So, there I was… 2007-8, Redundant, in debt, uncredit-worthy and absolutely F@*ked!!
That was my shit’uation within my first year of arriving in London. The recession helped all that along but so too did bad management of my personal finances. Never-the-less, my self-esteem slipped to an all time low and my confidence was just slight enough to put on a smiling face so no one would know…
Finding Jobs that wanted were few and far between and after a few months of scrapping I eventually decided it was time fall back on to other skills, bartending – Not the healthiest of environments to be in when you’re not feeling to great about yourself but it did provide some temporary escapism distracting me from the real issue. I have to say though – despite losing weight, living like a vampire and consuming fast convenient food – the colourful mix of people I worked with really did make it all worthwhile even though the money wasn’t great. It got me by and the recreational aspects of the job were perks.
I did learn this wasn’t for me or sustainable for the ‘future me’ that I wanted to be. I needed more and wanted more so a new plan of action had to be developed and executed if I was to become this distant future-self, the person I believed I was meant to be…
That, was 7 years ago and I’m now healthy, happy, debt-free, married, an employed homeowner, a start-up business owner, avid travel (I could be more so!!), surrounded with amazing people, I have creative hobbies that I love and, finally, I’m pursuing a career as a personal coach.
How did this change come about?
Have you ever noticed that when you’re broke you come up creative ways to make money and you also learn great ideas about making your money work for you – when you eventually have some?!!
Here’s the process I went through. Hopefully, you find something useful…
Step 1: Don’t bullshit yourself
I had to be honest with myself in assessing the gravity of my situation and be honest with my peers for support and understanding (and even advice). The great thing about this phase is getting a game plan together and developing that 360º view of your situation and the landscape that you are in. Yes I couldn’t do certain things like going out partying or do holidays with friends – I remember that my girl and friends went to the exit festival in Croatia, Man, I was gutted – but by adding the details and breaking my goals into smaller goals or milestone I kept my focus on the tasks at hand.
Step 2: Do your research
Though everyone’s shit’uation is different (financial or other), there’s a good chance that you’re not the first person to be in it. Jump online and start digging to find ways to steer your situation towards the light at the end of that tunnel and achieving your goals (and this goes for learning new things). It’s up to you to take action and get a game plan together.
Step 3: Stay Focused
Staying focused can be challenging, especially when times are tough but you know what – You want this, you’ve made the decision and things don’t progress by themselves. Only you can keep the momentum alive, just remember that with every step in the right direction is a step towards your goal and each small ‘win’ no matter what it is (the perfect cup of tea to start your day, getting up earlier, studying for 1hr a day, etc…) adds to the small ‘wins’ before and soon you’ll be looking back at a stack of wins and be closer to your bigger goal.
Now, is temporary.
Step 4: Celebrate
When you achieve something really challenging and the smile won’t rub off your face and Hi5’ing yourself just won’t cut it – In these moments need a little celebration or treat. but not too much, there’s still work to be done…!!.
Beware: some treats are dangerous and could be counter productive!! I’m a vinyl junkie and proud to be on but when you can’t afford it so walking into a record store to buy a single record doesn’t work!! When I walk into record stores all logic and restraint leaves my body. Soon I’ll walk out of the store and snap out of it to realise I’ve spent too much on this black gold!!
Step 5: Don’t Stop Setting Goals and Be Responsible For Achieving Them
Keep the momentum going. Set short term goals, long term goals, relationship goals, career… And if you share your goals with friends and family not only have you made them real but they can also support you in staying motivated and focused.
YOU’RE ONLY RESTRICTED BY THE LIMITATIONS YOU PUT ON YOURSELF