I’m not sure where to begin.

I guess this could be considered a “Start Here” post if you’re someone interested in working remotely.

Throughout the years roaming about and working and studying throughout the US, Australia, China, Vietnam and now most recently New Zealand, a lot of networking and stumbling into remote online work has taught me a lot. I will share these secrets with you if yOu SiGn Up FoR mY cOuRse at oNLy $500… just kidding, I don’t charge money to sell you a pipe-dream. The remote work lifestyle is not for everyone and can be quite stressful. I aim to be transparent with these ups and downs, and hopefully you readers won’t feel like a punching bag where I’m just bombarding you with complaints, but instead can take away whatever it is that may be relevant and useful to you.

I do not have all the answers and anyone who claims they do, stay away!

Undoubtedly, there are a shit ton of “digital nomad” groups out there. The DN wave is in full force as we enter the 4th industrial revolution and jobs are ever-increasingly transitioning to the digital realm.

“It is projected that by the year 2035 over 1 Billion people will be working remotely.”

To get to the point, I will try my best to be transparent about my journey navigating how to juggle a love for travel and generating income to support said travel. I deeply believe that time is more valuable than money, but obviously, not everything is free! Travel is a luxury, but it can be cheap (if done right). Experiences are everlasting, stuff is temporary happiness. Yada, yada, I won’t tell you the whole Marie-Kondo your life spiel but being a minimalist has its perks.

This blog was created to document memories and places, share photos (mostly taken on a Google Pixel 3), and explain remote work lifestyle ups and downs. In the spirit of not yet being discovered, continually making mistakes, learning, and still trying to assign myself a “title” when asked, “what’s your job?”

Personally, I like the title “Trout Fisher and Gold Fossicker

“Untrekked” came to mind as something not yet discovered.

We live in a world where Google has captured almost every crevice on Earth, leaving no rock unturned. Basically surveillance. Ironically, I rely on the Internet to generate a living, yet loathe being disconnected with the natural world. We’re reliant on technology, but I wish for a day to disconnect. Hence, the urge to earn more passive income. We’re all online and ideas, connections, and the world’s knowledge is at your fingertips.

The struggle is how to navigate, and this is where I feel metaphorical or better yet, “digital” rocks are still left unturned.

I packed my bag; I think it was one at the time? If not, it would later be one bag. All my “life” packed away in a bag and I had touched down in Shanghai. I would be attending the first week of orientation for new English teachers. Boy was I naïve back then. Struggling to learn Mandarin, teaching at multiple schools throughout Shanghai, shooting through the subway day in and out was exhausting, but the one takeaway from my first year in China was:

Know your value and never compromise this value. Understand what unique value proposition you have to offer and run with it.

…also, eat more 小笼包 xiao long baos.

I guess this is easier said than done, as are a lot of things in life.

Hindsight is 20/20 and even if I could speak to my younger self, would that person even listen? But more importantly, is it even possible to take advice when some things just aren’t learned through taking verbal advice? Experience is everything and failing is paramount to chiseling away at whatever you think to be true. *Puts down the joint, gets back on topic*

The demand for English teachers is extremely high in China and a significant amount of money can be made and saved. It’s actually one of the many ways to earn on-the-go if you are considering taking the leap and migrating to another country to live, work, and travel. I used English teaching as a stepping stone. This freed up time, later on, to pursue personal interests, learn skills, and lead me to other ventures and networking with international friends from all walks of life. Some stay and become lifelong teachers and while this is a noble pursuit I prefer the comforts of online work – no dress code. Yes, online teaching is an option but social interaction over the long-haul is quite exhausting.

no dress code
See, no dress code

Minimizing correspondence and putting effort into areas that can achieve passive income is what interest me nowadays.

I edit, proofread, and write content via my other site Joe’s English Café. To make this site I needed to learn WordPress, the Divi framework, CSS, JS, HTML, etc. I transitioned from on-the-ground teaching and moved into the digital realm of Upwork and networking with former students who were business professionals and university students that needed marketing reports, emails, documents, and thesis papers edited.

As work increased so did task management, correspondence, outsourcing, and other remote skills that came into play to manage an agency that produces content for multiple companies in Singapore, Israel, the UK, China, and many other countries.

I’m a big believer in learning interdisciplinary skills to create synergy.

A combination of web design, leveraging social media and freelancer networks to attract clients, streamlining workflow and task management via project management software, and relying on good old trusty email can work wonders.

To wrap up, later posts will cover things from:
– Basic remote work tips and transitioning
– Travel hacking / churning
– Best project management boards and apps to use
– Automating and outsourcing tasks
Networking and finding quality clients
– Minimizing transaction fees and the best ways to send invoices

 

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