They meant well, but they were wrong.
They told us that working 9-to-5 Monday through Friday was needed for success as an adult.
They told us that “a good job” would take us to the promised land.
They told us that “hard work” was the only way to get what we want in life.
Who are they?
“THEY” are the people in our lives who likely love us and mean well. They are also the teachers of our youth who had to teach a certain doctrine in public schools.
They may have been teaching us this philosophy while living it themselves. All the while, they may not have believed in it. They may not have enjoyed living it themselves.
They may not have tried (even once) to live and work in a way that is unconventional to most, and yet still enjoyed by many.
I invite you to pause today and look around at environments, situations, people working, and people playing. Think about how they may be living their lives. We are all unique. We all have endless choices. We each create the path of our life.
Why are some people riding their bike while you sit in an office? Why are some people always traveling while you save and wait for that one escape each year? Why do some people get to sleep in while others get up early to sit in traffic for an hour each morning? Why do some people go to college for 6-8 years only to make 20% more than most who did not? Why do some people with no college training, but a great desire and work ethic, earn 10X more than the average person?
THEY say that a specific structure of life will yield positive results. Sometimes that’s true, and often just the opposite is truer.
Here’s what I’ve found to be true:
1. Working for someone else can give you the illusion of stability. That is until the company closes, the boss dies, you get laid off or the business is sold.
2. Working 9-to-5, Monday through Friday, 40 hours per week is nonsense. Why does this have to be a common structure? You can and should work as much or little as you like to build a life that is fulfilling. If you want to work from 6 am until 2 pm Monday through Thursday, that’s what you should do.
3. Commuting to an office in traffic each day is horrible and even bad for your health. I recently drove to Los Angeles and got stuck in traffic. That’s what happens when you drive in LA. It’s nasty. Then, I thought about the people who do that every day for years. I felt bad for them.
4. You don’t need much. With essentially every work tool now on the cloud, you don’t need much to operate your business. In most cases, a laptop and a smartphone will handle 95% of your work just fine.
5. Paying rent for an office is most often not needed. Instead, you can work from a coffee house, a co-working location, home or anywhere with WIFI.
6. For about the last year or so, I’ve been studying the difference between the “crush life, I’m a badass guru” group of people as compared to the “live life simply, and go see the world” group of people. This was just a simple observation to me. Both groups have success stories. However, what seems to ring true more often than not is this…. the “live life simply, and go see the world” group of people seem genuinely happier. They still earn – on average – far more than the “norm”. Nearly all of them have some type of location independent business. And, they are less encumbered by “stuff”. They seem to be more interested in meeting new people, exploring, seeking, trying new foods and just walking.
7. When the majority of people move in one direction (Example: 9-to-5, M – F) it’s because they have been programmed to do so. It’s not always because it’s what they want most, or think will serve them best. The resistance to break free from that constraint is rooted in fear (mostly of the unknown). However, as they say, on the other side of fear is freedom.
Just think about it.
If you are dissatisfied about your career choice, you can change it in an instant. Then, work to refine it until you have what you want.
Do you remember the story I told you in a previous email/article about my friend who lost nearly everything in the 2008 mortgage meltdown?
He now makes much less but has reduced his cost of live my about 80% or so. He’s actually living a better life now with minimal work while he travels the world.
That would scare a lot of people. But, it seems those I speak to who have done it, all say it was a wise choice and they’d never go back.
If you are not fulfilled, do something about it.
I’ll leave you with this quick story!
I remember being told by someone about a special 90 day period in their life. I think it was after a tragic event, a break-up or something traumatic.
They decided that they would not say “NO” to anyone’s ideas, suggestion or requests for that 90-day span. Gutsy!
During that period of time, they said yes to skydiving, a blind date, a road trip, weird food, business pitches and much more.
He said it was the toughest, yet enlightening, time of his life.
Something to think about…..
Life is short…. live it!
Thanks for reading.
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