Set up a life you don’t need to escape from

Posted by in Riff

Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, you ought to set up a life you don’t need to escape from.
~Seth Godin

This is me, in the green dress on the picture above. Little old me, walking the Red Carpet at the Dinard Film Festival last month, and thereby living a childhood dream. And, guess what: the woman on my left is a client. I got to do that FOR WORK!

Of course, all my days at work are not fancy gowns and red carpets, but all the time spent behind an Excel spreadsheet (my nemesis) is made valuable when I get to live a moment such as this one. And, truth is, although the VIP treatment is an extreme, I get to live a variety of really great moments in my job.

What sort of job do I do? I’m sure you’re wondering. Well, you won’t find a job description for it on Monster.com, because I built my job from scratch. I decided to put on the description all the things I love to do: traveling, taking pictures, writing, being creative, being strategic, being on the front stage some days and behind the scene other days, living all sorts of weird experiences, meeting incredibly inspiring people… And then I went and look for paid opportunities to practice one or more of these things.

Along the way, I hit road-blocks, fails and the need for Excel spreadsheets, but I learned to deal with them. They’re part of the story, and sometimes they’re even part of the fun (don’t tell the people at Microsoft I said that).

I’m not going to lie, a life like that takes some courage, some tenacity, a bit of gumption and quite a sense of humor. But for the past 10 years, I never wondered once when my next vacation would be.

Where to start building a life you’re excited about?

Setting up a life you don’t need to escape from is accessible to anyone. If you’re wondering where to start, you can begin with the first of the five key principle of Effectuation: the three things every entrepreneur owns!

  • Who you are: tests like the Four Tendencies, the VIA character survey or the introvert-extrovert spectrum from the Quiet Revolution will help you figure that out if you’re not sure what that means.
  • What you know: hard skills are useful, think about what you CAN do, but also what you LIKE to do. You might come to realize that you’re missing some… And that’s when you become grateful that we live in an era where education is accessible to anyone, online!
  • Who you know: you don’t need to know celebrities, people from the Fortune 500 list or Kevin Bacon. Actually, maybe you think you don’t know them, but really you do. According to a theory that have been tested several times, the entire world is connected with only six degrees of separation… Guess what’s left for you to do to reach out to someone that inspires you…

I recently gifted a friend, for her birthday, a bracelet engraved “Make the rest of your life the best of your life.” First it sounded corny but the more I think about it, the more I believe it’s the best advice I could give.

Photo credit: Dinard Film Festival