It is impossible to separate the lifestyle we lead from other areas of our lives. The jobs we do, the business we have, and where we live all affect the quality of life. I honestly believe that to build a successful business you have to envision the lifestyle you desire to have first. For example, it does not make sense for me to start a fishing business when I hate fish. Regardless of how much money I make, I will hate every second of the process. Wealth is not only measured in terms of money but the fullness of life we enjoy as a result.
Lifestyle design or lifestyle entrepreneurship is designing your business around the lifestyle you want. Lifestyle design is something that became important to me when I had my first child. I knew I did not want to spend hours working away from my children but at the same time I needed to provide for them. I was determined my children were not going to spend countless hours in daycare and as a result I negotiated with my boss to design my job in such a way where I can still spend quality time with my baby. Even though I did not have an official terminology for it then, I never based my decision on taking a job based on money alone. The job had to be flexible enough to grant me the lifestyle I desired.
Now fast forward fifteen years later, I treat my business with the same mindset. I was not afraid to do away with all the traditional norms of starting a business and building a business that will afford me the lifestyle I love. I have been truly blessed all through this process.
Planning a lifestyle business
Firstly – specific and measurable goals
If you throw a penny up, it will come down: One truth we cannot escape is that we will most likely end up in the direction we are heading. We cannot meet the goals we set for ourselves unless we aim for them. So if you want to design a business that accommodates your desired lifestyle, you have to become very specific. In other words, you need specific and measureable goals.
For instance, rather than saying, “I want to lose weight” say “I want to lose 10 pounds in 3 months”. Having specific and measurable goals can translate in any area of life. If your lifestyle goal is to spend your winters somewhere warm then you need to incorporate that preference in your business. You will need to think of a way to structure your business where:
- You make enough money to afford the lifestyle
- Your business is mobile/ flexible enough where leaving your permanent residence for a whole season will not disrupt cash flow.
If you do not take your preferences into consideration, what ends up happening is you grow a business you learn to hate and you find yourself stuck in a hamsters wheel. Planning a lifestyle business is less complicated than people make it.