Posted by: James Shannon | February 9, 2010

Someday is a Disease, Take Action Now … OR Stop Waiting for Unicorns to Rescue You from Your Cubicle

escthecub_poeYour life won’t live itself.  YOU have to take action and do that. Now quick, climb, crawl, RUN … whatever you have to do escape the cubicle/your boring life! (image source)

We’re all guilty of it.  When’s the right time, we ponder? To quit smoking.  To go on that round-the-world trip we’ve always dreamt about.  To start the business that would put our destiny squarely in our hands, and not in the hands of some faceless menage of corporations that comprise our modern world.

What’s the most common answer to above queries?

Someday.

Someday, some magical unicorn will come prancing out of the woods and make all the pins line up, all the red lights green, all the curved roads straight ….

Sorry to burst your bubble, but that’s bullshit!

What happens to the overweight friend who says they’ll go on a diet and lose weight someday? One, two, three years later, not only have they not gone on that diet, they have gained even more fat to adorn their waistline, and have gotten ever closer to a sudden end via a heart attack!

What happens to the person who says I’ll stop buying gadgets impulsively someday? Six months down the road, they have more junk they don’t use, and a burgeoning debt that threatens to crush their ability to save for anything!

What happens to the person who says I’ll start a business and free myself from my corporate prison … someday?? 3 years later, they’re still housed in that cozy little cubicle, hating their job and their life (but hey, at least you’re a manager now … never mind that you work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week … your boss and corporate masters LOVVVEEE IT!)

Here’s the problem with someday guys.  Someday has no definition, no designated spot on the calendar.  Without any objective marker that makes you accountable, someday = never.

All the traffic lights of life are never green at the same time.  Does the the fact that some traffic lights might be red on the way to the mall, work, or the grocery store stop you from getting in your car?  Of course not.  We just do it.

redligoflif_poeYou don’t avoid driving because you might encounter red lights on the way to your destination … so why do we avoid life-enhancing experiences because of a few obstacles (aka the red lights of life)? (image source)

So why are we afraid of red lights with regards to travel, entrepreneurship, relationships, et cetera?

Because we’re not familiar with the process!  I bet you were at least a little nervous when you drove your parent’s car for the first time … but in time you got better at it, and now you don’t even think about it.

I was afraid of leaving my comfort zone just one year ago; I hated my job … but it paid my bills and provided me with enough money to eat out with, go to the movies, and drink myself into a drunken haze on the weekends.  But it wasn’t what I truly wanted … I wanted to be able to bound out of bed in the morning, to travel, to have time and financial freedom.

To be honest, I have yet to achieve many of these goals … but I am well on my way to arriving at these destinations.  After getting over the fact that I would be paying for two places for 3 months (red light #1), and be making less than I was (red light #2), I pulled up stakes and moved to Jasper 9 months ago.  I now have jobs that put me in touch with nature and sports, and allow me to explore the Canadian Rockies right in their backyard.  Having two jobs means I haven’t achieved time freedom yet, and my consumer debt is still acting as an anchor to my financial aspirations.  But I am taking action in these areas as well, drafting conceptual plans for potential muses, and paying off my debt in a sustainable fashion while reducing all unnecessary spending.

Someday is a cancerous concept.  Define your goal, take action today, no matter how small.

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