Wednesday, April 29, 2015

(Belated) Weekend in Review: The Beginning Stages

My weekend in review is a little late, but I hope you will find it worth the wait...

My heart is just exploding right now and I have to write my thoughts and feelings here even though this is a long post. They say people connect when they are vulnerable, so I'll just whip it out here, and you can decide if you still want to hang out with me or not. So, here goes.  Are you ready?

At the end of 2014 Ornery and I sat down and wrote out some goals for 2015. Celine Dion's song Another Year Has Gone By on Ornery's Christmas music track was an ear worm reminding him that time was passing and things were still the same as they were 5, 10, 15 years ago. He was really frustrated with his lack of retirement options, so he determined to change things in the coming year.  Our goals and plan of action were stringent, uncomfortable, and focused.  Uneducated, but very focused.  There were a few things we did know: 
  • We didn't have much of a retirement fund and at the rate things were going he would have to work until he died--and if anything happened to him I would be up Poo Creek in a leaky boat without a paddle.
  • Our single rental property wouldn't come close to funding our dreams, much less our basic living expenses if anything should happen to his job--especially not with the repair expenses being more than the income every month so far this year.
  • We knew that the key would be to find something we could do together; a business that I could tend while he worked at his job until it would pay for him to be able to quit.
  • We researched several options, but also determined to work on improving ourselves first so we would be able to handle success without self-destructing, or losing everything.  
  • Not only would we need to research vehicles for passive income, we would need to take some significant action. 
So, since we knew that the greatest change in our outer circumstances would be affected by the beliefs of our hearts, we started there.  We started at the end of December reading Proverbs every day, along with Dr. Jim Richards' The Prayer Organizer and Connie Witter's Bible Study, Because of Jesus.  We set the alarm for 3:00 AM and started each day in the Word and in prayer.  While there were a few days we missed this, for the most part we have managed to complete four months of daily quiet time. (In almost 36 years of marriage we have not been able to maintain the practice for more than a month at a time, despite numerous attempts!) 

Dr. Richards always says that the more modalities you use the quicker you will see transformation, so we made some other changes, commitments and goals as well, but this was the first one to get implemented and the only one that hasn't altered since we began. Ornery determined to do the work required to get some online business activity going, and I committed to writing my memoirs.  We cut back on other outside commitments so we would not feel pressured by the additions to an already fairly full schedule.   

One of the things we felt would be beneficial was to start a DIY blog, and Ornery stepped way out of his comfort zone and did so. He took pictures of a couple of his projects and posted them, then work got extra busy and he began working more overtime. That was good for the checking account, but not really good enough for us to think it would help financially in the long run.  

Then things began to happen.  Thursday, March 5th it snowed here in our little corner of the world. Despite the fact that Ornery's job is a mere mile from the house, the steep driveway was slicker than a greased pig, and since he had plenty of vacation stored up he stayed home. To pass the time, I read aloud to him. All day.  Little did I know the journey that would begin on that day!  Here is an excerpt I wrote in a post on March 11, 2015:

Last Wednesday when we were snowed in, Ornery and I began reading aloud Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T Harv Eker. We spent several hours that day, and have continued to work our way through it a bit each day since then.  We should be done reading it for the first time by this weekend. We have also signed up and made hotel reservations to attend a Millionaire Mind Intensive seminar, and been faithfully following the advice in the book, in as much as we are able.
 It is time consuming and emotionally intensive to address long held beliefs and take the steps to alter those thought patterns.  However, it is another step in the progression of the goals we set at the beginning of the year, and we are both on-board with the plan.  It seems when we are both in agreement with anything, we make serious progress, so it is exciting to consider the future and what it may hold in store for us.
 Our ultimate goal at the beginning of the year was to replace Ornery's income at his job with self-employment and/or passive income within 5 years.  We thought to do it with real estate, but it requires much more investment capital than we have been able to secure, so we are taking some different paths.  So far we haven't made any money, but we have learned a LOT and I think we are moving in the right direction. Time will tell, but we aren't quite through with the first quarter of the year and we can already see that things are aligning to bring about the changes we seek. 
We have both continued to maintain a lot of the routine we set for ourselves in January. We know that success in the financial arena will require that we have good health and stamina, so part of our daily routine has been to spend time doing the sauna, exercising and eating for health.  We have gone a couple of weeks now without eating wheat, and Ornery says he has lost about 5 lbs. so far.  We are also still having a quiet time each morning, reading from the Proverbs, Psalms and two different Bible study books depending on the time we have.  We are fairly consistent (more so lately) in our nightly journaling exercise wherein we track the daily activities that will bring us closer to our goals. 
One of the quotes by Jim Rohn that has really helped us to focus is, "If it's easy to do it is also easy not to do." Doing those little "easy" things every day makes change and will create the lifestyle we seek. But it isn't possible to just do something once and establish a habit or change core beliefs--it is by repetition every day that will achieve success. Easy to do, but easy not to do. And life is so DAILY! 
This is the longest period of time we have been able to maintain our momentum, and that is really encouraging to us both. We have been able to remind each other of the potential benefits, and have had some really deep discussions and addressed some heretofore unknown issues in ourselves. I would say the last month has been one of the most rewarding times relationally we have ever had. And that is saying something because we have always had a very close relationship!
Once we had signed up for the program, we began getting emails for webinars and other things, so we started taking advantages of those programs.  We signed up for some group coaching, then after we saw another webinar we signed up for MORE group coaching.  We are listening to two coaching calls each week and doing the related actions. We added a reading session in the evenings to go along with those we were doing in the morning.  We read Harv's book through again in the mornings and read Dr. Richards' book, Wired for Success, Programmed for Failure in the evenings.  We read just one chapter a day, but it always sparked discussion and moved us closer to being prepared for the changes we would experience at the Millionaire Mind Intensive. 

So, here we are, almost two months after we picked up that first book.  We attended the Millionaire Mind Experience (formerly Intensive) this past weekend.  I can't even tell you the number of ways we had to get out of our comfort zones to attend, but one of Harv's principles is that your comfort zone = your wealth zone. If you have a small comfort zone, you won't make much money, but if you work to expand the number of situations in which you are comfortable, your entire world will expand. Ours ought to be explosive after all that, just sayin'.  

The personal victories this weekend were astounding for both of us.  Ornery eradicated his lifelong fear of failure, and I broke the mental and emotional chains of a lack of self worth. Both of us have been battling with these issues for years, and they have limited us for way longer than they should have. Despite having a number of tools at our disposal to conquer them completely, (Heart Physics, E.F.T, etc.) for whatever reason, we were still being held captive by our conditioned minds and hearts.   

Seeing my shy, wall-flower husband on the stage dancing and wearing a big smile several times throughout the weekend, watching victories all over the room together and supporting each other through some incredibly potent exercises designed to write new truths at a cellular level created an even deeper sense of intimacy and commitment to each other than ever.

The energy generated at the MME was intense, healing and long lasting. I am still fired up, and rarin' to go! Yesterday I was super-productive and maintained an upbeat attitude through some pretty frustrating circumstances. I had even more emotional healing yesterday as I was doing some reviewing of an old Darren Hardy program we did in 2010 when I had to answer the question of whether there was anyone in my life that I had not completely forgiven. I got quiet, took a deep breath, closed my eyes and asked my heart if there was anyone I had not yet fully forgiven and when the person came to mind, I took care of it. :)

One of the tools we are using for change (and have been since January) is a transformation journal we write in each night just before bed.  Various actions we are working to establish as habits are given a point value with the objective of making 100 points every day. There are enough activities on the list to make this possible even if you don't do every single thing, but when I had done the exercise in the past, after a few weeks my focus would wane and I would start accumulating fewer and fewer points each day--sometimes as few as 40 points--end then just quit altogether.  It is a rare day now when I don't have 125 to 140 points. I am more focused than ever, yet yesterday I spent thirty minutes just sitting outside listening to the birds sing and admiring my lovely flowers, so I am getting more done and still taking time to regenerate.

While we were at the MME seminar we signed up for several more training experiences. So many of the things we had been looking for as far as passive income were addressed at the MME and will be thoroughly covered at the other events.  I'm not going to lie--it was scary to hand over the credit card (which was finally almost at a zero balance again!) and commit to such a significant financial expenditure, but we knew we had to take action now.  The next couple of years will be a wild ride for us. Changes will happen rapid-fire, but the personal growth promised by these opportunities will be worth any sacrifices we may decide are necessary to get to our goal. 

When we left here last Thursday I had three objectives: 
  1. Make friends with three or four like-minded people/couples we could connect with socially 
  2. Re-set our Financial Blueprint so we would stop sabotaging our success
  3. Get training to establish passive income
MME delivered on all its promises and I was able to meet all my objectives and more. We are both more excited about our future than we ever hoped to be.  We have more tools, new skills, amazing support and increasing energy; and with the blockages to success removed, the sky is the limit.  

Thank you for reading all this, and I want to say that if you are sharing any of the same frustrations that we have felt for many years--no end to the rat race, getting wealth is too hard, or whatever other lies you have told yourself-- I hope you will at least pick up The Secrets of the Millionaire Mind and read it through.  If it speaks to you, or if you click the link to the MME sign up page above and you resonate with the message in the promotional video, I hope you will take the first action of attending one of the three day seminars. It will be worth every moment of your time and every dime of the money it takes to get there.  And if you go, will you let me know?  I would love to cheer you on. It's been less than two months since we really started the program and the change has been incredible. I know we still have a long way to go, but for the first time ever, we believe we have found the help we need to make the journey.

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