Let’s face it, we live in a world that is filled with distractions, both good and bad. Those distractions can easily take us away from the goals we’ve set for ourselves—especially our financial goals— when we allow them to. But it’s important to remember that you have a choice.
I distinctly remember during the middle of the Great Recession in California how difficult it was, at times, to stay focused on the goals I had set for my business and for my life. My husband and I had been through a lot of challenges, both financially and emotionally, because of the economic downturn—just like many of our friends, colleagues and clients. And yet, we refused to give up on our goals because we were determined to stay focused.
We more than survived the recession; we bounced back. We later catapulted to Minnesota where such phenomenally great things have happened to us that we wake up every day like it is Christmas. Interestingly, the amazing things that have happened were not only in Minnesota. The opportunities also showed up in California, which I found very interesting. It was like once I was no longer available, I was suddenly more in demand.
I remember listening to Joel Osteen years ago, during a particularly challenging time. He shared the idea that there is a place you will live where you will be blessed. I remember asking myself, “Is California that place?” It had been for a while, but then Tim and I kept getting the nudge, the whispers, to move back to Minnesota. The whispers went on for years. I truly think we waited longer than we were supposed to because the second we moved, it was like we were back in the flow of ease, grace and wonderment.
Now, I’m not suggesting that anyone move (unless you know that is your next step), but I am suggesting that it’s important to stay focused, no matter what, because great things are on their way to you. I KNOW that one of the reasons Minnesota has been so successful for us is because, in spite of the challenges we were facing, we kept our goals right in front of us and we stayed focused on achieving those goals. Not once did we think that we wouldn’t have the successful business, career, lake home (well, the lake home is still on its way, but it IS manifesting) or anything that we’d been dreaming about. We knew that it was on its way.
And that’s what I want for you, right now, in this moment. I want you to be encouraged that in spite of your current circumstances, you don’t have to believe that “this is all there is for you.” Or, that you cannot have the full success you desire, because you can and you will. I always tell my clients that the only way they can actually fail is if they give up on themselves. Remember, things might not always unfold the way you thought and sometimes things will happen in an even better way than you had ever imagined.
I’m going to share some of the things I do during stressful or uncertain times to stay focused on my goals and continue to be present for my family, friends and clients.
First and foremost, give yourself the gift of a handful of close friends who you can really trust. My dearest friends have been there through the tough times and I hope that I have been there for them as well. When we need quality time, we “hit the water,” which just means we head to the spa. I have a couple of spas around the mid-west and the west-coast that feel very healing when we are there. So that’s where we head when we need it. And, for the record, it’s a myth that you have to spend tons of money at the spa. There are many spas that will allow you to pay just for day use to enjoy the amenities and sometimes that might be the peace of mind you need to get back to the present moment.
Second, keep your task list updated. I sometimes find that working can be great therapy when you need a mental break from life’s challenges. However, it’s hard to remember what you were planning to get done if you don’t have a task list. I’ve used the same method to keep track of my task list and goals for years, so I can tell you that it really works and it’s super simple. I use a small legal portfolio to keep track of my task list and I update it daily. I also put checkboxes in front of each one because then I know I am committed to getting it done. I use the same method for goal setting, except I keep my goals in a separate journal.
Finally, don’t let external circumstances becomes the “reasons” you cannot reach your goals. My husband always says to me that “trying” is failing with honor. Our good friends over at Productive Learning have a course that I highly recommend called, “Beyond Reasons.” The title of the class says it all (www.productivelearning.com).
Instead of “trying” and or having “reasons” why you can’t reach your goals, simply make a decision that no matter what, you will reach your goals. Stay inspired and keep going. Who knows what is right around the corner for you!