Updated: Oct 2, 2020
Here we are. At the beginning. Time to get started.
Over the last decade I have been implementing many small changes to improve my mental and physical health and enrich my life. I changed my shampoo, I cut out unnecessary prescriptions, I started practicing yoga... and then there's a whole laundry list of some of the crazier changes I have experimented with. (Side note: keep an eye out for my upcoming book with 30 fun, interesting, and super easy ways to incorporate some of these changes into your life. Stay posted for updates, expected release date is early 2021!)
I've always had big ideas floating over my head. The big goals. The big dreams. The idea of what my perfect life would look like. It always seemed so far off. A distant and ambiguous point in the far away future. I had ideas of what I wanted but I always told myself there was something standing in the way. After that one thing was done then maybe I would get started. After I pay off my students loans... After I get a raise... After I double my savings account...
The problem with waiting until your barriers are gone is that there will always be another barrier popping up. The thing that's stopping you isn't a barrier, it's your mindset. That concept is easy to grasp, but it's not so easy to work past it. The hardest part is just to do something. So here are three ways to get started:
Envision your goals. Really envision them. Start a vision board, cut out magazine clippings, grab a glue stick and poster board, and throwback to middle school art class. Or start a Pinterest or other electronic board with all your inspiration. But here's the catch: Know that your dream life exists. It's possible. Someone out there is living the life you wish you had. It's not an impossibility, you just haven't found the right path to make it possible for you.
Identify your end goal and get inspired. You want to become a homeowner? Start looking at local real estate listings. You want to build your own house? Start looking at floor plans. You want to find a new job? Find someone with your dream job and find out how they got there. If that doesn't work, then find someone well-known in the field and follow them on social media. If your dream is to work part time and spend more time with your family, start breaking down your budget. Are there any areas where you can cut back your spending or increase your income?
Break it up, list the steps. Take the end goal and make it a series of smaller goals. What's the first step? If that first step seems daunting, break that one up too. Break it up until that first step is possible. Then get to work on it.
I decided to tackle my dream life head on. I started picturing my life. Like, really picturing it. I envisioned myself owning property. Raising my own livestock and growing my own produce. Making various products for myself. Canning my own peaches and pouring my own goats milk soaps and drying my own loose leaf tea. I saw my dogs running wild past a barn with a dairy cow and a couple goats. I saw myself collecting chicken eggs in the morning and having a farm fresh breakfast with my husband. I saw myself tending to a pair of alpacas, sheering and processing their wool and crocheting a beautiful blanket. I saw myself wrapped in that blanket, on a porch with my laptop, watching the sun rising through a backdrop of mountains and trees while writing for my dream clients.
It's the same dream I've been picturing for most of my life. And it really was daunting. I spent a couple months getting inspired. I reviewed our finances and rethought our budget. I drafted up some sketches for floor plans. I let myself get excited about the future. And then I tried to break it down into some manageable steps. The first step was obvious and big and intimidating: purchase some acreage. I started looking at property listings. I drove out and hiked through some pretty rough plots of land. My husband and I started making a plan for how we could afford to buy a second piece of property and when we would sell out house and what kind of house we want to build. And that's where we are at right now. Still looking. Still planning. We have found a 20 acre plot that we love. So now I'm working on that little (huge) baby step.
Stay tuned, hopefully my next update will be about purchasing some acreage!