What is a Beach Bum Billionaire?
It’s a person that balances the freedom of a beach bum and the access of a billionaire. These disparate lifestyles are in some ways similar and in others opposite. Some would look down on the beach bum, while revering the billionaire, when in fact both lifestyles have their pros and cons.
A beach bum can do what he wants when it comes to spending his time. He has this in abundance. He also has freedom from ownership. Freedom from the material shackles that comes with ownership. As Tyler Durden says “The things you own, eventually they start to own you.” In this regard a beach bum would be free from the obligations to maintain their property, whether it be a house, a car or anything shiny and new. This is the way of Minimalist; who focuses on what makes him happiest and cuts out the excess and the unneeded. It’s the simple living path.
A billionaire has financial freedom and access to pretty much anything, but they often constrained by obligation. As a result their lives are often not their own. We all have obligation in some form, much of the time it is a result of our choices. Those choices that we have made to maintain a lifestyle that ties into who we are and what values we have chosen. I know two billionaires personally, I’ll admit freely that I used to want to be one, until I began to understand what these kind of lifestyles demand of a person. Its not all yachts and private islands.
Why do you want to be one?
If you want to balance the freedom of having with the freedom of not having. The freedom of less with the freedom of access. If you want to travel with not a care in the world while still earning money doing what you love. If you want to change careers to pursue something that is less formal, more personal, and more freeing. It’s often the trappings of a career that end up snaring a person. What that career needs to succeed, what it demands of you, what it dictates you spend your time, effort and money on. If you love what you do, then maybe its how you do it, when you do it, or where?
How then can you be one?
Step 1: Reduce and Redefine:
Reduce what you have, what you need and what you want. Grow accustomed to that. Grow accustomed to what that means and what it feels like.
Step 2: Support and Surpass:
Then build a muse (watch / read), my muse is Independent Fiction, that allows you to take action and enjoy the things you want to engage in. The things you choose to engage in according to your minimal life. The things that make you happier, make you more, make others more.
Think of your ideal life as the Apollo 11 capsule; it has what you need to survive, in relative comfort, on the journey of a lifetime.
Minimalism reduces the amount of rocket fuel (money or effort) you need to propel you to where you want to go (your goals). There are so many practicalities for Lifestyle Design and Minimalism that I could not hope to contain them within this single post. Here though are some resources to get you started:
- The Minimalists - A great pair of guys writing very well on the life of having very little.
- Zen Habits - One of the Top 50 Websites on the Internet according Time Magazine. I have passed it on myself to many happy friends so far. Here’s a great little book on contentment.
- The seminal work in this field – The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Expanded and Updated) (Buy it, read it, build on it) Here is his blog.
- Chris Guillbeau, travel hacker who has been on the road for 9 years. His most recent book: The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future.
Why blend the two?
Lifestyle Design I believe without the moderation of Minimalism can be simply a new way to be greedy now. It’s the instant gratification of greed in our youth. It requires work and effort, but on the superficial level it smacks of a get rich scheme, of the imbalance of chasing more now – instantly. In the case of pure lifestyle design you may be tempted to build a muse solely for its ability to make money (which is not what Tim Ferris advocates).
Minimalism makes you question what you really need, casting aside wants, and excess. Its Occam’s Razor for your life.
Blending the two allows for a purer focus and more efficient attainment of your goals. It allows for the building of a life worth living. Further reducing your life to what makes you happy, and then choosing to fuel it with lifestyle design I believe puts you in the position of creating a muse that is based on your passion, on what inspires you.
Reduce what you need
Attain what is missing
Savor what you have
The Goal is Contentment, being happy with less, not chasing more, and loving the life you build to savour what you have.