How I work remotely, travel the world and spend so much time outdoors
This is a long awaited blog, I have been meaning to write for a few months so here it finally is. Anyone new to my page, you’re about to find out how I work remotely, travel the world and spend so much time outdoors. How just this year, I have spent a month living in Bali, a month living in Sicily and coming up, a month living in Cape Town.
THE BEGINNINGS OF AN ADVENTURE:
How do you begin to describe the absolute best summer of your life? It all started with a decision: to say yes to living the life I want and no to anything less. Who knew that a thing such a remote working retreats existed. A place that creates community and encourages your lifestyle.
Throwback to the start of 2017. I was working a 9-5, desk job, despite promising myself I never would. Going to the same grocery store after work, the same pub on weekends. Nights with too little time and weekends spent cooped up indoors in need of downtime after draining work weeks. No life at all. Sound familiar? I was not happy and I found myself in a constant internal struggle with myself.
A COMPANY CALLED "PACK.Adventures Ltd" :
I was doing extensive research at the time on how I could travel full-time and had already made the decision to quit my job and move out of my apartment with no further plan in the pipeline. I was throwing all caution to the wind and going for what I wanted, if not now, then when? PACK.Adventures Ltd happened to contact me on exactly the right day, funny how life has it’s way of doing that. PACK is a company that creates month-long remote work retreats for digital nomads and freelancers. When they contacted me I remember thinking, "I can't do this, I don't work remotely" but it sounded like exactly where I wanted to be. My goal for the next few years is to be traveling extensively, exploring every inch this world has to offer.
Fast forward to a month after PACK contacted me and I almost didn’t book the trip (what fear can do!) After a lot of internal debates and turmoil I took my biggest leap of faith to date, spending the last of my savings money and I reserved my spot for a month in Bali. Now the only question was what would I work on for a month? And the next year? And forever? Baby steps though. I decided during my month in Bali I would take the time to re-group, reevaluate and work on improving my photography and writing skills. So that's exactly what I did.
A co-working retreat like the one I did with PACK is amazing for so many reasons, but the absolute top reason for me was knowing the moment I signed up I was welcomed into a community and network of like-minded people. This community has proven to be life-changing and invaluable as I discover a better way to do what inspires me.
Not just the places, but the people:
I often find myself thinking about how insanely amazing people are and how inspiring it is meeting and talking to like-minded people. Those people who understand your journey because they are on a similar one. Sometimes society can be harsh. If you think outside the box you’re doing it wrong or you’re being unrealistic. It’s refreshing to meet people who believe the same things are possible. For me those people are the ones who have a burning passion for life. An insatiable desire to explore and to create something amazing along the way. The ones who want to immerse themselves head to toe in nature and want to hone their craft with the help of others. Meeting these people is a game-changer. It helps to keep the flame burning bright and reminds me that I'm on the exact path I’m meant to be on.
During my month in Bali I met every kind of person from bloggers to CEOs and programmers, you name it. The one thing we had in common was the desire to travel and to live a life outside the box. So I left Bali not only with the most amazing memories of adventures through rice fields, over mountains, snorkelling oceans and exploring waterfalls but with a community I can turn to in the future and a lot of clarity on how to fuel my travel lifestyle. I gained an abundance of knowledge about skills I never even thought of developing and the most important thing was I walked away belonging to an authentic, supportive community of travellers.
People I can without a doubt call friends, who’s journeys I now follow with a big heart and sense of pride. People who I find have opened up so many more doors for me and expanded my horizons. It is so funny because I’ve seen some of the people I met in Bali in Sicily, people I've met in Sicily in Johannesburg and now people I met in both Bali and Sicily will be joining in Cape Town.
WHAT WORK DO I DO:
I then went to Sicily for a month just two months after the Bali trip. I saw an opportunity within PACK for additional facilitator's and I jumped on it. That’s another skill I’ve been learning how to fine tune. The skill of seeing opportunities everywhere and being able to easily pin point if it's the right opportunity for you and then go for it with everything you have. I am now a facilitator for PACK and I get to travel with them around the globe while meeting the most wonderful people, seeing new places and working on my company and dreams at really cool co-working spaces in between excursions.
Through this years journey I have started to find ways to use my skill set to my advantage. I have a marketing background as well as a production, sound engineering and project management history. So I am using all of those to fuel my new endeavour which is a 360* production company that helps brands and influencers alike in creating content with purpose and relevance. I’m crafting my photography and videography and keep practicing skills like writing, so that I can grow myself and my company to a level where it is all I need to be doing. Because I’m still pretty much at the starting stages, I also freelance as a photographer, videographer, editor and travel writer at the moment, all skill sets that allow me to be outdoors and exploring as much as possible, and that allow me to funnel my creativity and work remotely. I want my work to talk about things like conservation and sustainability and having time to travel and work on my vision in between freelance jobs is invaluable. Time is my biggest asset and I am trying to live a lifestyle that encompasses that. Don't get me wrong, it is a LOT of work. I find myself working almost every single night especially on days where I've been freelancing for outsider companies, because I see my goal for my business and I'm determined to get it.
Some key lessons I've learned on my journey over the last 8 months:
If you want to live a lifestyle where you have more time to travel and be outdoors go out and find it. We live in this amazing age where literally anything you can think of is most likely something you can make a career out of. You just have to really want it and be willing to sacrifice some things to get it. (For example I have sacrificed the luxury of a steady income, takeaways and buying stuff and basically free time in general. Every second of my time is filled with tutorials, research, sending pitches that get no replies, practicing skills and so on. I watch Netflix about once maybe twice a week and any spare time I do have I use to exercise because being an outdoor adventure photographer is also a goal. You have to centre your life around what you want.)
LIVE!! life is exciting and filled to the brim with wonder, let it excite you. Be joyous, have an abundance of energy and positivity and good things will be attracted to you. Most of the best opportunities I've grabbed onto have come my way, not when I have been stressed and anxious, hitting my head against a wall to think of a way forward, but in the moments I've been present and content and open to the endless possibilities of life.
Nothing is permanent your whole path can change course because of my choice. It can be a silly choice like deciding to go for a hike and bumping into someone who then leads you to an opportunity. So try not to stress the finer details and just go.
WHERE TO NEXT:
I'm off to a month in Cape Town with PACK. at the start of November and then Bali again in February. Seems I just can't get enough! We still have a few spots left on both trips, so if anyone is a remote worker, looking to network while being productive and exploring new places, get in touch ;)
To find out more about PACK.Adventures Ltd visit www.findyourpack.org.
You can also go read about some of my new-found friends adventures on their pages:
Eli, Aka "The Partying Traveler": https://thepartyingtraveler.com/2018/04/06/post-bali-life-update/
Lauren, Aka " The Wanderlust Movement": https://www.wanderlustmovement.org/blog/digital-nomad-retreat-in-sicily-italy "