Living life day to day just in the routine is easy. It is easy to push aside everything that is nagging at you to correct or calling you to achieve and keep plugging away doing the minimum. You tell yourself none of the other will matter. You are too tired. You want to look on the bright side, you tell yourself. You want to keep moving forward and don’t want to get bogged down in the past.
You do the things you know that you must do and that takes pretty much all of the time, energy and focus you can muster. Of course there are things on that to-do that never get done. But that’s okay you tell yourself, I will do them tomorrow. You put them on tomorrow’s to-do list. Or you just plain ignore it.
Oh the oblivion of denial! So sweet is its call. So convenient is its offering. Scarlett O’Hara said it so well “I can’t think about that right now. If I do, I’ll go crazy. I’ll think about that tomorrow.” Sometimes, being laser focused on today is exactly what we need. When we must deal with what is most pressing in the moment. That is why living in procrastination and denial can be so easy and attractive. It works. Until it doesn’t.
I used to live in denial about my spending. Until I realized I couldn’t wait until tomorrow to look at it and to begin repairing the damage that had been done. I made really good money and have for many, many years. Once I got my self-esteem out of the gutter after a long teen romance that lasted into my mid-twenties, I started making better and better money. And I started spending. If I look at my life in the more recent past, I see the exact pattern I had that first time many years ago. I went wild spending after that relationship ended as I was setting up house. Then I got serious, paid off all of my debt and started making exponentially more money than I ever had before. I kept way ahead of my bills and managed to sock away some money even while my lifestyle got a lot more expensive.
All went along pretty well, really, living in somewhat of denial about how much I was making and how much of it I was spending. I was grinding away just trying to do my job and stay ahead of that, so I deserved the vacations and other things I blew my money on. I used to even say, I work for vacations. It was my stated goal.
I do not regret those vacations. Not at all. They hold fantastic memories for us. It was a learning process and now I see it a bit differently. After all of this freewheeling and sometimes crazy spending, I found myself separated from my husband. I had just bought a car pretty much on a bet that I wouldn’t. It was a 2009 Shelby Cobra. Convertible. A GT500. She was gorgeous. But even after test driving it I knew it wasn’t for me. I bought it anyway.
A year later my world was upside down. I had to quit my job then lost the next two and for a good while, I thought it would be three. My finances have still not yet recovered from that but are on their way. As I regain my self-esteem at a greater level than I have ever had before, I know that my financial blessings will follow. But not if I continued to live in denial. The first step is awareness. Awareness cannot happen amidst denial. Part of loving myself is to seek awareness even in the parts I would rather ignore and the benefits of that are immeasurable in terms of growth, energy, focus and overall success.