5 ways to have more freedom in life

5 Ways to have more freedom in life [PMP #162]

If you want to be happier, focus on creating more freedom in your life.Click To Tweet

We all want to be happy, right? But the trouble with pursuing happiness is that it’s so vague. Happiness comes from so many things. For example, feeling fulfilled by how we spend our time, removing stress and conflict from our lives, from relationships and feelings of contentment.

If I just tell you to “be happy” that’s not very helpful. Instead, you need to focus on one of these prerequisites to happiness.

I could write a blog post about either one of these things. But today, I’m going to talk about how a focus on freedom will result in more happiness in your life.

Don’t want to read this post? Listen to the podcast instead:

I view freedom as a “prerequisite” to happiness and as I’ve slowly introduced more freedom into my life over the last 5 years of building my business, I can say with confidence that I feel happier.

How have you tried to create more freedom in your life? I’m keen to hear your ideas! Leave me a comment below!

So what can you do to create more freedom?

1. Freedom to work when and where you want

Whether you work for yourself or an employer, if you can create more freedom around your working conditions, this often leads to more productivity and happiness.

We all have different styles. Some of us prefer the quiet conditions of a library, others enjoy the hustle and bustle of working in a coffee shop. I’m a morning person but other people do their best work at night.

However you like to work, find ways to create more freedom around your working conditions. Not only will you feel better but the quality of your work will be higher.

2. Create freedom through autonomy

If you can be more autonomous, this enables more freedom and happiness.

By ‘autonomy’, I mean your ability to make decisions and do things for yourself without having to get approval from others. If you work for yourself, this is easy. But even as a salaried employee, you can talk to your boss about to create more autonomy so you can do things without bothering them (they’ll almost certainly support this idea).

‘Autonomy’ also comes from the automation of repetitive tasks. This is why I use tools like Zapier. If you can use technology to automate parts of your job, this frees up your time and energy for other, more productive pursuits.

3. Freedom from responsibility

I may get some pushback here… but if you can reduce the people and things you are responsible to, you’ll create more freedom in your life. Obviously this is easier said than done and I don't expect you to leave your partner or disown your children.

But if you can remove yourself as a bottle beck and have fewer people rely on you for answers and direction, this enables more freedom all around.

Let’s go back to the example, above. Instead of being the person seeking more autonomy, if you help the people around you to be more autonomous, they don't need to bother you as much.

Recently on the blog, I talked about why I don't want to scale my business. Part of the reason is I don’t want the responsibility of having to employ people and the sacrifice to my freedom.

4. Freedom from caring what other people think

One of the key takeaways from everything I’ve learned about Stoicism is to disregard things you can’t control, especially the opinions of other people.

Trying to control what people think about you is a pretty futile effort. Maybe you got off on the wrong foot with someone. If you can mend the relationship, great. But if you’ve made a good effort to mend a relationship but you’re not having any success, move on. Stop caring what other people think and remove this mental weight from your shoulders.

5. Freedom to say “no”

As you can imagine, this is one of my favourites.

Having the freedom to say “no” to ideas, projects or people you don't want to work with results in less stress and more happiness.

A great way to be happier is to have less to worry about.Click To Tweet

Saying “no” isn’t easy. We’re social animals and love to say “yes” to keep other people happy. And saying “no” can be pretty difficult if the person asking you to do something is also your boss.

But saying “no” (or at the very least, challenging a request from your boss) allows you to focus more on the things you want to do and do those things really well.

How have you tried to create more freedom in your life? I’m keen to hear your ideas! Leave me a comment below!