You are a product of your environment.
But you’re also a creator of it.
Years ago, I was stuck thinking that I had to seek out my ideal environment: a perfect living situation, a great apartment, the all-factors-considered city that would cater to my every want and need. Only then, I rationalized, would my environment support me perfectly so that I could do… whatever I would end up doing with my life.
Because when I looked around, it seemed like that’s what everyone else was doing. Finish high school, check. Go to college, check. Graduate, and move to some city where jobs are; you get an apartment; you spent a shitload of money at Pier One Imports and/or Target to fill it with stuff; life magically becomes perfect; happily ever after.
Seemed like a simple enough recipe!
Until things never worked out like that — for me, at least.
If you’re like me, the physical environment is only one factor of what eco-system you require to fully flourish in your life: to feel like you’re truly living an open, inviting, experiential journey. If you’re like me, being a mere “product” of your environment feels… like you’re a gold fish in a bowl.
Can you really expect to fulfill your purpose-driven, aspirational nature by living in a fishbowl?
That’s because you’re a creator. A creative. Someone who is not only subject to the environment around you — a city, a neighborhood, an apartment, a bedroom, your literal physical living space — but the element of personal choice that dictates, shapes, and creates your environment through belief, intentions, dreams, goals, service, leadership, or love.
For a long time, I was always seeking an environment that would support me.
I never thought to create the environment, itself.
The Value of Creating Your Environment
We all know that we are each, to varying degrees, products of our environment.
We were shaped by the houses we grew up in. Our neighborhoods and towns. Our parents, guardians, families, friends, schools, teachers, heroes on T.V., the books we read, the superheroes we dressed (or still dress) up as for Halloween, and on down the line.
These days, your living space shapes you, just the same.
And so do the people, noises, sights and sounds that fill that space — every such element that impacts the senses and, perhaps, even the “meta-physical” that you can’t see, taste or touch. The energy. The willpower. The determination. The belief.
Lying on my forest green mat last night in yoga, my mind drifted into the visual of the Universe’s fundamental and most basic element — the atom — and that the atom is pure energy.
Energy is what makes up every thing in this universe.
And so, no different than your New York City apartment or a window with a view, every such energetic influence that you can or cannot control — a car horn, or a dream; an ambulance siren, or a goal — becomes a part of your living space.
The value of creating your environment is the simple acknowledgment that we are, at our core, solely and personally responsible for what influences we allow into our lives: both our living spaces and our thoughts and beliefs.
Both the physical and metaphysical create your environment.
But the physical environment can sometimes be tough to change.
You have a family. A job. You like living where you’re living, and know you have to take the good with the bad. You’re not a globe-trotting, responsibility-free kid. You have priorities. Financial obligations. “Real world” expectations.
Not everyone has the choice. Not everyone has the ability. Some just plain ol’ don’t have the will.
That’s when you need to kick the metaphysical into overdrive.
That’s where you need to invest more of your choice, belief, dreams and determined thoughts (your energy) into understanding, distilling, metaphysically shaping and manifesting every intention, dream and goal that you have — dreams of service, of personal leadership, of community change and of global change on behalf of life, liberty, love, happiness and the values you live by, every day.
When the physical environment can’t be moved, the metaphysical environment can be.
Because you create it.
Last summer, that’s exactly what I did.
I achieved my first $1,000-week as an entrepreneur by “lean” launching a new venture called the Literati, my digital writers’ group that functions as a year-round writing course with community support and “live” curriculum that is custom created to members’ wants, needs and goals.
That entrepreneurial achievement began after I realized that I needed to create the environment where I could flourish:
An environment that met my basic needs and desires while allowing me the simple space to expand, explore, grow and flourish.
That’s what the Literati has become — not for me alone, but for our every member.
The Literati is that very ecosystem that a writer like you can join to have your basic creative needs satiated alongside fellow writers on the creative journey, while being perpetually fueled by amazingly insightful content and the support you need to thrive.
By creating the structure of a digital environment and filling that space with the ideal members and consistently high-value curriculum, that Literati eco-system has become the space where writers can be writers, learn, grow, fuel their self-belief and achieve the ends they desire.
But maybe you’re not a writer.
So, here’s what you might do to create an environment for yourself — and others like you — to flourish.
How to Achieve a $1,000-Week by Creating the Environment You Require to Flourish
Sure, $1,000 is a lot of money.
But when you break it down, all you really need is to find 20 people who are willing to pay you $50. Or, 10 people who are willing to pay you $100. Or, 50 people to pay you a simple $20.
(You get the point.)
But instead of asking, “How can I get X many people to pay me X amount of dollars?” ask yourself,
“What is the ideal environment that I could create for myself to meet my basic needs while further granting me the space to learn, grow and flourish?”
What might that environment look like?
- How can you combine your skill-sets and personal strengths to create an environment that allows you to have your basic needs met?
- What little bit of structure (physical or digital) can you establish, maintain and operate on your own (or with a little bit of help)?
- How can you then contribute to that environment — maintain it, cultivate it, empower it, nurture it — so that everything and everyone in that environment will grow, thrive and flourish along with you?
Sometimes, the answer is a lot closer that you realize.
If you take the exact image of an environment that you would want to be a part of and combine that image with your own talent, skill, passion, or what everyone always tells you you’re so good at, you already have a very simple idea to explore more seriously.
Engage in conversation. Ask people like you if they’d want to be a part of your environment — and why they’d flourish in it. How that space will let them learn and grow, openly, without judgment and with tons of support.
Share why the environment will be great.
If they’re into it, it’s time to set to work tilling the soil. Planting seeds. Watering. Cultivating. Growing.
If they’re not into it, examine it more closely. Explore your environment deeper. Get down and dirty into the eco-system and ask yourself what you’re really looking for in an environment that will support and encourage someone just like you.
Repeat the process.
For me, hoping to find my ideal living environment was not enough to get me where I wanted to go.
It took me a lot of searching and moving for an environment “outside of myself” to understand that the physical environment is only only half of the equation. The other half requires more “meta” creation.
Vision and action.
Cultivation and exploration.
Endeavor. Community. Encouragement.
And for a self-starter, a dreamer, a world-changer, a make-it-happen’er like you — that’s just what it might take to find ideal environment that you require to fully flourish:
P.S. – The Literati ushered in our
10th 11th (as of this morning!) new member of 2013! Our doors will open remain open to new members for a few more weeks, then we’ll close until May at the earliest.
We look forward to seeing you in our environment!