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Use this simple HACK to make the HIGH cost of being an Architect LESS painful

It's expensive to be a licensed architect! Here's a simple hack to make all the fees less painful

Today I want to share with you this little hack I started doing whenever I had to pay for all the various architect fees. I use this when paying for license renewals or even certificates. Even taxes, honestly! So if you want this simple little reframe hack, read below, and I'm going to help you enjoy paying these sometimes frustrating fees.

I want to share with you a reframe hack I started doing a while back. I thought about it this morning because I was renewing my architecture license. If you are an architect in California, you must renew your license every two years on the odd year and the month of your birthday. So, for example, it's 2023. So everyone who's licensed will have to renew their license this year. My birthday is in January, so I must renew by the end of this month.

So when I sat down to pay, I was reminded how often I hear from people that they're frustrated about AIA dues, licensing dues, NCARB payments, etc. I totally get it. It's expensive! If you haven't watched my video about how much it costs to become an architect, you should watch it because I talk about what it takes to become an architect. I also talk about all these extra fees to maintain a license. You can watch/read more here.

At first, it was frustrating. I got licensed in September 2020. So that next year was going to be an odd year. This means I had to pay in October 2020 to get my license, and then in January, I had to pay for my renewal already. So I had only been a licensed architect for four months and already had to pay my renewal. I remember feeling frustrated sending another check to the architecture board. This is in addition to all the other dues like NCARB, AIA, LEED, etc.

When I sat down today to pay and renew my license, I had a totally different reaction. I thought this is incredible! It took me 12 years from the first time I started school to get my license.

And now I'm sitting down, simply filling out a form, paying $300, and maintaining my architecture license. I thought to myself, "I've worked so hard to get to this point that I feel really grateful for sitting down and being able to renew this license because there were years and years when I dreamed of having this license. If you had told me that it was just $300 to renew every two years, I would have happily done it because I would have done anything to make it work. Plus, when you're going through the exams, those exams are almost $300.

So, one thing I started doing is just being grateful to be able to pay those fees. You always have to evaluate if what your paying for is worth it. Do you want to keep this certification or keep this association? And if it is worth it, then it's wonderful! I once heard this very successful person explain this philosophy with taxes. When she started her business, she was worried about paying taxes. She did NOT want to do it. Then when she flipped the narrative, she created a new story. Instead said, "I'm so thankful to be able to pay these taxes because that means that I made enough money this year to pay taxes."

That was such a light bulb switch. I can relate. For so many years, you're wishing for the biggest check back for your taxes. But in a way, you're basically saying, I hope I don't make any money this year. What you really want to say is, I hope I owe taxes because that means I MADE money! So I now think of it in that same vein when I'm paying certain dues and keeping up my license.

These simple reframes can completely transform your mindset and how you proceed. This is even applicable when you're taking the architecture exams. Instead of being down on yourself for failing, you can switch it around and think, wow, I failed! But I was able to sit for that exam and take it, which means I'm 1000 steps ahead of so many people! Many people are just starting school and can't wait for the day when they can sit for their exams.

Reframing narratives like this puts gratitude in the front seat rather than frustration. Do it over and over, even when it feels a little weird. The more you do it, the more it'll become natural. And the more you will start feeling grateful and appreciative about everything in life.

Action Steps

I have a homework assignment for you. Maybe you already do this. My family and I have implemented this in our dinner times. We all go around the table, and we write it down. I encourage you to write it down as well. Write down three things that you are grateful for. Make one of those to be something that isn't obvious. You know, like, "I'm grateful for my family...I'm grateful for being alive..." Make something a little different. For example, I'm grateful for being able to pay the California architects board my yearly fees so that I can continue being a licensed architect, you know, something a little bit different to reframe. I promise that the more you do it and practice, the more you practice, the more you become second nature.

I'd love to hear the three things that you're grateful for! Please leave a comment here or over on YouTube.

Resources to help you pass your exams

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