Well, it’s one mile to Holt. Milestones answer questions about destinations. Where will I get to if I continue on this path? I’ll get to Holt and I’m only a mile away. Important information if you have to go to the bathroom, desperately need a coffee, or have a mortal enemy in said town (in which case you might want to turn around!) What’s your destination?
My cousin Christy is on the same journey that I am on. We are both on the road to “Smaller Clothes” So is my friend Terri. We have milestones along the way. Christy gloriously posted on Facebook that “Her first number is officially a 1” That’s a mile stone I want to get to. It’s big and it’s significant in that I haven’t been able to say that for too many years now! I want to say it and it’s only 25 pounds away.
Yesterday at the gym I learned that most Albertans plan to retire debt free at 62. That’s a milestone goal too. I’ve got about $5000 to pay off and 10 years.
Any journey has a destination. Some journeys are long and some are short. But they all have stops along the way. These are your milestones and they are usually big and significant, to you if no-one else!
I am reading (Thanks to a post at http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/) SWITCH – How to Change Things when Change is Hard While many of the examples relate to business, they all relate to people and that makes for interesting reading. Right now I’m reading about making small changes to reach for a big goal. (Think Dave Ramsey’s Debt Snowball or Flylady’s 5 minute room rescue or 27 fling boogie!) Fred Heath (the father of the authors of the aforementioned book) used to tell his IBM teams this:
When milestones seemed too distant,look for inch pebbles instead.
(That’s on page 136 in the book!) Inch pebbles, or “pebble-stones” as I call them are the little things we do on a regular, consistent and daily basis to get to our milestones.
Financial Example: Every paycheque I feed my debts $200. This makes them smaller. I am that much closer to being debt free. Each debt paid off is a milestone. So far I’ve knocked off two of them. I have a chart on my bulletin board that tracks my pebbles – every $100 I pay down equals a smiley face!
Weight-loss Example: My destination is of course to weigh about 150 pounds and reach my goal. In TOPS lingo I want to become a KOPS who “keeps off pounds sensibly”. Every 10 pounds I lose (“the second number is a ___”) is a mile marker. “My first number is officially a ONE“ is a mile stone. Every loss in between, every visit to the gym, every sensible morsel of food – those are the pebbles along the way – all important because without them I’m not going to get to the destination.
One thing I don’t always like about self-help books is that they give you “homework” so this is optional, but helpful: Pick a destination. Then find some milestones along the way. Then find the pebbles (actions) that will get you there. Have fun. Find some rocks and put them on your counter!
Here’s a link round-up for this blog. Not all my posts will have them, but I thought it would be helpful. I hope they work:
Get Rich Slowly: http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/ and the post that made me read the book: http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2011/09/20/logic-and-emotion-why-smart-money-management-isnt-just-about-math/
Fly Lady http://www.flylady.com/index.asp Marla Cilley is a pro at helping to create pebblestones.
Dave Ramsey and the Debt Snowball: www.daveramsey.com Dave’s Total Money Makeover is very helpful for setting the financial mile and pebble stones!
More about the authors of Switch? Check out http://www.heathbrothers.com/ where you’ll find their blog, freebies, and more.
See you somewhere!