2020 has been a weird year so far. Besides what’s going on in the world right now, I made some life-changing decisions. It’s time for a big change!
Back to 2019
In 2019 I had four months off from work (unpaid leave), and I traveled for 3 months in the USA. It was an amazing trip, I hiked a section of the Pacific Crest Trail, explored some Hawaiian islands, and went on a big road trip in the Pacific Northwest. At the end of my trip, I spent a week on the gorgeous Isla Holbox in Mexico.
After three months, I got back to The Netherlands, and I wasn’t really happy about it. I had to go back because of financial reasons, but I would’ve preferred to travel a little longer. Yes, of course, I missed my family and friends, but I wasn’t looking forward to going back to the office. Spending every day from 9 to 5 in an open-plan office, it was so different from having all the freedom in the world. Also, it was really hard to adapt to normal life in a big city like Amsterdam after camping for three months.
Back to my daily life
Nevertheless, I got back in my daily routine in no time. I had a lot of fun with my colleagues and the weeks flew by. There was one disadvantage though: the open-plan office. Right before I left for my big trip, we moved to a new office. And I went from sharing a room with two colleagues to a big open-plan office which I had to share with thirty colleagues. I’m an introvert, and I can tell you, it was really hard for me to deal with everything that was going on around me. I was extremely tired every night I got home. Also, there was a heavy workload and there were still loud renovations going on during work hours. I didn’t really want to go to work anymore, it was too much. That’s when I started thinking, is this really what I want to do for the rest of my life?
Of course, I thought about a career change in the past, but I never really knew what to do. I even took a course to find out what career path would be good for me. At the end of the course, it turned out that my current job was perfect for me. Pretty frustrating! I really missed the freedom that I had during my trip, and also, working on this website took more and more time. I get a lot of energy from this travel blog, so I don’t want to stop working on it. It’s always been a dream to turn this website into a job instead of just a hobby. I just kept on putting it off, because I thought it was impossible to gain a decent income with a blog.
It’s time for a big change!
I had to do something, it’s time for a big change! During the last months of 2019, I made up several plans, which I discarded at some point. But at the end of the year, I figured it out! I’m moving out of Amsterdam, move my stuff back to my parents in the northern part of The Netherlands (where it’s nice and quiet) and go travel for an indefinite time.
During my travels, I hope to earn money through this website and I will be doing some freelance gigs in the field of marketing and social media. You could call me a digital nomad. I told some friends and my family about my plans and most of them were really positive. In February, I told my boss I would quit my job in August, and then it got real!
And then there was corona
Three weeks later, and the world is upside down. Borders are closing and on the news, you’ll only hear about lockdown and corona. The income I had through my website was reduced to zero. A lot of people asked me, is it smart to quit your job right now? Don’t you just want to stay working until this is all over? I’ve been thinking about this for so long, that it was impossible for me to change things back. And I didn’t want to change things back either. I noticed that this whole crisis made me more relaxed and increased my flexibility. I do make some plans, but I’m okay if it doesn’t go the way I intended to.
What does the future look like?
As of August 1st, I don’t live in Amsterdam anymore. And I’m out of a job. Two huge changes in my life and I have to admit, I’m really looking forward to it. Right now, it’s crazy busy at my work, so I don’t really have time to plan anything, but I’m confident it will work itself out.
For now, I have some travel plans (although nothing is set in stone yet). In August I will be hiking a long-distance trail in The Netherlands (the Pieterpad), all the way from the north to the south. Some time to relax, take some distance, and think about my next steps.
And I got a plane ticket to Las Vegas for September, I would like to make a road trip to Arizona. Currently, the borders are closed so I can’t travel to the United States. I don’t know how long it will last, but if I can’t go, I just postpone my trip to the US and go traveling in Europe.
I don’t exactly know what my life will look like from August on, but I can’t wait for my new life to start. I’m really (and proud of myself) that I made this decision. No regrets.