Break the 9-5 Tradition and Own Your Time: Get Professional Freedom and Enjoy a Location Independent Lifestyle
Corporate job slavery is what my 9-5 felt like.
Someone said to me (and this is not a dig just a fact), that they were happy for me wanting to work less but they couldn’t do it because they like to keep busy. I replied not to confuse “working” with being busy.
The reality is you can feel fulfilled, without working for others or running a business employing people, and without ‘grinding’ in the traditional sense.
But some people love that, and it’s cool. It’s a matter of how you spend your time and my plan is to spend it doing things I love. I want to own my time and live a location independent lifestyle based on professional freedom.
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Photo by Robert Anasch on Unsplash
There is no right or wrong way to feel, just what makes you excited about YOUR life. And for me, it meant giving up feeling the chains of corporate attitudes, expectations, anxiety, "climbing" and limits on my creativity. What felt like corporate job slavery. It sounds dramatic but the term "golden handcuffs" exists for a reason.
And this elimination of it is what I'm most happy about now in November of 2021 as I update this post, originally published in September of 2020. The reality is: we all have 24 hours in a day, how you spend them should be your choice.
The big question: can doing what you “love” sustain a lifestyle?
When I started this journey and originally wrote this post, I didn't know 100% how to get there yet but from what I saw right away, YES. And now I am even more confident as I'm enjoying my location independent lifestyle in my new home in Williamsburg Virginia a place that was only a "vacation" spot for me.
In my life of ill-fitting logo'd shirts and having to ask for time off if my family needed me, I was told I had to live in the middle of the country. I was chained to "living near a hub" [airport] and limited on where I could travel for years.
To be clear: not all of my bosses said this out loud, but yes, I was told this and there was always pressure about location though my job was national and remote.
Photo by Ryland Dean on Unsplash
You can start today to get out of 9-5 life and enjoy professional freedom.
I explored several options after reading the 4 Hour Workweek and my business coach confirmed it because she does it.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
We all were raised with the limiting beliefs of a 9-5 mindset.
Tegan also noted (and I’m paraphrasing here) her pitch deck of income streams being applicable to people 38 and older – I agree. Here is what I'm talking about.
1) GenXers (and late millennials as I learned sitting in a room over 2000 people watching a keynote speaker) have a mindset about the right way to work being 9-5.
Or as I always felt back in the day, at least 10 minutes before everyone else shows up til at least 10 minutes after the last person leaves.
In addition, in the 21st century: being accessible by text or email- always.
2) We have spent 20-30 years building up skills! It’s now time to use them for ourselves (selfish? Yes and no, but that’s probably another full-on discussion) instead of using them to make money for others.
You earned it.
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I love writing. So learning to build a blog business doesn't feel like work.
I may not be awesome at it yet, but I’ve already expanded my knowledge by utilizing Linked In learning and some free webinars/tutorials from those that have made money doing it.
What I’ve discovered:
- There are some extremely talented people willing to share their talent and their tips on monetizing skills and
- You can be busy doing (or learning more about!) something you love and although it IS work, it won’t feel like work in the traditional 9-5 sense.
I also love helping people and giving presentations. And my Facebook group fulfills this part of me.
Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash
Here are the first few steps I took to get started on lifestyle design based on breaking the 9-5 tradition.
- Write down the skills you’ve developed, circle the ones you love using (example: giving presentations, creating budgets, managing people).
- List the things you love and love to do (reading, writing, traveling, boats, food, skiing).
- Sit down and figure out your budget needs- your ACTUAL needs. Ferriss outlines how to do this in his book and it will depend on your priorities- some people need more income than others, but you’ll be surprised how little you really need to live on.
- Research ideas for income streams (this includes talking to people, reading blogs, podcasts, books and going down relevant rabbit holes).
Related: the Free At 50 budget articles.
But just start. Whether you are ready now or will be later, I will be sublimely content knowing I may have had a little role in getting you where you want to be.
Related: this video chat with my business coach talks about taking action!
Book a 15 minute call with me if you want to chat: I give encouragement for free!
There are people that will want to continue working for others, that’s ok, just not where I want to be. Figure out where you want to be and if you're in the camp of breaking the 9-5 tradition, do it.
Image by Willgard Krause from Pixabay
Professional freedom and owning your time is worth the effort.
Funny story to bring this post full circle: I am [still] “working” a lot of hours right now, for no income! But I will get there.
The main point: I feel completely Free At 50.
So... take a step towards owning your time outside corporate job slavery, and without the golden handcuffs. Join the Ditching the 9-5 Facebook group to share, grow and keep moving forward.
And really take the next step: Download my 6-Step Checklist to Escape the 9-5 here.