The modern dream is increasingly no longer money, but meaning. We share here a bevy of inspirational companies that do good and do well at the same time, along with our first guest post this year by Militza Maury from The Little Green Dot who’s chasing her dream to become a family of digital nomads.
Some of my best work of 2014 was created in a small town outside Ubud, Bali – where I stayed for one month with my husband and young daughters. We lived in a beautiful white villa, overlooking rice paddy fields – where we worked from the poolside, searched for frogs with our kids and connected with new friends… all during our normal work hours!
To some, it may seem like a care-free life, but really it’s a very conscious, deliberate and dedicated life. Throughout the year, the decisions we make are in service to our bigger goal. Every year, my husband and I do a year in review – with this goal of being location- independent, are we on target?
It’s a dream we’ve been working towards for over three years now – to have the freedom, resources and opportunities to choose where we live and work.
I write an eco-lifestyle website called Little Green Dot where I share practical tips, recipes and green lifestyle inspiration to over 150,000 (and growing) monthly readers. Little Green Dot gives me the opportunity to create a sustainable and profitable living, doing something that I love.
When it came to turning my passion into a business – I deliberately made choices to do things differently. I don’t have an office, or a large team. In fact, I don’t even have a desk. Instead, I focus on connecting with readers, collaborating with great people and taking on inspiring projects – and none of this is tied to any one place. It’s quite the opposite – the broader my experience, the richer my work.
There are other considerations, of course. Being responsible for two young children, we can’t make decisions too impulsively. We need to find experiences that offer our children a good education, safety and stability. But you find great schools in the most unlikely of places. We recently visited the Green School in Bali – high in the hills and crafted from bamboo – and were very impressed with the young citizens of the world the school is producing.
Another consideration is how you cope with too much freedom. Not everybody does well when they have to be their own boss. Here are some strategies that have worked for me, to keep me grounded and productive:
1. Invest in yourself
Without a regular office to go to, you lack those personal interactions that can be so important to growth. Find experts, coaches or mentors that you can learn from, or workshops that you can attend, so you can feel challenged, inspired and can continue growing in the right direction.
2. Find time for what’s important
In any business, there’s the urgent, busy work that needs to be done. But to see real growth – make time for things that are important, but not urgent. It might be reading and researching, taking care of your wellbeing, spending time with friends and family, learning new things, even breaking up the day with walks or bike rides… that’s where you’ll find your inspiration, ideas and creativity.
3. Create healthy routines
Without set hours and fixed expectations, it’s easy to get lost in your day. I do specific morning routines to keep my mind focused and feeling positive. They keep me from floating and help to anchor my day. For me, it starts in the morning – before the kids and the chaos – with a cup of green tea and my notebook.
My morning routines have helped me so much that I even created a free online course called How to Become a Morning Person – where I teach the specific techniques my expert friends and I use to feel refreshed, focused and productive.
You’ll get routines and strategies for sleep hygiene, nutrition, exercise and mindfulness, to help you create the lifestyle you want for yourself. Want to join? It kicks off January 19th – enroll for free here.