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Living Without Excess

I am writing this post in the lovely country of Guatemala, the birthplace of my fiancee. I have spent the last week here for New Years and I will be spending one more week here before I go back home to New York.

If you ever visit Guatemala, the first thing you will notice is the hot and humid temperature, followed by an unmistakably sweet smell that envelops the whole country.

This is the burning of sugar cane–it is burnt both for ease of cutting and for enhanced flavor. This is done throughout the entire country, as this is Guatemala’s main export.

It wont take long before you notice the more tangible result of the burning sugar cane: throughout the day you will notice chunks of black ash falling from the sky like tiny black shoe laces and pieces of tissue paper.

I have been to Guatemala one time before, and both times I have found that my favorite pastime is simply looking for the different business opportunities that exist here.

While there are plenty of innovations in which we are used to in other parts of the world that may be useful here, I feel we as entrepreneurs have much more to learn by the simplified way of life in Guatemala.

There are no washing machines, driers, paved roads, few cars and running water is only one temperature: cold. However, depending on how good you are at adapting, it can take very little time to adjust to these changes and not only enjoy them, but prefer these differences.

Realizing how you can come to get used to these simplifications makes you realize that you don’t need nearly as much as you think you do.

Entrepreneurship is about achieving financial freedom. But is this freedom only about freeing ourselves from relying on an employer for a salary or is it also about freeing ourselves from excess, from expensive things that we don’t really need?

If we are able to free ourselves from feeling the need to buy expensive and unnecessary things, we will find we need even less income to truly achieve the full financial freedom we desire.

In my next post, I will delve deeper into simplified living and my reflections of entrepreneurship while on my vacation.

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