What Do You Really Want?
It has been an interesting week for me. I’m in Pattaya Thailand for the very first time, and I came here alone. Since being here, I’ve hardly explored. I’ve stuck to myself for the most part, and I’ve solely focused on getting into a routine and getting work done.
After a fun but hectic week in Chiang Mai, and a very unproductive January at home in Melbourne, I am feeling more than ready to make some progress once again on my goals.
I’ll be exploring some of Pattaya soon (probably this weekend), but so far I’ve been more than content to stay in my local area, go to the nearby coworking space and gym each day, cook my own meals, wake up early and go to bed early.
My mind is craving routine, and I’ve quickly found myself in one.
At the same time though, I’ve scarcely had a conversation this week with another English speaker. This has given me a lot of time alone to be with my own thoughts. This time is something that very few people ever get to have, and it’s also something a lot of people seem to fear.
Personally, I try and have periods of time alone often. Usually to ponder, and to think about what exactly it is I want from life, and what would make me happy.
For a long time, my answer to that question has been simple…
At this moment in time though I’m at a strange point, because I’m making more money than I ever have before. For the past couple of months, I’ve been averaging around $400 in mostly passive income, per day. At around $12,000 per month, I just found out that that puts me in the top 5% of earners in Australia. Crazy.
You’d think that I’d be totally happy. But as I said, it’s been an interesting week for me…
In the past week I’ve been in communication with a potential buyer for a Kindle business of mine, which I’d be looking to sell for around the $100,000 USD mark.
Also this week, I had a crazy day of sales where I made approximately $875 in a single day from all of my income streams combined.
When this happened though, I was surprisingly unexcited by it. I thought ‘woo, good job’, but it really didn’t make me as happy as I thought it would have.
So, I started to ask myself why that was. Why wasn’t I happier than I had ever been?
That’s when I realised that I am living on around $50-$60 per day here in Pattaya. That pays for an awesome apartment, a gym, a co-working space, great food, and transportation.
There is literally nothing more that I want right now, and I’m living off of only 15% of what I earn.
More money is cool, but it wouldn’t have a big impact on me right now. More money wouldn’t improve my current quality of life.
I realise that this is a strange position to be in, particularly for a 23-year old, but it got me thinking: If money won’t make me happy and fulfilled, then what will?
People always say that money can’t buy happiness – but to be fair, it’s usually broke people saying that. I think that whilst money alone can’t buy happiness, it is one of the key ingredients for most people, myself included.
For me, earning good money means less stress. It means not worrying about bills. It means that if someone needed help, I’d be in a position to help. It means that if I want or need to go somewhere, I don’t even have to think twice about buying a plane ticket.
Money is good because it gives you options. But I think that there’s more to the equation of happiness.
For one, I derive happiness not just from the money I earn, but from completing the challenge of earning it. Setting a plan to build some sort of a business or product, putting in the work, and then achieving it, is really rewarding. That’s what keeps me motivated to keep on working to build my business further.
Money is just a by-product of me achieving these business goals.
But, I dug deeper with my thoughts. I asked myself, ‘what would my ideal life look like right now?’
That was a tough question that I think everyone should take some time to ponder over.
For me I decided, my ideal life right now would involve a lot of learning. I wouldn’t necessarily be working to earn more, but I’d be working to learn more. I’d be able to relax, not stress about money, and just focus on growing. For so long I’ve been working on the same old business. I know it like the back of my hand, and while it makes good money, it’s not exciting to me anymore.
There’s a quote I really like: If you’re not growing, you’re dying.
In my opinion, it’s in the growth that happiness lies.
And from there, I decided upon what my perfect life would look like, and made a plan to get there. This wouldn’t be what I want forever, but right now, it sounds absolutely ideal to me.
I decided that this is what I would like my life to look like at the start of 2018, after this crazy year of travel is over. I plan to live this lifestyle for 3-6 months in total. I think I’m well on my way there, and these goals are really realistic. I wrote all of this down in a notepad, but here’s essentially what I wrote.
The Happiness Plan
Where I want to be financially at the start of 2018:
• Have sold a Kindle account for 6-figures
• Have $150,000+ in liquid assets
• Have scaled a Kindle account to 40+ books (currently it has 8)
• Have scaled the Kindle account to $10,000+ per month in mostly passive income (currently it’s at around $4,000 per month)
• Have relaunched Freedom Self Publishing and be making $2500+ per month from it (currently earning around half of that)
• Earn $2,500+ from the other Kindle accounts I have (currently earning around $1,700)
• Be earning $15,000+ per month in mostly passive income
What I would ‘do’:
• Live on Koh Phangan for 3-6 months (my favourite Thai island)
• Spend the majority of my time learning
• Practice learning a new language every day for 1-2 hours
• Read every day
• Walk on the beach daily
• Exercise a lot
• Learn about currency trading
• Learn about Facebook ads
• Learn about affiliate marketing
• Eat well
• Spend quality time with friends
• Have a flexible schedule
• Spend 5 hours or less every week ‘working’ to maintain my income
• Volunteer at the animal shelter occasionally
• Produce fun and valuable content that I enjoyed making
I wrote up a bit of a mock budget for this lifestyle, and purposely overestimated all of my expenses. Even still, the total came in at just over 50,000 baht per month, or roughly $2000 Australian dollars. If I was earning my goal income of $15,000 per month, that’s only 13.3% of my income.
Having no money troubles, no stress, and no obligations would be freeing.
I have a bunch of courses and material about currency trading, affiliate marketing, and Facebook ads – but I just don’t have the time right now to commit myself to them. My time now is focused on growing my income streams. For the past few years, that’s been my focus, and for a long time, money (or lack of) has been a big cause of stress in my life.
Being able to not have such a rigid schedule each day, and to live a carefree life for a while sounds like absolute bliss. Spending time to grow more, and learn more is exactly what I feel like I need to do. And doing all of this on Koh Phangan would be ideal. Most of the month (minus the full moon party week) the island is extremely relaxing. Everyone operates at a different pace, the island is beautiful, coconuts are abundant and cost $1 a pop, and the locals are some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet.
What more could I ask for?
I’ll be there probably in February of 2018 if all goes to plan. This blog is a great way to share my thoughts and to hold myself accountable to these kinds of crazy goals. I’m putting it out there, and I plan to achieve it!
So… who wants to join me on Koh Phangan?
If you haven’t sat by yourself and asked yourself the question ‘what would make me happy right now?’ then I seriously urge you to do so. It’s a tough exercise and the answer might not come to you straight away. But, once you find the answer, the clarity is freeing. Then, you can make a plan to get there, and start working towards that vision.
I’m enjoying this year so far and am looking forward to all of the challenges and adventures ahead, but it will be this vision for the start of 2018 that will be driving me to keep on working and pushing forward every day.
Well, that’s my deep, introspective post done for the week. I hope it made you think.
Until next time,
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