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Morning Sun
  • Shoestring Living: Little changes, big impact

  • It’s resolution time; have you given up on yours yet? I hope not. January just seems like the perfect time to harness the motivation in our environment and bring our goals into reality. Sometimes though, our goals seem akin to mountain moving and that’s no easy task.

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  • It’s resolution time; have you given up on yours yet? I hope not. January just seems like the perfect time to harness the motivation in our environment and bring our goals into reality. Sometimes though, our goals seem akin to mountain moving and that’s no easy task.
    I’m suggesting that you don’t move mountains. Not yet anyway. Make a list of small changes that you can sneak into your life in a way that leaves you better prepared for the dragon slaying of gigantic goals that lies ahead. Take a look at some of my personal plans, and favorite mini-goals. Some may sound familiar, but they’re sure to propel you toward your bigger dreams like never before.
    Water
    Drink it, it’s that simple. It’s so good for your mind, body and soul. As I tell my kids each morning when I ask them to drink a full glass, “It wakes your brain up for school!” Not only does it keep all systems running in top shape, but it keeps you full and less likely to be running to the fridge or pantry, making a larger goal of weight loss within your reach. 
    Manage paper
    For those of you with organization on the brain in 2012, I urge you to prevent yourself from creating paper piles. I repeat, do not create paper piles. When you get the mail, deal with it immediately. Ditch recyclable mail in the bin before you walk in the door. When your kids dump a stack of schoolwork on the counter, praise them, save only what you think they’ll want to show their own kids someday and recycle the rest. Don’t leave your home office area with anything left to file. 
    Save a bit
    Even if you have holiday debt to dig out from under, try to save just a small amount each week. Something as minute at $5 or $10 will add up over time and will get you in the habit of doing so effortlessly. The trick? Make sure your amount isn’t too small. If you can handle $25 or $50, by all means do it and have it transferred to savings automatically. You’ll be that much closer to your larger savings goals.
    Stretch yourself
    So many of us want to grow professionally in the coming months. While you might have a large goal, like billing a specific amount this year, or obtaining a certain number of new clients, start small. Buy a book on improving your marketing techniques or attend a seminar in your field. These baby steps will open your mind to new ideas and networking possibilities. Both are equipped to help deliver your goals with unprecedented speed.
    Page 2 of 2 - Molly Logan Anderson is a freelance writer who lives in the western suburbs of Chicago with her husband, Mike, three kids and two labs. Join Molly on her family’s journey of living a frugal life and making financial freedom their reality in her columns or visit her website at www.mollylogananderson.com or on her blog at www.butterfliesandmudpies.blogspot.com.
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