We are blessed with our parents being our kids grandparents. While it's frustrating, and sad at times that they live 1000 miles away (yes, literally). We are very blessed with their visits and love they give the children.
I hear countless stories of parents trying to discipline, set boundaries to make their children better, and stronger and ready for the future. We must help our children become strong, independent, intelligent adults that successfully contribute to this society. Not individuals that feel they deserve everything, materials, new gadgets, and new top of the line objects.
You keep saying you miss the "old days". Well, now is your time to help create that for your grandchildren. Take them out fishing, knitting, sewing, building, walking, discovering, exploring, and star gazing. Let them know and understand true appreciate for hard work and dedication. Show them the awesome power of your unconditional love. There are things grandparents can teach grandchildren that no one else can teach them. Embrace the fact you are a grandparent, for not everyone is given such a wonderful opportunity. If the parents say, please, don't give them extravagant gifts, DON"T DO IT. But DO let it be in the form of love and inspiration. Story telling and drawing on the pictures of life. Don't let your grandchildren view you as a lifeless wallet full of money for plastic things to buy. I miss the old days as well. I'm extremely old fashioned when it comes to rearing my children. (The rearing word coming straight from my grandfather...we raise corn, we rear children). Grandchildren listen to you. They are awestruck by you and your greatness. The need and thirst for your knowledge of life. Surround them with that. Don't spoil them with items...for spoiling leads to becoming rotten. I'm sure you don't want that with your grandchildren.
Also remember, it's NOT a competition between grandparents about who is better than the other with gift giving. Please don't think it is. If it feels that way, take the upper hand. Have "coupons" with experiences. They would love it. To just spend time with you, not money. Not materials. It kills me when I hear parents say the grandparents give the "bigger gift". What are they trying to prove? Time, it's all children want. As I said, our parents live miles away. Our children start to beg to just be able to SEE them. Not asking for the latest movie, or latest electronic gadget or a new wardrobe. They wish they can go to the playground, to sit with them on the couch and read, to work and fix things around the house. They want to see them create their recipes while talking about their childhood. For you have something so unique. A life before all of this "security". A life before technology, tv, phones, constant blaring of news. A life they'll never get to experience that is so raw and beautiful. The need to live that through you. GIVE that to them. Talk about how crazy, your own children were, how we were as children. Tell the fun stories. For if you don't, then your personal legacy and gift to this world won't live on.
I've said it many times, I adore my grandmother. I always had a time to spend a week with her. I wasn't spoiled with gifts. However, powdered sugar donuts and chocolate covered raisins were plenty at her house. I was spoiled with her time, energy, constant listening and talking. I got to understand my own mother in a way that I don't think she'll ever understand. When at times as a teenager or frustrated with my parents, my grandmother listened. Just sat and listened. When in doubt with things in my life, it wasn't, what would my mom say, it was..."what would my grandmother think". They have an awesome influence in life with grandchildren. Grow and develop your relationship. Which would you rather hear? "Hey grandma...can you buy me this?" or "hey grandma...I just need to talk."
When I was asked in my last interview for a director position, they asked me what my goals were in life...5 year, 10 year and long term. My answer for long term? "To be a happy grandmother and not regret any decisions that I've made in life. To accept them and be the best grandmother I can be."
Spoiling grandchildren does not mean buying them whatever they want. It means giving them undivided attention, love, and support that no other person can give them. Just to be a GRANDparent.
YOu're guaranteed that without a plan, you're going to lead to nowhere. We all know that we need to be organized, we need to handle money and our lives, but LIFE "gets in the way." We're busy, things are happening at amazing fast speeds.
I admit it, I'm not great at following grocery lists. I always forget an item or two. Sometimes it's because I've been there a long time, tired, and just don't want to walk to the back of the store, and honestly we may not have "needed" that item any. Also, I do pick things up as I see them. I don't write down produce...I just know I have to get it. Same with milk. I have three boys in my home, I know I always need milk. It's a given.
Yes, I drive myself out of the way to go to cheaper stores, get the deals etc. My husband knows that vitamins can ALWAYS wait. For I usually find buy on get one deals.
I used to be one that doing bills was the same, I thought I knew what I was doing. However, there was stress, frustration and feeling like that with every raise, we weren't getting ahead. Now, we're organized and we budget before the month...BEFORE we "go to the store". It's not just a "whatever is left over" is for groceries. Yea, you know what I'm talking about. HEY! We have $300 left over before next pay period. EVERY SINGLE PENNY is accounted for? Exhausting? Well, no. It was in the beginning but I can't think of anything better now. My sons are learning that if there isn't any cash in my purse, we won't be getting any food. More than likely, you have food in your house, everyone does. It takes some creativity. Why, tomorrow is National Pancake Day, and while I don't promote other companies...you may want to check out a famous pancake place and see what their deals are for the day!
Ah, the lure of maple syrup got me side-tracked. Budgets allow you to become free. They create "bonuses", fun free days, and allow you to sleep stress free. I'm already saving up for Christmas, I don't have to worry about it in 11 months. My son's birthday is this Friday, it's already paid for. It's like I have a bonus, or won a lottery. The money grows and sits there until I"m ready to use it. It takes discipline, and PRACTICE. If you fail, don't beat yourself up. It's okay, Try again. It'll take you about 6 months to truly get the hang of it. But once you REALLY get the hang of it, you'll never go back. Cash, is your friend, not your enemy. Actually it's amoral, it has no feelings. It's the person behind the cash and the planning that has all the control.
What budgeting has done for me is to allow me to spend without guilt. Sleep without fear. Pay for un-expected items from our children's school/sports. We can do it when it's the end of the month. We don't have to wait for a pay check. We don't have to use a credit card. It's a freeing feeling. We are honestly knocking items off our list...debts. That's even better. I love to see what our budget will look like without debt and how much more our investments will grow. It's a great feeling to know we can care for ourselves, truly in case of an emergency.
It takes practice, it takes diligence, but it is worth it. The average couple that takes my course or comes through my door has an $8000 turn around in their finances in 6 months. Worth it? YOU BET!
Where do you fit in with these categories?
1. Watch your expenses but don't have a formal budget.
2. Have a formal budget but not good following it.
3. Keep track of expenses on big items such as mortgage, major electronic, furnishings.
4. Don't know how to budget/watch expenses.
5. We have a formal budget that we follow religiously.
**This poll was taken recently in Parenting Magazine Feb 2013**
Where do you fit? Want to know the outcome? 1. 60%, 2. 13%, 3. 11%, 4 3% and 5. is 14%. My husband asked me if this follows what I've been studying and researching. Yes, this is true for my clients and for the classes I lead to help others become debt free. Let's look at it different. If you answered in any of the numbers 1-4...YOU DON'T BUDGET. That would be 86% of the population. I've seen percentages anywhere from 75%-90%, so yes, this falls in line with what I"ve done.
Why is it that the others don't work? These are people that are stressed, my not know what's happening with their income. No, wait, they really don't know what is happening. Paying bills and budgeting are two completely separate things. 86% of Americans only pay bills, they don't budget. What ever is "left over" after bill paying goes to groceries, and other items. Let's chew on this for a minute:
If you have left over for groceries...the average family of 4 spends approximately $800 on groceries, and $400 eating out per month. I have people tell me they only spend $200-$400 for food. However, when I do the budget with those numbers, they'll come out with a huge positive. If I then do the budget using the realistic numbers...yes, that is what they feel every month...the money pinch. Be real about it. Many families are letting $1200 per month escape through their fingers without having a goal. USE CASH. Let's budget $600 for groceries. If you get paid twice a month, that's $300 for two weeks. That's it. Period. Try it. Does it work? If you have too much left over...then cut your budget down. If not, then it has to be increased or you need to shop differently.
So many people in strong denial. Just because you're able to make ends meet and pay your bills, doesn't mean you're free. Doesn't mean you've made it. It doesn't matter what the income level is...if you do not budget, have a set dollar amount for everything, you can never truly move forward.
JC Penny was an amazing man. He saved $300 to open his first retail store front in the early 1900's. In todays dollars, I figured that to be $300,000 from a person earning $35,000 a year. Granted, he wasn't married at the time nor had children. But he worked hard, saved hard and made a dream come true. He refused to have credit cards and it wasn't until he passed away did the retail giant started to give them out to others. He did not want people to rely on debt.
Is this possible in today's world? Yes. He refrained from living as his peers lived. He lived a "weird" lifestyle. Short term pain for long term goals.
It's still the new year. In fact, every day is a new day for goals to be created and for us to start a new. Be in the weird 14%. Have a budget. Those people sleep well at night, don't worry constantly, and know exactly how they will end up. Even a disaster is planned.
I'm weird...I love it, and I'll never go back. Peace.
Just a little slice/shave at a time. Whittling, it's something that I just can't do. I'm not artistic enough to imagine a horse coming from a stick. It's amazing to me the art and skill that's needed. We have a great friend whose father always whittled away and we received the cutest snowmen, snow-women, Santas, and little leprechauns. We value and treasure them every year we take them out. They have such unique personality and I found out that this year, there are to be no more. His hands just can't do it anymore.
Many people are starting to make resolutions. To make changes, improve onself and take up a new skill. Today I talked with a woman that I usually work-out next to. This class kicks you in the well, you know. I can barely walk the next day but yet I go back for more. She is right there, gets the weights for the instructor and is going 100% during class. I found out that over a period of 8 years, she lost over 100 lbs. WOW!!!! Little by little, she whittled it away. She started to make some minor changes that she could live with then she started to excersize. Now, she said she can't imagine life any different. She was overweight as a child and after having her first...she didn't want that for her children. They play together, work together, eat together and therefore, will have a healthy, active lifestyle.
It's hard, very hard. It's the exact same thing with finances, only people live in denial longer due to the fact that you can hide it easier. You get a loan on a better car with better mileage to save money. What? Yup, making up excuses. It's hard for couples and individuals to come into my office. They have to be emotionally ready to handle it. There's nothing to hide. I don't allow excuses, and we keep moving forward. It's not me though, it's my clients. THEY are the ones that have to work hard, I just give them the tools. I can tell if they don't do anything between appointments. They're scared to come in. It's not like I yell, or get angry. Honestly, I just sit there, look at them, and ask, "So, how did it go these past couple of weeks?" That's it. What's scary is that it's finally coming out for them. They finally have to answer to someone.
I've never met a healthy person say, "Gee whiz, I really want to be overweight." Same with a person that is debt free, "Gee, I really want to use a credit card and go into debt again. Life was great." They know it wasn't, especially those that have been there. They know they've turned a corner when they don't have a chance to look at their bank account for a while, or when they feel lost without cash in their wallet.
I read all the time on Facebook, CNN, New York Times of other peoples struggles. Struggles that they are willing to share to be an inspirational story for others. It's why I love my career. I get to be a part of that change. Some clients will always struggle. However, with others, it's a magical moment when they finally "wake up". They look at me and say, "I'm the only one that can change this. Me. You can't grow money for me. I'm the one that got us here, I'm the one to get me out." I just had a single mother claim this and within 3 months, get got rid of $9000 in debt. She was negative every month. She didn't have to consolidate, in fact, she reversed a consolidation once she realized she could do it quicker! She didn't have to file for bankruptcy and now she can support her children 100% on her own. Awesome. And folks, she did this before Christmas and still had gifts under the tree.
I know you can do it. It's just a matter of how badly do you want it? How badly do you want out of this mess? Out of financial stress? Your income DOES NOT MATTER. What matters, is how you manage your income to work for you instead of against you.
Whatever challenge or hill you are facing just remember that being negative about it will only make the situation worse. Be positive, write a plan, find help or other good resources and get it done!
This is the time of year everyone is making New Year Resolutions. Let's try something different, for they tend to fail. Let's make one small step at a time, and make changes to make sure they stick.
It's hard to go on a "crash diet" of whatever it may be. It changes us too much: how we shop, how we socialize. Try just one thing at a time like from 6 sodas a day to none before noon. Then, eventually to water. ONE THING. By changing everything we'd go into "shock" and then not complete our goals. Baby steps.
It's amazing to me how during Christmas season I usually don't get very many clients. The reasoning? It's Christmas. Now, we're getting sticker/bill shock. What happened? Guess what folks, Christmas happens every single year. Same with the bills that show up after. I'd suggest sitting down, look at exactly how much you spent last year, add it up, divide by 12 then save that amount every month. If you can't save that every month, then lower it and that's what your Christmas will be this 2013 holiday. I'm already saving for it.
Start using cash. I hear every excuse in the book. I've worked with several people, guess what. Cash always works, always wins in the end and you can never over spend cash. I don't mean going to the ATM for $20 here and there...that adds up. I mean taking out all the cash you budgeted for the following two weeks and using ONLY that amount of cash. Period. You'll start to change how you shop in the grocery store and how you plan up coming events.
Pick one bill, the smallest and vow to pay it off within this month. Leave it out in the open, cheer and celebrate once you obliterate it. Then, do it again with the next one. YOU CAN DO IT.
Like I've said before, if you keep doing what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always gotten.
Let's use baby steps into this New Year. Start by saving for Christmas NOW, and let'
While many people sit, eat, drink and be merry, others will be lonely.
While many will enjoy company, relatives, and a feast. Others will be lonely.
While the parade is on in the background, turkey smells clinging in the air, and the anticipation of that evenings football game whether on the tv or in the yard. Others will be lonely.
With my grandparents being sick, it's made me sit back and think about quite a few memories that I cherish about them. We've had many meals, play time and fun experiences. I've been blessed. My family is far away and we will not be together with anyone this year. However, that doesn't mean we are sad, or lonely. We have 3 amazing, beautiful sons. We decided to give to others. Others who are much, much lonelier. We'll be volunteering Thursday morning at a senior center going room to room to visit with those that don't have family with them for one reason or another. They are stuck in one spot. How difficult that must be. To raise a family, and not wanting to be a burden to them, to be alone during the holidays.
Sometimes I find myself so wrapped up with my boys that I realize I don't want the hectic crazy days to go away. I pray like crazy that their future wives will be loving, kind, and generous. When I find that if I put my foot down too much, it just may stay there, unable for others to be able to move it. I fully understand that due to nature, the wives of the household tend and care for others. So, if they don't like their mother in law, keep in touch with them, call them, or involve them in any way, I"ll miss out on so much of my future grandchildren and my sons.
I pray that my future daughter in laws and I will love each other and get along. I have an amazing mother in law. I love her and have learned much from her. Yes, we've had our hang ups and bang ups, but for the last 10 years, it's been wonderful. I'll call her for recipes, have her talk with the boys, and share stories with her. I really wouldn't mind helping to care for her. (I say teasingly so I can finally do her hair the way I want...or to paint her nails a bright pink or purple). However, she never had a daughter. She never had that experience of raising a little girl. Nor will I ever have that experience. Must you remember, that's not by choice. What is by choice is how we work together and love each other. It takes work on both parts. I love her...she's done well! If anything, I love how my husband turned out!
If you have your family with you, REJOICE, enjoy your turkey and the parade. If not, find friends and others that are "orphans" during the holidays. If you can't find that...volunteer. I hope my boys will be soaking it in on Thursday. I have no idea what's about to happen, but I know for sure we'll be a different family when we come home.
We value life not by what we keep in store around us, but by what we are able to GIVE to others.
I've recently started using coupons again. But only when my children aren't with me. If you've been there, you know that with a 4 and a 2 year old, you can't concentrate much while shopping. It's a grab and go while they're playing spiderman on the grocery cart. I have three energetic boys. So during grocery shopping I get many looks. Most are smiles and giggles, and some are annoying looks. But hey, we need food, they need to learn, and I don't like shopping at 10pm to go alone.
My two oldest are great in the store. They know what we need. What we usually buy and go for it. I don't get asked about new products or begged to get other items off the shelf. They also know it's a no at the checkout line. My oldest just won't even look, my middle will look and just say, "we can't have this". (Although, rarely, yes, we'll get something special, I'm not overly strict). The both of them will ask how much cash I have. If this is a "big" shopping trip or just a milk run. They love getting change back, counting it out and handing it over. They've turned into great runners. The benefit of when you look down the isle and it's crammed with people and carts. They'll snake through, get what I need and come back. That's the best ever. Especially when it comes to MY shopping isle. I love to bake year round. But, during this holiday season it gets packed. All of these people baking all of a sudden. My boys even get upset..."why are they all here??"
However, my youngest (almost 3), who is still with me all the time is, well, different. He's my spiderman. It's always a game, like going to a carnival or amusement park. "Go fast mom! WAIT! BANANAS!!!! Mom, a grape! I eat it? (that yes, is up off of the floor). I NEED these crackers! Yes we DO! (honey you get only one), nope, I need both! Mom, I have gum? HI! Hi! Hi! HI!" He has to greet everyone, and if they don't respond, he'll keep at it until they do. For this shy mom, I've had to step outside of my box every time I go shopping with him. Which is all the time. "Mom, I ride Sandy?" (the penny mechanical horse), ooo, STARBUCKS! Mom? Strawberry drink? Mom? Mom? Mom? Bye! Thank you! I run through doors...POW!"
Yeah, you just try to do that while juggling the grocery list which I always forget items because I don't want to turn around. AND adding coupons. Yikes! Again, I really admire those that can do it.
Here's my take though...I use the coupons for things that I buy normally. And, you can't really feel the savings unless you have a budget. If you don't, it just gets absorbed by other things and you aren't really telling it how to behave. Like I said before, we have a jar with left over cash from the store. It gets saved for something special. Something we all are looking forward to doing together. This last spring is was a new garden. I'd rather have them eat the strawberries that touch the dirt than grapes off the grocery store floor.
So, here we go, super hero cape getting food to the rescue. I get to go through the doors first...POW!
Is it possible to be debt free or is Dave Ramsey a hypocrite? Most don't know his whole story. Of course he was a millionaire, then he fell into bankruptcy, now, he's an even stronger millionaire. But how are we, the middle-class supposed to survive? He hasn't survived on a middle class salary, without credit cards while trying to raise a family.
I'm telling you it IS possible. It's much easier being debt free than it is having debt. Those that are debt free, yes, about 25% of middle class Americans have no debt, have financial freedom. They live within their means and they are very passionate about the word, "NO".
We don't always need a car loan, a bank loan, or a credit card. We don't need to constantly use our debit card. We need, time with our family and friends. We need to be able to care for our selves when times get rough and we need to be able to help others.
Dave Ramsey is not a hypocrite. The older I've gotten, and taller, I realize how much further you fall down when ice skating or tripping on the sidewalk. For a child, it's no big deal. For me, the pain lasts longer, hurts more and more damage can be done. It's no different than those that have a lot of wealth and then loose it. He lost MILLIONS. What a hard blow to take and to survive. Your rearrange your life. He did, and interviewed many wealthy people. Not the ones blowing it all, but the ones that save, save, save. The ones that know exactly how much they spend on groceries....not just saying, "I'll pay my credit card bill at the end of the month."
When we started to become debt free it was, "well, what we're currently doing isn't really working. We don't like the feeling of not being able to catch up. And, some day, some day we'd love to make a constant donation at church and not calling it just "volunteering. We'd also like to be involved with our financial future in retirement." But, save for a rainy day...how are you supposed to do that when at the end of the month you're lucky to have two pennies to rub together?
We've learned and love it so much that I really enjoy helping others. However, its up to them. It's hard work. There's no easy button. But it is possible. Why, just another family declared their debt free. Ones that used to be our neighbors. Great young couple, two little boys and living in a very cute, but small neighborhood. Now, they're going to start building wealth. Within one year, they can build an emergency fund of 6 months of their expenses. So, if one should loose a job, or another become ill or injured, they'll be able to care for themselves. Then, once their home is paid off, well, that just boggles the mind. You see, those that are debt free are so used to making every penny count, that it's hard to go in reverse. you can never go back again. We will ALWAYS have a grocery budget, a gas budget, a clothing budget, a Starbucks budget, home repair budget, car budget, retirement budget, savings budget, giving budget. Yes, a budget for everything!!!! It's not recording what you do AFTER the fact, it's sitting down and saying what you're going to do in ADVANCE.
Just try it. Sit down, write out your bills and categorize them by necessity and debt. Then make another for clothes, car, birthdays, holidays etc. I'm sure it's tough to plan ahead if there is a lot of debt, or any. Now, pretend you are debt free...make your budget. Include 10% for retirement every month and 10% for giving. Wouldn't you just love to give your time AND money? For you always know, money has to buy the items that you use while volunteering. If you sing, it's for the conductor and music, if you garden, it's for the seeds, rakes, and water. It has to come from somewhere. Wouldn't you love to do that? You can! Try it, you may just like it. And it is possible.
So, is Dave Ramsey a hypocrite? No, he learned from his mistakes and he is sharing it with the rest of the world. He's had to do it on his own. Way to Dave. But I'm so thankful that I'm following in his footsteps. Small, baby steps at a time. Building a small emergency fund helps to eliminate need for a credit card, then start paying off debt. One at a time. This helps to create better habits.
Go for it. If you try it for a year, then go back to your old ways. But you have to work HARD for one year. I guarantee you won't go back.
We all dream it. When I retire, we'll go traveling around the world. We'll have that beautiful home we always wanted. We'll be with our families. We'll do okay. Or, like most, you don't think about it, or don't want to think about it. Why? It's too painful to realize you haven't been saving.
I'll admit it, we didn't start when we should. But, we are now, running the numbers, we know we'll be just fine. But how do you know just how much to put in? And how can you increase those numbers when we're so far into debt? But we have to support our children with their activities, school and college.
Here's the deal, I'll be blunt, simple, and to the point. Your children are not a good return on an investment...in the dollar sense. If you were concerned more about investments, you wouldn't have had children. HOWEVER, you don't want to be a burden to them either. Just like you don't want your 26 year old moving back home and watching tv, you don't want to move in with your children because the social security check isn't high enough.
I've said it before, I don't mind clients taking out a student loan. But, you better be ready to pay it off, and pay it off quickly. Don't sit around and get that tax refund every year while you're paying so much in interest. If you donated 10% of your income, you'd have the same tax return rate and feel better about giving to an organization that you care about. You're children will be fine with a student loan, IF they know that they owe back on it whether they graduate or not. AND if they understand that going to a private school to get a teaching, social worker degree isn't that smart. The extra dollars don't earn you enough extra cash with your employer. Be smart about it, pay it off quickly, build wealth and move on!
It is hard though to jump on the band wagon when it's going full speed. Many have to stop, figure out how to get out of debt and stay out of debt, then be able to move forward. I am not a financial planner. I'm not a lawyer or tax accountant. I manage budgets and help people with their life styles. I do know that when I see couples coming through, barely able to make it on their current income, without anything going towards retirement, that they won't survive. When you retire, you're on a FIXED income. It won't increase, it'll never increase. While medicare, taxes, food, gas, clothing all increase, your retirement income will stay the same. You will always have to trim here and trim there. If you're not used to doing that, it's going to be difficult to fly to see your granddaughter right after she's born. Or to see your grandson graduate from high school. You want to be there for their events. It doesn't mean they'll all live right around you.
Get out of debt, FAST. So you can start planning and move forward in life. I want you to enjoy the simple pleasures without worrying about the future. You just have to plan for them and tell every penny how it's going to behave.
I'm a middle-class citizen. VERY middle class. I do know it's possible, and wonderful to be debt free. It works. You just have to make it work.
Meanwhile, I'll be making sure I keep up with technology so I can visit with future grandchildren, pay to go to their events, and I'm expecting that my three children will be in three completely different parts of the world. I'm excited to see what they'll be up to and where they'll be going. So, we're taking care of our retirement, planning on being debt free and enjoying and extra ice cream cone with a
Yes, yes goals and being held accountable can hurt. BAD. Recently, I've started running, just in the past 3 days. So, I've VERY new to this world. Runners are crazy people. Going out and doing a 5K just for the fun of it. What's the fun in running super early in the morning, sore muscles all the time, and for what? Do you ever see a runner smile?
As you know, I've always danced. The classes I take at our local Y are the cardio-sclupt/fit and kickboxing. I always thought I was in shape, but recently, it's like my body is telling me I'm OLD. My young 20's just aren't there anymore, neither with my 30's! My bones creak, my feet ache, I'm just plain getting older. Surely starting to run right now would kill me, plus, put me in a group with those "crazy runners".
I made the "mistake" of posting on FB that I ran a mile without stopping. Well, that opened up a can of worms. However, as a friend said to me once, "Well, you can't catch very many fish without worms." So, I posted it again the next day, feeling better after my run, still at a mile though. This is from the person that wouldn't run more than past two houses. Well, my mistake is growing. My cousin's wife messaged me to run a half-marathon with her. WHAT???? Really??? That's insane. However, I love them dearly. They live far away so we don't get a chance to get together often. So, out of wanting to see them so badly, I said yes. WHAT? I can't believe it myself, let the pain, sweat and tears begin. However, a transformation will as well.
Setting goals. Realistic goals. Is it realistic for me to run in a half-marathon? Yes. I know that I just have to work hard every day and not give up. There's someone watching over me, literally. Almost like a parent or teacher expecting high goals out of a student. That student will then thrive in that environment in which challenges them. We need that as adults. However, we need to do it to ourselves. In part, setting goals and telling others about your goals keeps you ACCOUNTABLE to those goals. I can't back out now. No way! My foot is in my mouth, but I'll run anyway! It'll be interesting to watch that's for sure! But I'll be so ecstatic about getting it done, with the people I love. Better yet, with cousins I barely ever get to see.
It's no different than money management and budgeting. Setting goals and knowing how to get there. It's not as simple as slipping on shoes and running. I have to go through a training program. So should we all for money management. Setting goals, making plans, and you'll reach that freedom. However, it won't work if you don't start telling people about it. "We're eliminating our debt!" "Sorry, can't go out to eat...not in our NEW budget. However, in a year we'll be able to take YOU out to eat!" "No more credit cards for us!" "No more student loans!" WHOOO HOOO!!!
So what are you waiting for? Change something...the day is almost over. What are your goals? If you don't experience pain, then it won't change you.
Oh, and runners DO smile. They smile because they're healthy. They smile because they like the burn in their lungs. They smile because they can feel their body being used to the full extent that it was intended. I saw one lady working out that had to have been 40 weeks pregnant and another lifting weights while in a wheelchair. They didn't have an excuse...they are an inspiration to others. Get out there, set your goal, and tell others so you can hold yourself accountable to it!!