Do you ever find yourself wondering why you can't seem to uplevel your lifestyle and surrounds as fast as you wish you could?
I remember being in the second half of my 20s, officially underway with life as an online entrepreneur, and knowing that "one day" I'd no longer be traipsing the streets in my workout gear, backpack on my back, and working from wherever I could find good coffee.
One day, I thought, when I'd REALLY made it, my life would be 100 percent five star. I'd wear gorgeous designer clothes, carry a stunning one of a kind handbag, and base myself in the very best beautiful locations for my on-the-go office.
I'd have the house, car, and travel schedule to match, and my at-home office would be everything I'd ever dreamt of, with a stunning view over my equally stunning garden.
I couldn't wait!
Now here's the funny thing. When I look back from where I'm at now to all of the years I spent accepting a (for me) sub-standard lifestyle or environment, they were also the years of struggle and fighting to breakthrough.
Makes sense, right? After all, I couldn't exactly upgrade my life if I wasn't yet making the money!
Or could I ...?
I believe that your environment is critical to your success.
You've heard the saying that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with (SO true, as behaviors and beliefs really do "rub off"), and it applies equally to your office, home and lifestyle surrounds. Now I'm not saying that you need to (for example) stay in five star hotels, live in a mansion, wear designer threads etc in order to reach success. What I AM saying is that how your environment feels to YOU matters.
For example -- right now I'm sitting in the breakfast restaurant of a five star hotel. I upgraded my room to one on the top floor with stunning views. I'm eating pricier food than what I could get down the road in a cheapo cafe. And I'm planning a spa treatment later this day when I have a break. This feels good for me. I LOVE that I now only fly business class (and by mid 2015 it will be only first class!). I love that we always stay in the best hotels and go to the best restaurants. I love tipping 25 percent when in the States. I love that I can gratefully give money to other people, to companies, to small businesses, or wherever I go and I can trust that that money will return 10-fold to me and also yes -- I can enjoy the first class environment that I long pined for.
But what I wear while I'm doing all of this? Mostly still workout gear, even in the restaurants! Hey -- long days on the go with kids and moving from city to city on a nearly daily basis means I really could care less about designer threads. But actually I just don't really care in general. I'm still a Lululemon and Mac in my backpack kinda girl, and my "office" is still wherever the good coffee and wifi can be found.
What matters to you?
What do you need to wear, eat, work on or in or at, where do you need to go and how do you need to live your life in order to feel GREAT about yourself?
And -- being honest now -- what do you know is right now in any way dragging you DOWN due to the energy or beliefs it's perpetuating in you.
The truth is, no matter how much you might try to convince yourself otherwise, you really do become an average of your surrounds. Of the people but also the general VIBE of it all. So yes, it's about what matters or feels good to YOU but it's also about recognising that there may be levels of belief about success you haven't even considered, simply because you haven't been exposed to them.
For example, earlier this year I joined a new mastermind with a goal of reaching 100k+ months consistently. Once I got chatting to the other students in there I found some were making upwards of a million dollars each month, and there was a hundred million dollar club in the group! These were figures I hadn't even considered. All of a sudden my 100k month seemed so much easier to reach (and it was!) and also kind of a small goal!
The point is not that you always have to strive for more more more and never be happy.
The point is what are the TRUE limits you desire to place upon yourself, and is the way you're living right now limiting you BELOW your actual desired potential?
Did working hard to make great money get me to a point where I can now call people like that friends and peers, now travel first class, now afford my dream home, now buy my fancy Mont Blanc pens and whatever else makes me feel good?
Or was it, perhaps, that --
Before I ever had money to spare I saved up and bought a $1,000 Mont Blanc pen to write with ...?
When I couldn't "afford it" I spent pennies I didn't have on the best leather journal rather than a cheapo one ...?
When I was struggling to pay my rent I'd pay for coffee in a fancy hotel lobby bar and work there, just to be in those surrounds ...?
When my budget said Target I bought Lululemon workout gear ... ?!
When I was already 40k in debt I invested in a 72k coaching program because I intuitively knew it was what I needed to get to the next level ...?
When my business did grow but so did my debt, and I was over 100k, I invested again, this time in 50k coaching, because I knew I was worth it ...?
When it was absolutely unnecessary practically -- and this one many times over -- I upgraded our hotel room so that I would feel LUXURIOUS in my environment and see myself as someone who has the best and therefore ACT accordingly within my business and life ...?
Before I felt worthy I joined masterminds with top entrepreneurs and leaders, knowing that it was time to be the stupidest person in the room and watch MY level rise as a result ...?
When recent accommodation booked wasn't up to scratch and I knew clients were coming to see me there, I dropped an extra 3k just to get us moved, knowing I didn't "have to" but that I DID HAVE TO ...?
When I'd already spent over 100k on my education this year I paid out another 15k that could have gone into savings to attend yet another conference (40 hours of travel, with kids, to get there!) and shelled out extra to be a VIP ... then jumped into another 10k spend while at the event! ... because I believed I HAD to be there ...?
Your environment counts.
It is CRITICAL to your success.
The books you read, the people you associate with, how you spend your free time, the courses you go out of your way to attend, the investments you make to surround yourself with the right learning or mentors, the way your working surrounds make you feel, the way your clothing makes you feel, the way YOU make yourself feel in how you treat yourself, how you act towards yourself, how you believe about yourself and your business ... it counts.
And here's the thing.
It's easy to tell yourself that when you get to "that level" you can afford to be that person. But it's kind of like an unfit person telling themselves that once they magically 'get fit' they'll run that race.
You want to be the first class entrepreneur and live your lifestyle dream? Start running that race now. Act "as if." Fake it till you make it! Do whatever it takes, however often it takes, to create an environment that lifts you UP or else the one you PUT up with will surely drag you down.
A challenge for today:
Write a quick list of everything that's popped into your mind while reading this post and choose one small (or big!) way in which you can level it up this week.
You're worth it baby! Time to live that one day dream TODAY!
Life is Now. Press Play.