A major part of my job is helping people reach their financial goals in life. Over the course of my career, I’ve found that while things like planning, saving and investing are crucial, they’re not as important as qualities like perseverance, hard work, gratitude, and adaptability.
Sometimes, whenever the road to our goals seems long or daunting, it’s helpful to look for inspiration. So, lately, I’ve started sharing a few quotes that have inspired me in my own personal journey. I call them Words to Live By, and I hope they’ll help you as much as they’ve helped me.
Last month, we looked at the quality of perseverance. This month let’s look at an underrated quality: Adaptability and the willingness to change.
Words to Live By #2
“There is nothing permanent except change.” – Heraclitus
Have you ever worked toward a goal only to find the process isn’t quite what you thought it would be? It’s a tale as old as time. It happens when someone starts hitting the gym after years of staying away. When someone returns to school to finish their degree. When someone starts saving for that special trip they’ve always dreamed of. When someone wants to finally write that novel kicking about in the back of their head. And when it happens, people’s responses are often the same:
“It’s harder than I thought.”
“I just don’t have time.”
“I don’t want to do it that way.”
“This isn’t how I thought it would be.”
I’ve certainly thought these things on many occasions. When I do, I remind myself of this quote by Maya Angelou:
“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”
The fact is, achievement doesn’t take place in a vacuum. It happens in the real world, and the world changes constantly. New obstacles and challenges will constantly present themselves. New demands on your time will constantly arise. The things that used to work for you before don’t work anymore. The skills you’ve long had, or the knowledge you’ve long possessed, may not be enough.
That’s why adaptability and a willingness to change are crucial if you want to reach your goals. To put it simply, the people most able and willing to change are the people most likely to be successful.
“I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.”
– Jimmy Dean
When working toward your goals, accept and welcome the fact you may have to change:
• Your habits.
• Your expectations.
• Your schedule.
• Your mindset.
• Your work ethic.
• Your comfort zones.
“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”
– Stephen Hawking
Change may be difficult. Sometimes, it can even be downright unpleasant. But if the goals you’ve set for yourself are truly what you want the most, then it’s absolutely worth it.
“You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.”
– Jim Rohm
As time passes, the world will change. As the world changes, our lives will change. And as our lives change, so too will the road we must take to reach our goals. When that happens, embrace it. Don’t get stuck in the past. Or, as the great Will Rogers once said:
“Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.”