Lifestyle Design

Lifestyle Design

Lifestyle design is when we consciously choose what “thriving” means to us (and those we share our life with) and direct our energy and engagement to co-create that together. Lifestyle design is rooted in what matters to us emotionally, physically, and relationally. It looks for freedom through mindful resource allocation (and even conscious limits) in order to be sustainable and joyful.

  • Lifestyle design help sustain our focus when exposed to pressures to live differently than we choose.
  • Designs co-create intentions. Shared intentions co-create long term systems to give us the freedom to live and experience what matters most to us.
  • When we design based not just on “things” (consumerism), we are freed to explore ways our emotional dreams can be met in ways that don’t necessarily require what anyone else is “selling.” We buy what serves our thriving lifestyle NOW, rather than based on a marketing promise.

Living the Emotional Lifestyle

There are different emotional climates. Just as you can live on an island beach or an icy mountain, where and how we live also has emotional climates that vary.

For example, some people value ease and put resources towards what feels smooth and flowing. Others value expressing their body’s power and capacity and seek out challenges to body, mind, and spirit.

We can design to allow co-creating… or personal achievement… or spiritual journeying… or a blend across the seasons of our life.

By starting with the emotional lifestyle we want to craft, we find it easier to filter out the physical activities and situations where we would not thrive.

For example, a typical vision board has a bunch of things we cut out and imagine ourselves having those things and living that life. Yet, underneath the vision board is… how those things would make us feel!

Emotional freedom cuts through the things and gets to the root feelings. If you love being of useful service, there are millions of ways to do that. If you see the mansion and feel a sense of artistry and grandeur – you might get that feeling on a mountainside (without the taxes and upkeep and work a huge house requires).

Of course, no judgment about any size or choice. It’s just clear to us having gone through lifestyle design that starts with the emotional and energetic experiences that there’s a “decoupling” that can happen. We stop identifying “success” with a certain brand of car, house, or way of living.

Instead, our choices become deeper and more in touch with what really and truly matters… and the heartistry we choose to express into this emotional world we share.

F.O.M.O. and Outside Pressure

The Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is used “against” us. Yes, it is part of the primitive brain. “Eat these berries NOW… or they will be gone next time you look!!” Whether a sale or deadline or limited offer, when our primitive brain gets triggered, we often act contrary to the lifestyle we want.

It’s why having a lifestyle design supports our long-term thriving. If you have as part of your design the pleasure you get from having more options to choose from, a sale “now” is less appealing than knowing that setting aside that money in your Freedom Fund would mean… expanded choices in your future.

People who have discovered that mindfulness feels good to them, and stewardship of resources does too, start becoming amused by FOMO rather than trapped by it. “Ahhh, there they go again. I so appreciate the feeling of knowing what matters to me and choosing in ways that are right for me!”

Same goes with outside pressure. A boss can use fear to push us to do more, more, more. If we’re clear that sustainable effort is core to our lifestyle design, we can find is easier to assert on our own behalf. “I hear you want more done than can be during the time and energy we have. Do you know which has the best benefit for us or would you like my help choosing?”

Such clarity about our lifestyle changes us. If freedom is dear to you, you would interview an employer with different questions than if you sought security (and were willing and able to sacrifice to have it).

Outside pressures become like rain outside the car rather than a storm you are caught in unprotected. Becoming skilled in your own clarity and action, even the contrast of other people’s assertions reaffirms your own choices.

Savoring What Is Showing Up Now

Ever become really distressed when you were not achieving a goal you set for yourself? That’s one of the issues we have with goal and vision-oriented planning.

Lifestyle design for a thriving life is meant to make it possible for you to savor, each and every day, aspects of what is showing up now. You don’t have to wait to have “the house of your dreams” when you do a little something to make your current nest a bit more yummy and sweet.

This is particularly true when you’re crafting from “scratch.” Whether growing your own business or seeking out a partner for lovership, we know that many of the emotional aspects are available each microstep of the way.

The Big Win is a dopamine rush, for sure.

Yet, savoring is the practice of truly being in touch with what’s alive, real, and beautiful in your world right now. That’s thriving.

Useful Questions

  • What emotions and experiences would nourish me day-by-day?
  • If I take something I’ve dreamed about yet it hurts that I don’t have it, what are the emotional states I’d expect to get from that? What other ways could I experience that now… and tomorrow… and the day after… even if that dream in that form never comes true?
  • In order for me to feel ____, what do I believe has to happen first? Is that true? Or, are there other ways I could design a life that gives me those feelings?
  • What have I been striving for… and is that really what matters deeply to me?


Related Concepts

Abundance, Clarity, Co-Creating, Contrast, Ecosystem, Heartistry, Magical Misconceptions, Practical, Sacred Decisions, Simple Uplifts, Thriving, We-Space

Contributors: @Rick

We invite you to share your experiences and wisdom:

  • Life examples where this concept has played a role
  • Other useful questions
  • Links to audios, videos, books, and courses that add to our shared understanding of this concept
  • Memes, quotes, and inspiring images

Lifestyle Design when grounded in feelings / experiences is quite different than one based on a vision board with “things” that are an indirect way of saying/showing “I want this ___ because of how I’ll feel if I have it and ___ experiences it would make possible.”

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