Over the past month or so I have gotten caught up in the Major League Baseball playoffs. That’s something I haven’t been caught up in for years. As I’ve gotten older I have had to find ways to better manage my time and enjoy the hobbies that I do have. Work, family life, and just general adult responsibility take up a lot more time than they did in high school, college, and my early 20’s. And that isnt a bad thing. These things add so much fulfillment to my life. But as a result certain things I have enjoyed immensely at various points in my life have gotten less attention over the years. I don’t read as much as I’d like too. I am perpetually adding shows to my netflix backlog and saying “I will get to that some day”. My video game backlog is literally hundreds of games long. With gaming I’ve reached the point where I probably won’t buy another system for myself unless it’s to play games online with friends. There are martial arts classes I want to take. Trails I want to hike. Volunteer work I want to do at the local animal shelter. But most (if not all) of these things are “nice to haves” in my life.
One of the things I have learned to do fairly well in my adult life is to accept my limits. What I mean by that is that I have done a pretty good job of living in a way that gets me through the day to day grind of work and then filling me free time with activities that help me recharge my batteries. Being an introvert, I am typically pretty burned out by the end of the week and to effectively recharge I need time by myself, usually at home, to prepare mentally and emotionally for the week ahead. That means I am often not engaging in the types of activities that are on my bucket list because I am focusing on taking care of myself. As part of my own efforts to grow personally that is an area I need to continue to work on, as I don’t want to go through life just waiting until that one moment that comes when I am financially free and can then start working on that long list of things I want to experience.
So getting back to baseball…..I guess for me that means that sometimes it’s better to get outside your comfort zone, or make a concentrated effort to enjoy something you’ve put on the back burner while dealing with the day to day of adulthood. Financial freedom will come one day, and money certainly matters when planning for it. But we don’t want to get so bogged down in the hustle, that drive for money, doing those things that are taking us towards that ultimate goal of financial freedom while not enjoying the ride along the way. There’s a lot of life to live on the road to financial freedom, not just when we get there. Don’t forget to roll down your windows and enjoy the ride while taking a few detours while driving. Otherwise you may end up at your final destination, look back, and realize that you missed out on some of the best parts of the trip along the road behind you.