I reckon a significant number of people at my children’s school think I’m unemployed and on benefits because I’m always around during ‘normal’ working hours – dropping the kids off and picking them up 🙂
I’m always at school plays, sports days, concerts, ‘dad days’, and anything else my kids are involved with, again usually during 9-5 hours
Doesn’t help that I’m a really scruffy sod and spend most of the summer in shorts and T-shirt and most of the winter in a big old green coat
…despite the fact that I earn a very comfortable living from home
Anyhow – here’s what life is like in the Shepherd house…
We have two cars – a ‘posh’ big, comfy cruising one (which actually isn’t that posh) for our road travels – Scotland, France or wherever…
…and a knackered up old one which we change when it stops working, for zapping round locally in
This is usually a four-wheel drive because we invariably get snowed in for a few days in the winter, and we can also chuck wheelbarrows full of manure in the back, or garden waste or whatever. At the moment it’s an old rusty Toyota
One is a workhorse, the other is for travel
In fact when we got the posh one it turned a few heads up at school from people who think we’re penniless and I mischievously wanted to tell them you can get them free if you’re on benefits and fill out a form…
…but my wife wouldn’t let me.
We live in an old cottage (built in 1796) which was the bigger part of a larger house that’s now been divided into two cottages, in a pretty village with a good school for the kids, a decent arts and music scene and a varied mix of people
Our house is home. It’s comfy and we love it, but it’s definitely not what you’d expect to see on a typical online business blogger’s ‘bling’ video
It’s a bit ugly from the outside to be honest…
You wouldn’t look at it twice to be honest, which is the way we want it, yet it has more than enough room for our family and guests
It’s got a smallish garden that is just big enough to fit in a trampoline for the kids, a couple of veggie patches where we grow stuff, a couple of apple trees, our chicken coop, some fruit bushes and a tiny pond where get frogs every year.
We eat outside throughout summer when it’s warm enough, light the outside wood burner when we’re getting the garden ready for winter in Autumn and my missus makes jam, pickles, chutneys and other tasty stuff from the things we grow
(if this all sounds a bit quaint or boring stick with me – I’ve got a point to make)
Both myself and my wife work at home.
We work in little chunks then go do other stuff – go out for lunch somewhere, go to a gallery or exhibition or chill out doing….dunno, whatever we like
For example as I write this my wife is watering in some new pea plants and then she’s baking some cakes for the school fayre next week
My next job is to put some air in the old car tyres because it screeches when I go round corners…
…and then I have to go see someone about a possible business venture
You get the idea?
Running an online business from home isn’t about owning speedboats and sports cars as you see in the scam ads.
It’s real life – not some perpetual whirlwind of five-star hotels overlooking sun-drenched beaches, although we’ve done a tiny bit of that too 🙂
…and there are other things on the go too of course, I love sailing when I get the chance, the kids have just discovered climbing walls (and Minecraft unfortunately) not to mention several business to run and we’re always on the lookout for new opportunities.
But for us, working from home is NOT about fast cars and material possessions – it’s not about the money, even though I earn more now than I ever did working a 9-5
It’s not about gated mansions or ‘being seen’ hugging celebrities at events while we point at each other and grin like tits.
My lifestyle might sound idyllic to some and total hell to others and THAT’S the point
Internet marketing frees you up to decide what type of lifestyle you want.
I mean REALLY want.
Being free of your 9-5 and esetting up a profitable online business doesn’t mean you have to buy a Ferrari, although many do and that’s fine
But on the other hand many do it because they think they’re SUPPOSED to do it.
You give the average working person a million quid (about $1.7 million) and I’m told almost all of them will buy bling, a big house, a fast car and be skint in a year because a million quid is NOT enough to live on forever any longer unless you’re VERY smart.
True freedom in my opinion comes from one simple thing – replacing your salary so that you don’t have to work any longer
This gives you time to THINK. It gives you time to expand your e-business and find your ideal lifestyle
Ours revolves around family, home, travel, creativity and business – for me I especially like how I’m now in a position where my main role in my biz is simply about coming up with ideas…
Our ideal lifestyle is a very simple one
A few years ago I flew to a networking seminar in London. I was booked into the hotel for three nights, and on the first evening we had a cracking night on the town, meeting up with old marketing mates and making new contacts
Same the next one too. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
The day after I missed home and my family so much I decided not to wait another day for my flight back so I hired a car and drove home the same day.
Did my wife take the piss? She did a bit yes but I don’t care, and truth told she’s exactly the same.
I’m sure that when the kids have grown up and go to University my wife and I will travel more and maybe move to a smaller house somewhere…
But on the whole life will be very much like it is now I reckon, which is pretty wonderful.
And for now the kids have put down roots, they have good mates, a great social life (as do we) at a great school and everything is…nice.
How much did my lifestyle cost me to achieve?
About £2,000 ($2,600) at the time if I remember correctly – I just needed to replace my salary.
How much would it cost to replace YOUR salary?
£3,000 a month? £4,000?
THAT’S the actual price of your freedom.
(It’s SO important to understand this)
You don’t need to win the lottery or earn £50,000 a month (that may come later as you have time to think and develop your business)
So it’s genuinely not hard to do.
Do my mates who run their own businesses take the piss out of me for writing posts like this, and being a family-based, chutney-eating, potato-planting, beardy-wearing, wine-drinking, banjo-playing, life-enjoying hippy?
No, actually they don’t…
Because if you speak to anyone who has achieved any degree of success they’ll tell you that they’ve done it for themselves and their family on their OWN terms…
…and they don’t give a crap what anyone thinks about how they choose to live.
Not a flying one.
And nor do I, and nor should YOU.
My advice is to replace your salary, free yourself up from your 9-5 as quickly as possible through your online business. Whether that’s through writing, internet marketing, building websites, email marketing, software creation, Amazon selling or whatever.
Just free yourself up.
(I know someone who works 60 hours a week and has now hired a gardener because she doesn’t have time to tend the dream garden she works so hard for)
You just need to find a way to pay yourself the same salary that you’re earning now.
(Write, be a proof-reader or copywriter, create software, plugins, apps, software, become an affiliate marketers or do ALL of them!)
Because things will start moving very quickly and will REALLY develop when you get yourself into that position
There’s one more thing.
There are no guarantees in life. NONE
So in my opinion working like a nutter and gambling your entire LIFE on the hope that when you hit retirement age you’ll be able to finally the live the life you want…
…is a mug’s game.
Because any of us might drop dead tomorrow.
Which is why I live my ideal lifestyle right now.
You don’t have to earn £10,000 a month – just work on freeing yourself up by replacing your salary.
The hardest part (and you won’t believe me until you’re in a position to see for yourself) is working out what YOUR ideal lifestyle is, because it’s very unlikely to be what you expect
But bloody hell it’s a lot of fun finding out 🙂
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