My definition of success has changed over the years. We learn from experience. Although one can make so many mistakes that repeat offenses are a rarity, I’ve made them all — repeatedly. At least we can leverage these painful lessons to craft our slightly more mature lifestyle ideal. Ultimately, life is about knowing when to fold em’.
It is my sincere hope and intention to help other hyper-motivated, energetic, courageous, entrepreneurial dreamers see that their dreams are closer than they think. Basically, don’t kid yourself. Trying to capitalize on not being accountable (in a meaningful way that can be built upon) is a tricky business. I understand the these-walls-won’t-box-me-in mentality. I have just learned that walls don’t have to be cages.
Two years ago, I ended an article I wrote about the business of a successful lifestyle with a question: What do you have to lose?
Now, I’m coming back to the table to answer the question and share my lessons with others who aspire to have a lifestyle business of their own.
How It All Went Down
Two years ago, at 28, I moved my apartment into public storage, shipped my car from D.C. to L.A., and took my restless, hungry soul on a journey. I’ve spent most of my life chasing freedom. It eluded me somehow. But through the process I have discovered that it’s very likely that freedom is an attitude. It doesn’t need a certain lifestyle to in order to be legitimate.
For a while I went out and did what I wanted to do. I was riding the rails from music festival to music festival. My online image was one of a free-spirited, on-the-road girl. Why did I do this? To develop my project, #savvycity, and expense these experiences to my business. With that being said, here are some lessons I took from my adventure.
- Routine isn’t the enemy of freedom. Some routine is freedom. For example, there is a freedom in sleeping in your own bed, having your own bed or attending the same yoga class weekly. Just because I’m running around from festival to festival, doesn’t mean I’ve found the freedom I was seeking. What I was after was a way to expense play by calling it work. Accomplished!
- Let life surprise you. Do not try to fight the river. You will lose. Just ride the current while finding the gold. This is a lifestyle approach. I’m still learning to truly practice this particular preach.
- Make a plan. Whether it’s a business plan or a spiritual plan, write it out and put it up somewhere visible. Practice flexibility! The plan is not meant to be the law of your landscape but rather a reference point to get you back to your real purpose.
- Be happy. Take time to do what makes your soul happy.
- If you’re going to do it, do it right. Is your soul unhappy? Delay your journey. What halts us most in life is the picture in our own head of how’s it’s all supposed to be. We create our own reality. Pay close attention to what you want yours to look like.
- Life is about the edits! Change the channel. Rewrite the script. You’re allowed to come back to those negative thoughts if you choose to. They’ll be there waiting.
- Don’t ask if it will work, but rather why it might work. I have had hysterical fits because my vision is clear to me and not the mass population or consumer of my particular project, #savvycity. Analyze and make changes to make it work for today’s user.
- Choose a job you love and you’ll never have to work a day in your life. How do you choose a job you love? Find something you are passionate about and stay devoted to it.
I’m still moving forward with my dreams and ambitions. With the right attitude, and the openness to learn the necessary lessons along the way, the journey can be quite rewarding.
A version of this post originally appeared on the author’s blog.