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Taking the Plunge with a One Way Ticket

One Way Ticket to Asia

One Way Ticket to Asia

Sorry for the lack of posts lately, but the past few weeks have been a bit of a blur. A whirlwind of visiting friends, some delightful small gatherings and final farewells with relatives. We had a massive wedding on hubby’s side of the family which was a fantastic way to catch up with everyone and tell them our crazy plans. Plus, we both overindulged with way too much food and wine thrown into the mix. If I remember rightly, I hiccuped and giggled all the way back from the wedding reception. By my side was hubby chuckling softly and shushing me to be quiet. Yeah right. I just increased the intensity of hiccups and giggles in the middle of a still night. The other hotel guests must have wondered what the silly bunch of noises were that emanated across the ground. It has been a riot of fun capped off with a weekend in Sydney with our closest friend prior to flying out on Monday 11 March – one way ticket in hand.

The only way to really describe how I have felt in these past weeks though is from Seinfeld.

(Kramer) “I’m freaking right out here Jerry!”

Surely you have had this type of lead up to a big life event. Super excited one minute, and totally flipping out the next. When a gigantic life change is about to happen, it is usually accompanied by mixed emotions.  In my mind, this is a massive change. I have temporarily given up a great life for the hope of an even greater one.

For me taking the plunge, and the time, I have been pining for over the past 18 months to finally work in my business is monumental. It means that I need to move my business from a pipe dream to a reality. There is a mountain of work and adjustment in front of me, in front of both of us, as we adjust to this new life. Going overseas but not going on holidays is quite bizarre. No activities to plan, no Pina Coladas by the ocean, no shopping ‘til you drop, no over indulgences  It doesn’t have that same vacation anticipation. In many ways that is a good thing. Whilst I always feel like a tourist in a foreign country, I still want to absorb myself into the culture and get to know the locals, not just go nuts for 7 days and come home exhausted.

My motivation is that I want the lifestyle of earning my income from my laptop. This lifestyle means different things to different people. For me it means time to spend with family and friends, and time to travel on a flexible schedule and see the world. Many times I have sat down and thought about the alternatives such as working temp jobs and saving to go on extended trips. It could work, but it doesn’t hold the same appeal in my eyes.

What would this type of lifestyle mean to you?

Overlooking the Positive Points in Your Life

I have been inspired by Marc and Angel’s 10 Things You Must Give up to Move Forward based on principles by Steven R Covey. It was shared by a very good friend of mine through Facebook. So I have decided to put myself out there and write my thoughts on each of the 10 things based on my personal experience and opinion.

Dear Hubby's Delicious Coffee

Number 9 | Overlooking the Positive Points in Your Life

The key to true happiness is that it starts right here and right now. You have to be happy with yourself and your life at this very moment. Happiness is not based on future what ifs. One of the easiest ways to be happy and appreciate what you have in life is to have an attitude of gratitude. You will have a hard time being happy if you are not thankful for the good things in your life right now. Sure, there are times when life gets pretty average and it can be a struggle to think of anything good. But spending time daily either writing down or thinking of these good things in your life can instantly improve your mood and put you in a positive frame of mind.

One of the ways I have maintained this attitude of gratitude in the past is by being accountable on social networks. For me, to create a positive start to 2012, I wrote a daily post of Facebook with what I was grateful for. This could be anything from small pleasures like my husband making me a delicious coffee in the morning, to something major like being grateful for having a reliable form of transport so I could get to work or spending special time with my family or friends.

Life is really like a choose your own adventure book. Only you can choose the direction you take, the decisions that make up your life as it currently is, and the way you react to negative situations that inevitably pop up. It can be a constant struggle, but at least by putting positive thoughts out there, you can move forward towards the life you really want.

As a side note, “The Opposite of Happiness is Boredom” from Tim Ferriss in The Four Hour Work Week

Down time or quiet time is not boredom, it is a time to take stock of your life and appreciate what you have. Boredom though, often comes about through a lack of fun, games and adventure. As an adult, we are often very serious and have many stresses and pressures that we can forget to have fun. If you find yourself having little to appreciate, schedule some fun into your life. Time with friends and family, a sport that you enjoy, a funny movie, whatever it takes to put a smile on your face. This is different for everyone, so find out what excites you then do it.

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

Running Away from Your Problems

I have been inspired by Marc and Angel’s 10 Things You Must Give up to Move Forward based on principles by Steven R Covey. it was shared by a very good friend of mine through Facebook. So I have decided to put myself out there and write my thoughts on each of the 10 things based on my personal experience and opinion.

Number 7 | Running Away from Your Problems

Running away from your problems

Are you running away from your problems or towards them?

“Running away from your problems is a race you will never win” TWEET THIS

It is easy for me to sit here and say just face your problems head on, and overcome them. In other words, get over it. I am sure you may have heard that before. The trouble is, it won’t help you one iota.

When you are deeply entangled in a particular problem, or even a multitude of problems, it is like being stuck in a spiders web. It is all encompassing. You can feel like you will never move forward or get out of it. So you need to face your problems head on to move forward and have the life you truly want. In the words of Ty Bowes – “Resignation and ‘quiet desperation’ are not living”.

So where do you start? 

Devote some time to considering your situation and pinpointing the actual issues. This can be harder than you think. Sometimes problems are obvious such as addictions, overwhelming debt, an awful marriage or any number of real and evident problems. Other times it can be a niggling concern that you can’t quite identify. Take some time out and work hard to determine your problems. It only then that you can start working towards a positive outcome.

Don’t deceive yourself. Whilst it may seem simple to put on an external persona that you think the world wants to see, your heart will know the truth. Trying to live a double life is the basis of massive internal personal conflict. Do not go through your life living a lie. Being truthful with yourself is the greatest way to move forward.

Ask for help if you need it. This can be either personal or professional. You are not a failure if you need help to get through an issue. In fact, it indicates that you are more committed to making positive change in your life.

When working towards successfully breaking through your problems, don’t try to do too much at once. Small, but rock-solid steps are much more effective than large but superficial leaps.

Reward yourself for taking on minor challenges and actually winning.

Also understand that big problems can feel like a mountain in front of you and they will take time to work through. Kind of like eating an elephant – you can only take one bite at a time.

Lastly, be kind to yourself.

What problems have you overcome in your life that have allowed you to move forward? Comment below.

 

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

Your Need to be Right

I have been inspired by Marc and Angel’s 10 Things You Must Give up to Move Forward based on principles by Steven R Covey. it was shared by a very good friend of mine through Facebook. So I have decided to put myself out there and write my thoughts on each of the 10 things based on my personal experience and opinion.

The best things in life don’t come from being right

Number 6 | Your Need to be Right

To move forward in life you really need to pick your battles. When you are always trying to be right, it makes it very difficult to learn new things and progress towards your chosen lifestyle. It is not worth ending important relationships with the people you love because you feel you always have to be right. It is a very fast way to alienate friends and colleagues as well.

It is fine to be passionate about what you’re doing and to want a better life for yourself. Being driven and determined are not bad traits to have. But always being aggressive and argumentative is not the way to treat your immediate friends and family.

The people close to you are your support network. They are the ones that helps keep you balanced when you are trying to make progress. It is okay to be wrong and it is okay to get some constructive criticism. Receiving feedback from those around you is a great way to grow within yourself and get new ideas for your life. However, continually arguing and trying to bring others down around you will move you backwards faster than you can blink.

Always trying to be right is not the way to move yourself towards to an improved version of your life. CLICK TO TWEET

A little bit of compromise and grace will go a long way to helping you having the life you desire. It will make those around you feel more comfortable and you will be more comfortable with your decisions. You deserve the best in life and you deserve every chance for success in the world. But you don’t always have to be right.

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

Being Indecisive About What You Want

I have been inspired by Marc and Angel’s 10 Things You Must Give up to Move Forward based on principles by Steven R Covey. it was shared by a very good friend of mine through Facebook. So I have decided to put myself out there and write my thoughts on each of the 10 things based on my personal experience and opinion.

Being Indecisive About What You Want

10 Things you Must Give Up to Move Forward – Being Indecisive About What You Want

Number 3 | Being Indecisive About What You Want

You will never move forward or improve anything until you have decided where you would rather be. Figure out what you want and then pursue it passionately.

If you are unsure of where to start, try answering these questions:

  • What is one thing you want to do daily?
  • What is one thing you must do before you die – a once in a lifetime experience?
  • Where is the place you have always wanted to live?
  • What is something you have always wanted to do but have never prioritized?
  • How do you want to generate cash flow?

 

Sometimes your circumstances can cause frustration. You know what you want, but it feels out of reach. I have often had times in my own life like these. So how do you get around it? Be absolutely single minded and driven to get where you want to be….and keep going….now you are getting closer.

Don’t forget to tell your story in the comments below – what are you being indecisive about in your life?

 

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

The Shame of Past Failures

I have been inspired by Marc and Angel’s 10 Things You Must Give up to Move Forward based on principles by Steven R Covey. it was shared by a very good friend of mine through Facebook. So I have decided to put myself out there and write my thoughts on each of the 10 things based on my personal experience and opinion.

Caution Epic Personal Failure

10 Things you Must Give Up to Move Forward –The Shame of Past Failures

Number 2 | The Shame of Past Failures

Your future life has nothing to do with your past. Your past has shaped you into the person you are today, but your future lies in the person you create starting right now. So here is the burning question. Who do you want to be?

Now what actions are you going to take to get to that point? Most of us will have to deal with the consequences of our previous decisions. But there is no reason not to start moving towards your future self right now. You owe it to yourself to be absolutely one minded and driven to create a life that is of your own design.

If you have no idea where to start, try some of these ideas

  • Set dates – if there are things that need to be completed, put together a plan and set dates to make it happen
  • Deal with things – stop being an ostrich and get your head out of the sand. You need to face the music, suck it up and get on with it. Ask for help, get the support you need and move on.
  • Dreamline – writing down your dreamlines gives you a clear view of what you want. Think: BE-DO-HAVE
  • Bucket list – putting together your bucket list will give you some inspiration to achieve greater things

 

I have had my own failures in life, but at the moment I have 2 major blockages.

The first is my debt. I feel like it is a mountain, but in reality it isn’t. It is just something I need to allocate cash flow to service. Nothing more, nothing less.

My second blockage is making excuses not to move forward with my business and continually second guessing myself about whether it is a good idea or not. For this, I need to set dates and make it happen.

I would love for you to share your story of your future self and some of your struggles in the comments.

 

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

10 things you must give up to move forward based on principles by Steven R Covey

Entrepreneur or Employee??

You have completed the process of dreamlining are now you are ready to fulfil your dreamlines, commit to long term travel or simply spend more time being with friends and family or doing the things you love. However, you are still unsure whether to be an entrepreneur or an employee. Hopefully this will help.

In my humble opinion the answer is to do both. Here is why:

Your day job gives you a regular income which is nice for surviving in this crazy old world. My solution to being both an employee and an entrepreneur lies in bending your day job to your will. What do I mean? I am referring to temp work. Temping is great for your income and your free time – you know the old time vs money debate.

By taking on set length contracts you can continue to have a regular income, generally at a higher rate than a permanent employee due to the nature of temp jobs. In your spare time you can build on your business ideas. Then at the end of your contract, spend some time doing those things you love before taking on your next gig.

During your break from work, concentrate on building your businesses. The break will give you a clear headspace to work from and if you can change location and free yourself from your normal day to day life, you will find the break to be refreshing and inspiring. If your business isn’t quite where you want it to be financially you can hit the next temp gig and repeat the process until you are making money from your business.

Making this work financially comes back to setting clear dreamlines and being crystal clear in your conscious spending plan. Also having a target end date will assist you in sticking to your dreamlines.

So how does this fit in with your current life plan? Leave some comments below to share your thoughts with our community.

Oct 20, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    4 Comments

Are you having a Breakdown or a Breakthrough?

 Every Problem has a gift for you in its hands - Richard Bach

I was listening to The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss the other day and this quote nearly made me stop dead in my tracks. “Are you having a Breakdown or a Breakthrough? “. You know when you have an understanding that something in your life is super tough. A time when you are struggling to find meaning. A time when people are saying things to you like ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and ‘One door closes and another door opens’ and ‘You will be FINE’ (Freaked out, Insecure, Neurotic and Emotional!). You know that these moments usually lead to something bigger and better, but in the heat of it all, you can really feel like you are in the middle of a big fat breakdown.

By the way, it has been a while since my last post. But frankly, life has been a little crazy lately. Yep, the mother of all months hit me like a ton of bricks. Long story short, on top of hubby’s little surfing accident and subsequent operation, we both lost our jobs in the same week. It is only now, a couple of months later, I am ok with writing about this. So, I was just about to go on a long awaited holiday to Malaysia and Singapore (more on these two in a later post), and BAMMMM my boss dropped me a bombshell – I would have no job to come back to. Whilst I was disappointed after three and a half years with the company, I could deal with it.

That was Monday, on Thursday, hubby’s boss rang (yes rang him) to say “You don’t have a job to come back to”. Nice to hear when you are laid up recovering from an operation. Fair? Not really. The boss didn’t even have the respect to speak to him face to face. Did we both proceed to have a mental breakdown? Pretty much. But deep deep down, we both intrinsically knew that something would change. This was the catalyst of all catalysts for change. I don’t think the Universe (or whoever is in charge) could have made the point any stronger.

Our plan prior to Breakdown has been to save a little to travel (8% of our after tax $$), and pay the mortgage off ASAP by putting every spare cent into it. The ultimate aim at the end of it was to work part time/casually while building businesses to support us down the track, and also to travel for more than 2 weeks at a time and more than once a year.

When we started thinking clearly about our situation, we both realised how trapped we felt in our jobs and by our mortgage. We thought if we put in the time now with our jobs and 110% effort then we would negotiate flexibility with our bosses later on so we could travel more. Well Breakdown has turned that right on its head. No more being controlled by our jobs. We will work on our terms, no one else’s.

So here is the new plan.

Part 1 of The Plan

Part of any income I make will be skimmed away into the travel fund at the rate of a week for week expense to slow travel. So say it costs a couple around $1500 per month to travel slowly, living in apartments rather than holidaying in a resort or staying in a hotel, then I will attempt stash $350 for each week that I work into the travel fund. Effectively this means that for every week we work, we can travel slowly at a later date. It is a big stretch and will depend on many factors, but as I have only been working part time and intend to work full time moving forward, it is a possibility that we can pull it off.

Part 2 of The Plan

Any excess income outside our expenses and travel funds from both combined wages will go to paying off the mortgage. This may mean that we are looking at a payout date a bit further in the future, but we can always decide to pay travel money off the mortgage if we feel no real desire to go somewhere. Any extra income will be as per our previous Conscious Spending Plan and be broken down as such.

The downside of this plan is that we will most likely have to relocate to achieve it due to a lack of work in our area. It is the price we are willing to pay. In the meantime, ironically, I have my job back. Albeit temporarily, but it will hold us over until such time as hubby has made a full recovery. He is getting closer and stronger every day.

 

Jun 9, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    No Comments

Holding my Ground

Every Cloud has a Silver Lining

Every Cloud has a Silver Lining

If you read my post called “The Reason”, you will remember my discussion about life’s curve balls and challenges. My apologies for being a little while between posts, but my hubby ended up having an operation and my priorities have obviously been elsewhere for the past few weeks. 

So today I wanted to discuss holding my ground. Not to get too personal but since dear hubby’s little accident, our income certainly took a nosedive. Generally, my income pays our bills and hubby’s is used for everything else. We are now in week 5 since his big wave wipeout and here is how our finances have gone. 

Week 1 – My regular income plus one full week of sick pay

Week 2 – My regular income plus just a little under one week of sick pay

Week 3 – My regular income plus a little overtime and one week of half holiday pay

Week 4 – A very lean week with about half my pay and half holiday pay (week of the operation)

Week 5 (this week) – A very lean week on my behalf and no more pay left for dear hubby

So what does all this have to do with Dreamlining? Well I have held my ground on my conscious spending plan so that future dreamlines can still be met. With dear hubby homebound and me doing some work from home where possible, our biggest expense, fuel, has dropped dramatically (like about 1/3 the normal cost), and that has allowed us to continue funding our dreamlines – in our case, travel. Sure it has been tight, but we are also not going out for dinner therefore cooking at home instead. We aren’t making extra headway on our other primary dreamline which is paying off the mortgage asap, but 2-3 months of treading water with it doesn’t make a huge difference in the big scheme of things. 

One thing that has inspired me about this whole crappy situation is that I don’t want to delay my dream life any longer. I am more determined to ensure that both our dreamlines are fulfilled. So the question is, how do you motivate yourself to continue moving towards your dreamlines when things get in the way?

May 13, 2012 - Cash Flow Generation    5 Comments

The Reason

Sometimes life throws you a curve ball. A challenge. As they say, life wasn’t meant to be easy. This week, I have had a big challenge thrown my way and it has got me thinking about a lot of things. One of those things I am thinking about is my reason for starting my business. See, my hubby had a little surfing accident…dropping down the face of a 9 foot wave landing awkwardly on his board and damaging his left leg pretty badly. That changes our income temporarily for fulfilling dreamlines and also puts a stop to many of his own dreamlines until we know the long term effects of his injury.

Which brings me to something I read and wrote down not so long ago. It goes a little something like this…

You must always have a:

  • Short term source of income to pay the bills
  • Two medium term projects that supplement that income
  • One long term project that is years away from fruition.

 

Cash Flowing into Pot of Gold

So what does all this have to do with dreamlining?

Income that’s what. Dreamlines are funded by cash flow and most of us have limited varieties of cash flowing into our lives. That is why I am starting my business whilst still working a regular job. An extra source of income would make a situation like this a little less of a worry financially.

The question you need to ask yourself is “Do I have a strong enough cash flow plan that allows me to fulfil my dreamlines now and in the future?” (or are you putting all your eggs in one basket?) My answer to that is…not quite. It is a good reminder to solidify our finances and it is THE reason I am building my side business.

Just quickly, if you haven’t read the posts on Dreamline Planning and Dreamline Planning Details, have a peek at these. My next couple of posts will go into the details of how to set up a conscious spending plan to fulfil your dreamlines.

 

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