17 Location Independent Entrepreneurs Define “Home”
To some, house equals home.
But an ever-growing number of determined entrepreneurs disagree, and have been using creativity, hard work and today’s technologies to break free of the chains that hold most of us in one specific place, developing flexible, “location independent” careers for themselves.
In my own ongoing quest to travel more and more, two particular questions continue to surface.
#1) How can I find forms of income that will help sustain longer-term journeys? We’ll be discussing a number of methods in forthcoming posts.
And, #2) What about the value in being home? As cliché as it is, I, for one, have always felt that where I lay my head is home. I could honestly care less whether I’m sleeping in a cushy bed at the Grand Hyatt or on a woven mat on a Ghanaian friend’s floor, with a mosquito net MacGyver’ed overhead. What always have ben more important to me are experiences and people.
But would that change if I were to be gone more often, for longer durations? This seems like an excellent opportunity to turn to some people I look up to, who are already doing many of the things I’d like to be. The group of travelers, writers and self-starters below each inspire me to keep plugging away and pursuing a more mobile lifestyle- something I personally feel an increasing need for everyday.
A huge thank you to everyone that took the time to contribute and share their definition of “home.”
Nora – TheProfessionalHobo.com
Most of us in North American society consider home to be our place of shelter and refuge from the elements (ie: four walls and a roof), filled with items that we buy which provide us with a sense of familiarity and comfort. But if we deconstruct this idea and look at the basic elements that provide us with that sense of familiarity and comfort – ie “home”, it doesn’t have to be such a physical thing.
Close your eyes, and consider these sounds: laughter, glasses clinking, and fire crackling. Consider these smells: scrumptious food cooking, aromatic flowers, and freshly cut grass. Do these ideas and sensations feel comfortable? Familiar? Warm? Enticing? They can be experienced absolutely anywhere, at any time.
Maybe the old cliché that “home is where the heart is” isn’t far off. For myself being The Professional Hobo and having lived without a fixed address for the last four years, my definition of home is an ever-evolving entity. But it is in the little things – the sensations that we often overlook and ignore in our busy lives – that I believe anybody can feel right at home.
Greg – TheMisadventurer.com
As I’m never in the same place for very long, I seek respite more in a state of mind, rather than a location. I regard “Home” as a period of time that allows me to turn off the outside world, avoid the ever-exhausting stimulus of a foreign country, simply relax and be “normal”.
So when there’s a quiet place to be had, I’ll pop in my earbuds, open a good book and enjoy some secluded “Home” time. – Though it’s the newness and unexpectedness of travel that we all crave so much, a couple of hours each week at “Home” are necessary to renew our energy and appreciation of the world in we are so keen to explore.
Jeannie – NomadicChick.com
Home – is where you feel the most comfortable, which isn’t tied to your birthplace. A place that tugs at your heart and forces you to be entirely yourself. That comfort could be found in a place or a suitcase. Cause the best part of this is there are no rules. 🙂
Wes – JohnnyVagabond.com
I have to say more and more home is becoming anywhere I lay my head. With email, Skype, Facebook and instant messaging it’s become so easy to keep in touch with friends and family that I really haven’t felt homesick once in over ten months of travel. I’m sure there’s an upper limit to how long this state can continue, but I’ve yet to find it. Check back with me in six months 🙂
Brooke – BusinessBackpacker.com
I’d have to say that my idea of home has changed dramatically from the white-picket-fence that it once was. I left my home in Sacramento two years ago and bought a one way ticket to Bangkok with the goal to run my business abroad. I had my business consulting practice set up for a couple of years already, and made the transition online. My fantastic clients were willing to share the adventure with me, and I’ve been able to live in beautiful Krabi, Thailand doing what I love most. My life here is a combination teaching, climbing, diving, and helping my amazing clients grow their businesses.
I’ve definitely had to have a change in mindset of my idea of home. My old thought was that home is a proximity – keeping everything near and dear to you in one tangible place. But, recently, I’ve realized that I’ve found my home. My home is online. I can reach out and find like-minded people that are smart, fun, adventurous and want to create an incredibly exciting life. I can stay in touch with my friends and loved ones from all over the world. This enables me to live where the activities are that I enjoy, while still having a career that I’m incredibly passionate about.
I believe that you can have it all–you might just have to make your new home somewhere you never thought it would be… online!
Jenny – WhereIsJenny.com
For me, when I’ve traveled long term I’ve always had a place to call my own to come back to. On this travel indefinitely trip I’m on now, I don’t. I feel a bit different. I’m at the point where home is where I’m at temporarily. Home is a state-of-mind when I’m with my friends. Home is when I’m with my family. Home is in my heart.
Everett – FarBeyondTheStars.com
We need to stop putting the idea of home in a box, it can’t be there anymore. We’re living in a digital revolution where people can live and work from anywhere, and they are. We’re a part of a generation of information generators who are re-investigating their nomadic roots with the added power of an Internet to oversee our futures. Home is where our feet are, but it’s also where our digital self is. We are in essence in a lot of different places at once. Let’s make them all home.
Karol – RidiculouslyExtraordinary.com
Lately home to me is wherever I lay my head. That changed 7 times last year. But I still consider Michigan home even though I will never live there again. That’s where I grew up and spent 22 years. It’s where most of my family lives and where some close friends still live. That all said, we really need to make wherever we are home. Otherwise we get caught up in living in the past or the future and ignoring (or worse, missing) the present.
Colin – ExileLifestyle.com
Home is wherever I happen to be at the time.
So long as I’m able to connect to the Internet and set down my bag, I’ve got all the resources I need to set up shop, connect with my friends from around the world and relax a bit. The people around me are always different, the climates and languages and architecture is always different, but I know that I can build a new life from scratch without losing my existing relationships, and that enables me to feel totally comfortable in even the most foreign environment.
The WORLD is your home! Go visit some other rooms!
Sean – Location180.com
For me personally I have a hard time thinking of any place other than Eugene where I grew up as my true “home”. I’ve been in Portland for nearly 4 years, and while I refer to it as my home, I don’t always feel that it is. Frankly, I think home is whatever place you can feel comfortable and spend a extended period of time in. Bangkok was a home for me for awhile.
Dave – TheLongestWayHome.com
Home is something I’ve traveled the world in search of for the past 6 years. It’s a childhood dream. My definition is simply that the place feel’s right. It’s a gut, soul pulling feeling.
Today’s world of bureaucracy, economics, and society add more to prevent this feeling coming permanent than anything else. I work from the road, my website is my office desk, my wall to hang photos and a journal to record everything. My backpack is the reality of home, it sits in a hotel room most nights.
Jodi – LegalNomads.com
When you’re on the move quite often, home becomes wherever you happen to be that day. I’ve been in a new city for a day and said ‘Oh, I’ll email when I get home’. Constant travel breeds the ability to adapt more easily and get comfortable faster than you expect. For me, feeling at home on the road is associated with a favourite street food stall, the smiles from locals who recognize me coming to and fro and being able to call newfound friends to meet up for some eats.
There are plenty of other old sayings and quotes that you may have heard, which echo the words of the location independent entrepreneurs above . . .
“I long, as does every human being, to be at home wherever I find myself.” (Maya Angelou)
“Peace – that was the other name for home.” (Kathleen Norris)
“Where thou art – that – is Home.” (Emily Dickinson)
“A man’s homeland is wherever he prospers.” (Aristophanes)
“My home is not a place, it is people.” (Lois McMaster Bujold)
What are your thoughts on “home”?
I’d love to read your definition in a comment below!
(photo by Robinn. )