What does the good life look like to you?


A couple of weeks ago I spent a week in New York on holiday with my family (you can read all about our trip here). I love how holidays give you a little bit of headspace - I always find that being away from home and out of my routine allows me to reflect on life and what I want out of it, and our trip to New York was no different. One thing I found myself pondering a lot was the idea of "the good life" and how that looks different to each of us. I've spent a lot of my twenties trudging down the same well trodden path as everyone else - going after each promotion that was available, buying a house, settling down. And while all of those things have been wonderful and have afforded me some great memories and opportunities, I often think about whether the past decade might have looked any different if I'd been living my life more consciously.

I think it's something we're all guilty of - we're fed this narrative of what success and happiness looks like from an early age, both by our friends and family and the media. And while I'm sure there have always been plenty of people doing things a little differently, I think it's only since the internet became a thing that we've had access to their stories.

And so, as I creep ever closer to the big 3-0 and start to think about the next stage of my life, I've been spending a lot of time pondering what the good life looks like for me. I've been thinking about what my days would look like if I designed them on purpose, rather than feeling the pressure to chase the next milestone just because everybody else is.

The biggest thing that I keep coming back to is time. I want more of it - more time to travel, more time to spend with family and friends, more time to work on projects that I'm really passionate about. And that craving becomes even more intense when I think about the possibility of starting a family. If I'm lucky enough to have children of my own, I want to be there for all of the important things, and I want us to have enough time to travel and play and grow as a family. Outside of that my wants are pretty simple - a cosy and inviting home, the opportunity to see more of the world, and a platform to keep connecting to wonderful people like yourself.

As someone who has always been quite ambitious and career driven, it surprised me that nowhere on that list is a fancy job title or a big salary. I don't care about having a huge house or driving a fancy car or being able to buy designer handbags. I just want enough to be able to live a comfortable life, and a way of earning that money that will allow me to spend as much time as possible with the people I love.

It's been such an interesting exercise, because it has completely reshaped my goals for the next few years. I'm no longer striving towards the next big promotion, or trawling Rightmove trying to figure out when we might be able to upsize our house.

Instead, I'm focusing on building a sustainable and profitable business, that allows me to live life on my own terms. I'm throwing all my love and attention into the gorgeous home we already have, to make it feel like somewhere we can live for a good while yet. And when I find myself getting stressed or caught up in the rat race, I'm stopping to ask myself "is this getting me any closer to my own goals?".

It's freeing, knowing that you're striving towards a life that you truly want. It has given me a sense of clarity and peace that I've never really felt before, accepting that it's far more important to make myself and my little family happy, rather than trying to keep up with the Joneses. And most of all, it's exciting, because I know that I can make my good life happen.

So this week, why don't you spend a little bit of time thinking about what the good life looks like to you? What would make you spring out of bed each morning, or feel a sense of contentment and joy you can only dream about now? I bet more than a few of you will be as surprised as I was.

Also, I'm super nosey so I'd love to see what the good life looks like for you!

This post first appeared on my newsletter, The Weekly Pep Talk. If you'd like to sign up and receive a dose of positivity in your inbox every Sunday, you can do so here.