Mindset Monday: Expect to Win

I analyze my position and take a side glance at my opponent. Silently, I assess the possibilities of his next move.

“If I move my knight there, he will be able to get my knight with his rook. If I move my bishop there, I can get his knight, but I will leave my king open. If I move my rook here, my pawn will be open for him to get with his queen, but then I’ll be able to get his queen with my queen. Hmmm… will he go for it?”

When playing chess, one must constantly be thinking of current possible moves in addition to at least a few moves ahead–constantly judging and weighing each of the possible plays in order to ultimately win the game.

The same is true for life.

It’s important to live life appreciating and enjoying the moment that you’re in, but it is equally important to strategize for the future. I mean, it would be easy to say, “Hey, I’ve just got paid! Let’s go on vacation!” But, if one doesn’t stop to consider the next few moves in the game of life–those moves being paying bills, buying groceries, medical appointments, etc. then one will “lose” the game.

So, being able to win this game of life, a person must have the mindset that they are going to win. Utilizing a plan of action is the best way to win. It might take years, but if a person makes the choice to plan and makes the choice to expect to win, winning will happen.

It will.

Years ago, when I was on cash aid, food stamps, and Medi-Cal (What California calls its Medic-Aid) I could have easily just accepted that life of not having enough and stayed there. But, that’s not what I chose.

The competitive part of me showed up and I chose to do better for my kids and me. I developed a plan of action, which included going to college, and I became a teacher. I went from being a displaced housewife to a school teacher within a five year period of time.

It was supposed to take me seven years to get through school but I had children to take care of so I had to accelerate my plan. I shaved off two years by busting through and taking five or six classes per semester and taking classes during the summer. I also worked three jobs while going through school.

There were times when I wasn’t sure if I could do it alone. But, I kept my eye on the prize, kept my mind on my action plan, and I did it.

You can have the life you want. But, you must develop an action plan and stay the course. I won’t promise it’ll be easy. I will promise that if you plan to win and you follow that plan, you will win.

Live a kick-ass life,

Alicia Bates

Wealth Wednesday: Negotiate.

Ooooh!!! Now THIS is good!!!!

It’s so amazing how many people have an issue with negotiating.

Think about it though. No one ever teaches us how to negotiate. It’s something you have to learn by watching others or by just getting out there and trying it out yourself.

The biggest scenario where this becomes difficult is when job hunting. You are trying to put your best foot forward and, if you are desperate for the job, you are in a position where you’ll accept any amount they offer just because you need to start bringing in the paycheck.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to be condescending or difficult to deal with or even hard-nosed about your position. What this means is that you shouldn’t be scared to return with a counter offer.

Further, negotiations don’t always need to be about more money. Maybe you’d like to negotiate into the deal that you work from home one day per week or have an extra day or two of vacation. There’s so many other possibilities for negotiating that don’t involve money directly.

There is a lot of guilt tied into money. We feel guilty when we can’t afford something. We feel guilty when we can. We feel guilty if we can afford the price but still try to get a better deal. We feel guilty even when we can’t afford the price and feel it needs to be lowered.

Where does this guilt stem from? Why are we so emotionally tied to money?

Start negotiating for what you feel is fair and no longer allow it to make you feel guilty. You are worth it!

Tell me what you think.

Enjoy your Wealth Wednesday,

Alicia Bates

Mindset Monday: Dream It

Dreams.

When we are little, we aren’t afraid of them. We dream about crazy things like jumping from cloud to cloud while eating a big, red lollipop. We dream about cool things like becoming firefighters, cops, doctors, mommies, and daddies.

But, something happens as we grow older.

We become scared of those dreams.

Could it be that our eyes are slowly opened by the reality of the world that surrounds us and we just become jaded about dreams and life?

Could it be that the people around us have had their dreams smashed so many times that they have just become non-dreamers and end up shutting ours down?

Could it be that the world loses its wonder and we just become numb to those possibilities that we once saw everywhere and in everything?

For some of us, however, we either continue to see the dreams and possibilities–or maybe we just learned to find them again.

Walt Disney was right on with this statement though. It’s true, if you dream it, you can do it.

I was a single mom fresh out of a divorce living on cash aid and food stamps. But, I CHOSE to dream of working in a good career and owning a home. So, what I did was work myself out of that broken situation by going to college and getting the degrees and credential that I needed. Today, by myself, I have exactly what I had dreamed for myself and my kids just a few years earlier: I have a great career and I own a house and a decent car.

Once you accomplish your goals and attain your dreams, then it’s time to set new ones. For example, now that I own my house, my goal is to let the equity build so that I can sell it and buy a smaller house on a larger lot. Ultimately, I’d really love to have a decent amount of land around me. I will get there. It’ll take time, but I’ll get there. And it will be amazing!

There is one thing missing from this quote though. It’s that our dreams and goals require work. There is no one on this planet of ours who is just going to hand over whatever you could possibly desire. It just doesn’t work that way.

You have to actually map out a plan and stick to it so that you can have what you want. You have to constantly keep that dream in front of your eyes, which is why you need to print it out or write it down and post it in places that you see regularly.

We humans tend to get bogged down with the daily requirements that life are full of, such as work, making dinner, washing laundry, cleaning house, running errands, and on and on and on. Because of this, we lose site of our goals.

Click Here: Dream To-do list to get the steps you need to take so that you can get started on your journey to making your dreams come true.

Wishing you a kick-ass life,

Alicia Bates

Wealth Wednesday: Money Guilt

Wow! Cindy was really onto something when she said this!

I have heard many times people making others feel guilty when they come into a little money.

People will say, “oh come on, you can afford it!”

That might be the case but that doesn’t mean that one should pay for someone else just because they have some extra cash. How do you think they have that extra cash? It’s because they make wise financial decisions on a daily basis.

There’s also another problem that happens. There are those money hungry individuals who only come around when they are able to sponge off of others.

I have a friend who would get thousands of dollars back on his taxes every spring and it never failed, his “tax return honey boo boo” was right there alongside him until the money ran out. Then she’d leave and he’d be left feeling stupid and taken advantage of. But, you know what, he’d fall for it again the next year. This went on for several years until he finally got smart and put a stop to the madness.

The thing is, when you work hard for your money, you need to do a couple of things:

  1. Be proud of what you’ve accomplished.
  2. Appreciate any money that came along because of that work.
  3. Understand that it’s ok to tell others “no.”
  4. Understand that’s it’s absolutely
  5. ok to NOT feel guilty about it.

Instead of feeling guilty about not giving away your hard-earned money to those who didn’t work for it, ask them if they want help in learning to do better. Then, be sure that you’re willing to help them get to where you’re at. If they aren’t interested in truly improving their financial position, then you know you absolutely made the right choice in not giving them any more of yours.

You are free to let go of that guilt.

Here’s some hard truth: If they aren’t willing to do the work necessary to make different choices to help their financial situation, why should you carry the weight of their burden?

Stop doing it.

Now, while there are those you should definitely say no to when it comes to your money, there are also people to say yes to. But, you need to be smart about it. Do small things to help others, such buy some stranger’s coffee or lunch at the fast food place. But, just don’t let anyone guilt you into it. There’s a huge difference between helping from a place of caring and helping from a place of guilt.

Your to-do for Wealth Wednesday is to go out and buy someone something. It can be as small as buying a gumball machine toy for a kid or as big as whatever your imagination can come up.

What this will do is help to turn your mindset about money around so that you can start directly seeing the good that money can do for the world.

Wishing you a kick-ass life,

Alicia Bates

 

Mindset Monday: Have you ever felt like a failure?

Have you ever tried something and then completely bombed the thing that you tried?

How did that make you feel? Did you feel like a failure?

Or…

Did you say, “Yo, whatever! That’s the way things go sometimes! What can I do differently so I get better results?”

Most people fall into the first mindset and end up in the metaphorical ditch only to lie in wait for something or someone to put them out of their misery.

But, you can’t wait on anyone or anything else. You’ve got to take the initiative to pick yourself back up and plop yourself back onto your feet so that you can make the necessary adjustments for trying again!

So, check out these La Crosse (Please tell me that’s the right sport! Ya’ll know I’m not a sporty chick!) players. They didn’t get to where they’re at by wishing and hoping and waiting.

And, they MOST definitely did NOT give up! They didn’t let anyone tell them they weren’t good enough or didn’t deserve the success. They didn’t let anyone tell them they couldn’t do it or wouldn’t do it or shouldn’t do it. They went forward anyway. They took action; they practiced and practiced and practiced. They kept trying new plays and new ideas until they learned what they needed to learn and persevered to ultimately win!

This is how life works. We have to keep trying. Every day. Each day is a chance to try again, start over, or just completely scrap the previous plan and try something new.

Or, you can choose to lie in the ditch until someone else picks you up and repeat the same thing over again even though it hasn’t produced the results that you’re after.

The thing is–the CHOICE is YOURS!

Yes! You heard me right!

It’s a CHOICE you make and it’s one YOU make on a daily basis.

So what are you going to do?

One thing you can do is stop looking at failure as the end all! It’s not an end.

Failure is the beginning of doing the thing that will work for you the right way. That takes trial and error. Some times more errors than other times.

But, how do you know if you don’t keep adjusting and trying? You will get there! You just have to keep trying. That 10,001 way was Edison’s “light bulb” so use that attitude to go out and make your own light shine!

Wishing you a kick-ass life,

Alicia Bates