I spent the last couple of weeks talking about fitness, both financial and physical, for the New Year. It’s important to thinking about early so you’re in the right mindset at the start of 2011. But to be truly prepared for improvement in 2011, you have to reflect on what you did in 2010.
It’s incredible how quickly this year has flown by. For some of you, it was a trying time with the recession. And for others, it may have been abundant with new opportunities. Whatever your situation was, let’s take this final blog post of 2010 to look at these past 12 months.
- How much money did you save this year? Was it more or less than you wanted?
- What kind of debt did you accrue this year, and how much did you eliminate?
- Did you get promoted at your company or find a better position at a different company? And did you get the pay increase you wanted?
- What did you complain about a lot this year? And what did you do to turn those complaints into positives?
- Where you able to purchase your first home this year? Your dream home? Why or why not?
- How about personal goals you set? What steps did you take towards achieving them?
If you don’t like your answers to some of these questions, that’s okay. We all have things that can hold us back from achieving what we set out to. The key to overcoming the pull of non action is to recognize exactly what it is that is stopping you. So the first and most important step is conquering the crabs in your bucket.
I’ve talked about the crabs before. One crab in a bucket can climb out easily. But if you fill a bucket with twenty crabs and one reaches the top, the others will pull it back down. Identify who or what the crabs in your bucket were this past year, and you will take steps towards a brighter 2011.
Here’s the thing about crabs: they’re insecure. They see what you’re accomplishing, and it is forcing them to think about what they are (or aren’t) doing to improve themselves. So to feel better about the place they’re at, they try to pull you back down into the bucket.
Crabs can be anybody. Maybe it’s your family and their negative opinion on the home you chose to purchase this year. Or those friends who made cynical remarks about your recent weight loss. You know who is really in your corner giving you constructive criticism, and who is trying consciously or subconsciously derail your progress.
It may be painful to think about what went wrong this past year. But in order to really improve in 2011 you have to think about the decisions you made in 2010. Once you honestly reflect on this past year, you’ll know exactly what you need to do to make 2011 your best year yet.
Tags: new year, new years, money, personal finance, reflection, reflect, Julie Murphy casserly, emotion behind the money