Though I hate to admit it, there are times when I compare myself to others and say to myself, “look how much that guy has accomplished, and he’s younger than me!” I sometimes even come up with excuses as to why someone seems to have accomplished more than I have in a shorter time, “well, she probably comes from a rich family”, or “he probably isn’t happy though”. And I don’t know exactly why I had or have these thoughts, but I have a feeling it is because I may feel inferior to those people or am ashamed of not accomplishing enough. And I think it is okay to feel like this sometimes, as long as it provides you that motivation to actually do something about it. But then there are times where you start feeling sorry for yourself and stay depressed. And if you are like me, you’ll start to feel like doing NOTHING, buy yourself some ice cream or waste away valuable time scrolling through Facebook, or maybe end up playing a game or watching too many NBA highlights (and commentary) on youtube.
And it is so easy to feel like this when you think about the lifestyle you really want to have. And your lifestyle does not reflect your IDEAL lifestyle.
When you come to the realization that the way you are living is not the way you really want to live, then you will want to figure out a way to change it. Actually, realizing that your life isn’t as great as it can be is the first step. But once you realize this fact, the next thing you need to do is to figure out what your ideal lifestyle looks like. And honestly, I believe a lot of people are not even sure what their ideal lifestyle looks like, which is strange. I mean, so many people are unhappy with their lives, but won’t be able to tell you what a happy life for them looks like. I know that I didn’t even consider lifestyle design until I was around 26 years old. So for the first 25 years of my life, I just kind of went through the motions of just living a “normal life”, whatever that means. I honestly had no idea that I could even design my lifestyle, but you and I both know that we CAN, and it is such an awesome opportunity.
Now, where does that leave you? I have been able to create a lifestyle I enjoy, and I started to build my lifestyle at around 26 years old and now I am 33. And you might be younger than that or older than that, and it does’t really matter what your age is because it’s never too late to start. But it isn’t going to happen over night. Just because your neighbor somehow created an amazing lifestyle for herself, it doesn’t mean that it should take you less than a month or even a year. And it’s not like she was able to create that lifestyle without putting in any time or work. Who cares how old the people are you are comparing yourself to. I think the most important thing you need to do is to realize that you have the ability to build the lifestyle you want. And now is the time to start.
Okay, so now that you know you want to make a change, what should you do?
Now that’s a very good question. All I can do is share from my experience.
For me, it was stress that led me to looking for more to life, without realizing I was looking for more to life. I was not happy working at the Korean company I was working at, I didn’t know what to do with my life, and I was experiencing a lot of stress and anxiety. My anxiety was pretty severe at that time and I experienced panic attacks and a bunch of physical symptoms, that I now realize were all manifested in my complicated head. I now know how to manage my mental stress levels, but it was a scary and frustrating time in my life. If you are going through some anxiety and stress, you really need to find ways to deal with your stress. The the thing that worked for me was to set goals and achieve them, so that my mind was busy focusing on the goals and not on other random thoughts or negative things.
So long story short, as I was searching for more, I came across a Pat Flynn tutorial. His website title alone got me really curious, “Smart Passive Income”. And I was thinking, is that even possible? But I did not really look into it much at that moment. Then a week later I came across a book as I was killing time at the Kyobo Bookstore near Shinnonhyeon station in Seoul, “The Four Hour Work Week”. I read just a little bit off the cover and bought my first ever self improvement book. And from that time on, I have been listening to podcasts, audio books (I don’t actually read much, but have listened to countless books), reading up on blogs and following some of the most successful business people worldwide.
So you can do what I did and look for some people who already have a lifestyle you want to emulate and then learn about them or read up on (or listen to) all of their content. Also, the best audios I find are success stories, especially the ones of people who have six figure businesses (or less) since they are still in the early stages and therefore are more relatable. Two podcasts I like to listen to are the Smart Passive Income Podcast and Entrepreneur on Fire.
Of course the challenge is to find a way to make money doing what you want or love, but that will all come as you learn from people who are already doing it. You can do the typical thing and write down what you are good out on paper and then match your strengths to a service or product you can make available to others. It is easy to learn how to sell and market things, so make sure you find something that you can sell for actual money. And I mean, it is easy to learn how to sell and market things, but it is going to take a lot of work to actually market and sell things.
Then you will be on your way to building the lifestyle you want. The important word in the previous sentence is “build”. Building something takes skill, time, and lots of effort. It is not going to be easy, but it is going to be worth it.
I am blessed to say that I currently enjoying my lifestyle. I enjoy building my businesses with my wife. I love that we can just plan around a delivery that we decide to make because we want to check out a nice cafe in the area of delivery. Sometimes we plan to visit a new restaurant as a “reward” for completing a delivery. Yeah, it’s just an excuse for us to go somewhere nice, but yeah, it makes me feel less guilty to spend the money. The photo below is of my wife and I at one of our favorite cafes which is located in Uijeongbu, Gyeongido, South Korea. It’s called “Cafe Arles” and we always use a delivery to that area of South Korea as an excuse to chill out there.
However, some changes and growth here and there would make my lifestyle better. So I have to put in the work and find ways to improve my lifestyle. But the first thing I need to do is figure out what I want my lifestyle to look like and then take the steps to make those changes. I hope you start or continue to build that awesome lifestyle you so deserve. And once you start, you’ll realize that the journey is really really fun and rewarding. So get started!