Brainwash Yourself to Financial Independence

One of the reasons I decided to start this blog was because of the effect other blogs have had on my life. I started with reading Zen Habits while I had some time at work, and Leo Babauta encouraged me to bring inner reflection and intention to my days.

My next major breakthrough was with Courtney Carver’s Be More With Less. Every post seemed to have nuggets of wisdom gently challenging me to let go of my things and busy agenda, and to listen to my heart. I gave myself the permission to let go of everything I was holding into that was “still good.” While my friends and family bemused at my detachment from things, I knew having less to worry about, less weight on my soul was good for me.

Finally, while looking for reviews of Your Money or Your Life, I found Mr. Money Moustache‘s blog and speed read through it. Then for a year, I DID ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. I still can’t believe it given all that wisdom. I didn’t have a car, so at least I knew I wasn’t going to get punched in the face for that. Finally, after months of telling myself I really had to get on top of this financial independence thing, I realized I had to start from the beginning and read every post. It was tedious. It was slightly manic. But my aim was to brainwash myself into this.

I feel that about all my goals. If there isn’t a seismic shift in my life, there will be no change. While I was reading the blog I started identifying things that had to go. My term life insurance. My personal cell phone (I now use my business cell phone and no longer cart two devices around). Two snacks a day. Expensive protein powder smoothies. Meanwhile, every month, I increased my automatic contributions to various accounts and goals. It wasn’t easy, so the change had to come gradually. Most importantly, I continued to “brainwash” myself by reading FI posts the first thing in the morning, and before I go to bed. I aimed to learn, cut expenses, and invest more every day. Improving daily is now a habit.

Here are some other tricks to achieving success in your goals:

  • Do something today
  • The moment you make a decision, a quick win is to do something today to get it in motion. For example, when I decided that my next goal was to make accelerated payments on my loan, I set up a monthly automated payment immediately.
  • Create Visual Reminders
  • Think about your daily schedule and where something could attract your attention and remind you of your goal. Whether a bracelet, a photo on your mirror, a Wall Chart or a daily Outlook reminder, keep your goals at the front of your mind.

What did you do to guarantee success in your goals?