Manny Bitton, Who Swapped Success for Freedom

Manny Bitton from Tel Aviv loves parties, nightclubs, and rave festivals, and hates to stay put. That is why he organized his life in such a way as to both make money and enjoy life. Now that he is over fifty, this works out particularly well.

Manny Bitton is a hairdresser, and a very good one at that. In his youth, he quickly built himself a fantastic career and became an incredibly demanded master. Capitalizing on this wave of success, Manny opened his own salon, which also went on to achieve public acclaim. For almost twenty years, Manny laboured in his salon day in and day. Not only did he dress hair (which was actually his favourite part of the job), but also managed employees, whose number exceeded thirty due to the salon’s super popularity.

Manny had money and success — everything an ambitious person may wish for. And yet, the more successful his salon, the better Manny realized that money and success do not make him happy and that joy is missing from his life.

In the end, Manny decided that he did not need riches and success. He tried it and did not like it. Being happy and enjoying oneself was much better: one just had to find a way to make that possible.

Had Manny continued managing his thriving business, he would have had the funds, but not the time and freedom necessary to live the life he enjoys: to travel here wherever and whenever, to dance all around the globe at the best rave parties.

On the other hand, by quitting his job altogether, Manny would have gained plenty of spare time, but lost all income, which also would not have let him live as he wishes.

With age, Manny figured out how to solve this problem and organized his life in the best way possible. Now he is happy as can be. He arranged his life in such a way as to both make money and have the time to spare. This is how he does it.

On returning home from yet another trip, Manny Bitton rents a chair in one of hair salons in Tel Aviv, announces his readiness to work, and from dawn till dusk passionately dresses people’s hair, several days a week. It is just as impossible to make an appointment with him, as it is to leave him with a bad haircut. Manny accepts no appointments: he just serves everyone who turns up (and there is always a line to see him).

This “work” mode lasts just as long as Manny needs to save up enough for his next trip. Once he has enough, he stops accepting clients, quits working, packs his bag and takes off — to spend nights clubbing, or to take his ten-year old daughter to a quieter resort. Physically, Manny is in perfect shape, so he heartily enjoys dancing, partying, and skiing.

Manny Bitton has no bosses or employees, no need (and desire) to rise in the world, to return to business and stress about little things. He does not even put too much effort into planning his trips, and whenever clients ask when to expect him back, he replies, “I’ll be back once money runs out.”