I realize that so many of my questions have been answered over and over again. But like most people, I tend to forget that I already know the answers to most of my questions. This trip to Mexico, while not my most extravagant adventure, was one of the best vacations that I've had in a long time. It was so wonderful because I was actually fully present and could see and experience the beauty of my life directly. Too often, I've found it much easier to live in the past or the future rather than focused on the present.
During the last several years, I've been on a mission to change my definition of success from the constant accomplishment of new goals to having simple gratitude, compassion and ability to love in a variety of circumstances. This trip to Mexico gave me a confirmation that my path is the right path.
The fact that I experienced mindfulness on this trip was really a hidden treat. I traveled to Mexico to support and witness a dear friend getting married to the love of her life.
I would not miss her wedding for anything in the world. Yes, I am extremely sentimental. I originally met this friend in an airport in Japan while we were both on our way to our solo trek to Bali and Singapore.
Go figure, two young black successful women that decided to do the exactly same thing at the exact same time. Needless to say, we were and continue to be soul mates. I love so many characteristics about her. In fact, I often describe her as an upgraded version of myself. If I had to pick my favorite trait about her, it would be the fact that she sees and attracts the ultimate good in others. She collects friends all over the world from all different races, religions, philosophies and points of view. Her friends all have in common they way that they treat life with love, compassion, fun and inquisitive excitement. I'd pick people with these characteristics anytime. Beyond being a friend magnet, she is a force to be reckoned with in the corporate world, and accepted me as part of her family from the beginning. I think she is the first person that I met that has been able to integrate both self-love and the pursuit of a strategic corporate path in a way to support a fabulous balanced life.
Over the years, my view of success has really changed. I must admit that originally I followed the path of most Westerners in believing that success was defined by titles and/or money. But, I luckily realized that there were other things that really made me happy. I am all about finding mentors with whatever goals that I have in life. With this line of thinking, I've always tried to surround myself with friends who could inspire my growth. A selection of people of those people would include those who have the ability to be happy in the midst of uncertainty and chaos and still figure out a way to pursue their life goals.
One such friend is Erika. We have known each other since 7th grade and lived on the same street in San Diego, California. We spent junior high, high school, and college together and remained friends even to this day. It's funny that for most of our lives, most people could not understand why we were friends as we had such different personalities as demonstrated when I was voted most likely to succeed and she was voted most fun in high school. What some people don't realize is that people can have different external paths in life, but have the same internal values. It's funny how although we treat life differently, we both value financial strategy and don't believe in debt. We both find inspiration in listening to dharma talks daily. And, we both know that love is the only thing that matters. I guess we have all of the important components in common after all.
Over the course of the trip in Mexico, I gave myself the time to soak in the knowledge offered by the Four Hour Workweek. Reading the book was both timely and exactly what I needed. The overall premise of the book is how to design your life in a way that supports your passions, creativity, priorities, and your need to feel alive. I was surprised to discover that most of the main points discussed in the books are in alignment with my overall philosophy in life. I felt like the book was a reminder of the wisdom that I've collected about life over the years. However, the book did force me to put a mirror up and do a self-assessment to determine if my life as an entrepreneur was in alignment with the previously mentioned essential elements. By doing this assessment, I realized that I needed to tweak the way that I have been sharing my passion for teaching people how to create a fabulous life by making smarter financial choices. Thus far, with Novellus Financial, I have been primary working on one to one consultations instead of group activities that can impact a greater number of individuals. As it is my mission to help as many people as possible create the lives of their dreams, I decided to change my business model to one that can help more achieve financial balance. I have been known to work constantly, but taking the time to feed my mind reminded me that we cannot achieve everything by brute force alone. Sometimes we need to sit in peace in order to see where we are in life and where we need to go. Both the book and the trip allowed me the much-needed strategy session/entrepreneurship retreat that I needed to ensure that my livelihood continues to stay in alignment with my overall purpose.
Life is a collection of decisions. I realize that the moments and experiences that I remember most clearly are those when I took a chance and followed my own path. This path at many times included dealing with experiences that involved a great deal of uncertainty, learning new concepts and being completely unrealistic.
My largest leap of strength was leaving my plush Washington, D.C. consultant life to move to a city without any guaranteed support system or social network. I decided to do this because I wanted to live in a city where I could truly be happy. I felt intense internal happiness every time I visited Atlanta over the 10-year period since I attended Georgia Tech. As such, I decided that I loved myself enough to change my physical environment from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta. When I arrived, I decided to apply my supper analytical nature to help establish my friendships, professional network, and social life. Based on previous experience, I decided to rapidly amass at least 5 circles of friends through a two-phase friendship algorithm approach. Phase 1 required my attending every single activity that I was invited to within the first three months of friendship, especially those that would show selflessness and support. Phase 2 allowed for a relaxed approach to accepting of social activities allowing for inclusion of self-compassion, priorities, interests and conflicting commitments in the decision-making process. This strategy worked like a charm, and I never lacked for the feeling of friendship, support or belonging in my new home city. It took the decade of my 20s to learn how to identify and cultivate mutually beneficial friendships, and I feel extremely grateful that the universe has responded so lovingly to this need.
I realize that all of these decisions were made in my pursuit to create lasting happiness. Through study and meditation I learned that happiness really is about being able to set an intention and rest in the present moment. I learned that all we need to is how to navigate through the ebbs and flows of life knowing that everything changes. However, what we can do is design a life full of our utmost enjoyment. Being a Wealthy Yogi and teaching people how to craft their desired life is my mission.
About Dr. Roshawnna Novellus: A Wealthy Yogi that helps people achieve their inner an outer goals through smarter financial decisions. Curator of Goal Diggers Club, a community of savvy goal oriented individuals that pride themselves on living a fabulous life. President of Novellus Financial, a concierge style tax and financial strategy firm. Author of Budgeting is More Liberation Than Limitation, a simple guide of how to change your mindset about money so that you can jump-start reaching your dreams.