The Confronting Reason You Haven’t Been Able to Do That Thing You’ve Been Wanting to Do for a While

I really wanted to go to Iran this year.

I love traveling — and being of Armenian heritage, I have a special place in my heart for middle eastern culture.

That’s why next year I had been making plans to visit Iran (along with Armenia and Georgia) with my friend Amir, who is Persian and speaks Farsi. It was perfect. And yet, I’m not going to go.

Why?

As much as I want to travel, I’m shifting my focus to getting my financial house in order, which means making money, paying off some debts and being consistently available to accept gigs and work on projects. Traveling stops my momentum, and I need to keep it for at least a year (probably more) to see the kind of improvement in my financial situation that I want.

I know, right? Look at me being an adult!

The funny thing is I’ve wanted to get my financial house in order before, but I always failed. I would work hard for a few months, then a fun trip idea would come up and I’d go travel, dropping everything I had worked so hard to build. Then I’d return from traveling and start over.

This was crazy, but it’s what I did over and over again.

I realized that there was one thing I wasn’t willing to do, and it’s a problem many people in my community have.

Sacrifice Is A Dirty Word

This morning I spoke to a Boodaism reader who was seeking help in writing more. She saw that I published every week and wanted something similar, and so I asked her an important question — and one that I wish someone asked me long ago.1

What are you willing to sacrifice?

I don’t know about you, but around my friends the word “sacrifice” is not exactly the most exciting word you can hear, because it secretly implies that you can’t have it all — which really upsets our inner teenager.

We want the rock hard abs without paying close attention to what we eat.
We want to learn to play guitar without putting in the hours to practice.
We want to write more but we can’t say no to fun social activities.

And in my case, I wanted to have a more stable and abundance financial situation without saying no to spending one-third of the year traveling overseas.

Turns out, we have to choose — and making choices is part of the responsibility of being an adult.

What are you willing to sacrifice?

What’s that thing you’ve been wanting to do but just haven’t been able to “find the time”?

Better health?
More creative output?
More time with your kids?

Now consider that you can’t just add it to your life, because your life is already full. I don’t meant that your calendar is literally full (although it may be) but I mean that your life is already running at max capacity, so if you want to add something, you’d have to also take something out.

So what do you want to take out? What are you willing to sacrifice to get the thing you want?

Sometimes if we’re honest with ourselves we realize we’re not willing to sacrifice anything for the thing we want, in which case we can just stop beating ourselves up and move on with our lives.

But other times we realize that while it may be painful, we are actually willing to give up something like some socializing with friends, or traveling, in return for the things we want — because the thing we want is worth it.


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Footnotes

  1. They probably did but I wasn’t listening.