Greetings from the road!
If you and I are connected on Facebook, you may have seen the highlight reel of my 8-day Nomadic Living Countdown. I’ve posted it again below, all in one 8-day synopsis.
To say that there was a lot involved in planning for such a major downsizing, would be an understatement. Going from apartment living, to my boyfriend, dog, and I all moving into a 20 foot RV was no. small. undertaking.
It required very real focus and attention to downsize, organize, pack and prepare for our Nomadic Living Experiment. And we did it all in 60 days!
I repeat: no small undertaking. We were motivated and up for the challenge.
While Nomadic Living is not for everyone, a growing number of people are redefining home and embarking on a location independent way of life.
Can you relate to feeling a degree of restlessness? Is your heart longing for adventure and newness? Perhaps you’ve grown accustomed to the same-old-same-old: taking the same route to work, to the gym, to the grocery store … going to the same places, with the same people…
Routines can provide comfort and stability, but they can also cause your mind – and your life – to go into autopilot.
Whether you choose to hit the road or not, you don’t have to settle for status quo expectations and life on autopilot.
With just a few small powerful shifts, you can create a life you can’t wait to get-up-and-out-of-bed-for-in-the-morning. As my gift to YOU, I created this FREE Dream Acceleration Strategies video training – made with love and behavior modification know-how. 😉
Claim it now and get started today to fast-track your dreams. (You’re welcome.)
Ok, here’s the synopsis of my 8-day Nomadic Living Downsizing Countdown :
8 Days From Nomadic Living: A Downsizing Micro-Glimpse
With the downsizing and packing process well underway, I paused to catch my breath. This bag of tea is a micro-glimpse of my process. I went from an abundant tea selection, with many boxes of tea stacked in my kitchen cabinet, to one single consolidated zip-lock bag. With just one week to go, I spent my entire Saturday sorting and clearing everything “kitchen”.
7 Days From Nomadic Living: Moving Sale
The 7 day count-down! After more sorting and setting aside my final few irreplaceable items for storage, I posted a moving sale sign by the elevator in my building. It listed the last of the things I had yet to sell. (Much of it sold. Whatever was left, I donated.)
6 Days From Nomadic Living: Decision Fatigue
I find that the most difficult decisions to make are often the ones that don’t really matter but that you need to make anyway. Do you agree? I was definitely feeling decision fatigue as I made countless micro-decisions … which pots to pack …. what spices to take … which socks … which kitchen utensils … toiletries … etc.. etc… and, even more daunting for me was deciding where each item I wasn’t taking was going … sell? recycle? donate? … and if for sale, for how much? … where and to whom?
You feel me? I was knackered. I put out a call for some positive juju and energetic support as I sorted through the stuff of downsizing. While super excited to simplify and have less – I won’t sugarcoat it – the process of getting there took a lot out of me. But, one decision at a time, I did it. And I’m SO glad I did.
5 Days From Nomadic Living: Giving Love Away
With just 5 days remaining, I hit a turning point. I went from battling decision fatigue, to surrendering. Instead of wanting to sell things, I wished I could just beam it ALL to donation. For starters, I gave ‘Love’ (and a few others items) away. I delighted in doing so, as a metaphor in motion. Really, isn’t that what it’s all about? 😉
4 Days From Nomadic Living: Farewell Pistachio
With a sense of nostalgia, I sold my little Fiat. I bought her (a.k.a. Pistachio) 2.5 years prior, just days after moving to northern Virginia. Fun to drive and cute as can be. I loved being able park in Washington DC in spaces that no one else could fit in. One time a man standing on a nearby curb watched me parallel park and clapped for me after I fit into an incredibly tight parking spot. 🙂 Pistachio and I also took to the highways, on road trips south to Florida and north to Rhode Island. And now just days from me leaving Virginia, we parted. Farewell, Pistachio … and thank you. Maybe I’ll see you on the road.
3 Days From Nomadic Living: We Put The Cart Before The Horse
Here’s a quick story about when Carl and I went to the RV dealership and purchased our “condo on wheels”. While learning about the weight of the unit, the towing info, etc., the sales guy asked, “What do you drive?” and in unison we answered: “a Fiat” “a Prius”. Maybe you had to be there, but it was a funny moment. Here we were, looking to buy an RV with two vehicles that obviously weren’t going to tow it.
That day, we purchased our little RV travel trailer and drove off – in the Prius.
With a ‘Sold’ sign in the window, it was now awaiting our return to pick it up.
In other words, we literally put the cart before the horse!
Arguably not a rational logical move, but not all good decisions are rational decisions.
We put into practice what, in coaching with my clients, I refer to as ‘Quantum Leaping a Dream’. By, quite literally, putting the cart before the horse, we took a big ol’ leap of faith. We dove into the deep end and teamed up to do something that neither one of us had done before.
With our decision to put the cart before the horse, we ensured that we would figure out what we needed to figure out, and gallop our way back to hitch our cart. And that’s exactly what we did. We sold our Fiat/Prius. And our little RV got it’s horse.
*** What Quantum Leap have you, or are you, dreaming up in your own life? What dream is stirring within YOUR heart just waiting for YOU to leap? Want to chat about it with someone who “gets” it? I love connecting with people from my online community. Let’s connect for a complimentary session and explore the possibilities, shall we?
2 Days From Nomadic Living: See You Later
Any friend who helps you carry boxes and drop stuff off at Salvation Army, is the real deal.
I was blessed to meet Laura salsa dancing just a few weeks after I moved to the DC area. That night, she yelled goodbye, waving vigorously at me from a balcony when she saw I was leaving. I knew then and there, we’d be friends. Not long after, we went for a 3-hour kayak conversation (much more talking than rowing) and it was a friendship made.
Just 2 days away from nomadic living, she helped me move some stuff, I gave her the grand tour of our 20′ camper, and we ate take-out at the dinette table. We also took a “see you later” selfie (no goodbyes). I’m so glad our paths have crossed. And I know they will again. True friendship transcends time and space.
1 Day From Nomadic Living: How Long Things Take
Carl and I spent our last night in the (almost empty) apartment after a busy day of too many tasks to name, all on the heels of a late night out dancing. We accomplished a lot and sleep felt like a true reward. After months of planning and preparation, it was exciting to be less than 24 hours away from the kick-off of our nomadic lifestyle. Knowing that by this time tomorrow, we’d be fully moved out of the apartment and starting on our RV living journey, was definitely exhilarating.
Big life changes are rarely made overnight. They take time and they require planning and preparation.
Generally speaking, the bigger the change, the more planning and preparation is needed. But, how long? How do YOU determine how long things will take? As a rule of thumb, I find that when it comes to getting big, daunting tasks and projects done …. things take exactly as long as you have for them.
Knowing this – and even better – learning to trust this, is a bit like having a superpower.
We did it in 60 days. Once the deadline was set, we got to work, trusting that the time we had was exactly the time we needed.
This can be easier said than done, I know. A favorite personal mantras of mine is “Time expands for me.” I tell myself this (on repeat, until I believe it) especially when I’m feeling like the time I have is shorter than the time I need. And, lo and behold, it all gets done.
On the eve of this great new adventure, having certainly wondered and felt concerned about whether we’d pull it off and get everything done and ready to go in time — I went to bed feeling confident, a knowing in my soul: we got this.
What about YOU? Do you find that things take as long as you have for them?
How do YOU ensure that tasks and projects get done, done well, and efficiently?
November 5th, 2017: The Nomadic Journey Began
Farewell apartment 207 – and thank you. Onward and upward!
Now, several year in to this lifestyle, we help others live it too! Curious? Learn more at www.NomadicLiving101.com.
So, you want to become a digital nomad. Awesome.
In my book, 10 Things RV Dealerships Don’t Tell You About Nomadic Living, one of the things I share is 50 Ways to Make Money on the Road.
If you’re not sure what avenue you want to pursue to as a digital nomad, this is a great place to start. You’ll find a chapter devoted to how to make money from the road with 50 ideas that are sure to get your wheels turning. And – you can get the entire first 3 chapters for FREE here! (The full book is $4.95.)
Before diving in to 3 Tips for How To Become a Digital Nomad Entrepreneur, let’s first clarify:
What is a digital nomad?
A digital nomad is someone who works remotely. Another name for it (more of a corporate term) is telecommuting. A digital nomad is someone who has the freedom to either work from home or travel to different locations and still do their work, thanks in large part to having internet and telephone connection. A digital nomad doesn’t need to be in any one place to provide their service or do their work.
I have been a digital nomad entrepreneur since 2004, long before I had a name for it.
From the very start, by intentional design, I created my business to be something I could do from wherever I happen to be. I designed it that way because I knew my nomad soul wanted the option to work from anywhere. So, from day one, when I first started my coaching company (more than 14 years ago!), the work I did with my clients was over the phone and though the internet – even if my clients lived nearby!
And, when I began, they ALL lived nearby.
Over the years, I’ve been able to expand my reach and serve clients spanning 4 continents. I’ve served clients from as far as Spain, Germany, Israel, New Zealand…
How did I do this? How am I able to reach people across the globe?
Well, the Internet certainly helps. But the truth is this: The PRIMARY source of client attraction through my business has come from referrals.
And that’s tip #1…
TIP #1: Referrals are the best testimonial.
When first starting out, I had clients before I had a website. Worth repeating: I had clients before I had a website. Really take that in, because it’s super important to not lose site of the fact that long before there were websites, there were businesses.
A website does not make a business. A website is a modern-day billboard. And, yes, a billboard can be helpful.
But, I stand by this: Clients raving about you will be even more helpful.
The best thing you can do when you’re first starting out, is focus on delivering high-service, helping people consistently benefit from your offerings. People talk. They tell their friends.
I’m honestly not even sure if social media existed when I first started out. (MySpace maybe?) Either way, I wasn’t on it. I didn’t lead webinars or teleclasses. And I didn’t have a “following.”
I’ll tell you exactly what I did:
I sent emails to people I knew (my first newsletter was just to friends and family). I spoke publicly wherever and whenever I could find the opportunity. And, I regularly asked for referrals.
TIP #2: The fastest path to reach real people, is the BEST path.
When you are first starting out as a digital nomad, the fastest path to reach real people is the best path. And rarely is the fastest path to reach real people creating a website or building a social media following. Again – all good stuff, all can be helpful, but only if it’s happening *along side* connecting and serving real people, not before.
And this takes me to tip #3 for how to become a digital nomad entrepreneur.
TIP #3: Resist the inclination to hide behind a computer.
This one might seem especially counterintuitive, especially as an aspiring digital nomad.
BUT – while your instinct might be to spend hours upon hours behind a computer, resist this and start serving people NOW. Rather than prioritizing website development, or studying SEO and social media strategies, study your target clientele through personal real-time interaction. Determine what your customer needs and how to best serve them: real live people, not imaginary people.
Starting a product-based business? Let’s say, for example, you are starting a mail-order cookie-shop. Walk your butt down the street, bring cookies to all your neighbors and tell them you are starting a mail order cookie shop.
Starting a service-based business? Let’s say, for example, that you are starting a coaching company. Call, email, and tell everyone you know. Tell them you are starting a coaching company AND – this is what I did – that you have 3 pro bono spaces open for new clients.
I started my company with 3 pro bono clients. I rolled up my sleeves with them. I served them personally, to the best of my ability. One of these three pro bono clients became, not only, my first paying client after the pro bono period came to an end, but she also referred me all her friends. That’s how I started my business. Nothing fancy or high-tech about it. Simply people connecting with people.
This is how I launched my location-independent company, more than 14 years ago.
What I see happening in the aspiring digital nomad landscape is, all too often, aspiring digital nomad entrepreneurs are so focused on websites and Instagram followers that they lose sight of The Foundations of Service: the offerings, the personal connections, the fundamentals of what makes a business sustainable.
And what makes a business sustainable is clients who rave about your work, because word of mouth is the most trusted source.
I learned by doing. I didn’t start out confident about my abilities. But I started anyway.
Only after I had actual experience serving people did I start building out a website and creating an online platform.
That’s been my experience. And 14 years later, I’m still in business.
I often remind my business coaching clients that marketing is nothing more than a way to connect with people, ideally people who can benefit from what you provide.
If YOU are an aspiring digital nomad, remember this:
⇒ The real work in starting a business is in connecting and serving people.
⇒ It’s figuring out WHO you serve, WHAT they need, and HOW you can best provide that service or product to them.
Are YOU a digital nomad, entrepreneur, or remote work employee?
If so, you know that the search for remote work spaces, places where you can really buckle down and get things done, is par for the course.
There are huge perks to nomadic living and remote work opportunities … but when you live a nomadic lifestyle AND you work remotely, setting yourself up for productivity can be challenging.
Enter: Co-working spaces.
Co-working spaces provide an awesome alternative to, say … using a Verizon Jetpack at a picnic table … or milking your cell phone’s hotspot for an hour here and an hour there … or buying a coffee that you don’t really want at a cafe full of distractions just because they have decent wifi … or driving around until you find an open network and sitting in the car with your laptop on the center console. (I’ve done it.)
I had the pleasure of spending a few weeks in Burlington, VT this Fall, visiting family and getting in some leaf peeping. During my stay, I was so happy to find Blank Slate Coworking Space. Here, I was able to get some much-needed productive focused work-time in.
The co-working space not only offered me a quiet environment but I also had access to shared resources like secure wifi, a shared kitchen, printer, scanner, fax. As you can see from the pictures, it is a beautiful inspiring space with high ceilings, big windows, and lots of seating options.
As is common with co-working spaces, Blank Slate Coworking, they offer memberships at varying levels.
They offer a $25 day pass, a 5 day per month membership for $80/mo, and two full-time membership options: $400/mo for a dedicated 7′ x 8′ cubicle, and $125/mo for a non-dedicated workspace. Membership also provides you with the added value of networking and collaboration opportunities that comes with rubbing elbows with like-minded entrepreneurs and innovators.
Are YOU a digital nomad or aspiring digital nomad?
Have you experienced the benefits of joining a co-working space?
What are some of your favorite co-working locations?