The question that I’ve been pondering lately is this: what exactly is lifestyle design?
It was only a few weeks ago that I first heard the term lifestyle design. I had no idea what that meant exactly, but in very basic terms I knew that a lifestyle was how someone lives, and to design something is to create it. But, to create your own lifestyle? I had to do some more research…
Lifestyle design is such a new term that it’s not even on Wikipedia yet, but successful internet business gurus are using it like we use air to breathe. So, I decided to do some research, because I want to be an internet business guru someday too.
I learned that lifestyle design, actually creating your own lifestyle and living how you want to live, is something that is very real. People like Timothy Ferris, author of The 4-Hour work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (full disclosure – I earn a commission if you buy), has done things in his life to live exactly how he wants to live. He’s a national Chinese Kickboxing Champion, a breakdancer in Taiwan, actor and a multi-millionaire. Oh, and of course, he works only 4 hours a week.
I’m not going to do a review on his book or talk much about him, but I will say that you probably think that his life is the way it is because of the decisions and actions he has made. Although that’s true, the way we describe him with respect to lifestyle design is the other way around:
“He took specific actions and made specific decisions based on the kind of life he wants to live.”
I think that most people, myself included, never really think about the exact lifestyle that we want to live. Yes, we do have goals and work really hard for them, and I have always seen the goals (retirement, millions of dollars, owning a company), but never really the lifestyle – or how my daily life would be.
We make decisions and work hard for our goals, but do we do the same for our ideal lifestyle?
If someone has earned $500,000 in a year, they may have reached or surpassed their goal. But if it took them 90 hours a week to get there, they may not be living their ideal lifestyle. See the difference?
Passive Income as a Lifestyle Design Aid
It’s a fact that everybody will have different ideas of what their ideal lifestyle should be. You have to really think about it, deep down inside about how exactly you want your life to be. That being said, if you earn a passive income, you have the ability to more easily design your own lifestyle. That extra paycheck in your bank account not only gives you more money, it can also give you more time and freedom to do whatever it is you want to do.
For example, I actually enjoy working in an office. At the same time, I don’t want to work 8 hours a day because I’d rather spend more time with my family. Earning a passive income would allow me to do this because I could just work part-time while earning the same amount of money (maybe even more) as if I was working 8 hours a day with earning no passive income.
Also, my fiancee and I love to travel. Say we want to take a one month vacation in an exotic place each year. Why do I have to use the money from the income I already make? I can just create a new passive income stream (a new product, website, what have you) and use that money for traveling. That way, I don’t risk an effect on the other parts of my life. I’m designing my own lifestyle.
Also, the realization is that while I’m on vacation, I’m still making money. Would I have to work while on vacation? Absolutely not! Why? Because I designed my income streams to be automatic! See how that works?
It’s not about working X hours for X dollars. It’s about working hard now, so you can reap the benefits and live how you want later. A passive income creates freedom.
Yes, it’s definitely easier said than done, obviously – but with some hard work and determination, and hopefully through our experiences that I’ll talk about here, we’ll be able to design the lifestyle we want using the benefits of earning a passive income, which we are working for today.