Week 3: You become what you envision yourself being

“Creating an inspiring life that works, you inspire others around you to do the same.”
— Lewis Howes

My vision is really about freedom. Being an entrepreneur wasn't my dream; it was a goal on the path, a means to achieve my dream. 

I only came to the realization this weekend while reading Lewis Howes book, The School of Greatness. In the book, Lewis has this to say about his own vision: 

"My vision was to achieve All-American status when I was younger, but what I really wanted to be was great."

Lewis realized his vision wasn't about being an All-American, it was to be great and to inspire others to find greatness. It stemmed from his childhood; when he was 6 or 7 years old, his father told him that All-American football players were the best in college. 

Did my vision to be free go back to some kind of big, outsize childhood dream? 

I don't know.

My strongest childhood memories are of growing up in New Hampshire. The state motto there is: Live Free or Die. A phrase that is mandatory on every license plate in the state. Perhaps subconsciously, that motto influenced my vision.


It was the early eighties when the American dream took hold. Personal computers were making their way into our homes. Ronald Reagan was in the Oval Office. And the entrepreneurial age was dawning. 

My brother and I set up a lemonade stand. My mother cooked us popcorn. And we rallied a couple of mates to spread the word in the neighbourhood: we were in business. Then, as I recall, we ate most of the popcorn and drank the lemonade ourselves.  

Nevertheless, I carried on building businesses.

To me, entrepreneurship represented independence, control, freedom.

Until one day, in my late thirties, I awoke in a midlife winter with White Walkers bearing down on me. On the outside, everything was great: I was a successful entrepreneur, I lived in one of the most exclusive parts of South Africa, and I had no shortage of expensive toys.

But I felt trapped.  

I desperately wanted to shake off the shackles of my life; to find a purpose and do something to inspire others.

I began changing my life and working on a new vision to become a lifestyle entrepreneur. To work location independent, on my own schedule, living close to nature and inspiring other people to discover their own freedom.

But I realised this weekend that my vision hasn't really changed – it was and still is a desire for freedom. Instead, I've spent the past few years envisioning my future, clarifying my vision.

So why do I seem no closer to my ultimate desire: freedom! 


The trouble is I'm shit at achieving my goals. To reach my full potential, I need a clearer set of goals. You see, a powerful vision emerges when we couple our dreams with a set of clear goals. Without both, we're doomed to drift aimlessly in the purposeless mist of the doldrums.

 This weekend, I committed to creating a plan of action for my vision. Developing more clarity about what it looks like. Shifting my mindset to thinking about coming from that place rather than going to it. Focusing on the goals that got me to that place. And committing to living my vision.

Purpose + Plants = Peace.



The podcast: The School of Greatness
The book: The School of Greatness: A Real-World Guide to Living Bigger, Loving Deeper and Leaving a Legacy