As a Canadian living in southern California, I get asked a lot of questions along the lines of how I was able to do it, how I paid for the move, what advice I have for other people who are wanting to relocate, etc. I am very fortunate to have been able to do what I did, but it definitely took a lot of hard work and strategizing on my part. I put together some advice on how to achieve your dreams too, and I think these tips are good to keep in mind whether you’re moving cross country or just trying to manifest your dream life wherever you’re at. I also wanted to write about how to start saving money and living your dream life because I know it will be useful to some, so I outlined my best tips below on how I started living my dream life and how you can do the same!
1. Plan Ahead
I’ve always known I wanted to live in southern California, so everything I did throughout my college years was in preparation for moving and achieving my dream life. The biggest thing that helped me was writing things out and keeping a daily planner. I used my planner to draw out a timeline that included what date I wanted to move by and a list of things I needed to have done by that time. I wrote lists that took everything into account, whether it was little things like what clothes and personal belongings to take with me, or bigger things like a list of furniture and appliances I would need for moving in to the new place.
This same tip can be applied to many scenarios in life. Whether you’re going for a promotion at work, trying to hit your fitness goals, or any other outcome you might be working toward. You’re more likely to remember and internalize things if you write them down, so get a journal/planner and list everything that you think will help you achieve your goal.
Below are some of my favorite brands for journals and personal planners. The planner I personally am using right now is a Day Designer x Blue Sky one and I love it because it has a built in “to do list” section next to each and every day of the week and there are also pages at the front specifically for goal planning and then pages at the back for notes and anything else you would want to write in your planner.
Before I left, I was spending a lot of time online looking for roommates in greater LA and thinking about what kind of place I wanted to move into (house or apartment?). I ended up moving into a house and stayed there for a year before moving into a different apartment near the Grove, and I found both of these places online through a lot of searching and weeding out potential scams – there are tons of those in LA – and I ended up being very happy with living at both places because I did the research to find roommates that were my age and who were living in areas that I wanted to be in.
If you’re not moving in with roommates and are looking for your own place right off the bat, make sure you understand the rental property laws in the city you want to move to. You might think that they don’t really matter, but after you move you’ll see that any number of unexpected things could happen where you might need legal advice and wish you would’ve known more beforehand. This is a good place to look to start your research on all that legal stuff 🙂
Definitely whatever scenario you’re facing, you want to make sure you do your homework. Whether this means asking more questions at work to learn your job even better or whatever it may be for you, knowledge is power.
3. Save $$$
I was really lucky to be able to live with my parents throughout college and spend all of my free time working. I saved a good amount of money by generally trying to stick to a rule I made for myself that I would save 75% or more of my disposable income and spend the remaining percentage on clothes and makeup just so I wouldn’t go crazy. Everyone has bills but most of us also have the freedom to decide what we want to do with the rest of our income. Instead of going out to restaurants and spending my money on expensive dinner checks or drinking, I skipped out on that stuff in favor of doing all of that now that I live in LA. It was a bit of a sacrifice but it’s for sure not one that I regret, and I can guarantee that once you accomplish your goal you won’t regret being smart with your money either.
Pinterest is a great resource for finding all kinds of information on how to save money, even if you don’t have much to save. I pin a lot of finance and saving tips to my account, check it out by clicking here.
4. Stay Focused
More than anything, if you keep your goal in mind and stay dedicated, you’ll be able to achieve it because everything you do will be aimed at accomplishing it, whether or not you even fully realize it. Creating an inspiration board is always a good idea: take a bulletin board and pin your favorite pictures that remind you of your dream life and keep it on a wall where you’ll see it frequently. Or, write about your goals and objectives in a notebook so they’re brought to the front of your mind on a regular basis. Anything that reminds you of what you’re working towards will help to keep you motivated and on the right track 🙂
I love this resource that talks all about setting up a master plan to achieve a goal!
I hope this post was helpful and thanks so much for reading! Remember, at the end of the day, if you want something badly enough then you’ll find a way to get it – it just takes determination and hard work to live your dream life 🙂