For years, I dreamed about the days when I was going to be successful.
They’d be stress-free days. They’d be easy days. They’d be fun days where I could do whatever I wanted to do.
I was looking forward to having some days like that.
But as the years went by and I started actually getting some traction out in the world — things didn’t turn out quite like that vision…
From my experience, REAL success is something much more powerful than that original “worry-free” vision.
In a way, it kind of resembles the opposite:
The more “success” I have, the more responsibility I have. The more accountability I have. The more commitments to others I have. The more people I have who are, in one way or another, kind of counting on me to pull through for them.
Wouldn’t you know it — the more of those things I get…
The More Alive
I Feel As Well.
I know there are some folks out there where the money is just rolling in — and they LITERALLY don’t have to do a single thing to get their material needs met.
I know people in that situation. I’ve met them.
But they are generally no more “filled up” than anyone else.
Now there’s nothing wrong with using this desire to motivate yourself to strive for a better future. But despite what the get-rich-quick gurus will tell you, when you take action toward the goal of “no longer working”, somewhere along the line you discover that’s not what this journey is really about at all.
We start out with the vision of getting unlimited success so we can finally stop having obligations…
But I think what most people’s REAL desire is — is this:
The Freedom To Live
On Their Own Terms.
They’ve just been conditioned by society to associate “obligations” with “PAIN”. As if there’s no way an obligation of any kind could ever make you happy!
So they believe the only way to have true freedom and autonomy, is to not have any obligations.
“I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.”
- Jim Carrey
But most people never consider this:
What if your obligations were the things that brought you the most joy in life?
What if you reached a level of success where — if you took those obligations away and could really just “derp” around all day without any money worries — your quality of life would go way down as a result of not having those obligations?
The truth is, people just don’t like to be forced into obligations they don’t want. We don’t like to be forced to do things in general.
But if you have full autonomy to create your own obligations, that’s when you can finally reveal your true purpose to the world. And when you’re living that way — when you’re putting your purpose into the world every day, out from the depths of your soul — you tend to want to keep doing it.
At the end of the day, it’s not about ending your money worries. That’s only a symptom.
It’s Actually About
And from my perspective, business and self-employment plays a huge role in the journey towards autonomy.
Maybe not for all people. But probably for most.
Unless you totally love your job, the most logical leap to living the life of your dreams — where you set your own schedule and do work that is most important and meaningful to YOU — is to work for yourself. The amount of people who are going to create YOUR exact dream job and hire you for it… are pretty slim.
Yes, this is a lot of responsibility. There’s going to be a learning curve. You’ll have to learn how to market and sell yourself. It won’t always come easily. But millions of people who are no smarter than you have already figured it out. I’m sure you can, too.
When you take full control over your time and what you do with it, there’s no one to force you to do anything.
That is, besides YOU…
And, Of Course,
Here’s what I mean by that:
When you first enter into the world of business — or any high-achieving activity — the universe forces YOU to discover a few things. There are certain truths about making things work out in your favor that nobody told you growing up.
Case in point:
You could sum up my first few years in business as a never-ending attempt to fix things that weren’t working.
- How can I get those guys to give me money?
- How can I get those folks who aren’t paying attention to me to notice me?
- How can I get those products that aren’t selling to start selling?
- How can I fix that promotion that bombed?
- How can I fix all these things that aren’t working?
But somewhere along the line, I went in the opposite direction. I stopped “trying” to fix the broken and started focusing on the REAL.
The questions I asked myself changed drastically.
- What is working naturally?
- What is flowing on its own without effort?
- What can’t I see that’s working because I don’t WANT it to work that way?
- How do I restructure everything I’m doing to support, augment and increase what’s working naturally?
These are very different business questions that come only when you’re willing to ignore the way we’re all trained to look at the world. And when you’re dedicated to living your truth — whether that’s working for yourself or anything else — eventually you adapt and look at it this way.
If you keep going and never give up, what you eventually realize is this:
The mind is attracted to fixing. And forcing.
The heart is capable of flow.
And the truly beautiful thing about all of it is this:
You Get To Choose Your Path:
Mind Or Heart.
You can obviously mix the two, but one of them has to be driving. The other has to agree to be in the passenger’s seat.
The passenger is always free to comment, free to interject, free to suggest, even free to influence the direction of the car — it’s just not free to dominate.
This works for any big life goal or vision you have. I’m using business and entrepreneurship here because it’s such a great example, but fill in the blank for anything: relationship goals, health and fitness goals, and so on.
Is business — or whatever your goal is — a “mind game” to be figured out?
Or is it fundamentally a heart game to be intuited?
I know the answer: the world, the establishments, and the “powers that be” want us to choose. But that seems to bring a lot of struggle for a lot of people.
If you’re one of the more “mind-focused” people (as I was for years), try dedicating just 15% or 25% of your time to letting your heart take the wheel.
Get a sense of how that feels. Get used to it.
And if this sounds a little too “fluffy” for you — remember that neuroscience has proven that what we call our “heart” can sense and process information that our logical brains are not built to understand.
There’s an intelligence in the “heart" that goes back to primitive times. In the modern day, we’ve been trained to cut ourselves off from it and over-rely on the head.
You don’t have to quit everything and jump right into a “heart-focused life” either.
Simply take notice for where it leads you from time to time. Which will usually be where deepest passions lie. Look for what’s really happening in the world. And see how it feels to let your heart guide you to it.
And instead of keeping the mindset of “forcing” an outcome… allow your heart to put you in “flow” so you can work with what’s already there.
Practice this daily, and your results might just shock you.