed clothing, put the folded clothing AWAY!
14) Bed sheets laundry required!
Many of these items can be done simultaneously so I can maximize efficiency and build in my own breaks. This will get a good portion of the stacks of boxes completed and out of the basement. I also need to clean the car and post for sale.
Lot's to do. Each task will keep me reaching towards my goal, by constantly and consistently allowing me the ability to review my possessions and make good decisions on their purpose in my life.