Hi one of the things that people sometimes ask me is why would you bother setting up a business at all if you’re not wanting to make loads of money?
And why this whole thing about being a lifestyle business, be something you even want to pursue?
If somebody asks that question, they’re not the sort of person that it was just really for in the first place. Those that a lifestyle business is for usually get it from the word go. They may not be able to articulate it correctly or know the right words to put around it – but they have the desire for the freedom and self determination that can come with it.
One of the things that I’ve thought was that was a really good way of actually explaining it is a sort of a joke or a parable or teaching that sort of does arounds every few decades.
“So there was this businessman walking down the road one day and he sees this fisherman stopped at the side of the dock. He’s sitting down and he’s net to beside him and he’s taking a nap and it’s middle of the afternoon. And this is obviously the days before Google and GPS, et cetera., as the businessman wants to ask for directions.
So the fisherman pops up his head and tells him where he needs to go to find his meeting. Before he walks away, the businessman says, “By the way, it’s a lovely day. You’re sitting down here resting. You know, wouldn’t it be more useful to be out fishing?”
Then the fishermen goes, “I could be.”
The businessman asks “Well, did you do some fishing at all?”
And the fisherman replies that he had done something that morning.
Then, as people may want to do at times, the businessman goes, “Well, you know, surely if you go out in the afternoon, when you catch more fish, you’ll catch twice as much. And then if you go out twice as much tomorrow, and the next day and the next, eventually you can go buy another boat and then maybe could take on some more people and they will run the other boat for you. And that will bring you more business. And then maybe you get third boat and have expanded even more and then they’ll bring even more business. And then if you keep doing that after a few years, you know, you’ll be able to sit back and enjoy life a bit.”
And then the fisherman just looks up and goes, “Well, that’s what I’m doing already.”
And went back to sleep.
That’s essentially is a quick example of the difference between the business growth mindset, and someone who wants to live with a lifestyle business.
Growth, Hacking, Hustling, etc. all seems to be so prevalent these days and a lifestyle mindset is very, very niche.
To be Frank, I think a lifestyle approach was only possible to people who may have already had other sources that build it on. It was not something that was optional to everybody before with the advent of the internet.
Specifically, I got to say one of the reasons that spurred me to set this up now is because of COVID.
Despite the whole global issues it’s caused, it’s also an opportunity for a lot of people to take a stock and revaluate what’s important to them. Especially now, at this time of year, and into the next few.
So when a lot of people who would not otherwise have been afforded the opportunity to take stock of things, now have that chance. So, when reading this, you may be in the right mindset, and you may be thinking of ‘what if’, ‘what could I do?’
It’s the time to take action now.
Because you will be thinking about it.
A lot of employers, markets, et cetera have been forced to think of things differently. There’s a lot of push try and get it back to the old way as if that was some utopia.
It wasn’t. A lot of people are spending a lot of their lives, doing stuff to help other people’s dreams, not theirs, leaving for work at 6.00 or 6.30 in the morning, spending a couple of hours in a commute, then stuck at an office – doing something as it turned out before lockdown – you could not do elsewhere.
Then, and certainly when it suited, guess what – you can do it from home. Then, home, maybe grab time with family – if you have young kids, it is a race to beat bedtime, grabbing some food, maybe watching something on TV to unwind, then sleep.
Then get up in the morning and rinse and repeat.
And that’s not a healthy lifestyle.
It’s not a lifestyle that will suit most people – although there’s stages when you may want to grind and push through and work like a beast. And that’s something will come through in future articles is about the stages of your work life and what you’re looking for.
And this also helps you to know where you are in the scheme of things, and helps you to know when you’re dealing with other people and possibly team members.
But essentially this is a unique time in that it is a chance that people can actually work out how they want to do things to suit themselves.
And it’s probably the only time where they will get a lot of widespread acceptance for the next while. So it’s worth thinking about worth pushing on this if it is important to you.
Side note – if setting out on your own is not important to you – personally, it helps to see what the other viewpoint is on this. If you are thinking about a change and then have decided it’s not for you, but you’re working with a colleague or you’re talking with somebody who thinks it is for them, you know where they’re coming from. Then you can help support each other on achieving your goals.
If you are grinding up the corporate ladder, because you want that corner office and you want to achieve VP or Director in your organization -that’s fine. Absolutely perfect. You cannot be dismissive of the person who may want to go elsewhere and set out on their own. What you can do is help plan with them so they can spend the time that they are remaining in your organization, helping you achieve your goals, while you help them achieve theirs outside it. And that’s a win-win for everybody. (For one, it’s one less competitor for you!)