The theme of this site isn’t about random hacks, regardless of how cool they may seem. It’s hacking your health, wealth, tech, and wisdom to design the lifestyle you want. Health, entrepreneurship, technology, and wisdom are tools that can get you there.
So, the real purpose of it all is to help you (and myself) design the lifestyle of your dreams.
So far, I’m not 100% of the way there in achieving the lifestyle I want, but it’s the journey that often makes us appreciate the destination even more. We’ll see what works, what doesn’t and what I learn along the way. And I’ll share that journey with you in hopes that you achieve your goals and dreams.
Let me be your guinea pig!
On to The Lifestyle Design Report…
In November I celebrated my 37th birthday. Wow, I’m getting old — seems like I was 27 yesterday!
Many of us who live in the U.S. also celebrated Thanksgiving, myself being no exception. Usually, I conduct business the day after Turkey Day, but this year I decided to take a nice, much needed 4-day weekend. It was great and I think I’ll do the same thing around Christmas and possibly New Year’s.
Here are some of the lifestyle design highlights for the month…
Mortgage Refi Mania
In my October report, I mentioned that I had become more financially conscience after watching a series of Suze Orman videos a friend of mine lent me.
A financial “action” list was compiled late in the month.
One of the items on the list was possibly refinancing the mortgage to save on monthly payments.
The last time we did this was in mid-2014. At the time the wife’s credit score was a bit below the excellent mark (I believe 740 or higher is what they look for), so we didn’t get the best rate possible.
Since then, we’ve purposefully done some things in an effort to boost her score. A quick check in November revealed that we had been successful in “hacking” her score to make it higher. It came back in the 790’s. Mine was also in the 790’s.
If you live in the U.S. you probably know there was a presidential election early in the month.
Shortly after the election, rates started to climb so I knew it was now or never. After calling several banks and mortgage companies I got the ball rolling and locked in a rate 0.75% lower than the one we currently have.
Doesn’t sound like a big deal?
Even with the refi fees we’re saving over $100 per month just by lowering the rate 0.75%.
I’ve since submitted a slew of paperwork and the process is still going as I write this in December.
Since I’ve started the process rates have climbed considerably, so I’m glad I pulled the trigger when I did and got a low rate locked in.
Lifestyle design impact: Part of living a freedom lifestyle is having enough money to do so and part of accumulating wealth is watching what you spend. This move will save us over $100 a month. Next, I plan to shop around for home owner’s insurance to see if we can save even more money.
Are You Luckier Than I Am?
I recently finished another book I highly recommend — especially for entrepreneurs — called Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck–Why Some Thrive Despite Them All by Jim Collins and Morten T. Hansen.
The book compares companies who out-performed their competitors (beat their industry index) by at least 10x from 1972 through 2002 (what the book refers to as turbulent times).
The point was to find out what separated the winners from the losers, so to speak.
The last chapter of the book asks the question were the 10x companies luckier than the others?
Believe it or not, I’ve never really considered myself to be a particularly lucky person.
It seemed at times in the past that some people just had everything fall into place for them while I had to struggle for the slightest break.
But, as I’ve recently discovered, this way of thinking about luck is wrong.
The authors attempt to quantify and study luck in the final chapter.
I won’t give the whole book away, but the result was pretty astonishing: the 10x companies had just as much luck (good and bad) as the losers did during the same time period.
It’s not whether or not someone else is luckier than you – we all get good and bad luck. It’s what you do with the luck (good or bad) that counts most.
This was a real eye-opener for me.
The book claims that “[…] a dangerous disease infecting our modern culture and eroding hope: an increasingly prevalent view that greatness owes more to circumstance, even luck, than to action and discipline[…]”
Sure, I’ve heard other super-successful people say things like there’s no such thing as luck, or that you must think positive to be successful, but I’ve never seen anyone try to study and quantify luck to find out why some appear to be luckier than others.
My take is that positive thinking not only helps you recognize and capitalize on good luck events, but also deal with bad luck events in a constructive way.
Note that the book is not about positive thinking or PMA (positive mental attitude).
To quote the book again:
If there’s one overarching message arising from more than six thousand years of corporate history across all our research […] it would be this: greatness is not primarily a matter of circumstance; greatness is first and foremost a matter of conscious choice and discipline.
I can’t argue with that, as all the 10x examples in the book were disciplined — almost to a fault. They also favored empirical evidence over guesses, popular beliefs, and hearsay when making choices. They tested their assumptions thoroughly before spending massive amounts of money and time on them, something the losers often failed to do.
Lifestyle design impact: We all have luck, both good and bad. The trick is to first recognize it, then to act appropriately. Believing that some people are “just luckier than you” will only serve to hold you back from achieving your goals and true freedom. In the end, it’s what you do with luck that matters most.
Website Theme Change
If you’ve been to lifehackguy.com in the past, you may have noticed that the website looks different than it used to.
That’s because I installed and tweaked a new theme in November.
The old WordPress theme I used was Thesis. It was a good theme, but I’m no web developer and the current one is easier to work with.
My current theme is sold by Studio Press and was created by Pat Flynn of smartpassiveincome.com. It is a copy of his old theme he used on his own site for a few years.
The investment was minimal and so far I’m happy with it.
I’ve also created another niche site (nothing to do with lifestyle design) and am using the same theme there.
I’d tell you what the site is, but it’s really niche and I’m not sure how many lifestyle designers would be interested in it. Maybe in a future report I’ll let the cat out of the bag, but for now it’s a secret 🙂
That concludes this Lifestyle Design report.
Until next time, go out there and get the lifestyle you want!
P.S. If you’d like some help designing a freedom lifestyle, request to join my free Facebook group Life Hacker’s Mastermind.