Music Mondays – Let’s Get It Started

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Let’s Get It Started

I used to have the kind of job where the end of the year was just another workweek for me. In fact, I had one job where the success of my corporate clients hinged on what they did with their investments prior to the close of the year, so I typically worked late into the evenings on both Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve to assure success for my clients.

The last two year-ends since I became my own boss, I have opted for a different strategy. Rather than run myself ragged only to start a new year exhausted, I have taken the time to consciously rest, process the end of the year and prepare for the coming year, and I have to say that I much prefer this process and the results it yields.

Resting Before I Start

The week of Christmas was chaotic with holiday prep, holiday parties, dinner with friends and family time; however, the following week, I did just about nothing. I started watching Rescue Me on Netflix and worked my way through the first season. I watched all three extended versions of the Lord of the Rings movies with my hubby (it’s his favorite book and movie of all time). I read a book from my favorite author, and I mastered Candy Crush and the Frozen version of that called Freefall.

I say that I accomplished nothing, but actually, I accomplished the reverse. On Friday, I woke up and literally felt flush with ideas, strategies and energy. I have crazy lists on paper, on my phone and in my head going. On Saturday, I organized my entire home so that I have a clear environment to match my clear mind. On Sunday, the thoughts continued and I began writing filled with inspiration. I feel excited and full of energy just like the runner at the beginning of a race.

Ready for the Race

I know what the runner feels like because I ran track when I was in middle school. I wasn’t very good, but I enjoyed participating on the team with my friends. I was never fast enough to run the 100-meter event, so I raced in the 200 meter or 400 meter events.

I don’t know if you have ever run track, but there is a huge difference in preparing for the 200 and 400-meter events. The 200-meter is just half the track and the 400-meter is a full track lap. I hated running the 400-meter because that track is deceptively easy when you first look at it. How hard is one lap you ask yourself? Well, the problem with the one lap is that you have to run it pretty hard, as opposed to steady and measured in the longer races. It’s tough to run hard for a full lap, but if you prepare your mind for it, you can do it.

If our adult lives are like a marathon race, then each year is like the 400-meter event.

You have one lap to run as hard as you can and get the best results possible. I can’t tell you how many clients I have sat with who have doubted the results that I tell them are possible in a year, and yet many of them now are hitting those goals. They are hitting the goals because they understand the race, they know what the track looks like, they are rested up and they are focused on results.

My Clients Are Getting Started (whether they know it or not)

Just like I give myself the end of year to regroup and recharge, I give my clients the same thing. Many of them have not heard from me and that’s because I think even they need a break from my nagging encouraging. Their break from me is over, though. Most of them will be hearing from me in the next few weeks and I will be reminding them of what the 2015 track looks like, what’s important to them and what they need to focus on.

For those of you who don’t quite know what the track looks like or you want to up your game, every Wednesday in January I plan to share the 15 of 15. Each week I will share 15 ways to achieve various goals whether it’s saving, making money, investing or debt reduction. My hope is that it will help you define your race or at least give you something else to focus on this year.

Thanks to doing nothing, I am at the starting line for 2015, the race gun is about to sound and I plan to get this year started, and the Black Eyed Peas are motivating me at the start.

What are you starting in 2015? What do you hope to accomplish in one year? What’s your 2015 motivation to get things done?

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Shannon is a financial planner who left a “traditional” financial services firm to start her own company, The Financial Gym, because she felt traditional financial services firms did not have the tools or resources to help people in their 20s and 30s who are starting out and trying to build assets while also managing debt. She realized that the key to long-term personal financial success is a commitment to financial fitness and making smart financial choices. Through her blog, Financially Blonde, her book, Train Your Way To Financial Fitness, her podcast, Martinis and Your Money and The Financial Gym, Shannon is committed to making financial fitness fun, easy and accessible for everyone.

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