Each one of us who chooses to go against the grain in pursuit of a lifestyle all our own–a lifestyle that defies conventional definitions and fits neatly in no boxes–has different and deeply personal reasons for doing so.
When I reached out to a select group of fellow entrepreneurs to add a variety of voices and perspectives to my recently released eBook, the first burning question that came to mind was, “Why become location independent?”
I have my own reasons, of course, and I’ll share them at the end of this post. But I’m hardly the only one choosing such a lifestyle. It’s well within the realm of possibility for many people these days and that awareness is growing with each passing day.
I wanted to know what factors others were considering, what circumstances pushed them to overcome their fears, what catalysts set their plans in motion toward a life of location independence.
Here’s what these 5 brave entrepreneurs had to say in response to the following question:
What was your main motivation for pursuing location independence?
Globetrottin’ Glo is a professional travel blogger on a mission to show people there’s a world of knowledge out there that can’t be taught in a classroom. She chronicles her oft-hilarious anecdotes on her website TheBlogAbroad.com and can regularly be found penning travel stories for Huffington Post, Elite Daily, and Matador Network. Here’s why Gloria decided that for her, it was location independence or bust…
“The minute I got a glimpse of transatlantic life when I studied abroad in the UK my senior year of college, I knew I was going to stop at nothing to find a way to make this my lifestyle.
The irony in experiencing the ultimate freedom when you’re outside of the ‘Land of the Free’ was tugging hard at my conscience and I knew it was only a matter of time before I’d be on a one-way ticket for good, developing a brand that would allow my work to cross borders as seamlessly as my passport.
The idea of living and working wherever I pleased was just too enticing, so my main motivation was freedom, but more than the literal sense that life in America sold me.”
Aleena Rooyakker is an online health and fitness coach based in Wisconsin. She’s also a wife and mother to three beautiful children–and she’s completely location independent! Follow her inspirational journey at aleenarooyakker.com. Here’s what made Aleena decide the traditional work structure wasn’t for her and take a chance on something better…
“I chose my path with online health and fitness coaching not only for the freedom of time and money that it could provide for our family, but also for the location independence factor.
My husband and I have immediate family members sprinkled all across the US and three children from Ethiopia, so traveling to spend time with the people we love is a key priority.
Within the structure of a traditional job, however, vacation time is limited, so I was motivated to create an opportunity for myself where I could travel for any given amount of time throughout the year without requesting time off or losing income!
I’m not tied to a desk or an office, so I can literally work anywhere in the world with a Wi-Fi connection…now that’s freedom!”
Johnny FD is one of the world’s most outspoken and transparent digital nomads as the host of the Travel Like a Boss Podcast and through sharing his actual income streams openly on his blog JohnnyFD.com every month. Here’s a peek into what made location independence too appealing to pass up for this entrepreneur…
“Becoming location independent has allowed me to bootstrap my online businesses by taking advantage of the low costs of living in places like Chiang Mai, Thailand, and now that I’m making a lot more money, it allows me to invest or save up to 90% of my monthly income instead of spending it all on rent and high living costs back home.
Being able to go on vacation, move to a different city, or relocate to a different country on a whim gives me the ultimate freedom as no matter what happens in the world, we can take our laptops with us.
I don’t know if I’ll ever be happy staying in one place for the rest of my life, going to the same restaurants and bars, and not being able to randomly have lunch with people from 5 different countries and learning from their culture.”
Matt Kiefer & Anna Paniagua
Matt and Anna are the brains behind the independent travel brand Hostelgeeks.com. Their curated selection of “5-Star Hostels” in major destinations the world over cuts out the research process for travelers by bringing them the best of the best. Here’s what led them to say “see ya never” to the 9-5 work structure in favor of a life of location independence…
“We love to be independent. Independent of time and space. This means we wanted to create ourselves a lifestyle where we do not have to work from an office, and instead choose our own working areas.
We both worked in offices and didn’t like the strict rules. We felt trapped sitting 8 hours at the same desk every single day. Plus, we even had to ask for permission (called vacation days) to go out, travel, and spend the day the way we wanted to.”
As for me…
My dedication to the pursuit of location independence came about the moment I realized I wanted travel to be major part of my life, but on my terms.
No groveling at my boss’s feet just to get time off. No limits on the length of my trips. No restrictions on the where, when, or with whom.
I wanted to spend months at a time in other countries, moving at a slow enough pace to absorb the culture around me while still saving myself plenty of time to do the work necessary to make a living. I wanted the freedom to fly home to be with family when needed, or pick up at a moment’s notice for a weekend trip with friends.
To live, travel, and work on my terms and no one else’s–for me, that was the ultimate dream.
What’s your reason?
Maybe you hadn’t considered a location independent lifestyle until this moment right now. Maybe you’ve been dreaming about it for years. Maybe you’re still not sure if it’s right for you, but you’re intrigued.
You can find more detailed information about this lifestyle, including more of my own story and the full interviews with each of the people in this post, in my eBook Take Your Life Back: Finding Freedom Through Location Independence.