You’ll never take our freedom!!! (Sorry but with a last name of Wallace, you kinda expected me to do that, right?) After traveling with my boss the last few months, he just started referring to me as “Freedom”. Gotta love a good Braveheart reference, don’t ya? And quite honestly, I didn’t mind the joke. After all, freedom is what we’re all after in some way.
This topic of freedom has been on my mind a lot lately. And I imagine it’s on most people’s minds too. Perhaps it’s been my nonstop schedule between work and personal and trying to balance it all, that has had freedom in my thoughts. Next week will mark my first week to be in my apartment for a full week since I moved in April…if that gives you an idea of how crazy my life has been.
I think freedom looks different to all of us. And in our own ways, each day we aim to get a little closer to our definitions of freedom. Most people are probably looking for some type of freedom of time, money, or both. So I would venture to say that when you declare you need more time or money, it’s actually more freedom that you’re asking for.
It can be a bit of a vicious cycle. You might work hard to make a good living, but put in so many hours working that you don’t have the time to actually enjoy that income or lifestyle you have. Or perhaps you work a job you love, but don’t have the income to live comfortably. In their own ways, both scenarios are a bit heartbreaking and stressful.
And try as we might, it’s not an easy balance. Trust me, I get this. You find yourself going through the motions each day as a slave to either your job or your bank account…or maybe even both. Here in the States we’re taught especially to work constantly thinking that makes us successful. But I find that you stop truly living when you go at this pace. You forget to enjoy life.
Now let’s talk about who specifically desires freedom. Here are a few common types of people:
- The 9-5’er: That person who has a full-time, steady income and dreams of nothing more than a nice cushion in their bank account and for the weekend to be at least one day longer. You get home at the end of each day exhausted, over worked, and dreading the next work day. This person tends to desires both freedom of time and money.
- The Corporate Exec: He/She may seem to have it all from the outside. A great job, nice car, big house, impressive income, etc. But so often they are putting in so many hours at work trying to keep their business going, car payments made, staying on top of enormous mortgages, and they still don’t get to truly enjoy their lifestyle. They think that having the time for their family and enjoying their life is a pipe dream.
- Stay At Home Mom or Dad: Now I’m not a parent, but I can only imagine how being a stay at home parent can overwhelm you. Unlike the full-time worker, there is never an off switch. You can’t clock out of work and go relax on the couch. Your work literally never stops for a good 25 years, right? Maybe money isn’t top on your list, since you’re able to stay at home. But I’m guessing time (and personal space) is of the essence, and you don’t find yourself with much of it.
- Student: Now this one I know all too well. The student is often a dreamer picturing what they want their future to look like, and they work hard for it. Time may not be a giant need depending on their schedule. Or if they are in graduate school or higher, it may be a desperate need. And we all know that the majority of students desire money. After all, many of them (myself included) walk away from school with enormous student loans looming over them. And isn’t the whole point of getting that education to get a good job to pay really well, so that money isn’t a burden?
- Teacher: I’m highlighting this one as the daughter of a teacher. My mom retired last year after teaching for my entire life and then some. And I learned at a young age that teachers are severely overworked and underpaid. And what a shame to do that to a profession that works so closely with young people. But it’s the way it goes, and I know a lot of teachers are praying for more money and time to spend with their families and get to enjoy life more.
- Odd Job Worker: So many single parents or people without an advanced education find themselves working several jobs throughout the week just to stay afloat. They do this to keep food on the table, and to provide for their families. And it’s beyond admirable. They instill the value of hard work in their children, yet hardly get to see them as they try to squeeze in as many hours or work in the week as they possibly can. This worker, well they are dying for freedom of both time and money.
So basically everyone wants freedom then, right?! We’re all in the same boat in this sense, even though it seems like all of the types listed above are world’s apart. None of these groups are living that ideal life that we all dream of.
Desiring abundance in time and money is great, but it doesn’t mean much without a purpose. And it’s really important to know deep down in your core what drives you.
So I ask you this: What would freedom of time, money, or both bring you? Why do you want it?
Think about it really hard. And start dreaming a bit. Close your eyes and imagine if you had all of the time and money in the world, what would you do with it?
Here are a few things I imagine many of us are dreaming of when it comes to their freedom:
- More family time
- Ability to stay at home with your kids
- Travel more
- Pursue your passions
- Volunteer and give back
- Buy a new car
- Move to your dream home or city
- Stop living paycheck to paycheck
Freedom is a basic desire of every human on this planet. The chance to live a life that fills your soul with joy and that lets you lift up those around you. So hold tight to that desire. But also get very clear on specifically what having it would look like in your life.
That picture and clarity is what drives you every day to sit in your cubicle, or put in overtime, or nurse a sick child back to health, or go through the motions each day.
Now here’s the tough part: Whatever it is that you’re desiring more of . . . what is your plan to get it? Because the thing is that if you want something badly enough, it CAN be yours. I challenge you to find a way to start bringing more time or money into your life.
Manifest it, force it to be so. I know you’re thinking I’m asking the impossible. That it’s too late for you to change your life, in whatever way that looks like. But it is NEVER too late. So maybe you find a side job where you can build your own business and have some control over your finances. Or perhaps you cut down your work hours even if it’s just one day a week. Or you schedule a date night or night out with your friends if you need a break from the kids.
If your desires are real, and you want it, you can get it. And if your desires that you wrote down above aren’t strong enough, then go back and revise that list. What are the things that EXCITE you? Volunteering? Having nice things (which is totally okay, so don’t feel guilty if that’s what you want – but be specific about what those nice things are)? Creating something of your own that you can be passionate about? Traveling the world?
Dream BIG, my friend!
If you don’t mind sharing, I’d love to hear from you! Comment below and share what freedom looks like for you and what you desire most with your new found freedom?
For me, personally I’d love freedom of time and money. It’s why I developed an entrepreneurial spirit several years ago . . . giving me the chance to make my own money by starting my own businesses. I’m happy to report that I’ve found an opportunity in a field that I’m really passionate about that has the ability to give me more time AND money if I’m truly serious about it. So if I can do it, I know that you can do it too!
Stay inspired & know that freedom can be yours!