A Bodey in Motion

Building momentum, one step at a time

Go Pro

The number one cause of flat tires in my household? Nails jammed in the tread.

I’m really bad about driving the tires on my car until they are as bald as the head of Charles Xavier. I know it’s generally unsafe to do, but I hate having to replace stuff before I’ve used it through it’s full potential (and then some). I’m kind of cheap that way.

That having been said, you can imagine how frustrated I get when I walk out to my car and find a flat tire. What a pain in the butt. That’s never a good thing.

Of course, it used to be worse. Back before we took control of our finances, a flat tire meant the added joy of money stress. Would they be able to fix the leak, or would we have to replace the tire? Where would the money come for that? Did we have enough cash or are we going to put it on the credit card and pay it off with interest over the next three months? More often than not, it’d go on the card.

There’s no money stress today, though. No credit card, either.

So, what changed?

Hint: it wasn’t a bigger salary. I learned a long time ago that you can’t out-earn stupid behavior.

No, the difference is that today we have a plan. We save for car maintenance, like flat tires. We save for a lot of things, and we do that because we have important things we want to do with our money. We want to save for the future and we want to give generously. Not tying up our money with payments, paying back interest on unforeseen purchases, allows us to do those things with consistency.

In other words, we went from reacting with money to being proactive. We stopped letting our money problems happen to us, and instead began happening to our money.

Reactive people are driven by feelings, by circumstances, by conditions, by their environment. Proactive people are driven by values-carefully thought about, selected and internalized values.

Stephen Covey, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

This is true for a lot of things in our lives. Whenever we let external factors control us, we abdicate responsibility for the results of those decisions. For example, if we forgo regular rest in a vain attempt to maximize our time and get everything done that we “should be doing” then we’re giving power over our health and productivity to that list that we feel the world has placed on us. Ultimately, however, the consequences of the failure to act upon our time (or money, or tires, etc.) with wisdom and maturity falls directly on us.

Until a person can say deeply and honestly, “I am what I am today because of the choices I made yesterday,” that person cannot say, “I choose otherwise.”

Stephen Covey, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

If there is an area of your life that been out of control, then you need to start to act upon it. Seek out help and advice if you need to, but take control back. Stop reacting. It’s time to go pro.

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July 30, 2012 - Posted by | Past and Future, Work and Money | , , , , , , ,

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