The first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want. – Ben Stein
What does that mean?
Well, that doesn’t sound like rocket science, does it? I mean how obvious can a quote be? If you want something, the first step is to figure out what it is, right?
But how many of us could list the five or ten most important things we needed or wanted to get out of life, and be specific? Given his bio, I would guess this was a quote from one of his financial planning workshops. In that vein, can you be specific about your retirement goals?
If you don’t know where you are going, how will you get yourself from where you are to where you want to be? Again, it sounds really obvious, but how many people know exactly what they want to do, and know when they have arrived at that destination?
Why is knowing exactly what you want important?
As I mentioned in the first section, if you don’t know where you’re going, how do you ever expect to get there? If you want to retire, how will you know when you have enough money? That will depend on how fast you’re going to spend it, isn’t it?
So if you don’t know what you’re going to be doing when you retire, how will you know what your finances have to be? If you don’t know that, how will you know how much to set aside each month or how to invest it?
Someone who wants to buy a few acres and a cabin and read books for the rest of their lives will need a little less than someone who wants to buy a yacht and sail the seven seas, right? And that’s just the tip of the iceberg (and I hope the yacht isn’t named Titanic!)
The answer to “What do you want out of life?” leads directly to the next questions, “How do you plan to get there?” and “How will you know you have arrived there?” But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?
Where can I apply this in my life?
The retirement example used above is just one possible way to apply this quote. There are plenty of other things you might want to consider. What about your love life? What do you want to get out of life regarding your love life or romantic life? If you don’t know, you’re going to be disappointed, right?
Conversely, if you are presently disappointed with your love or romantic life, do you know what would make it better? Can you be specific? If not, you’re already in pretty deep with no idea where you are going, right? How will you ever be happy if you don’t have any specific goals or ideas?
What about living arrangements. Do you want a house or an apartment? How big? How many bedrooms? Have you watched TV shows where the home buyer has no idea what they want, and keeps changing their minds? It usually works out, as the Realtor helps them get specific, and then find a house that matches.
Take a moment and consider where in your life you have fuzzy goals. Do you know where you want to be living in ten years? Think about what country, part of the country, city/town/rural, size of house, size of yard, etc. Now that you know where you’re going, did a couple of ideas just pop up in your head?
Once you know what you want, and with great specificity, your mind can start sifting through all the information in your head and in your environment, and start finding solutions for you. It may sound odd, but that’s part of how your brain works. Take advantage of this powerful tool.
After I broke up with my ex, I actually sat down and wrote down what I was looking for in a relationship. The things I had to have, the things I wanted, the things I could tolerate, and the things I absolutely would not tolerate. I used my failed relationship to help me make the list.
The amazing thing is that my mind, properly prepared by that exercise, started evaluating people in a completely new manner. In a very short period of time, I found the lady I eventually married, and am still married to, nearly two decades later.
Will you be able to magically find the perfect match for you? I doubt it. Even with as good a job as I did, we weren’t a perfect fit. We’ve had to work through some rough spots. But by making sure honesty and integrity were very high on the ‘must have’ list, we have been able to work our way through it.
Take a few moments and gather your thoughts. What is important to you, and what do you want? Be very specific. Color, size, shape, location, anything and every detail. The more real it is in your head, the more easily your mind will believe it, and the more easily you will achieve it.
If you are planning on getting something, the first thing you have to do is figure out what it is, right?
From: Twitter, @iheartquotes
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/b/benstein101489.html
Photo by Bill Ward’s Brickpile