The Zen of Lifestyle Design You can find zen in lifestyle design. The two actually have a whole bunch in common. Lifestyle design is all about finding a way to live the life you love right now. No delaying the fun stuff until retirement, no 9-5 shifts stuck in a tiny cubicle with nothing but fluorescents to take the place of natural lighting. In a way, a very real way, lifestyle design is about living a more natural life that best reflects the unpredictably predictable world around us. Zen, meanwhile, is all about being fully aware….right now. It’s about each and every moment that comes your way and living fully within them. See the similarities?

Let’s look at three main principles behind the practice of zen and how they fit in with being a conscious lifestyle designer:

1. Living Authentically

In Zen, there is great emphasis upon making the most of the moment. Every moment. Each moment has as much value as the one before and the one coming next. With lifestyle design, you take advantage of the life you have right now. Not the life you can lead on the weekends or on vacations – but the one you are living today and in this moment.

2. Rethink Reality

With Zen, you stop taking things at face value. You look for the true essence of things – and the meanings within them. What is food? What is water? What is a job? With lifestyle design, you also stop looking at things as they appear to be. You search for deeper answers. You redefine things so that they most reflect the authentic you – yeah, the one who wants to go surfing for an hour at sunrise each morning instead of hopping on a commuter train to a job you don’t totally love.

3. Embrace Simplicity

Going along with that idea of living in the moment, simplicity in Zen means ditching the baggage that holds you back from fully living. In lifestyle design it’s often the case that designers toss out preconceptions, complicated employment and living situations and focus on how to best automate their lives and their businesses.

Key Takeaway for Everyone:
Lifestyle design, like Zen, can be completely transformative. When you fully embrace true lifestyle design, you end up living a more authentic life, being more fully “you”, and enriching the moments that you collect like beautiful shells on a long, sandy beach.

Key Takeaway for Real Estate Investors:
Investing isn’t without little things that pop up here and there. A pipe, a new coat of paint, an unplanned vacancy…. Don’t let the little things that may happen in the future take away from your ability to use investing as a great way to fuel your lifestyle. Just as in life, little things happen but keep perspective and keep your focus on the moment – every one of ‘em.

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