Five years ago, I was overspending by hundreds of dollars a month on things that I neither really wanted nor needed. Whether it was a tank top on sale for $5, a or cinnamon bun in the food court for $7, nothing was off limits.
I worked in a mall, so I was surrounded every day by shopping, consumerism, and “blowout sales”.
This resulted in a hamster wheel of living paycheque to paycheque. The only thing preventing me from sinking deep into credit card debt was that my credit limit was $800.
I moved in 2010, resulting in a complete overhaul of my life. My environment had completely changed. Instead of working in a mall, I worked on a farm. Instead of spending thousands of dollars a year on junk, my money accumulated and I started the first long term savings account I’d ever had.
When I moved, my time was spent with people who were ambitious and inspired, and I drank the poison.
I moved with no plan to enter into a degree program; I was going to get my diploma and be done with it. My friends’ drive influenced me to enter into a degree program. I graduated two years later, already working in my chosen field.
A change in my environment – what I did, where I was, and who I spent time with – completely changed my life.
Study after study demonstrates your environment’s affect on your progress in health, business, and various other pain points.
Knowing this, we can design our lives so our environment is such that it would be difficult to fail at goals.
We’ve heard the old adage “out of sight out of mind”, and know how true it is for dieters. People who want to try to make a dietary change for the better aren’t going to have much success if their favorite dessert is sitting on the counter.
Your environment has such a huge impact, even, that according to a study done by Brown University, if a teen has three or more friends who smoke, their likelihood of picking up the nasty habit increases by 2,400%.
Who you surround yourself with and what you see and do on a daily basis can make or break your success in meeting a goal or making a lifestyle change.
How to Meet Any Financial Goal You Set For Yourself
If you spent an hour a day with Jillian Michaels, chances are you’d have a higher level of weight loss success than spending an hour a day with a self indulgent friend who is 50 pounds overweight.
If you go to the grocery store and buy chips, it’s going to be awfully hard not to eat them when you take them home.
Consider your finances. If you are in debt, how can you change your environment to ensure that you get out of it?
You could start a blog to track your progress and connect with like-minded people. If you have a weakness for spending money on consumer goods, unsubscribe from promotional emails, flyers and catalogues. Take a different route home from work if you drive by your favorite store.
If you want to make more money, surround yourself with people who make more than you do. Subscribe to a blog about income generation, such as smartpassiveincome.com. Ensure that the posts are delivered right to your inbox each morning. You’ll be compelled to read them.
If your goal is to eat out less, ensure that you have your refrigerator stocked with food that you like, and that you have some easy-to-prepare recipes on hand. Don’t walk by any restaurants at lunch.
Your environment has a huge impact on your success. Watch out for these three things when trying to reach a goal:
– Who you spend time with
– Where you spend your time
– What triggers you expose yourself to
Trying to work around these triggers will only make your transition much more difficult, so if you do reach the goal, it will be at the expense of your will power.
Design your environment in such a way that will help, as opposed to hinder your progress.