Tag Archive for "The Lifestyle Shift"
Welcome to 2011! I hope you had an amazing Christmas break and a fun New Year. The holidays have passed so quickly and I can’t believe it’s the start of a new year and more importantly, only 10 days to our wedding!
This Christmas heralded the start of a new dawn . . . the patter of tiny feet. No, not our own! At least not just yet. But this Christmas was a happy portent for Christmasses to come! At Greg’s brother’s house on Christmas day we had the pleasure of Charlotte, Greg’s 2 year old niece, and then at dinner at my dad’s house we had my little cousins running happily around us. As you know, our intention for 2011 is to create our own babies so it was great to get some practice!
On New Year’s Eve, we went to the beach near our new home in Williamstown, Melbourne, to sit and watch the fireworks cascade over the city. Fireworks are such a dramatic way to bring in the new year – they beckon excitement and wonder and I love relating them to business. As each rocket exploded over the city, I imagined how many of your businesses will take off and explode into profit this year.
Profit comes with good planning and the right intentions. If you want to set some intentions, now’s the perfect time to do it. In the meantime, happy new year!
For those of you in the UK I hope you had a great Bank Holiday weekend and you made time to do lots of nice, relaxing things! Remember, running a lifestyle business is just as much about the time off as it is the time spent working.
This weekend has all been about books for me. I’ve been working on the marketing proposal for my new book, The Lifestyle Shift. Who knew proposals could be so darn difficult?! It’s harder than writing the book itself!
As a break away from the page, Greg and I have found ourselves gravitating towards the beautiful harbour here in Antibes. It’s like stepping into a different world. You would not believe the size of some of the yachts! They’re like mini-Titanics! Still, it’s a lovely place to daydream and soak in the energy of abundance.
Abundance comes in many forms. Before I go, let me tell you about an extra special webinar I’m running on the 9th of June. From conversations with many of you, I know you’re interested in running your own lifestyle business – a business you can run from the South of France, the mountains of Spain or even the foothills of the Himalayas. It’s all about webinars! Hop on this free webinar on the 9th June and I’ll share all their life-enhancing benefits with you! Big Money from the Small Screen
I read a report in the paper the other day that the British are guaranteed a long, hot Summer. Get the barbeques ready and the sunglasses out. Who needs to fly abroad anyway? This way you get to beat the ash. So, what holiday plans have you got for this summer (or winter if you’re in Oz)? Please do share the exciting ones with us – it always gives me ideas for my next vacation!
In a few days, Greg and I are flying out to Antibes in the South of France. It’s not technically a holiday because we’ll still be working out there but it still gives us a chance to dine out on all that yummy French food. Isn’t French food just the best? I just love the way the French practically build their whole day around their meals. I like that they place this at the centre of their existence. It says something about how healthy they are – rather than placing their lives around their workload.
Holidays aren’t just an annual event are they? In our business we permanently aim for the relaxed edge that holidays give us. What you get out of holidays – the time to unwind and relax and get the work/life balance into perspective – we try to strive for everyday. How can you bring the holiday into your work-life? It’s actually more productive than you think….
Think about it this week as you soak in the sun in your lunch-break.
I’m flying from London to LA and just finished watching that delightful film- Julie and Julia. It’s been a long time since I’ve watched a movie and laughed AND cried AT THE SAME TIME. Oh the parallels were too close to home!
You see just before boarding the plane I was Skyping my little sis back and forth, as she was feeling lost in the “passion-infused-hobby-becomes-business” sea. I know the feeling – I’ve been there myself. I remember all to clearly how when I first started “doing what I loved for a living” I lost myself in the love of the work, and at times I lost my mind!
At that time it was my little sis who held my hand and took me shopping for “care food”. We went to her local food store and bought ingredients for a muesli slice, pita pockets and the ingredients for a homemade hummus. She cut up carrot sticks and packed my lunches for three days in advance and gave me the ultimate sisterly advice: “Take care of yourself please”.
And now she finds herself in a similar place. Founding mother of a super-fast growing, heart-based business feeding the foodies of Melbourne.
Its a place that all fledgling passioante entrepreneurs find themselves in in the first 12 months if they meet with early success.
When your hobby (the thing you used to do because you purely loved it) becomes the thing you do for work two things happen:
- Your life takes on a richness you never thought possible. “I can do what I ask, and get paid for it? ” the disbeliveing conscious mind will enquire. YES!- your unconscious mind gleefully discovers every day. The passion feeds more into the business, and more and more- until the fire burns so hot it can consume YOU- leading to the possibly ineveitable, second phase…
- Your lifestyle takes a severe hit, as the lines between your business and your life blur and blur until you forget where one stops and the other begins.
All this is fine- unless you are focused to the point of forgetting to eat, forgetting to drink, forgetting to go outside in daylight hours for weeks on end, and forgetting that you have a husband, wife or family who loved you even before you started your business.
Watching both Julie and Julia, and my sister Kath go through all this, I am reminded of that time in my life a few years back where the passion burned so hot I was like a bushfire. Leaving behind a wake of destruction. But like a bush fire, once the fuel is burned out, it slows, and a cool rain will eventually extinguish the embers. And soon enough, irrepressibly, the new life shoots from the charred trees, green-ness descends once more, and the cycle continues.
There is an opinion among Australian environmentalists that it is precisely because we do such a good job of preventing bushfires (a perfectly natural phenomenon) that when they do occur they are so MASSIVE and UNCONTROLLABLE. If we (well-meaning but control-freak humans) hadn’t come along, fires would burn, and burn out, and the cycle of life would continue.
Perhaps it is the same for the heart-based entrepreneur. Perhaps we are destined to go through our fires, our passion burning hot. And then to burn out, and rejuvenate. The trick is catching ourselves before our health and relationships burn out.
And perhaps it is for this reason we surround ourselves with family and friends who care. Like my sister was there to catch me a few years back and bake a muesli slice, it is now my turn to be there for her. To remind her to go take a bath, shave her legs and do her nails. To go have that massage, walk by the river and smell the eucalypts.
I think that most heart-based entrepreneurs will go through this almost ritual cleansing. Don’t freak out if you burn hot for a while. It’s only natural for this to happen when you unleash your passion in a meaningful way. Just make sure you have people around you to remind you that there are OTHER things you love too. Your family, your friends, your yoga, your kung fu, the opening credits of a movie, the way the air smells just before it rains. If you remember and give time to these things that bushfire can become a hearth fire, that others will come to so that they can warm themselves…
Smell the roses, just try not to singe them!
If you are too busy working in your business to notice that your life has been on hold for a few years now- then chances are you don’t even have time to read this article. But I promise you if you do, you will be richly rewarded. You see, as Michael Gerber said in the The E-Myth most of us get into business because we want to be our own boss- and then our Lifestyle goes down the tube in a flurry of tax preparation, stock taking, hiring and firing and general stress!
But times are changing and more and more business owners are undergoing what I refer to as “The Lifestyle Shift”. They are waking up to the fact that they are the boss, and they should be able to design their business to match their lifestyle. From the ground up.
If it’s time for you to have more time for yourself, your family, and for your dreams, then read on…
Your lifestyle is ultimately your life’s work. We are all artists, whether we acknowledge that or not. And every day we are gifted with a canvas upon which to create our design. We are now operating in the Information Age, at a time of great wealth and great possibility. Yet seemingly intelligent people continue to operate under old assumptions. Too many people I know “work hard” for no other reason than they thought that’s what they were expected to do. There has never been a greater time than now to design a life the way you want it.
How do you “Design Your Life?”
The first step is a simple one.
Wake up to the fact that YOU ARE THE BOSS. Your life is the way it is because you let it be that way- either by your actions or non-actions. You are tolerating it, or fostering it, or forcing it to be just how it is. Most of us get so busy just getting the work done that we forget to take stock and remember who’s in charge.
You started your business. It is a direct reflection of you. So isn’t it time to take responsibility for your deepest desires and start making it JUST HOW YOU WANT IT?
My greatest wish for the world is that everyone lives a life of self-expression. By that I mean that one’s life is an expression of that unique identity within them. It honestly breaks my heart when I speak to business owners who describe their lifestyle as anything less than awesome. As business owners we are in pole position to craft our lives the way we want to. For heaven’s sake, if the guy or girl running the show can’t have it they way they want it, what hope is there for anyone else? I think it’s just that we get lazy. We get lazy because questioning our assumptions and making changes in the way we operate is actually harder to do than work 70 hours a week!
So what can you do?
Take a half a day for yourself. Get out of your routine. Go to a place that conjures up “the sacred” for you. That is different for everyone. For some its a church, for some a park, for some a bookshop or the Virgin Megastore! Wherever you feel connected to your creator, the universe or your higher self. Spend a couple of hours just hanging out with yourself, and then in that space – ask yourself one simple question: “is your business supporting your lifestyle or eating away at it?”
Make no mistake- if it is not actively building it up, it is wearing it away slowly through attrition. There is no middle ground here.
Commit to taking one action this week that will allow you to reclaim your lifestyle.
For more information go to: www.Shiftlifestyle.com/Laws