If you're running a business or have a fire in your belly to run one, you're already an innovator.
Here's the catch though:
"As entrepreneurs, we innovate ideas, we innovate solutions, we create these brilliant businesses yet the one area which we seem to have a block in innovating is our own lives" Marianne Cantwell
There's often an unspoken fear about taking a few days away from the office and experiment with ways of working.
Well, a free range human is someone who creates a life on their terms rather than have someone else define how it should look.
What being a free range human is not:
- clock watching your 9 to 5
- being caged in an office pod
- timeboxing your day with back to back meetings
- processing as much email as fast as you see them coming in
- skipping lunch because you've got 2 proposals to write
Let me take you back to Summercamp 2015 for a sec.
We had a 2 hour spell of sunshine so fled from the shelter of the barn to soak up some rays and listen to fellow campers Marianne Cantwell (author of Be a free range human) and Jack Hubbard (creator of an alpine playground) give a free range duo talk.
Marianne and Jack shared advice for creating a lifestyle that aligns wholeheartedly with business.
Here are the 3 key traits in those living life as a free range human.
1) Free range humans slaughter sacred cows
No animals harmed, hold your horses :)
A 'sacred cow', Marianne told us, is a prescribed definition of success or a certain way to live that society's drummed into us often blocking people from charting their own path.
Take the prescribed definition of success as an example.
Get onto the corporate ladder, work your way up to an early retirement and a house in the country. Might sound like a safe route, but what you're not told is how unhappy you'll be during 9 to 5 every single day you work on things without purpose.
It's these prescribed paths to success that spark outrage in a free range human. You're following a path someone else has set for you, working in a pod you're forced to have creative thoughts in.
Free range humans recognise what environment gives them energy, doing their best work in the mountains, on the beach, watching their kids. Life and business aren't separate and it's bye bye office pods.
"Behind every sacred cow is a whole load of amazing shit, you've just got to kill it" Jack
2) Free range humans constantly run life experiments
Handling thoughts like "I can't just up and leave my job" or "what if it doesn't work" are a doddle when you're a free range thinker. Their solution to blocking thoughts like this is to make your life a laboratory, Marianne told us.
When something stands in their way of their grand vision for their life and business, they don't jump to the "oh my god I can't do it" conclusion. They run experiments to prove to themselves they can.
"Whatever it is blocking you from that next step, recognise it, set a time frame of around 3 months to test yourself doing it, see how it works out temporarily and take learnings from it"
3) Free range humans don't look for off the shelf solutions
Finally, free range humans know there's no right and wrong way to do business. They don't look for the exact way they want their life or business to look because it doesn't exist.
Instead they use their innovative energy to create their own bespoke free range career. They've known the definition of success since they began on their entrepreneurial journey, and it's not the same as other peoples. They focus on the life they want and the change they want to make, not the numbers they need (that will come).
So try this.
- Define what success looks like to you.
- Plan experiments around the things that block your path.
- Then blaze your own trail in life, don't chase a prescribed way of living that could lead you down an unhappy path.
A good place to start if you're needing a little direction is to join a tribe of likeminded others seeking a free range lifestyle too. If there's one thing free range people know it's that you can't build an aligned life and business on your own.