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The Meek Shall Inherit The World.

One of the adages I really hate! It makes me think of all the losers who are frustrated with their lives, and who waste time “rationalizing” their situation rather than get their act together, decide what they want and get it! Remember – there will always be someone who will want you to stand in the corner and patiently wait for your turn. The thing is , your turn never comes, and the longer you wait, the harder it is to get out of that bloody corner!

So cut the crap out and tell me: “How much do you want to make?” One of my favourite questions! Is running a business just about money? I don’t know – you decide if it is ALL about money, but it is definitely ALSO about money, because if you don’t generate profit, you don’t actually have a business.

My clients come from more than ten countries, and it is interesting to see or hear that our culture has such a great influence on our relationship with our wallet. I come from Poland, where the entrepreneurial drive has had its various interpretations and faces over the last decades. You would be surprised how many people have a rather critical opinion of those who want to be financially successful.

We – Poles – must be among the most creative nations when it comes to coining words referring to people who have become financially successful.

Many of my  British clients drive me crazy with their “modesty”! I haven’t worked with many US Clients so far, but the ones I have worked with seemed to be the most comfortable talking about money, and they find it quite easy to talk about their financial aspirations. They also understand that if they offer a service that helps their clients solve a certain problem, or get them what they want, it is OK to expect the adequate remuneration for that. A lot of my clients develop business based on their passions and their willingness to help others, and consequently, some of them seem to have mixed feelings about helping and charging for that help.

Well, as this post is turning into a pseudo -sociological ramble/stereotype – labelling shit, let’s get to the point:

If you want to be successful, ALSO financially successful, steer clear of the debilitating voices and opinions – coming from people who typically have not achieved anything in life, and who will try to make you feel guilty about your aspirations – including your financial goals.

I remember some of the critical remarks I heard when I made it very clear that I wanted to have a prosperous business. “You’re turning into a workaholic”, “Watch out, or you may lose something much more important on your way!”. At some point, I just stopped listening to them, and I “fired” some of my “friends”!

If others want to live by some noble truths, like “The Meek Shall Inherit the World”, let them – they have their reasons, needs and visions. Nothing wrong with that. But don’t let them stop you from creating YOUR WORLD!


What Lifestyle Do You Want?

Many of us spend hours, days, or even weeks designing our flats – choosing our dream blanket, ordering that Italian coffee table, importing the gorgeous Turkish rug. We set up discussion clubs around the type of coffee beans we drink and organic food recipes we experiment with.

Yet, so few are equally specific about the quality of life we choose to have. Isn’t that ironic – we know exactly what we want to put on the floor in the living room, and we often have no clue what we need and want from our lives!

I have always been very open about why I set up my first business twenty years ago, as well as the the other companies later on.  I didn’t do that because I thought it would be cool to have a company or call myself an entrepreneur. I did it because I wanted to make a lot of money – much more than any regular “job” would give me and to be able to make the most important decisions – where and how I live and how I can support the ones I love.

I have never pretended that I set up my business to save the world, my motivations were much more “pragmatic” – not to have to look at the prices and not to have to do certain projects – just to make money. A few years ago I would accept any development project from any client – as long as they were ready to pay my rates. Now, I am much more selective and work only with these clients who really need my support to move further and are ready to work harder than ever before. As far as I am concerned – that is also an important aspect of my lifestyle – who I support and what REAL value and impact I have. I have decided to have fewer clients, but much “better” clients. Am I earning less? I’m pretty sure you know the answer!

So what exactly does “lifestyle” mean?

The word “lifestyle” is used in many contexts nowadays – we have “lifestyle magazines”, “lifestyle programs”, “lifestyle businesses”. I can’t help the feeling that “lifestyle” is one of the most overused words nowadays – especially if it refers to the magazines someone reads, the matcha latte they drink, or the gym they go to. Additionally, it has become so generic – in most cases it helps you define one of the groups you decide to become part of. And let’s face it – “lifestyle” businesses are booming nowadays, as they help people feel better and get that instantaneous gratification resulting from belonging somewhere.

Does that make our lives more rewarding and fulfilling?

I believe it does – in many ways. By choosing a certain option from the dropdown list of the “currently available lifestyles”, we can define who we are, what makes us feel happy, and what makes us feel special.

The thing is, that choosing such a “second-hand” lifestyle category, we actually never ask ourselves what it is that we really really want.

From my perspective, only if you are an entrepreneur, can you make some of the key decisions, and come up with your own definitions. Having a boss or working for Company X makes you part of the system. Having your own business gives you the possibility of creating the system you like, or deciding not to be part of any system – whichever you prefer!

What lifestyle do YOU want?