Reaching Goals While Keeping Your Sanity
There is no rule book for life.
Even the best lessons we learn when we are young, have very little to do with the real world.
The things you wish for as a child, might seem very far away as an adult.
Maybe you look around you and see other people your own age making more goals, reaching higher limits and just going for it.
So what is stopping you?
Maybe you don’t quite have the education it takes to reach some of your professional goals.
Perhaps you got a late start in life and have been thrown off course.
Whatever the reason for you feeling less than adequate, it’s ok.
We all go through this. Everyone has a mid-life or even quarter-life crisis.
It is called being reflective. And it’s the only way we grow as a person and as a culture.
This might seem cliche to some, but in the real world, it is true.
No matter your age, there is a place for you to succeed.
What Is Success?
This is the age old question. And how can it be answered?
You will need things in life such as a car, or a house and some cheap insurance to go with it.
But is attaining these things success to you or mere survival?
And how do you get this status quo anyhow? Success is defined by us and by society.
The trick is finding the happy medium.
And when I say “happy medium” I mean the balance of attaining what is necessary and being happy with it.
This could be defined as true success.
So what are the steps necessary for attaining everything in life we think we need?
How do you get that brand new electric car?
How do you afford the house being built in that brand new housing development down the street?
This answer is different for everyone, but there are some steps and general ways to get to a place of success.
Steps And Steps And Even More Steps
If you are looking to get by in life riding someone else’s gravy train, let me just put a kibosh on that right now.
No matter how much money your spouse has, your family has or even that dying relative who leaves you cash, you will never have enough.
If you place value on money above everything else, it’s a lose/lose situation.
What you can do it put value in the things that bring you joy.
Is having that car or cheap insurance or brand new television bringing you joy?
If not, get rid of it. Get rid of the payments and get rid of the waste.
Here is the first step to a more successful you: shed what you don’t need.
Most of the time we fill up out houses and apartments and rental spaces with stuff.
This is a temporary fix. Being a successful person is about having control over your life.
That probably looks like a losing scenario when you don’t even know whats hidden in that office drawer or shoved away in your garage.
SO go through your life and separate the things that add to your life and the things that are simply taking up space.
You will be amazed at how much clearer you will think and how much more space you will have.
It doesn’t matter at what stage of life you do this in.
- If you are in your twenties, sharing an apartment with your friends and interning at a local cheap insurance agency, you can still shed. This is a great thing to continue to do as well. Every 6 months, organize your life. Find out which bills are taking away from your happiness. Do you really need that HBO subscription? Do you ever even use the third television in your house? Maybe that gym membership has just been a waste of money. Get real and get rid of your things.
Second step for a more successful you: plan it out.
The best laid plans can fail. But without a plan and a though process, there will definitely be zero success.
Now, plans change all of the time and life throws us curveballs to say the least.
Not just one plan, but a few.
Here is what I mean:
- Start off by writing a list of where you want to be in ten years and how you think you might get there. This can be anything you want. There is no mountain too hight to climb. This is called the ten year dream plan. Have a dream, get involved with yourself and your life and figure out what the big plan is. If you are married, do this with your spouse. Be honest. If you can only think of a couple of things, that’s fine. If your ten year dream plan goes on for ten pages, that’s fine too. This plan has no boundaries but is meant to inspire.
- Next, slow it down and make a 1 year plan. Where do you want to be one year from now. This may mean getting that promotion at work, or moving to a different town. Try not to make goals that escape you from reality. Live in reality in this plan and try to be realistic. A one year plan should be fairly realistic. Are you hoping to take a trip to Europe? Maybe visit your girl friend who lives across the country. It can be small milestones or large ones, but you must make a plan.
- Thirdly, make a month plan. This month you plan to do what? Maybe it is to get a lower rate on your cheap insurance plan. Do you need to focus on filing your taxes? Maybe there are ten things on your list and it is overwhelming. Write it down anyways and prioritize. If you write the list in order of importance, it will be easier to check off.
- Last but not least, make a list of things you need to get done today. Maybe the list is quite short and easy. Maybe you feel overwhelmed by the list. If you are feeling overwhelm, again prioritize. If there is anything you can move to tomorrows list, then do it. This list is about gaining momentum. Get things done now and feel success today!
So we have gone over steps one and two, throw away, then plan.
The nest set of steps relates to you specifically and not you and your spouse.
Maybe you are a wife of ten years and a mother of four.
Maybe you are a single man who just started his career.
Either way, these next steps will give you motivation to be more successful in whatever it is you do.
Step Three Equals More Pay
You don’t have to place importance on money and material possessions as much as the next person, but you need money.
It is a hard fact to teach our youth that your dream job, may not lead you to your dream life.
And sometimes we have to choose which one is more important.
Not everyone has the luxury of getting a leg up from friends and family.
Not everyone has a college education.
- This doesn’t matter if you just follow step four: work harder. Work ethic is the number one trait to highly successful people. It isn’t a good personality or being super smart. Having good work ethic is for the people who don’t mind waking up at 5am and getting their day started. Having good work ethic doesn’t mean you have to be a workaholic. These two terms are not synonymous.
How Do I Work Harder?
- Work ethic is a learned behavior. You can teach yourself if you don’t think this comes to you naturally. In fact, it may not come to anyone naturally, but it is learned over time. How is it learned? Good work ethic usually leads to success and success then is the driving force that makes us want to work harder. If you study hard for an exam and you receive an A, you will then have more motivation because of this positive feedback, to then study for the next test just as hard.
- Having good work ethic will be the hardest step for most people. If you really want to have more success in life, you need to work harder at it. Not forever, but just for now.
- Work ethic can be taught to children through positive reinforcement and to adults in the same way. There are a ton of blogs out there to teach work ethic. Check them out and start teaching yourself now.
Step Four: Know Yourself
This may seem like a no-brainer to you, but knowing yourself is one of the biggest assets you can have.
Are you an early bird? Do you love to sleep in? Are you struggling with depression or ADD?
These are all great things to know about yourself so that you can help yourself to be more successful.
Taking someone who hates to get up early and shoving them into a 7 am job and expecting the best outcome is a for sure failure.
If you are a recovering addict, why would you work in an environment that would spark these urges.
Are you a mother an want more time with your family? Don’t set yourself up for failure, but set yourself up for success.
- Take the time now to understand the way you tick and what motivated you. Is it a cup of coffee at 6am after a three mile run? Is it reading a whole book in one day. Know these things about yourself and plan accordingly. Don’t waste your time in a job that is the complete opposite of who you are. You may not love your job entirely, but you must be able to function in it and more forward,
- Make a list of the top ten things you do in your daily routine. This is a good way to start. What would your perfect day look like? Include your job if you love it. If not, don’t maybe your version of success is not working a regular 9-5. Think about the best version of you and what that looks like.
- Stop fighting against every urge you have. Every person on this planet is different and what makes them successful is different as well. So take the time to know yourself now and flow in your life better tomorrow.
Five: Save Young and Save Often
This one will be much harder to do than to say. But if you want your life ahead of you to look more successful, you need to start saving money.
Most people in their early years spend, spend, spend. It’s fun so why not?
You may be able to get that cheap insurance or cheap rent, but as time goes on, your bills pile up.
Your goals will change and you will want a savings.
Money is one way to make your life easier. Having more of it doesn’t get rid of your problems, but it makes living a bit less stressful.
Save in your twenties. Try to understand money even if it means taking a course.
There are a ton of podcasts, blogs and TED Talks out there for being more financially savvy.
The one thing that most people in their 30s and 40s wish for is that they would have started saving earlier.
Think of it this way:
Make the most money you can while you are able bodied and of able mind.
Your twenties and thirties are for making money and holding onto it.
Set yourself up for a more relaxing future, not a more stressful one.
Live your life now, but save for the future.
Maybe that means skipping out on a dinner with friends or that trip to Cancun.
The truth is, Cancun will always be there, but putting yourself at financial risk could be a huge set back to your goals.
- This comes back to planning and work ethic. If you stick to your plans and have work ethic, this last step shouldn’t be that hard. But it is a learned behavior: control. To be successful means you must have a certain level of control over yourself and your money. Look for the best deals on cheap car insurance, start a small savings account, don’t put outings on a credit card. You have heard all of this before, but it takes self control to stop this behavior.
Save, save, save and never look back.
Five steps to a more successful future and a more successful you.
Love your life and live it by these five steps.