- Bill Antonitis
We enthusiasts enjoy an expensive, time-consuming hobby. Needless to say, life often gets in the way of our plans for driving fun. Family, schedules, logistics, and myriad other factors can keep us from canyon running, track driving, or rock crawling as much as we'd like. Even our own interest in motorsports can ebb and flow. Sometimes it takes effort to plan a drive, and, well, sometimes it's nice just to loaf around at home. Last but not least, just cruising around ain't cheap. So purchasing, modding, and maintaining the vehicle (or vehicles) you desire can seem downright impossible. But let's discuss why and how you can keep your automotive passions from taking a back seat.
Slow down. Think about what you want... where you want to go as an enthusiast. Is it a new car? Maybe a lifted Jeep or that 911 you always wanted. Why? Exploring your motivations can help you prioritize what you really want. Is it a new automotive experience? Maybe to try overlanding or to join The Pilgrimage. Setting waypoints can help you identify roadblocks. Visualization is an important goal-setting tool and a great motivator when you can anticipate what is coming around the bend.
For example, I planned to start the summer of 2020 by buying a third vehicle--a fun car for enjoying road and track--and to use it while starting performance driving lessons. For several reasons, that didn't happen. My son and I love spirited driving and off-roading together, and my wife likes joining us for road trips. These are fun and fulfilling pastimes, and they will tide us over until circumstances change. Enjoying driving together will also help focus my energy and effort for what's to come. I know that a "fun car" will eventually be part of my life. It's just a question of when.
Once you decide what you want to drive and why, it's time to work out the how. To plot a course, turn the ignition, and put the pedal to the metal. And tell people about your plans. This encourages personal accountability. It can also bring you together with others with similar goals, so you can help each other out.
To buy a new car, my own plan is to cut expenses, pay off some outstanding debt, find additional revenue streams, and to, well, be patient. To become a better driver, I am binge-watching YouTube videos, digging Everyday Driver (obviously), and reading books like the oft-recommended Speed Secrets. I'm practicing what I learn a little bit each time I drive until I can get some one-on-one instruction. Karting more often will also be important. These seem like big tasks to me, and that's why I'm sharing it all in this post to help make sure I follow through. Feedback is appreciated!
Like most things in life worth having or doing, you will need to work hard to make your automotive aspirations a reality. Like traffic jams, participating in great efforts can be tedious and seem never ending. Unlike sitting stationary in an infinite line of cars, focus and hustle provides forward momentum. There will be no shortcuts, but patience and perseverance will pay off.
It's also important to have fun! There are many ways to do this. Get a team together to support each other. Keep a journal to track your progress. Celebrate the mile-markers you pass on the way. Before you know it your destination will be in sight. I, for one, like writing about my automotive endeavors and inviting others along for the ride. I plan to continue this as travel further down the road.
Sometimes we need a map to find our dream driving destinations. Sometimes we need evasive maneuvers to keep from crashing on the way there! No matter what obstacles may block you from totally loving your time behind the wheel--or in other areas of you life--taking the time to assess your situation, to make a plan, and to keep moving forward will help you cross the finish line.
Want to declare a driving goal? Help make it happen by sharing it in the comments.
Bill hosts a blog and YouTube channel that lead him to think more deeply about what it means to drive. The views and opinions expressed here are his own and may not align with the founders of Everyday Driver.