We talk a lot about saving money, and always keeping a good eye on our finances, etc, etc, but every now and again it’s important to REWARD yourself for your good behavior too. To keep yourself motivated and going strong w/out the chance of burning out prematurely. Budgets are still sexy and all that, but you gotta make room for some fun too! Or some new baubles or toys or whatever else gets you out of bed in the morning ;)
This comment below was left on my site last week, and sparked a reminder for MYSELF to keep dangling those carrots in front of my own goals too – I tend to go-go-go and forget to pat myself on the back when needed. Check it out:
Back in my college years, I would play [the lottery] right before a test. That way during the test I would be less stressed because I would think about winning the lottery.
Haha… I find that all kinds of awesome. Not because I’m a big lottery man, which of course you all know by now, but because it’s funny to me how easily our brains are tricked into feeling better! And in this case, all it took was ONE DOLLAR to de-stress yourself a bit! Haha… if only everything in life was solved that easily ;)
What I also liked about this, though, was that it triggered a memory of my own from back in the day too. One that I find particularly helpful even today, and even though it just popped back into my head :) Back in college I had a whole BUNCH of motivational tactics I’d use to get through the work – especially the boring stuff. And one of those had to do with taking tests as well. Only for me, I’d reward myself AFTER taking them in order to keep myself sane! It wouldn’t matter WHAT I got on the test (though, obviously that’s important), but it definitely got me through all that studying and hard work the 24 hours leading up to it ;) And my reward for taking these tests were simple:
For each test I completed, I allowed myself to go to the mall and by a new t-shirt!
That’s it! I could buy any shirt I wanted as long as it was $20 or less – no questions asked. (I add that last part not because anyone would ever question me about it, haha, but so I wouldn’t have to feel guilty for spending the money I set aside for just that — ME!). Even though it was a small amount in the grand scheme of things, it was enough of a reward to get me excited and to push through the hardest parts of the nights. The ones where at 3 am you’re literally going back to the gas station for your 2nd or 3rd big gulp of coffee before you pass out, haha… but hey – you were gonna get a killer t-shirt afterwards ;)
That’s a silly example to my main point to all this, but it was something that worked for me and something I hope you all are setting up for yourselves too: Little pats on the back that don’t cost much, but keeps your spirits high and your game plans on track. Over the years I’ve been getting into the bad habit of forgetting to set these up even for myself, so this is a reminder for me as much as it is for you. We can’t be going full-force ALL the time or we’ll slide through life without enjoying it!
So make sure to take the time and reward yourself here and there for time well served. If t-shirts aren’t enough to excite you, tell us what is! Maybe your tricks will help motivate us too? Share the love below and let’s see what kinds of prizes we’re giving ourselves… I need something new to treat myself with ;)
(Photo by Bobby-james)