Friends and Goals: Don't Let a Blue Falcon Bring You Down

by Jeff Rose on 23 December 2011 2 comments
Photo: Art G.

When I was in basic training for the Army, everybody hated Blue Falcons. The term Blue Falcon was the PG version used to describe a fellow soldier that was a "Buddy Fudger" (keeping it censored here for the kiddos).

What exactly did it mean to be a Blue Falcon? If a soldier talked in formation when he shouldn't have or didn't shine his boots, he was considered a Blue Falcon because we all got "smoked" by our drill sergeants. Getting "smoked" means doing a lot of calisthenics that weren't a lot of fun. Drop and give me twenty. Sound familiar? Blue Falcons always brought us down and were a drag on our platoon building any momentum.

Have you ever wanted to make a serious change in your financial life? Like get rid of your student loan debt, pay off your credit cards, or just get a grasp on where the heck all your hard earned money is going? (See also: How to Save Without Goals)

Whenever you want to make a change in your life, or try something new, you may find yourself surrounded by people who not only don't support your endeavors, but actually hinder them. These people can be friends, co-workers, even family members; their main function is to foil whatever plan you are trying to put in place in your life. These people are your Blue Falcons, and you need to find a way to either eliminate them in your life or at least reduce the influence they have over you. 

Here is a common life example. Say you are trying to lose weight or stick to a strict weight-lifting regimen. You will notice that you have friends who support you (these are called your Battle Buddies) — help you to make good choices at restaurants, avoid interrupting your workout schedule, or ask how your new strategy is working out.

You will also have friends who could care less about what you are doing or see that you are trying to make a change but, for some reason, don't want you to be successful. These are the Blue Falcons.

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Imagine having three close buddies, none of whom work out with any regularity. They might be annoyed when you choose to hit the gym instead of grabbing your usual beer with them. Maybe these "friends" will try to sway you to skip your workout routine and join them at the local bar. They might even consciously interrupt your carved out gym time. Whatever they do, they are trying to influence you to not make the change you have decided to make.

How, you may wonder, does this term fit into the context of finances? Maybe you are trying desperately to save money. Perhaps, like millions of Americans, you are working hard to get out of debt and stay out of debt. Unfortunately, the Blue Falcons in your life will try to influence you and make it harder for you to reach your financial goals.

How do they do this? Just like in the example above, your Blue Falcons might try to get you to go out more often, spend money on trips and movies and golf. They might even ask to borrow money — don't do it!

Now, the truth is, they might not know that you are trying to make a big change in your life. If you are a team player, however, then you will have shared your plans with those closest to you. Therefore, all of those nearest and dearest should be on board. If people in your life know what you are trying to do, and still stand between you and your goal, then they are not really your nearest and dearest. Are they?

So what do you do? Like a soldier, you need to stand firm, take charge, and go for it! You have nothing to lose (except maybe a Blue Falcon or two) and everything to gain.

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Andrea Karim's picture

Letting go (or at least minimizing) negative relationships is one of the best things you can possibly do for your health in any regard. It's why I long ago dropped the dramatic, needy friends from my life. I like balance, and more importantly, I need to be surrounded by people who are logical and not driven by the need to create chaos.

I haven't ever regretted it.

Guest's picture

Yep, it sounds harsh, but I had to start disconnecting from some people in order to stay within my budget and stress less about money. I started to turn down invites to kids' birthday parties and other events that would require a gift, unless it was immediate family. I used filters on Facebook to hide the people who can't stop talking about their fabulous new shoes or meals out. That and finding a few "kindred spirits" who are in the same situation has really helped me feel at peace with my family's fairly modest circumstances.