I always make projections to accomplish certain things by certain times, but must say in practice it’s way harder, as there is always a tremendous amount of bullshit if you’re to make a more dramatic manuever.
And when I do, I make notes with a detailed plan, and if it involves finances, then I calculate approximately how much money I expect to make by a certain time, minus rough monthly expenses (which I log on a daily basis in a spreadsheet), and then using that should get a rough time when it should be done. Similarly for food/fitness, but it is in calories and pounds instead of $$$, and the application Myfitnesspal is my friend in this case.
For example, for income, I take the best scenario and a realistic pessimistic one, and then average the two. Depending on where I’m working, the former would be an 84 hour workweek, and the latter 58. For expenses sometimes you have to leave a $500-1000/month buffer to cover unexpected expenses.
– So when I was younger, I aimed to graduate high school early and planned accordingly to take courses at certain times and finishing each by certain time frames. Which worked out.
– Then I wanted to complete my university degree at age 19, planning with similar logic… though I acquired 4 years of university experience by that time, I was not able to graduate, for a multitude of reasons.
– When I first moved here, I wanted a Porsche and my own place by September 2014. Though in theory it would had been possible, but I made a glaring mistake of buying a brand new vehicle instead of a slightly used one, which eroded my net worth. So there I learned to never buy newer years. And then I decided I needed to have a skill beyond just a body to make a better living, so I worked on the trucking license. Previously I expected to get into Power Engineering as a means to get into Fort McMurray again- this time armed- so I never thought of this, but that did not work out. Again another unexpected barrier. It also took me much longer to get my Class 1 than I anticipated- 5 months, in which I worked at 12/hour less than my former oilfield wage. So in short I didn’t make anywhere close to what I expected, but the course was a longer-term investment.
– I wanted to be perfectly shredded by this summer, but I learned from dieting that at lower body fat levels, your progress stalls as you plateau. I looked better after this spring and summer, but I am still far from the beach body. I grew a bit overconfident as I was able to put on 47 pounds in 4 months, gaining a lot of muscle along with some fat. What I originally thought would take perhaps 2 years (170-185lb cut) may take even 5, but again it is a learning process.
Now I would like to have my own house by mid to end of next year, and be working on my apprenticeship. If I tried, yes I could have a super nice car, but then it would be with a condo, not a house, or possibly without either of those. But after my experiences with vehicles I may hold off doing such a thing a bit longer.
Now I might be running my mouth here as I’ve fallen short of many of my objectives, but I still wouldn’t tell myself “that’s unrealistic, don’t even bother”. What I like to say here is to make goals, plan accordingly, fight your very hardest, playing the best you can with the cards that are handed to you… but with some realistic sense of pessimism as you won’t always achieve x by y time. And sometimes you just got to be a little crazy, all for good fun.