Creating A Location Independent Career
One of the most common questions we receive is how we can afford to travel at our age. We are both in our early 40′s (without children) and certainly have to work in order to afford any sort of lifestyle, much less a location independent set up. Now granted, for the time being we have our roots in Alameda, CA and are taking on the remodel of a 100 year old tiny house (500 sf). The Airstream is parked in the front driveway and while we aren’t full-timing this year or 2014 we plan to go back to it as soon as we can.
We take weekend trips quite often and keep the travel spirit alive…
It takes planning to be able to set up your life so that you can work and get paid while at the same time being location independent.
Brenda and I have an interesting story of how we both gradually moved from social service to being an IT Business Analyst and Web Designer. Being in the IT field has allowed us more freedom to travel and work at the same time.
Brenda was working for a managed health care company in the Employee Assistance Department. She happened to be handy with computers and would often assist supervisors handle IT issues. Her supervisor eventually left the company and moved to San Francisco City/County 911 Department in IT. After a few months, Brenda received a call and an invite to change jobs and get into IT full-time. She jumped at the opportunity to use her skills in a different way while making more money. By the time she left the City of SF she was a Systems Engineer and landed with Williams-Sonoma. At this time, we decided to down-size our life and sell the house and an extra car. We moved closer to SF for an easier commute and the dream of On the Green Road starting taking shape.
I was with the County of Santa Cruz working in Public Health. I changed jobs to work with the State of California in Public Health. We moved to Alameda, CA for a shorter commute and Brenda went into SF and I into Richmond. Brenda commuted by bike and ferry and I took BART or drove the one car we still owned. During the recession, my position was eliminated leaving me unemployed. Brenda and I took this opportunity to look into full-time traveling. We bought the used Airstream and took on an eco renovation thanks to sponsors. After a year of renovation, the Airstream was ready and we wanted to travel full-time, work from the road and educate about down-sizing and eco-friendly living practices. Brenda approached Williams-Sonoma and asked to telecommute. After many months of discussion, they agreed to this arrangement and Brenda kept regular hours no matter where we traveled.
I spent my time developing our website. I had never worked on websites much less designed one. I used a WordPress platform and taught myself along the way. I kept our site going while we traveled, created blog updates, set up Airstream open houses, responded to all the great reader questions and developed a marketing plan.
We were on the road for 18 months. We went throughout the US and Canada. It was an amazing experience for both of us and we plan to pick it up again.
Since coming back to California and settling into Alameda and the tiny house, we have both had career updates. Brenda was promoted to an IT Business Analyst and does go into work in the SF office. She rides her bike and then takes the ferry into work. I started ReinhardtDesigns and now design WordPress websites full-time for others. I work from home and can work from anywhere as long as there is a good internet connection.
This is our story and we are honored that our path has landed us where we are today. There are many ways to create your own location dependent career path. Photography, crafts, food truck, IT….. take time to follow your passions and design a career where you can control the where and when. Good luck!
As part of ReinhardtDesigns grand opening, I am offering a FREE website giveaway. Enter now and you could win our Basic Website Package valued at $550. The rules are easy. Like our ReinhardtDesigns Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ReinhardtDesigns. Once you have liked the page scroll down til you see the Giveaway post on our FB page – it will look like the photo below. Share that post with your Facebook friends. That’s it! You have now entered the giveaway. Cheers!