How to make 2015 your best year yet
Can you believe we’re now in 2015! It almost sounds like science fiction.
When you imagine you’re life, do you feel like twenty-fifteen will be your best year yet?
Or are you worried it will be another ground-hog day repeat?
I think an important place to start the year from is to consider the idea… “will you live your life on your own terms, or a life that others have got planned for you?”
In a minute I want to share with you a critical conversation that I had with someone this week that can help you get clear on the difference…
For me, I already know that I’m on track and living life on my own terms.
And it’s not without sacrifice.
But what do I sacrifice? Ego. The belief that I’m in control and that I know what’s best. I’ve let that go. I now just look for the patterns and follow the opportunities that present themselves.
I’m clear on my “why” – my intention and my direction.
But how I will get there? That is the mystery that is unfolding.
After running my online businesses and travelling the world for the past 2 years, I find myself now living in a central Mexico, at the nexus point of where Mexican culture meets creatives and ex-pat refugees seeking to escape the monotony of the Western lifestyle. San Miguel de Allende stands out like beacon for easy living and creative possibilities. And I’m blown away by what is opening up for me here.
If I’d tried to be more pragmatic, sensible, forceful or comfortable… I would not have found myself here. I listen for that knock at the door, and it’s what I pay attention to.
Following a super busy couple of weeks, traveling through Mexico up to the US border and back down again to San Miguel, I’ve spent the last week hanging out with a group of US tech entrepreneurs who were seeking some down time from the busy-ness of New York and San Fransisco.
And they are also wanting to re-locate here… given it’s a much more affordable place to live! You can check it out yourself on the city comparison website Numbeo.
The conversations I had with them were eye-opening, and helped me immensely refine the productivity app that I’m working on, plus helped connect me with the right people to assist with making it happen. Again, if I hadn’t let go, I wouldn’t have met these people connected into the heart of Silicon Valley.
Now… sometimes in life I meet someone who reminds me of the me from years ago, and this week that happened.
I was talking with Greg who runs a very successful NYC web design consulting firm – he has a bunch of staff and makes close a million a year… I’m sure by most people’s standards, this is success!
All around him people say, “wow! you’re amazing, look at the results you’re producing!” but inside he said all he felt was that he was only operating at about 30% of what he knew was possible for himself, and he wanted to stretch further.
I said to him that he was listening and comparing himself to all the people who were equally trapped, just like he was. They were also imprisoned, but they just didn’t have as many people working for them as he did!
We tend to play the game of:
- you’re not as successful as the person who runs their own business
- and if you run your own business, you’re not as successful as the person who has the bigger office with the bigger number of staff!
Basically it’s a race to who can have the most shackles to keep them tied down. Bills, obligations and expenses keep you in one place, with the dream of one day, some day, retiring to live a life on your own terms.
Greg was trying to feel good (while being trapped) by comparing himself to everyone else who were also trapped in the rat race. But he knew something was missing. That if he wanted to be free, listening to their accolades wasn’t going to be the answer.
Plus, on top of all of that, Greg was working a plan that would give his partners more shares in the company the better they performed. That meant giving them more control, which meant less control for him… and for what? An expanding company with more staff, higher wage bills and a bigger gross revenue.
I asked Greg what was his goal?
Freedom he said… but that he also wasn’t really clear.
I then pointed out, that if you weren’t super clear on the direction of your life, driven by an intention of where you wanted to go, and working each day to put that intention into action… you would be a victim to the plans others made for you.
Greg wasn’t truly living life on his own terms… because he didn’t know what they were!
`That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.
`I don’t much care where–‘ said Alice.
`Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.
`–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,’ Alice added as an explanation.
`Oh, you’re sure to do that,’ said the Cat, `if you only walk long enough.’
I remember when I had 12 staff running my own web design firm, I felt like I was imprisoned in a box at the bottom of the sea! The more clients I got, the more expanses I had, the more taxes I paid… it was an endless cycle. I dreamed of being free every morning when I woke up.
Finally, 5 years ago I got the break I’d wanted that enabled me to sell that company and ultimately move forward with the plan that is now my daily reality.
Sure it wasn’t without risks, but I knew where I wanted to go (and where I didn’t want to go), and I knew I was worth it.
It’s the new year, it’s your year.
Make it your own, because no one else will, and you deserve it.