Travel Local, Travel Slow, Stay longer & Get to Know Your Country
Where Disruption Meets Opportunity
Disruption meets opportunity when you decide to work with what you have; not what you don’t have. It’s time to take the opportunity to travel local, travel slow, stay longer and look around your back yard to discover something new in your own country.
For me, the pandemic has taught me to take up opportunities when they occur because you never know when that opportunity will come again. I am sure you have learnt something personal yourself through this unusual time of the 21st century.
Each country has its own little gems to discover and what I mean by that is that sometimes the greatest opportunity is right in front of you but you can’t see it because your mind is set on something else.
Take a look around your own community and experience it more by travelling more, travel to explore, see the diversity, the opportunity and grab it while you can.
Now, look at your state, province, country and you will see a bigger diversity and pockets of wonder if you take your time to observe.
travel local, travel slow, stay longer You have the control
Now you can work from anywhere his is a no brainer. People often ask me about my travels around the world and where is my favourite place to visit? And my response is always the same; ‘Travel for me is not about the place it’s about the people and your experience.’
Your intentions will affect your experience. So remember you are in complete control of your experience so mind your mind by having the intention to be respectful, open and observe. Know that you have the power to make or break a persons day so a smile always goes a long way.
The decision To Live a Global Lifestyle is about minimalism
It is a conscious decision to live a global lifestyle and it is a conscious choice you make that goes hand in hand with that is to be a minimalist because, for me, the experience is more important than all the stuff.
The decision was not difficult because I came to a point in my life where it was more important for me to experience the world. When I decided to live as a digital nomad and be a minimalist, (as the two go hand in hand and a whole other blog to be honest) I remember having this absoluteness about seeing my own country before going and living in a foreign country again. Previously I had left Australia and lived and worked for years at a time in other places such as Hong Kong and the Middle East and I knew I absolutely had to see Australia before I left again.
The nomadic gene was set and I acted on it, finding that I was much happier when I was experiencing the world and feeding my curiosity than having a normal job, so I set out to build myself a pyjama job ( that is what I called it back in 2004), I failed miserably but I knew I needed to create something that I work from anywhere. After returning from the middle east I was hungrier than ever to learn how to build a business. It took me another 7 years to leave my job and become an entrepreneur.
As a kid, I always had the best adventures as my mum and dad always took us on really interesting holidays, never to flashy resorts it was always off the beaten track, and camping or doing something wild in the outback. I was bought up in the outback and had seen more about our true culture living on aboriginal stations and camps, I was luckier than most, I had seen more than most and I understood more than the average person from seeing my Father ( a builder for the catholic mission) and my Mother ( nurse for the missions. But I still had a need to visit and experience Australia on a deeper level.
Let’s go to Spain He said!
As we decided to change our complete lifestyle from renting and owning housing to selling up and living a global lifestyle. My partner Mark said to me “let’s go to Spain” I said ‘great’ but first I have to do a lap around Australia on my motorbike. My response was based on the experience of living in two other countries up to then and it was ” I am riding around Australia and seeing my own country before I go and live OS again, I said. He said, OK let’s do it.
Getting to know my own country before punting off overseas again, and getting to know its diversity made me a better business person too. Because I got to see on the ground what communities were experiencing their mindset and what was an influencing factor. We also had a deep conscious need to help communities we touched and discovering the opportunity to help the community grow stronger.
I rode around Australia on my BMW F650 ( that was a trade-off because he got to do the Silk Road on Motorbike and I miss out) and my partner and our dog got to see all the beaches in Australia and in some parts walking on the beach was a little risky with him so I was watching for crocodiles.
We got involved with the startup community we helped build the startup ecosystems in regional Australia and we volunteered. We did what we love doing and that is innovation and help solve problems.
Take the time to explore & get involved in community
Now we are in France and we have a great startup ecosystem that we plugged into and are based at the Le Village Accelerator at the Technolac. We have a wonderful community of startups and like-minded people around us.
Building a startup is tough building something from scratch you need like-minded people around you. You can do this online and in-person doing both is the best.
Every week we go and explore somewhere new and we are always excited to find new places and even take new roads or hiking tracks we have never been on before.
We are involved with the business community through a coworking place called Le Village and because we are building a startup it helps to be in a like-minded environment of startups so we also joined the accelerator program. However, just having a coworking community is really great.
As for the small town, we live we walk there every day and support the local businesses. We attempt a little French and got to know some of the people in the villages surrounding us because we always say ‘Bonjour’ or wave. The same was when we lived in Bulgaria too we made sure we connected with the locals we saw each day with a friendly wave or hello in the local language. We connected with the local coworking spaces and we also had a great community in the resort we stayed where there was a lot of digital nomads staying.
Coworking is a great way to get in involved with the community as they always have events going on.
Currently getting to know the Savoie France 2021
Arriving in the Savoie France the day that the president announced the first lockdown. We were sitting in a small village bar of Yenne when the place totally filled up because it was the last time they would be able to be in a bar for a while.
A year has passed and we are still living in the same gite in the mountains just out of town and the only travel we have done is mainly local in France, Champagne, Troy, Italy for lunch. We popped over to Geneva for lunch that is only one hour away and sth of France, the centre of France and there is so much to explore.
Now we are taking the opportunity to explore the region of Savoie until Paris and other departments open again from the Covid. In the Gite, we stay at we have people from Paris stay a lot and a lot from Lyon, Geneva, and Italy. We are seeing a lot of French travelling from big cities to the country side.
Why get to know your own country?
Getting to know my country was important to me because often while living abroad. While travelling people would ask me about different parts of Australia that I had not explored and I felt like I was generalising our culture. So I was very adamant about spending some time travelling and getting to know my country.
Travelling around Australia is like travelling to different countries because it’s each state has its own character. I am sure you will find something unique about every part of your own country.
This photo was our first night as digital nomads camping by the beach in Bundaberg Qld Austalia.
As a world traveller most of my life, even as I was growing up as a kid in outback areas of Australia, I love to explore places off the beaten track.
Now living in France and around Europe for the past few years I feel comfortable knowledge that I have explored my country well enough to speak about its unique diversity.
Even if the rest of the world thinks Australia is wild and dangerous; I did laugh very hard while staying in a hostel in a small town in Ireland overhearing a conversation of a young female American backpacker talking about how dangerous Australia was. “So dangerous everything is out to kill you”, she said. Very undesirable, the great unwashed so to speak. “Way too dangerous to travel there!” said the backpacker! My response to that convo was “well I grew up there and I am still alive and I have survived so far can’t be too bad”.
Austalia is a little bit on the wild side but that’s what makes it so interesting. These days you can travel the entire country on Blacktop (Tarmac roads). However, in saying all that in comparison, I do notice that being in France I don’t worry so much about snakes and crocs here.
Yes, it is possible to build a business while you travel. We have built two businesses Nomad stays and SandTracks Mentoring CLUB, both were solving a problem we found as we travelled. One business was finding affordable extended stays for digital nomads and remote workers so that’s how Nomad Stays was born. And the other business is, to help remote startups and entrepreneurs connect with expert mentors in business who didn’t have access to coworking spaces because they lived in a regional area and there wasn’t much support for startups.
Having lived and worked in Australia’s outback, Saudia Arabia and Hong Kong and Europe now in my life so far, I feel happy I took the time to explore and get to know my country. However, I am now 50 years old and I was about 45 when I started travelling and living as a digital nomad, before which I knew more about travelling the world than my own country.
During 2020/2021 and COVID 19 has made it difficult to travel as much with freedom as we have had in the past, however, travelling locally is something we can do fairly easily without too much hassle. So, I say take the opportunity and explore your country you are currently in. If you are in your mother country take the time to do micro exploration, micro-adventures.
As I mentioned before; if there is one thing we have learnt from COVID 19 is never to take anything for granted and go when you can.
Last year I travelled to France, Spain, Ireland, UK, Scotland, Australia countries and this year so far I have only travelled in France where we are currently based at the technolac near Chambery. As I mentioned earlier we have a great coworking place only 30 mins from where we are staying at the moment in the Rhone-Alps.
We have a good community at Le Village Coworking and the facilities are great.