We can choose to wallow in the negatives in life, or we can seek to get ahead through applying some positive approaches and strategies. So whether you’re thinking about your finances or life in general, consider the following:
Look at what you’ve got. We spend so much time trying to ‘fix’ things and add new things, we sometimes don’t fully appreciate what we have. If you have a skill or talent, acknowledge it. In fact, sing it from the mountain top. You’ve spent a lot of money on some good stuff in the past, so enjoy it. Remember, there are things about you that others could only dream about having.
Dress the part. The old adage, “Don’t dress where you are, dress where you want to be”, goes a long way. But that also includes all forms of grooming. Is your hair more surfer than CEO? Is your make up more vamp than VP? Do you want to represent a certain way of life? It’s up to you.
Read. We all know that many successful people had to come through unspeakable hardships to get to where they are now. So why not read about them? Their biographies can be part inspiration, part model of how to apply yourself in life. If they can conquer financial problems, why can’t you?
Listen. We all learn differently, and reading may not be everyone’s bag. So how about watching or listening instead? If you can’t stretch your hard-earned cash to watch personal development gurus Tony Robbins or Wayne Dyer in person, then why not buy one of their programs? Or cheaper still, simply go onto YouTube for inspiration. And there are so many tips on finance there as well. If it works, it works.
Be nice. A smile and a compliment don’t cost anything and can go a long, long way.
Be helpful. Remember, ‘getting ahead’ isn’t just about you. There are 7 billion of us sharing this rock and every act of kindness helps in our interconnectedness. It’s the butterfly effect. It’s good for the soul.
Choose who you hang around with. It’s been said that we are the average of the five people we spend most of our time with. Think about that. Are the people you surround yourself with lifting you up, keeping things stable or dragging you down? Are they going to inspire you to a greater financial existence? It’s your call as to what these people mean to your past, present and future.
Be positive. It’s obvious, really, yet we forget that thinking and acting positively is far better for us than thinking and acting negatively. If you need a reminder to be positive once in a while, set an alarm in your phone to pop up, “I’m just amazing”, or whatever takes your fancy.
Note down the good bits. It’s good to record your successes. Big ones, little ones, money ones, personal ones, communal ones, national ones. Any that move the dial inside of you. One strategy is to find an empty jar, write any success that you may have on a piece of paper and then place it in the jar. At the end of the year, open it and see how amazingly successful your year actually has been.
Filter out the bad bits. We all know that consuming unhealthy stuff isn’t good for us. And ‘consuming’ relates to eating, drinking, watching, listening and so on. We are bombarded with negative images and influences, and we are all in a position to decide what to absorb. There’s no need to wallow in debt conversations. The less of the bad stuff that encases us, the more the good stuff can get through.
At least you tried. Not everything you turn your hand to will succeed. That’s the way life works. We try, we fail, we learn, we adapt. But as long as we take on board the lesson from it not working, well, we haven’t really failed. You’ve lived and learned.
Get out there. No man is an island. You need to stay connected. You need to interact with people that can move you forward. You need to realise that you alone won’t get you to the Promised Land. So network, join clubs, make new friends. From a finance perspective, consider a coach or a mentor. Move on from where you already are, basically.
Little by little. Rome wasn’t built in a day and all that. Not all change has to come via big sweeping actions. In fact, little habits, actions and behaviors can go a long way. If you implement small changes every single day, you’ll be surprised what advancements you can achieve.
Be authentic. It’s a phrase we’ve all heard but don’t always know how to apply. Basically, it’s about being real. Being real in your interactions with others, being real with how you choose to live your life, being real about walking the walk, being real about what you want to represent. Being real to yourself. Keeping up with the Jones is not being authentic. Saying you want to retire at 55 but spending like you’ll retire at 85 is not being authentic.