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What I learned about goalsetting through playing monopoly with my 9 – year old boy –or-How to give yourself 2 hours a day, effortlessly

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They say we can learn a lot from our kids, and this is one of those a-ha moments for me.

I find that this time of year holds no shortage of opportunities to “set goals” and “get organized.” I also find that we beautiful, smart, idea-rich people who have chosen to become (gasp) entrepreneurs inevitably have at least some form of “squirrel syndrome.” For those of you who might be wondering about said syndrome, it is also known by the name of “shiny object syndrome,” “monkey mind,” etc.

However much we might know that we need to focus, to really buckle down and focus, to really do it this time, for real, there’s a significant difference between knowing and intending and wanting to do it, and ingesting, digesting, and radiating that intention. Allow me to illustrate via a game of monopoly.

My son knows what he likes in the game of monopoly. He likes the train stations, he likes the orange house block, and he likes the red house block. When opportunities arise for him to buy other properties, it’s a no-brainer…he says “no thanks, I’ll wait for the right opportunity.”

Contrast this with his friend who came over yesterday. His friend went around the board, and, whatever that friend landed on, he bought. It was not long before my son won. His friend quickly ran out of resources to buy anything and did not have the ability to pay when he landed on my son’s property or was forced to “pay income tax” or whatever “bad luck” cards he was dealt in the game.

The game lasted only one hour. In contrast, the monopoly I typically play is probably an average of 4 hours. What can we adults learn from this story? Since this is an article and not a conversation, I’ll jump to some answers.

  • While it’s good to stay open to unforeseen opportunities, it’s critical to have a strategy and an overall plan in place.
  • When you plant seeds everywhere without reserves, you could run out of seeds and fuel.

How do you compare in this scenario? How do you approach business and life planning? Do you have a clear picture of where you are headed? How do you make purchasing decisions when a “not to be missed” email flies into your inbox? Do you have business filters, and are they based on that overall vision?

We can all use help in this arena, as adults tend to get sidetracked with the complexities of life beyond 9 years old. What support do you have in place? Here are some ideas:

  • Mastermind groups
  • Facebook groups
  • Accountability partner
  • Coach
  • Mentor

When you start thinking about your community as above, it’s best when you share values with the other people in the group. This work is personal and powerful, and not every group is a good fit for every individual.

I’m part of a mastermind, and a facebook group or two. I’ve also just begun a continuing education course where there is an accountability buddy component built into the structure. I am so thankful for that.

In closing, I’d like to share a quote from a client this month: “I feel like I’ve given myself 2 hours a day.” Why did she say this? By working together this last fall, we have identified her big goal, her big why strategies that serve her and new ones that serve her better. She feels lighter now and freer. She knows what she wants, and, much like my son, it’s easy for her to decline properties that don’t serve her mission. This clarity allows her to say YES to the properties/opportunities that get her to the next level and allow her to be her best self.

When you’re ready to become discerning about your monopoly purchases, set up a discovery time with me. We’ll uncover a strategy that’s been there all along, and you will feel lighter, freer, and possibly happier than you’ve ever been since you were 9 years old. As a client said, you’ll find “an old friend” and that friend is the childlike you, much wiser in the mature body and brain you live in now. Discover that friend now:

Posted in: Evernote, Get Organized