Wow, the difference a year can make
This time last year I was in my home office, preparing for an upcoming workshop about creating a financial plan to make 2016 your best year yet. I had big plans for my year and was excited to inspire others to set goals and start working towards them.
I’m here in my home office again today, one year later. Same room, but it looks completely different. That’s because one of the goals that I set for 2016 was to create an office that inspires me to do my best work. I painted the walls, threw out the clutter, and surrounded myself with beautiful things.
The office redesign is just one of the twenty seven goals that I set for myself last year. Yes, you read that right.
Twenty seven goals
Ambitious? Yes. Successful? I think so.
I achieved fourteen of my goals. (Woohoo!!)
I made some progress towards ten of the other goals but didn’t quite hit the mark. (Not bad!)
And three of them I thought about during the year, took a few steps but didn’t get very far. (Hmmm.)
I might not have achieved every goal, but I learned a very important lesson along the way. The difference between the goals I achieved and those that I didn’t is …
There’s a difference between being interested in a goal and actually committing to it. Interest looks like daydreaming, talking to your friends, writing it down. Maaaybe taking the first step – but always keeping one foot firmly planted in the safety of “I will do it … soon.”
Commitment looks very different. It’s removing all the ways you might backslide on your decision. It’s opening your wallet and putting your money behind your goal. It’s jumping in with both feet and saying “I’m doing it … NOW”.
What commitment looked like for me
One of my intentions for 2016 was to “feel good in my body”, so I set a goal to exercise three times a week. I’ve never really been into fitness or sports, but I had worked out with a trainer before my wedding so I knew how good being in shape could make me feel. This goal was really, really important to me for my health and well-being so I jumped right in.
I bought some workout clothes that I couldn’t wait to wear. I tracked my workouts on a whiteboard on the fridge so that I could see exactly where I was with my goal each month. And I invested in Class Pass. (If you haven’t heard of it, Class Pass is a monthly membership that allows you to take classes at hundreds of fitness studios across your city.)
It might sounds silly but becoming a Class Pass member was one of the most important thing I did to ensure I would reach my goal. I knew that I wasn’t motivated to go to the gym on my own, but the cost of having a personal trainer three times a week was far outside my reach.
Class Pass is my middle way. It’s certainly not cheap but it provides a lot of value. It gives me access to all of my favourite instructor-led classes. The use-it-or-lose it policy means there’s an actual cash cost if I back out on my commitment to myself. And, at an average cost of about $12 per class it’s almost half the price of purchasing packages at individual studios – which in Toronto run around $20-$30 per class.
Commitment isn’t always easy
I was nervous about signing up for Class Pass. It meant sacrificing a meaningful amount of my monthly “fun money“ and I certainly had some fear around the high price tag. After some thought I realized that I would spend the money anyway. Why not spend it on something that would make me feel good and that I would enjoy? I could always cancel if I didn’t find value in it.
Once I committed my money to my goal it was no longer something I was going to do. It became something I was doing. I’m so glad I got started that day. Thank you, Lisa from one year ago. I am so much stronger (literally!) because of you. I mean me. Thank you, me! 🙂
Money is a powerful tool
It’s interesting that 13 of the 15 goals I accomplished required me to commit some money in one way or another. Class Pass is just one example. There were plane tickets I needed to book. Course fees I had to pay. People I needed to hire.
When I think back, every time I made that first payment I felt a nervous excitement – something about putting my money behind my goal made it real, no longer just an idea.
Most of the goals that I didn’t achieve were those that I didn’t make a financial commitment towards or that didn’t require any money at all. I’m not saying that you won’t achieve a goal unless there is money on the line but in my case I certainly see a pattern. When I made the commitment with my heart and my money, the actions followed.
The only resolution you need to make this year:
Resolve to commit. Resolve to start living your goals right now and put your money where it matters most.
Throw out all your junk food and fill your fridge with healthy choices (maybe from Whole Foods!)
Sign up for that class you have always wanted to take and pay the nonrefundable deposit.
Order the new office furniture that makes you feel excited to sit down to work every day.
Not sure if you can afford to finance your goals?
Book a Clarity Call with me! I’ll help you figure out a financial plan to make 2017 your best year yet!