I remember when I lived in Brazil and worked as a teacher in a private English school.
I used to live, work and study in a city near my hometown, where my family still lives. I used to spend the weekends with them, leaving as soon as possible when I was done with classes and returning on Sunday evening or Monday morning.
Sundays were dreadful! The thought of having to pack, go back, be lonely in the apartment and having to work on Monday morning almost kept me from enjoying my lazy family Sundays. Sometimes I had to skip weekend trips and events because I had to be at work.
My schedule was crazy – one class here, one class there, a huge gap in between or a bunch of classes in a row and no break. There was a time when I was in school every Friday evening until 9:30pm and back on Saturday at 8am to teach non-stop until 1pm. I felt so tired, I wanted to cry on my pillow. Besides all that, I had to plan my lessons.
The thing about teaching is: I had to be there or it didn’t happen. I felt so anxious and pressured. It was a hassle if I got sick or if I missed my bus. Not to mention the amount of times I went through a lesson with a killing headache, stomachache, exhausted, sad, worried, etc.
Ok, most people go through situations like those in their work life and they just suck it up.
I’m just saying that I see it is also possible to:
- Do work you love and not endure;
- Work when and where you feel most inspired, be it your office, your garden, a café or a square;
- Be able to go on a trip and still do your work;
- Not have things depend on your physical presence in order to happen;
- Be able to connect and work together with anyone in the world;
- Be able to share your vision and your wisdom and help people everywhere.
That’s location independence to me.
I’m still figuring out what kind of work to do to fulfill this vision, but I know (and have always known) that I don’t want to spend most of my time in a job only to make money and then not have the time or energy to have fun and actually enjoy life.
When I’m old, I’ll be proud of things I’ve done and relationships I’ve build, not the money I made, the things I bought or the job that sucked the life out of me.
PS.: I’m not painting a job as the devil. I know people who have “conventional” jobs and are perfectly happy, enjoying their lives and fulfilling their dreams. Maybe I’ll find one myself before I fly solo and free. If I do, I’ll come back to tell you ;)
If you want to know more about the challenge, check out her website, Suitcase Entrepreneur.