A year ago today, I walked away from a full time job with a pretty great company and seriously fun colleagues to focus fully on thisbaz ames bar little internet thing I’d started ‘on the side’ back in 2014. It was sparked by feeling pretty average in the aftermath of losing one of my favourite people. In a little over a month, Uncle Baz went from relatively healthy and the happiest we’d seen him in years to… well, gone.

A few months ago, I went through a ‘why discovery’ process with one of many incredible mentors I’ve had the fortune of finding over the last 2years. It resulted in a life-mission-type statement that reads:

“To honestly and loyally give strength to others, so that they passionately realise their fullest life”.

If that sounds too deep, I get it! But I recommend reading a book by Simon Sinek called Start With Why. That statement is also what compels me on this particular day to share this – as it’s certainly not intended as any kind of gloating or bragging.

It’s 100% not about the money. If you find that part a little vulgar, fine. I would guess that means you’re happy that life is exactly where you want it to be on that front. Great – the world needs more like you! Or… possibly, you need to change your feelings and conversation around money. This is also in no way a suggestion or sales pitch that everyone should do what I do. There’s an abundance of opportunity out there to execute on what I’m discussing here.

Disclaimers done… so, to elaborate on the above.

Do you currently rate every area of your life as 10 out of 10? Or at least close?

I don’t mean justifying a 10 when put on the spot because you think you should be grateful that you have what you do, by saying “it could be worse”. Of course it could. Sure, when I started waking up every day applying gratitude for what I did have, everything else absolutely started to change. Or at least my feelings did. But far too many people settle at that point, justifying a frankly ‘average’ existence because it’s somehow wrong to want more.

No, no, no, nooooo! WTF is the point of average?! Yawn…

Do. Not. Settle. PLEASE!

One of my favourite authors recently shared a succinct but brilliant quote… “if you’re not dead yet, you’re not done yet”. So, if you’re honest, are there ANY little voices (even tiny, whispery ones) in your head or gut telling you something that you’re not listening to? Voices questioning anything, like…

How do you earn your living? Does it bring you any degree of fulfilment? Does it pay you enough to do EVERYTHING you want to do with your life? More importantly – does it allow you the time to do that? Or are you going to be retiring at 60 (or later) to do it?

For me at this point in time… it’s being able to pay for additional home care for my grandmother – in the interests of quality of life for both her and my parents. Sending them on holiday when they need it. Simultaneously living my best life as a single 30-something, experiencing as much of the world as possible. I want to continue to do this with my children – which won’t be cheap or possible with 4weeks holiday!

I don’t want to have to ask the other half for an allowance to buy stuff for myself or the kids. I want a nanny to look after them now and again so we have time to ourselves. I want to relocate at the drop of a hat if circumstances dictate we should or could. To spend regular time with people in all corners of the globe who mean the world to me. I’m not missing weddings and big events of close friends and family just because they’re in another country! It’s a blessing and a curse when you like to travel or have done previously! I’d also like to contribute a lot more to charity – which is, funnily enough, MUCH easier with money…

Cake, eat it? HELL YES. Why not?

Are the people and relationships in your life serving you to be the best possible version of yourself? If they are, tell them – often – how much they mean to you. If not, please, gracefully let them go. This sadly has to include family. You can’t control what you’re born in to but you get to make the choices from that point on. If your circle of influence or any role in what society deems ‘conventional’ does not work for you, get out there and find new people to fill those roles. Believe me – they are out there and you’ll find them, I promise.

Are you as healthy as you’d like to be? Confident enough in your own skin to take on your best life? Chain smoker, overweight and heavy drinker but HAPPY? Amazing! I am kind of jealous in a weird way! There’s no judgement here. But if you’re any of the above and don’t like it – for crying out loud, quit that shit and do some bloody exercise!

Stop living like you have all the time in the world to put this stuff straight. You don’t.

I don’t care how old you are (I regularly have these conversations with the 80+year olds in my family!), continually aim high in EVERY area of your life. You alone are responsible for the way it looks now and in the future. You alone are responsible for your legacy. Call it cheesy, call it cliche – I really don’t give a sh*t! If you know me, you’ll know that of anything stated here – at least that last bit is true! 😉

There is NOTHING you’re going through that can’t be changed or your perspective improved with a little self-awareness and education. So, find the education and information. Find people who have been there and done it who can help you. There’ll undoubtedly be some tough and ugly stuff along the way. But the simple fact is, there’s a proven process and steps to follow for any of this.

A year ago today, I took another step feeling unsure how the next would pan out.

Today I am typing this poolside in Thailand, having travelled extensively since last year. I’ve worked an average of 4hours a day for the past 6months and smashed my comfort zone again last weekend by speaking in front of over 100 people taking a similar path. I have earned (this month) what equates to roughly 6x what I did in my last job. I have never been more happy and at peace than with where my life is right now. Refer to disclaimer at the start of this post if at this point you feel that’s some kind of cringeworthy gloating. Or jog on. Whatever works for you.

12months since quitting job (4grid)

Send me your excuses and call me out on mine (always!). But please, PLEASE… if you have any of those little visions or hear those voices hinting that there’s more out there for you, LISTEN dammit! Stay curious and be brave enough to pick a path that will allow you to explore it further and do whatever you have to do to make it a reality.

Back yourself.

Because you CAN have it all.

And you absolutely deserve it.

Now, if someone could please morph Hugh Jackman with Bradley Cooper and send the result to Phuket for beta testing, that would be great. One of those roles I mentioned is currently available…

Mucho love to you all!

Ames xx