This post is written as part of Ruth Soukup’s Secret 13 Blog Tour, which I am excited to be a part of along with many other inspiring bloggers. To learn more about the blog tour and join us, click HERE. To find out more about the Secret 13 Essay Contest and your chance to win a weeklong Carnival Cruise for 4, click HERE. There may be affiliate links in this post, for more information please see my disclosure policy.
Does your life seem like a crazy episode of Sherlock? Mine does everyday. You lay in bed first thing in the morning thinking, “how am I going to do everything that needs to be done today?”. Then the crazy train in my head starts and it jumps off the tracks several times daily. The struggle and the secret to reaching your goals is real!
Why is it so hard to be focused? Why can I not seem to get the simple things finished? Why do I always think the next gadget will help me get it all done? I don’t know. I have no answers. I was hard-wired this way. Does this mean I can’t change some of those inherit DNA characteristics? No. You can, and it is easier than you think. Just by a few simple changes you / we can stop the crazy train, and stay on the track.
Ruth Soukup has written a book called “Living Well ,Spending Less: 12 Secrets of the good Life ” and it goes on sale tomorrow. You ask what does that book have to do with goals? A lot. Ruth has given us 12 Secrets to help us live the good life ,and how to get there. I was given a free copy to read in exchange for my honest opinion.
All of her secrets are life changing, but secret #4 “Written Goals Can Change Your Life” reached out of the book and smacked me straight in the forehead. Yes, it really did. (Not really, but it felt like it.) I love to start great things, but I struggle to finish these great things. Following through shouldn’t be so hard, but it is. Secret #4 has given me the tools to focus, not only the short-term but the long-term. I always see where I want to be, but knowing where to start and following through is the struggle. Can you relate?
Secret #4 Write. It. Down. Yes, write it all down. Write down the goals you have, and hang them where you can see them everyday. I love visual reminders, it is one way to stay the road, it visually shows you where you want to go, like a map. Without a map we only go on intuition, and we all know where that can end up, on a dead-end road with banjo’s playing in the background. Scary. I want to know where I’m going and exactly how to get there. I want to know the coordinates, roads, pit stops, rest areas, gas stations, fun places to visit a long the way, cost, who’s going with me, who will be there when I get there, and the end point.
We all need these directions and stops in our life. We need to know the coordinates ( Writing our goals down) so we know exactly which direction we are headed, where we are going, where we will be passing through, and ending up. We need to know HOW to get there, the roads that need to be taken, or paved along our journey. If we need to carve out new ones, or take the ones already there.
We need to know the pit stops, what can and will try to stand in our way. How do we get around those? You need a plan, having a plan will help avoid those detours and give you peace of mind when they arise.
Rest stops are also vital to our survival. Have you ever taken a trip and not stop to rest and move you legs? Not I didn’t think so. That would be crazy, right? So why do we do it, not rest, or take care of ourselves? I am so guilty of this it’s not funny. Rest is vital, so please find a sweet spot and rest in it for a while, you will be motivated and inspired to continue your journey.
Where do you fill your gas tanks? If you never fill your tanks, you either run on fumes, or run out of gas. To some that means forgetting your goals, and to other that can mean depression. Desperation is not a fun feeling, you end up searching for the first gas station that may have what you need, but you find out they only have 85 octane when you need 90. Routine tune-ups and servicing your mind will be one of the things that will guide you to your goals. Daily devotions or joining a bible study are some great ways to fill up. I fill up on Jesus because he is the ONLY way. Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6. But you, O LORD, be not far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me. Psalm 22:19.
Ask God to fill you up daily, he knows exactly where we need to go, and how to get there. When you feel weak, let him know. When you feel lost, ask him where you need to go. He is the only station that will have everything you need.
Define Fun: Something I am horrible at. We all need to find the fun on our journeys. Find your fun again. You know that quirky little museum that is a little out-of-the-way, but would be so much fun to visit. Be the museum. Be the fun. Find out what you enjoy, and just do it. It will help clear your mind, and may even give you new ideas you have never thought of before. Having fun may help you to live longer, it relieves tension, releases endorphins, and helps your heart. It really does! Go find your fun, and share it with those you love. They will only benefit from it.
“Your sense of humor is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.”
Know that cost of your journey so you can prepare for it. If you are not prepared you will be broke, literally broke down. There is nothing worse than being stranded on the side of the road and not having the money for a tow. You end up taking a detour you hadn’t planned on. Sometimes those detours have the power to completely stop us from going any further. Don’t let that happen to you. Plan ahead. Look at all the possibilities and plan for those, there will ALWAYS be something, just don’t let it break you down. More on this secret #8 in Living Well, Spending Less: 12 Secrets To The Good Life.
Who’s on your ride with you ,and who will be there with you at the end? Do you have people who love and support you riding with you? There is nothing worse than being excited about something and then having someone come along and squash your dreams. Make sure those who are with you are REAL friends, people who love you unconditionally, will be with you no matter if you succeed or fail. You need cheerleaders, friends to sing crazy songs with you, eat junk food, and keep you awake when you feel yourself nodding off and running off the road. Only let those people in, they are the ones that will be with you at the end of this journey and they will of love every minute of it. Be intentional, don’t just let any one in. People have the power of life and death with their tongues, have those who speak life surround you.
The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences. Proverbs 18:21
Your goal, the end prize, you can do it. Believe me when I say writing it down and preparing for the journey will be easier than you thought, more fun than you could have imagined, and you’ll be closer to God than you have ever been before. You can celebrate with those who have loved you along the way, and enjoy the benefits of your hard work. Enjoy it. Share with others how you reached your goals, and encourage them on their own journey. Be the cheerleader they may need, be the prayer partner they have prayed for, and be the fun to remind them life is precious.
Discover your own secret of the Good Life in Ruth Soukup’s new book, Living Well Spending Less: 12 Secrets of the Good Life. Through personal stories and practical action plans, she will inspire you to make real and lasting changes to your personal goals, homes, and finance. It is real, honest, and speaks to the heart of the matter—how can you live the life you’ve always wanted? (And be sure to preorder now to take advantage of Ruth’s AWESOME preorder bonuses!!)