Stress-Free Living: Planning A Successful May
Welcome back to the blog,
This week, it's back to our regularly scheduled program. One of the highlights of our current lives is being able to resort to the things that are relatively normal. Being out and about is something that I absolutely love, and this week, I made an effort to go to to Devon House, on Hope Road in Kingston, Jamaica. Life is still fun, it's just that the outlets to achieve it...are currently different.
In every city there are landmarks that belong to the public. Belong in the sense that the space is open to you for absolutely free, and once you're there, there are a multitude of things that you can do with your family and friends. The budget friendly yet exquisite places that exist in all cities include:
In Kingston, the national site Devon House has sentimental value for many. In my own childhood, Devon House is a space that we'd visit every Sunday. After dinner, we'd go for ice cream. After we had our fill, I'd play with my siblings on their expansive lawns.
Fast forward twenty years, and yesterday's visit still had all of those elements, and it was really nice to actually witness the increased level of activity, especially under the special circumstances. After several months of various levels of lockdowns, it was nice to see small groups of people out and about in the fresh air at Devon House. I had actually attempted to visit a few months ago, and with the health restrictions at the time, no one except shoppers to the bakery or peripheral stores were allowed in. Even then...if you bought food, pastries or souvenirs, you couldn't stay on the property. Everything was...to go.
Yesterday during my visit, I could barely find a seat...as the majority of tables and bench spaces were occupied. Yours truly was actually on a mission to find...a quiet space. Families, couples and students were all out. When I finally found a space under a tree to relax, I was then able to actually fulfill the intention that I set for that visit. The whole point of me going to such a beautiful location...was to find an inspiring place that I could PLAN my month. Visions and actions are very important.
PLANNING THE MONTH
One of the greatest life lessons that I have learned in this amazing life of ours...is the fact that we are responsible for our own lives. Gone are the days...when we can expect our good to come from others. It will often come through other people, but at the end of the day...we are responsible for our own achievements. As creators, one of the gifts that we have, is the gift of organization. I personally can't thrive without it, and there's a thrill that comes with accomplishing something that you decide you want to achieve.
Life is a cyclic activity, and it resets every month and every year. At the beginning of every month, I actually track my progress. Some of the best things in life...are actually free. Every month I find a few printables, that help me to keep my life in order. These include:
1) Monthly Calendar
With every success habit, it is best to ensure that you are able to track your activities. What is tracked will always be managed because it's in your direct consciousness.
As a visual person, I personally work best when I'm able to have inspiring plans for the month. Appling vibrant images or even quotes on your calendar, will inspire you to take action.
Take the time to either print out or create a monthly calendar for the month. The aim is to be able to identify key activities such as :
By having the big picture, you have a greater control of the month, because you can actually see it. With this initial perspective, you can then take the time to divide and conquer each day by the hour, and take the actions to accomplish each goal. As you accomplish the tasks, tick them off, and you'll feel confident in your ability to get things done. Thrive on a list and schedule, and you won't feel like you're drifting in life. You'll feel like you're more in control of your life. With control and empowerment, will be the confidence to accomplish even bigger things.
PLAN YOUR MONTHLY BUDGET
The key to a happy and successful life, is to make mundane activities more fun and enjoyable. Budgeting is something that I have learned to love. As I budget, I see where my money is going, and I actually challenge myself to accomplish targets that I have set for that particular interim. The aim of a budget is to enable you to live in abundance. Keep your expenses low, and your income as high as possible, and you'll live a happy life.
As you live in the surplus, you'll want to continue on this trend. This week, I discovered that for the past two weeks I have successfully achieved my supermarket expense targets, and from the positive feedback loop, I'm inspired to see where else in my life I can save more money. With more money saved, there'll be more money to do things like:
a) Invest - This year, one of the things that I am very focused on is investing money. This is because that I'm in the early phases of life and I want to ensure that I'm set for my retirement years. The important things in life are making hay while the sun shines. To achieve my monthly investment goals, I've actually cut back on fun activities, and will travel locally for 2021. By saving on the costs of things like plane tickets, visas and hotels, I'll be better able to invest. I'll still take a trip for vacation for instance, and stay in a reputable AirBnB. I will also opt to rent a car from a small rental company to avoid the premiums of larger companies.
b) Acquire larger assets - Home ownership is an important step in life. If you have ever researched the process, you'll realize that to own a home, there are often application costs and deposits that one has to make. The average deposit for a house is in the 10% margin. Achieving your deposit objectives for a home takes discipline, and by improving your ability to manage your finances, you'll be able to achieve the larger assets like your forever home or your vacation home.
Your budget will be your best friend that will enable you to achieve your life's goals. Anywhere that discipline is required, the gains will be well worth it. Budgets are individual choices, so take the time to research what the standard allocations for the different categories in the above budget are, and see how best you are operating. Adjust where necessary.
Do you take the time each month to plan your activities? If not, you can create a habit to do so. For every tier of life you can do this:
Singles: Take the time to plan for the future. Plan for your future career growth, travel plans, and even wedding and housing plans. The current condition is preparing you for your future.
Couples: Take the time each month to coordinate the months activities, savings and expenses with your partner. Alignment is key to achieving goals such as home ownership and even vacations and children.
Families: Parents and their children can have monthly meetings that enable the coordination of the entire families objectives. If children witness organized parents, they too will be organized.
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