It’s important to consider the pace you set to achieve your financial goals. If you set an unrealistic pace, you’re more likely to become overwhelmed or discouraged.
When I first arrived at Lukla, Nepal and prepared to make my ascent to Mount Everest Base Camp, the goal was ten days and over nine thousand vertical feet away.
I would have been kidding myself to think it could be done all at once!
Initially, the plan was to climb about one thousand feet in altitude, acclimate, and continue to the top incrementally. The first couple of days were pretty extreme. The thought of hiking ten hours per day over a challenging, seemingly endless path was overwhelming. My group began to convince itself that it was too difficult and considered turning back.
I wasn’t having it. I set my watch so that we would only focus on hiking for one hour with a water break at thirty minutes. We would not even talk about an eight-hour hike or what the rest of the day looked like. We wouldn’t talk about what “ifs” (for example: What if it gets dark? What if something terrible happens to us?). Everyone agreed to hike for only one hour and focus only on that one-hour!
Once we had gotten a few one-hour hikes under our belts with water breaks on the half hour, the group members stopped needing to take a break every thirty minutes. They felt they could easily continue, and they wanted to keep hiking for longer chunks of time. I remember one day specifically when the peak seemed miles and miles away. Because of our false perception, it appeared unreachable. So I set my watch for an hour, and we started hiking. Within forty-five minutes, we had arrived. The destination was actually closer than we realized.
In the same way, financial security may seem like it is unattainable, but you may simply be in need of a little perspective. The cure for being financially overwhelmed is persistence and knowledge. A robust savings account is achieved one step at a time. Put away ten dollars per paycheck knowing that, over time, that will add up to a large sum. In that way, you can create a new habit.You are often closer to success than you think you are!
If you have an area of finances that overwhelms you, surround yourself with books on the subject or go online to reputable sites. If you are more inclined to a discussion, try to find people who can provide strength in your area of weakness.
Financial stability may not happen overnight. By setting goals and starting the journey, you may find that you are only a short distance away from relief. Just put one foot in front of the other and get moving!
Turn your overwhelming feelings around:
• Know where you are and where you want to be.
• Learn the financial terrain.