Creating a Lifestyle Business
What is a lifestyle business?
Wikipedia defines “lifestyle business” as:
A business set up and run by its founders primarily with the aim of sustaining a particular level of income and no more; or to provide a foundation from which to enjoy a particular lifestyle.
Not to be confused with a lifestyle brand, a brand that promotes an aspirational lifestyle by associating with influencers, events, and celebrities. (ex. Redbull, Nike, Chanel).
I used to dislike the term “lifestyle business” – because I took it to imply that this isn’t a real business, just something people do to make money “on the side”.
This article by Lauren Bacon articulates this misconception really well.
One of my favorite things she says about her “lifestyle business”, a boutique web design and development agency, is this:
“We prioritized care. We prioritized making room for our whole selves. We prioritized having lives outside of work. We prioritized longevity over quick bucks.”
I fully and whole-heartedly embrace the term “Lifestyle Business” because sustaining a particular income level and providing a foundation from which to enjoy a particular lifestyle sounds pretty freaking sweet to me.
I get excited when I see entrepreneurs who may not fit this definition exactly applying its principles to the way they operate.
I recently listened to NPR’s podcast How I Built This (love it so much!) – where the founder Stacy Brown, of Chicken Salad Chick, a $75 million dollar franchise said this:
“We run the business. The business doesn’t run us.”
Here is why I am committing to creating a lifestyle business:
- Bigger is not always better
- I want to put my life first, then family and friends, then work
- Growth for the sake of growth is not sustainable
- I am always growing as a human, but the pressure to continuously “level-up” is exhausting and not fulfilling
- The focus on quality over quantity has always served me well
Does this mean I won’t have goals or ways to challenge myself in my business? Absolutely not! I love money just like everyone else. I like to hit a milestone and stretch myself, but I refuse to get swept up in the grow-or-die myth.
If this sounds up your alley, I would love to hear from you! Can I get a “Hell, yeah!”?