Tell me how this sounds:
Living in sunny Puerto Rico, swimming in the ocean in the afternoons
Running your own business that emphasizes your strengths and gives you the freedom to work how you want
Not having to do the dishes
Having a boutique closet
Keeping your life simple with few personal obligations and responsibilities
… and having enough financial security to make it happen.
I’m so excited for this post. Why? Because we’re going to take a deep look at my friend Selena Soo’s Rich Life. Selena is a publicity and marketing strategist running a 7-figure business from Puerto Rico, and she shared REAL numbers with us and tells stories about what living a Rich Life means for her.
First, let’s look at one of Selena’s two primary Money Dials: convenience.
I love spending my money on convenience. I’ve turned this Money Dial all the way up — I want to streamline and reduce stress in several areas of my life.
Selena has similar goals.
Her apartment in San Juan is steps away from her favorite restaurants and other city conveniences. The supermarket, dry cleaner, gym, and pool are all inside her apartment complex. She doesn’t need a car and all the expenses that come along with one.
Selena also saves time by meeting with her personal trainer via Zoom five times per week. Wait — Zoom workouts? Yes.
Selena says, “I don’t have to travel to the gym, get settled, do my workout, and then come back home. That could easily become a two-hour thing. Instead, I can just flip open the computer, do a 30-minute session, and be done.”
I love how Selena handles clothes — she really leans into convenience. “When I lived in New York City, I would have a part-time personal assistant (who worked full-time in fashion) go to the department store one hour before me to find clothes and the best fitting room, so when I arrived I was not wasting any time.” Yes! Even now in Puerto Rico, she has assistants place orders and handle returns.
Now, some real numbers:
“I used to drop $700 without a second thought at Bloomingdale’s.”
In NYC, Selena lived a block and a half from a sample sale showroom, so she bought discounted clothing from Rent the Runway, Alice and Olivia, etc. “Dresses that were $1,000 were on sale for $200.”
“I pay a stylist $300 a few times per year to find clothes online for me.”
She paid $75/hour to have someone organize her closet so that she had a system and the closet looked good. “It brings me joy to have such a colorful and stylish walk-in closet. It feels like it’s out of ‘Sex and the City.’”
Another big area of convenience for Selena is food. When she lived in New York City, she spent $1,000+ per week on food. She often ate out — in NYC, she could easily spend $100 on dinner. In Puerto Rico, it’s $30–40.
In NYC, she had a personal chef who cost $360/week plus the cost of groceries. She also has a personal chef in Puerto Rico. Here are some of the meals her chef has prepared for her:
Curried pumpkin soup with coconut milk
Shrimp, avocado, and dragon fruit salad with cilantro vinaigrette
Caprese salad with strawberries, radish, and basil
Sauteed purple okra with cashews and garlic
Salmon fillet with shallot, butter, and lemon
Beet and goat cheese salad
Selena said two things that I love: “I don’t have to prepare food. It just kind of shows up” and “I’m usually eating out, getting Uber Eats delivered, or eating from a container prepared by my chef, so I almost never do dishes.”
Yes! I love seeing my students build their businesses and live their Rich Lives.
Selena Soo’s self-improvement Money Dial
Selena spends more on self-improvement than most people would be comfortable with. She doesn’t care what other people think. She spends on what’s important to her — and her business success allows her to do it.
Here’s why I love it: Focusing on improving herself is what helped Selena start and grow her business (more on that later). But as her business grew, focusing on self-improvement and self-care has helped Selena deal with the stresses of running a multimillion-dollar business with over a dozen team members and several hundred students and clients per year.
OK, let’s look at some of the specific ways Selena has turned up her self-improvement Money Dial, including her real numbers.
I have impeccable eyebrows, Selena has impeccable eyelashes. This year Selena spent $4K on lash extensions and Glamnetic magnetic lashes. She also gets blowouts for her hair twice a month. As a highly visible entrepreneur and “a single woman looking for love,” Selena says her appearance is important to her for both personal and business reasons.
Here’s another: “I get my best business ideas at the spa or on the massage table. It puts me in a relaxed state. It’s really important for my business and personal well-being, and I prioritize it,” Selena says. She has a $99/month spa membership, and also spends $150 on 90-minute massages at home. The spa includes a saltwater floatarium, rain shower hallway, and steam room that Selena has unlimited access to.
A few years ago, Selena was in a terrible, emotionally abusive relationship. I encourage you to read about it here. I read this story before Selena published it — it’s powerful and important.
That’s part of the reason Selena invests so much in relationship support. She’s focused on breaking old patterns and confronting relationship fears.
After she published her article, she went down an Instagram rabbit hole and discovered that one of the most prestigious matchmakers charges up to $300,000 per year for a global search. She did NOT do that.
Here are some of the ways she DOES spend:
She signed up for a six-month group program with relationship coach Sami Wunder (who was one of her PR agency clients) for $6,000, as well as another program of hers for $2,000.
She found a local matchmaker for $12,500, who provides 6–8 matches.
She pays for dating apps like Hinge and Bumble.
She has an executive coach, Jen Mac, who she talks with about a variety of business and personal issues, including relationships, codependency, and intimacy fears. This costs over $20,000 per year.
She has a therapist and pays 60 euros per session.
That may sound like a lot, but Selena says, “I’ve spent millions of dollars on my business over the years. For me, the one thing in my life I don’t have is the relationship I want. That’s a bigger priority to me right now than growing my business — and I’m willing to spend money on it.”
“I’ve spent more than $36,000 on a business mastermind, including travel and accommodations, but I didn’t get much out of it. I realized this year that I need to take risks and show up in a big way to create the relationship I want, even if my investments don’t pay off.”
I love her philosophy about spending money on things that ultimately didn’t work: “In business and life, you make investments based on where you are at the time and your hopes and dreams, and sometimes it doesn’t work out. That’s okay.”
Selena also talks with a psychic on a monthly basis to get her opinion on things like how a launch is going to go, who to hire, etc. She gives consultations with her psychic as gifts to friends. She also has an energy healer to help work out the physical aspects of emotional healing. She spends around $2K/year on these services.
After seeing these numbers, what are you thinking? I bet some of you are thinking that these numbers are “crazy” or “ridiculous.” And you may be right — for you!
What I love about Selena is that she knows what’s important to her and what she can afford — and then she spends money on it.
“I choose to live where other people vacation”
Selena runs a 7-figure publicity and marketing education company from sunny Puerto Rico. “I choose to live where other people vacation,” she says. “I have the city … but I also have the rainforest and the beach.”
I want to share with you three stories that illustrate her Rich Life.
Befriending the chef
Selena and her best friend have a favorite Japanese restaurant in Puerto Rico. But there are only six tables and a small bar area, so it’s very difficult to get a reservation there. Since the restaurant is so in demand, they rarely answer the phone and you cannot book online.
One night Selena noticed there were some seats open at the bar. She asked if she could sit there, but was told those spots were only available for friends of the chef. “I need to become friends with the chef,” Selena decided.
The next time Selena got a reservation, she and her friend asked the waitress to bring over the chef. They told him how much they loved the food, how appreciative they were of this hidden gem, and next thing they knew he sent out some special sushi that wasn’t on the menu for them to try.
After a couple more visits and conversations with the chef, Selena and her friend are now on the VIP list. They’re guaranteed a spot every time they come by, and have a standing reservation at this trendy sushi spot every two weeks.
World-class salsa lessons
Selena identifies as a former workaholic. Part of her decision to move to Puerto Rico was to adopt a slower pace of life and enjoy life to its fullest.
“Before I moved to Puerto Rico, I was in constant hustle mode. I was always working and felt disconnected from my body. I wanted to find ways to reconnect with myself and slow down.”
One of the things Selena did was learn salsa.
“I take private salsa dance classes and my instructor is a four-time world champion. She’s arguably the best salsa dancer in the world.”
Manifesting a birthday hotel
Selena says, “It was on my mental vision board to manifest a free stay at O:LV Hotel, a super cool boutique hotel that has been called ‘the sexiest hotel in the Caribbean.’”
“Loisse [the owner] was an acquaintance and sent me a Facebook message a couple of weeks before my birthday that said, ‘Hi Selena! How are you? I’m selecting a few people who can influence others. Would you like to stay at O:LV or spend the day as you wish and post about it?’ I was an instant yes!” Selena and her friend even did a photo shoot at the hotel.
I love it. Selena knows what she wants and is designing a Rich Life that’s tailored for her.
How about you? If you could live anywhere or have experiences like this, what would you choose?
From a $42k/year nonprofit dream job to multi-7-figure business
Selena’s Rich Life is made possible by her multi-7-figure publicity and marketing business, which she runs from her small apartment in Puerto Rico.
When it comes to her home environment, Selena values simplicity and ease. Her 670-square-foot one-bedroom apartment is ideal for her. “In a smaller space, I have less to decorate, manage, and clean.”
Selena is truly living her Rich Life.
But it wasn’t always that way.
In her mid-20s, Selena had her dream job working at a nonprofit in New York City. But she wasn’t happy — she was tired of the long hours and low pay. So she went to business school at NYU.
During grad school, Selena started to figure out how she could build a business around her own strengths. She had started to follow several people online — Marie Forleo, Danielle LaPorte, and more (including me) — and started to see something…
Selena describes herself as naturally introverted, and even shy at times. But she’s a super connector. She started sending simple, personal emails to the people she was following online and introducing them to others.
This simple act — an introvert reaching out through email — eventually helped Selena grow her own publicity and marketing company. She built her business around her strengths as a connector.
Here’s what she says: “I’m more comfortable behind the scenes, like when I’m coaching, consulting, strategizing, and leading my team, versus always being public facing. So even though I’m a publicity expert, I really only do publicity once a year around my launch. I’m not doing interviews year round or flying out to speak on stages. I make a big bang once a year and then I retreat back into my shell. That’s part of my Rich Life.”
Yes! I love it. Selena knows herself and knows what she likes and doesn’t like … and she built her business around how she works best. She hires people to help her in areas that she’s not as strong in. It’s a business perfectly suited to helping her live her Rich Life.
“I’m taking a month-long trip to Southeast Asia … and my business will keep running”
Here’s the question I ask at the top of the Earnable product page: What if you could start a business that pays you to live the life you’ve always wanted?
Selena has used my material to help her start and grow her business and live her Rich Life.
She has so many stories of the benefits of running her own company that I could keep telling them for days. Here’s one that has yet to be fully written.
June 2022 will be the ten-year anniversary of her business. Ten years! Congratulations, Selena!
Selena will also turn 40 in July, so she is taking November off of work to travel to Southeast Asia with her best friend, Heidi. They’re going to Hong Kong and Thailand to live it up.
“I had wanted to wait to do these kinds of things until I had found my partner,” she said. But she chose to live her Rich Life now rather than wait.
Running her own business is what allows her to do that.
Selena says, “I’m the face of the business, but I also have other senior leaders and coaches, so the business can run for a month without me. The other coaches can run the group calls.”
“Part of my Rich Life is that I don’t need to be the center of attention. I love lifting other people up, and I love spreading responsibilities so not all of the weight is on me.”
I love this. Selena is showing how running your own business can help you live the life of your dreams, your Rich Life. It can allow you to take month-long vacations and know that your business will run without you.
* * *
Ten years ago, Selena was just getting started with her business. She was in the same place many people are, wondering whether to stay in a job they don’t like, change jobs or even careers, or start their own business.
So I wanted to share her story as an example of what’s possible when you take the leap and start your own business. If you want to learn more about Earnable, my program that shows you how to start and grow your own business, click here.
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