“I found out that everything I own ended up owning me,
which was interesting.”
– Pete Longworth
With Christmas and New Year approaching, it’s a good time to take a moment to think of any changes you want to make in your life. Whether that is in your relationships, where you live, your career, your business, your finances, or all of them.
I thought it would be GREAT to share an interview I did with Pete Longworth to inspire you to make a change, and to EMBRACE the possibilities that come with not knowing.
About 6 years ago, Pete Longworth decided to sell all his belongings, to pursue his dream of being a photographer. He gave up his luxury lifestyle and community in one of the most amazing upscale suburbs in Sydney, Australia (Manly Beach).
He put all his stuff on sale on his lawn, and just kept the essentials, a camera, laptop, and a suitcase of his clothes. Where was he going? New York.
“I wanted to swim with the big fish of photography and New York was the place to do it, and so I had these dreams of doing that. And off I went.”
But none of that went to plan for Pete. He found himself in a cardboard box apartment of a drunken Airbnb host who was violently knocking on his door. Meanwhile, Pete was just trying to get as much sleep as he could.
“I showed up and I’ve never felt so alone as that night and I’m sitting on this like moldy mattress in this AirBnB, which would have been better described as like a cupboard than a room and I’m like God, what have I done”
It was only then that he decided to even look at how much money he had to his name. He just moved to one of the most EXPENSIVE cities on the planet, without a job, without a visa, no permanent place to stay, and ….
ONLY $2,200 to his name.
There were more meals he didn’t eat in New York, than he did. He was forced to get resourceful, and forced to trust that things would work out.
He lived off the charity of friends and neighbors. One neighbor who always said, “Oh we cooked too much last night,” and would leave him a Tupperware container with food.
“I learnt that just because you love New York, doesn’t mean she’s going to love you back. I learnt that my answers were not going to come outside of me. As it turned out the Tupperware lady was a powerful woman, who helped me actually understand a deeper part of who I was.”
Pete was forced to look deeper to the reason he wanted to be a photographer. Instead of just coming to a city to shoot beautiful things, he discovered that what he wanted to do, was be able to capture the beauty that is already there, but often goes unseen.
This was the REAL REASON he loved photography. And things started falling in place. He got paid teaching gigs. He got paid speaking gigs.
“My life now fitted into a suitcase, I have a camera, I have a laptop, and for the last six years, I’ve not spent longer than seven weeks in the same place. I’ve managed through teaching photography, through photo sessions, through speaking engagements and creating immersive experiences, art projects, I’ve just continued following that serendipity.”
And six years later, he has still has been traveling, never spending more than 7 weeks at a time in any one location.
When I asked Pete what would be the ONE thing he wanted to share with people who want to make a big CHANGE in their lives, he said (in true Australian Style):
“It Would Be To Honor Your Niggle. It’s just the itch. Follow that itch.”
What’s your niggle? What’s your itch? I’m curious to find out…
Choose Gratitude Create Freedom