This is an introduction to a series on living a life of freedom by remotely providing client website services and digital marketing.
It’s been 8 years since my wife and I quit our jobs in the UK and started living a digital nomad lifestyle. Now it feels like we have enough experience to offer some useful content to anyone planning to do something similar. Or to just share experience with those who have already made a change.
Hopefully too, this content will not just appeal to those who want to travel the world. Much of the focus here will be on providing client website services in a way that does not zap time (which it very easily can). In essence, this is about how digital might be able to help us live a happy and balanced life.
Quitting our jobs
This was particularly scary for me. I was fast approaching 50. I had a flexible, often rewarding job that was for life! Should I stick with it, there would be a great Civil Service pension. If I quit, it would be worth little and realistically there was little chance of me finding employment this good.
On one hand I was grateful for what I had. I was respected in my job and I managed a great team from home which gave the freedom to work when I liked. I had a generous leave allowance as well. Yet, somehow this security made me feel trapped. I had come as far as I wanted in the organisation and it was getting repetitive after 15 years. I started to feel tired and cynical. I watched my peers counting the days to retirement. It was not where I wanted to be.
Something snapped and somehow I found the courage to make the change. I have not regretted it for a single moment. It’s been an amazing and rejuvenating adventure. The best time of my life. Almost like a return to the long summers of my youth – just without the teenage anxieties and spots.
Life has now stopped whizzing by so quickly, yet more actually seems to happen. Now I barely understand the fears I had over making this change. But then, my whole thinking has changed. What I thought was the bedrock of happiness has now completely altered.
Making ends meet
Like most digital nomads we’re cheating the system, thanks to technology. We offer services and skills that pay well globally, but carry them out mostly where the cost of living is lower. For us coming from London that could be almost anywhere, but much of the year by a beach in Asia. Goa in India and Thailand have been firm favorites, but Vietnam, Bulgaria and the Ukraine have become other alternatives for us.
What has been our biggest challenge (and this has taken some years to work out) is our own approach to offering client website services (our main income). We wanted the service to be personal yet allow us to work when we wanted. What we finally came up with almost the opposite to what most say is the best way to run such a business, but it’s working for us. Probably because we don’t have huge aspirations to grow an agency and we don’t necessarily want the greater responsibility that can come with some higher paying projects. Essentially we are prioritizing freedom over profit. We don’t want to wait for some future date to start enjoy the fruits of our labors.
Certainly, I can’t claim to help anyone to make fortune overnight. I earn less than I did as an employee. That said, financially we have more savings than we had when we started. This has been entirely unexpected because we booked quite a few luxury 5 star travel trips fully expecting this would be the year when we would dip in to our savings. We allowed for it.
Even when having period of more regular living we tend to eat out daily and enjoy a more luxurious lifestyle. Plenty of time to have a beach walk, a swim or just give up for the day and binge watch a TV series.
Interestingly too (but perhaps common) when I was earning the most I also managed to run up the greatest debts. Now we have almost no anxieties over about money. This journey in the world of digital work keep opening up so many more opportunities and I have time to take them up should I want.
In the next post I am going to talk about why I think client website services could be the best income source for those who are seeking freedom from the 9-5 …. even, and controversially, if you have absolutely no previous skills in this.
If this type of content sounds like it might be for you please let me know so I can put more work into it and please feel free to join the Facebook group I set up for this.