So I quit my job, again! To travel, again! Yes, It’s like Groundhog day.
I know, I know, I’m living the dream, but who’s dream? I work in fashion, in an office on the beach in one of the most fantastic cities in the world. Only a few weeks ago I was backstage at New York Fashion Week photographing models for my role as Global Influencer Manager in a career I love. But again something is missing. Freedom is missing, I crave it like a drug. Oh and my desire to give something back.
Clothes are just clothes. They became meaningless to me whilst I was travelling. Beautiful pretty garments were something I’ve spent huge amounts of money on in my lifetime. But that was back when my life had very little meaning or direction. I didn’t know what real happiness was. I can’t get excited about the latest Spring/Summer collection now I’ve experienced some of the most breath-taking sunsets in the whole world.
Barcelona has kept me occupied, my mind and senses stimulated for the last 5 months. I won’t pretend adjusting has been easy but I have a good life here, a beautiful apartment, the beach, good friends, art, culture and great food. It’s been an incredible stop-gap but I now realise I’d jumped back into the rat race, the view from my cage was just a little more beautiful than before.
I have never been happier than when I was free, surrounded by nature and an open road ahead. So what’s next… Well that my friends is something I’m working on. During my adventure around the world I was fortunate enough to meet people of all cultures trying to make a living from what they had and often that was very little. So many communities and small businesses heavily relied on travellers and tourists for an income but didn’t have the experience or skills to market what they were up to. English is without question the global language but many remote communities unsurprisingly can’t communicate very effectively in English. Their web copy is often a bit jumbled and their Facebook pages a mish-mash of random content. Without a good online presence how on earth are people supposed to find them in this day and age. Travellers often do dig a bit deeper and unearth these gems but not enough to sustain the communities and small businesses.
So many projects I came across completely inspired me and I often blogged about them. But as I was on a fairly fast paced journey around the world, I wasn’t able to do any more. Sat at JFK airport I had a bit of a lightbulb moment. I’ve got over 10 years of experience in PR, Social Media and Digital PR, oh and I am lucky enough to be a native English speaker (thank god because I suck at learning languages!). Why don’t I get back out there, travel slowly and exchange my skills for a bed and maybe a bit of food. I’ll take on paid clients if they’re profitable businesses but I want my primary focus to be for charities, communities and NGOs. I’m privileged enough to have got an education and I’ve enjoyed a good career so far but I dream of a simple life, a life on the road. It’s time to share my skills and experience with those who really need it and in exchange I get the life I want.
In a nutshell I’m quitting my well paid job in Barcelona, to go and work for next to nothing in developing countries. Maybe I’m crazy but I think about how much I’ve earned and the fraction I’ve actually saved. The years I’ve lived to work when I could have been out there experiencing life, I know I’m making the right decision for me. Maybe you’ve got it right and you’re happy, totally nailing the balance between life and work. I never quite managed that. I used to work, work, work, party, party, party and spend everything on my house, social life, my body and the odd holiday. I’m going to earn next to nothing, but spend next to nothing. I refuse to get sucked back into consumerism and instead with just a bag on my back I’m going to get back out there and try and make it as a global gypsy with a few skills to share.
I definitely sound braver than I am…