If you’ve heard the term “Lifestyle Design”, chances are you’ve also heard of Tim Ferriss and the 4 Hour Work Week. In the book, Tim paints a wonderful picture of outsourcing all of your work, automating common everyday time-consuming tasks, and hitting the road for adventure which, of course, includes world travel.
I read the book when it first came out over 4 years ago. I admit, it got my blood boiling. I immediately started thinking of ways I could make more money online and outsource my life to travel the world with my wife and first daughter.
Nothing! Absolutely nothing! I was too chicken to take any action.
The book and concept of lifestyle design became something I talked about on my lunch break with fellow employees. Living my life exactly as I wanted to was something I dreamed about as I stared out the office window.
Someday I suppose, right?
Cutting the Cord
One day I showed up to my job, and not too long after heard the words, “We’re going to have to let you go”.
Yep, my happy little office job became obsolete as I was “let go”.
It turns out it was one of the best things to ever happen to me. Because of my experience and the experience of many of my friends and family all around me, I wrote Why Getting Laid-off Can Be the Best Thing to Ever Happen to You.
It’s true…IF you have the right attitude. Fortunately, I have an awesome family (a super rad wife and two little girls that love exploring and experiencing new things) that totally support our new lifestyle.
We are living according to plan – a plan that we ourselves created. Not a degree. Not a job. Not a boss. Us.
We decide exactly what to do with the time we have. It took us a while but now we’re there.
But you don’t have to go through what we did to start living your dream life. You can start to design your perfect life right now.
So in an effort to save you the time and trouble of figuring it all out, I’ve created a cheat sheet for you.
Cheat Sheet to Expedite Your Dream Life
1. Recognize You’re In Charge of Your Life
It’s nice to read about people sailing around the world with their families or roadtripping from Alaska to Argentina but sometimes it all seems too unrealistic. It’s easy to think, “Oh that’s good for them. But I could never do it.” That’s exactly where you have to stop and recognize that you are in charge of your life. No one else is. Only you. You can do it, if you want to. This leads to the next step.
2. Reverse Engineer Your Dream Life
What do you really want to do in this life? What’s on your bucket list? Who is already living your ideal lifestyle? How can you emulate them? Think of all of the things you need to have, be, and do in order to get where you want to go. Then get started now!
3. Rearrange Priorities
Most of the things you think are so important really aren’t. Do you really, truly, deeply care about your 60” LED TV? Probably not. At least you shouldn’t. Think about your dream life and what it entails and shift your thinking and actions. This may include decreasing your expenses. This may mean starting your own business. Maybe it means moving. Whatever it is, figure it out and then have the guts to do it.
4. Set Goals
Now this is going to sound really self-helpy but you must set goals. You must be able to track your progress. What are you tracking? Countries visited? New hobbies/skills mastered? Financial goals? Whatever! Just break down your overall dream life into small, bite-sized, trackable goals to keep you moving forward.
5. Do the Work
If you need to quit your job to live your dream life, do it! If you need to sell your house, do it! Do whatever it is to make it happen. The key is to be absolutely hungry. Work as if your life is counting on it…because it is.
6. Recognize that Lifestyle Design Does Not Happen Overnight
If you poke around online, you’ll hear cool stories about people living in exotic places, traveling with their families, and raking in the dough with semi-automated income. While it’s true that people are doing it, it’s important to note that it usually doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a lot of ground work before you can reap the rewards. Just believe it’s your turn and keep plugging away.
So there are the steps listed out. Now you just have to be brave enough to actually do it. Don’t wait like I did. Don’t just think about it and or talk about it on your 15 minute break.
Take action. Do it today! It’s your life. Decide how you’re going to live it.
What are the biggest obstacles you’ve had in designing your dream life?