According to the statistics I have recently come across, almost 70% of Americans hate their office-based jobs, and this is quite an alarming number. Similarly disturbing is the fact that some office workers consider their working hours to be nothing else but attempts to survive. You are a lucky one if you do love your job, but I personally realized that drab existence within four walls is definitely not the life I always dreamt about. You probably want to ask what are the alternatives and whether they actually exist? There are many of them, in fact. I realized this when I had for the hundredth time caught myself gazing out of the window and counting down the days, hours and minutes to my vacation trip.
Just a few words about myself – at my previous (office-based) job I occupied the position of a marketing ops assistant. For those who are out of the picture: it is a person who runs different operations, maintains documentation, makes various schedules and reports. The key point was that this position did not presuppose any form of personal communication – only via emails and Skype. And that was just the point!
I didn’t want to quit the job right off the bat and decided to try working remotely. My boss was really surprised to hear that I wanted to leave such a comfortable office with so many perks, as he called it, but eventually agreed to give me a chance to try this. So, I was to work like before – from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., but still from home or from any other place with good Wi-Fi. I chose the second option.
After a couple of weeks of preparations and attempts to manage the post-office stress, my work-week started in a small comfortable cafe with the view of mountains in Denver, which is almost 50 km from my home. You ask why? The idea that hit me the moment I was contemplating the view from my office window was to combine work and traveling. And the cafe in Denver was my first triumph! I was going to stay there for five days and then, on the weekend, I wanted to go to Salt Lake City. My ultimate goal was San Francisco, where I was going to spend a couple of weeks and then decide what to do next.
For today, I have been living this life for a year and a half. Don’t think that I needed to sacrifice my career development – on the contrary, I finally had enough time and inspiration to learn more. At the moment I deal with the optimization of digital campaigns, and the greatest thing is that I don’t need to follow the standard 9-to-5 work schedule any more. What I mean is that you shouldn’t imagine this lifestyle as a different way of working – this is rather a different way of living.
One of the conclusions I have made is that many people do not even suspect that the only thing one needs to find an opportunity to combine work and traveling is to look at their profession from another angle. To convince your boss to allow you to work remotely is only one of these opportunities, and there are so many others.
If you deal with programming, graphic or Web design, or any other IT-related field, there is no need to explain why you are a lucky one. Also, it would not be a problem to find a remote job if you work with SEA, SEO, or almost any branch of marketing. Social media marketing could be a good option for junior specialists, for example, because even the fact that you like spending time on social networking sites may be turned into money.
Probably less paid but still a good option is to work as a copywriter or a blogger, or both. This could be enough to finance low-cost travels. If you know some foreign language or have a minimal grasp of SEO, this is definitely a great bonus. Another good variant is online teaching – the possibilities are endless, in fact. After all, you could easily become a teacher of English if you decide to go to some non-English speaking country.
Finally, one more option is online trading. You could try oneself as a Forex or stock trader, which is both quite lucrative and risky. The disadvantage is that even though the trader may make a lot of money, he can also lose a lot because one never knows in advance how much he can lose on a Forex trade. A sudden financial crisis is definitely not the thing you need while traveling. Less risky and complicated variant is HF trading which always gives traders an opportunity to know how much they can earn or lose in advance. Another good variant is online poker and sports betting, although it may be as risky and complicated as trading Forex, in fact.
The list of potential opportunities is not full, of course. If you still think that you have no skills or knowledge to build a career on the road, you are 99% wrong. What you actually need is to use your imagination and stop being afraid to try. That’s it.