Challenge Day 4 – Have you been controlling the animal?

Male Green IguanaDid you pack your lunch? Did you follow through with your plans? More importantly, did you control your reptile brain? My day went rather well, and I followed through with my goals, for the most part. I didn’t plan as well as I could have though, and that left myself in a bad position. What I didn’t plan for was an emergency stash, which left me no choice but to head to the gas station for snacks. I’ll explain what happened below and give you some tips to help you prevent what happened to me tonight, in allowing my reptile brain to instinctively take over from poor disaster planning.

Tonight was completely planned, or so I thought. I planned to eat dinner after the rehearsal for my pal’s wedding. Common sense should have told me I wouldn’t being eating until after 7PM, and my normal dinner time is around 5-5:30PM. I should have packed a healthy snack to hold me over. It makes sense to just pack some snacks and juice or water in the trunk in case I ever need it (granted you’d have to be careful if it was summer to keep whatever cool). Hence, I was forced to stop bye the gas station and grabbed a liter of Dr. Pepper and a pack of cashews as I got nauseated from hunger and developed a headache. Had I brought something, I would have avoided the headache, ate healthier, and saved some money. I basically wasted $3 because of poor disaster planning. I’m now going to put some food (dried goods) in the trunk to prevent something similar from happening in the future. If you have kids it’s an even better idea – as someone gets randomly hungry from time to time due to one kid not wanting to eat at meal time or some other reason. If you failed, but for other reasons, assess why – and what can you differently to prevent it from happening again. Maybe your problem is gambling, or something else, cut your atm card up, do whatever it takes to make things as hard as possible for you to alow the reptile brain to control your actions.

While we’re at it, and you’re packing the trunk with food goodies, may as well put a blanket, some extra clothes, and potentially a roadside kit. You never know when something bad is going to happen, it’s best to be covered. It would suck to get stuck in the middle of winter on an outer road and your battery goes dead. Something else to consider, is creating a small stock pile of canned goods and bottled water, separate from your normal food supply and keep it in the basement somewhere in case of a true disaster like an earthquake or whatever natural disaster may occur in your area.

Now that I beat disaster planning to a pulp, let’s talk about how well we’re controlling our animal instincts. By taking away the potential by properly planning, you can keep the animal from even rearing it’s ugly head. Because you’ve planned for most every outcome, there is little left to worry about – because you’ve already got something and you don’t need anything else.

In the next few articles (before we get to setting up a weekly plan on Sunday) I will turn my focus to talking about how to save money in various ways, from clipping a few coupons in minutes, to finding places in your area that are free to very inexpensive.

In summary, after 3 days I’ve saved nearly $20 to put into savings for when I setup my interest earning savings account, separate from all other accounts to reduce temptations from the animal. I will give you some suggestions for selecting a bank, you can choose your own though obviously – but I will show you which ones offer the best rates, promotions, etc. From there, I will start giving you something to think about with regards to selecting an investment company or broker to move a portion of your savings into for when we start investing at the end of the 30 day challenge. More important, I will help you decide how to setup a portfolio for your needs based upon some solid, tried and true advice. You and I are going to start feeling control over our life as we begin to tame that reptile brain. We have a ton to get to here in the next few weeks, but at the end you will be thrilled with how far you’ve come. It is important to not get to far ahead of yourself or me, so if you’re reading this days or weeks after I’ve written this, and even if you started on a different day – you can still follow along. Just don’t try and read everyday all at once, or even more than one day in one day. Rather check out the rest of my site or go get on your own planning. It doesn’t make sense to go overboard as you’re more likely to fail. I’ve learned this the hard way, with work, children, and so on. Pace yourself or you will most certainly burn out. Control that animal, peace.

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