If you’ve been reading this newsletter for very long, you already know that I’m big on working for a reason, not just working for the sake of working. My question for you today, in that vein, is this: Are you working towards some big, bold, audacious lifetime goal?
It’s important to understand why you are doing what you are doing. If you don’t have a big “why” that motivates you, then the reality is that you’re not going to build the kind of tax practice that you TALK about building. It’s extremely rare for an individual to subscribe to an email newsletter like this one if all they want to do is keep going along the way that they are. If you’re reading this, I can only presume that you’re after something bigger, more than just paying the rent and putting food on the table.
Perhaps you have a concept of wanting to make more money. The question you need to ask yourself, however, is “Why?” Wanting more clients, more revenue from your clients, additional services to offer your clients, these are well and fine. But at the core, it must be asked: WHY do you want these things?
Let me tell you a brief story. This past winter, I was hit by a car while riding home one night on my motorcycle, and it tore up my left knee so bad that it effectively ended my ice dancing ambitions. Not being able to participate in my hobby, I started looking at other things, and sailing caught my eye. Not only was I watching the exciting Volvo Ocean Race, but I also followed the progress of a young Dutch girl that was trying to become the youngest person to sail around the world.
Dutch child protective services spent almost a year trying to keep her from leaving, even going so far as removing her from the custody of her parents for a while (it made international news). She wasn’t willing to let that stand in the way of her going, and at one point she simply LEFT Holland. When she finally came back, the courts relented, and at the age of 14 she departed on her voyage. She finished this past January, just 16. The international community no longer recognizes such records for “youngest”, in order to discourage such things for safety reasons.
Why do I tell you this story? Because she had her eyes set on something, and did whatever it took to do it. Now that she’s done it, nobody can ever take that away from her. She had a big, scary, audacious goal, and DID it.
So why does matter to me? Because I was inspired by it. You probably know that I served in the US Navy for 6 years, and I actually loved it, especially being at sea. I’ve often thought about going back to sea recreationally, but never did anything about it. After seeing what Laura accomplished, and being inspired by the round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race, I made a decision: The next big chapter in my life would involve sailing to exotic places.
Due to the fact that I run a small tax practice that works for me, not me working for it, I have incredible freedom. So what did I recently do? I moved to the Pacific Northwest. This past weekend I took my Basic Keelboat certification class, and yesterday picked my shiny new electronic key card for dock access to the boats at a sailing club I just joined.
I don’t tell you this to brag, but rather to point out that if you want something, then it is completely up to you and within your power to take action towards it. No matter what it is that you want to do in your life, if you truly want it, then all you have to do is start taking the initial steps to get there. Creating a tax practice that allows you to live your life the way that you want is a crucial aspect of that, particularly if you still need the revenue coming in to pay for that goal.
Notice that I’m not calling this a “dream”. It’s a goal, pure and simple. And I personally believe that the bigger it is, the more audacious it is, the more powerful of a driving force it will be to motivate you.
Your goal doesn’t need to be about adventure and travel like all of mine are. Many other people share those goals, but yours can be uniquely you. Perhaps you want to raise $1 million for your small church — that can definitely be considered a big, audacious goal. Perhaps you want to put all four of your kids through an Ivy League school without incurring student loans — that’s also a big, audacious goal. Maybe you want that black and yellow Mustang Mach 1 that you’ve been drooling over since 1970 to be sitting in your driveway — if that’s truly what you want, then that’s cool, too.
You may have seen the video “The Secret”. The Secret was good for what it was, and the message it sends is true. The Law of Attraction really does work, but the part they left out was that you must take ACTION towards your goals. Once you know WHAT you want and WHY you want, you must take action towards reaching it.
So what’s your “why”? Do you have a big, scary, audacious lifetime goal that you’re working towards? What is it? What are you doing to achieve it?