Making Small Sacrifices to Move Forward in Your Life
We all have things in our lives we’d rather not lose. Small pleasures, items, or moments that we’ve become accustomed to, but that we’d rather not say goodbye to.
But what happens when these little things start interfering in the “bigger picture?” The direction we want our lives to take? The people we want to spend our lives with?
I only speak of this because I’ve got some pretty heavy life experience in having the little things hold me back. They literally held me back for years. I don’t want to see the same thing happen to you.
But we don’t need to go into specifics. I know your situation might be entirely different from mine, and that’s OK. But these ideas can pretty much be applied to anybody who knows they’re being held back by their own mild stubbornness.
If you feel like you’ve hit a figurative brick wall in your life, but you know that the smallest of sacrifices could amount to the greatest of shifts in your overall focus, maybe it’s time you considered letting go…
Small sacrifices can equal a great reward
Our lives are made up of plenty of different elements that make up the wholeness of our existence. But beyond the essentials — shelter, food, water — many of these things are simply extra comforts that we begin to take for granted.
This could be a hobby, a relationship, an indulgence… A vice? The list could quite literally go on forever. But what happens when you let just one of these things stop you from making progress in your life goals?
Sure, it might be something that brings you some level of daily joy, but ask yourself the question: Is it really something that you couldn’t do without?
A neat little trick is to write down the things in your life that you know you enjoy, but that you also know could be stopping you from taking the next step. Work your way through the list and make a practical assessment as to whether or not eliminating one or multiple of these things could make a huge difference as to where you go from here.
Eventually, as you cross things off your list, you might realize there are a lot of changes that can be made. They might be big or small, but the point is you’ve taken a clear step to identify what can stay and what can go.
Think of it as “Spring Cleaning” your life and your mind. It worked wonders for me. Give it a go.
Comfort can be a curse
We become so used to many of the small pleasures in our lives that they cease being pleasures, sneaking into a corner of our consciousness that’s reserved only for the essential aspects of our lives.
Tyler Durden said it best:
“Do you know what a duvet is? It’s a blanket. Just a blanket. Now why do guys like you and me know what a duvet is? Is this essential to our survival, in the hunter-gatherer sense of the word? No.”
There’s nothing wrong with loving a good duvet. They’re comfortable as hell. But it becomes a problem when we start to think we couldn’t possibly survive without a duvet. When the duvet has begun to feel more important than a lot of other things in our lives.
What’s even worse is when we’re unwilling to throw the duvet in the trash, even though the duvet is holding us back. In case you can’t tell, we’re not talking about an actual duvet here… it’s a metaphor.
So, what’s your duvet? What’s something that brings you a sense of comfort, that makes you feel safe, but that you know is stopping you from starting down the path you want to take?
It might hurt at first, and it might be a big shock to the system, but eventually, you’ll come to realize that the duvet wasn’t the thing bringing you comfort — it’s how it made you feel. Replace that feeling with something else, something that won’t be as halting to your progression.
Or, go cold turkey and eliminate the duvet from your life altogether. You’ll be a little chilly at first. But you’ll adjust to the new temperature.
Time won’t always be on your side
Everything comes back to Father Time. Whether we like it or not, we’re all on the clock. You need to ask yourself whether or not you’re going to let the little things, that could easily be sacrificed, get in your way while the clock keeps ticking down?
I’d argue this is the biggest motivator to make you want to make a considerable change to your life. It certainly was for me. If you feel like you’re wasting time, you should seriously consider taking the things you know are costing you time to the chopping block.
When you look back on your life, do you really want to have to deal with knowing you could have done things so much differently if it weren’t for a few small, expendable factors?
Use the list system we talked about earlier if you must, and try ranking things in order of how much time they’ve cost you, or are likely to cost you in the future. Then you’ll have a much clearer idea of what you can keep, and what you can leave to the sands of time.
This might all sound a bit on the philosophical side, but I legitimately feel it can be applied to almost any and every aspect of your life you feel is pushing you down.
As for me? I’ve made some small (and BIG) sacrifices in the past six months. Some I REALLY didn’t want to make. But I can honestly say that my life is exceptionally better off for having made them.
Take a step back, examine your situation, and try to do the same. Good luck.