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It’s the journey, not the destination

By Dana Mancuso
Bigg Success Contributor
01-06-09

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The United States Declaration of Independence could not have been a better predictor of America even generations later.

"…Among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," it says.

Americans desire happiness. We've developed technologies, gadgets, appliances, and luxury items with the goal of having an easier, better, more exciting, "happier" life.

As the year-end holidays come and go, I can't help but think of what one might call Christmas Let Down. There is so much anticipation, activity and doing to get ready for whatever holidays you celebrate in December and early January. Then the holiday comes…and goes. And there is the inevitable let down. We sent the cards, got the gifts (returned/exchanged the gifts), ate the food– and yet it does not satisfy. No magic happiness showed up on our doorstep at the end of the rush as our prize for working hard to get it.

We have determined that we the hunters will pursue happiness until we catch it. Then we'll have it, put it on display. Like the 10-point buck forever mounted for us and everyone else to admire.

"Wow, Bob, that's the biggest happiness I've ever seen! Took you a long time to catch that, didn't it?"

We've gotten it wrong. The pursuit of happiness is the happiness we're pursuing. If we can't find glee in the anticipation, exhilaration in the activity, and delight in the doing, we don't really deserve the Christmas Day. 

It's sort of like a making a snowman. People actually go out and make a snowman and enjoy the process of making one. They are building it with friends or loved ones. They take pleasure in rolling the snowball or selecting the right nose. But with the holidays, the build up might be a chore, something to get through in order to actually eat the big dinner or have those guests over. Were we waiting for happiness to land in our laps in one fell swoop instead of building it as we go, bit by bit? Isn't it true that although we're sad to see the snowman melt, we remember how fun it was to create it, not so much what color mittens it had?

Thomas Jefferson worded it right. As we wrap up another holiday season remember this: continually pursue the pursuit—therein lies true happiness.

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

 

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You Can Be Debt Free with These 5 Steps

By Bigg Success Staff
07-03-08

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It’s funny how many people loathe the thought of renting because “it’s just throwing money away”. Yet those same people think nothing of paying hundreds or thousands of dollars in interest on debt (i.e. “rent” money). Debt costs you money that could be spent elsewhere for something more important or more fun.

Too much debt can also cost you time – juggling bills, answering collection calls, and the like. But there’s still a higher price for excessive debt. It creates stress and worry. Your health may suffer as well.

So getting out of debt is a worthy goal. Here are five steps to do it:

Step 1: Stop adding to it

As long as you’re adding to your debt, you’ll never be financially free. So make a point to pay for everything you buy. If you can’t pay for it when you buy it, don’t buy it.

Step 2: Find a reserve

Now, you just have to go one step further and things can really start going your way. Spend a little bit less than you make every month. We have a great thought-starter on how to do it called 860 63 Moves to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck].

This little bit of money is like a tiny snowball at the top of the hill. It will start rolling down the hill and get bigger and bigger. That is, this little bit of money you’re saving each month is going to set you free from the burdens of living with a lot of debt. 

Step 3: Pick either your highest cost or your lowest balance liability

Next, look at what you owe. Pick either the debt that’s costing you the most money (i.e. the debt with the highest interest rate) or the outstanding account you have with the smallest balance.

The first one (the highest interest rate) is the best move for you financially, as long as you follow through on your plan to pay off your debt. But the second one may work better for you because it delivers the quickest psychological rewards, so you’re more likely to stick with your plan. The key thing is to pick a strategy and go for it.

Step 4: Use your reserve

Now you’re going to take that reserve from Step 2 and apply it to the account you picked in Step 3, along with your regular payment. Keep going until that account is paid off. The snowball is starting to get bigger now!

Step 5: Double down and repeat

You’ve paid off one account. Now take all the money you were paying on that account, including the reserve from Step 2, and apply it to the regular payment on another account. Keep doing this until you’ve got all your debt paid off!

 



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