PSFK is a trends and innovation site. They're always filling our head with interesting things, and so when they asked if we'd write a piece to accompany their report on the Nomad Class, we were happy to oblige.
Below is bit of what we wrote. For the full post on PSFK, click on through here. (Our Op-Ed is free to read even without an account.)
Is the world ready for global nomads?
Entrepreneurs Faris and Rosie spent three years in 30+ countries—here, they tell us how they do it
In March 2016, we will have been living as classy nomads for three years. We met in New York City, a dazzling, hyper-accelerated place, where the population density seems to make everyone move faster in some macro version of Brownian motion. We fell in love there, spent five years there, made friends there, made a life there.
When we announced we were leaving, people said what all New Yorkers say to people who are leaving: “BUT WHY?! This is the greatest city in the world!” Maybe so, but until we’ve been everywhere else, how will we know that for sure?
NYC gives a lot, but takes a lot too. Everyone should live there once, but leave before they get hard, as journalist Mary Schmich wrote in the Chicago Tribune. The next lines were “Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft. Travel.” And of course, the whole piece was turned into a spoken word song called “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen)” by Baz Luhrman.
Maybe we were getting hard, maybe not, but we were definitely busy. NYC is hard work, and you have to work hard at the same time, because there are just so. Many. Meetings.
We did not plan to go fully nomadic. We didn’t set out to build a location independent strategy and innovation consultancy; We are accidental entrepreneurs, husband and wife, and for two people who love traveling, who love talking to strangers, being technomads gives us the flexibility to do just that.
We had speaking gigs that would allow us to slingshot from NYC, through Europe and around to Sydney, over the course of a few months. So we quit our jobs and decided we’d spend some time traveling. It made sense for us to stop paying rent in Manhattan if we wanted to take advantage of the opportunities we were being offered, as long as we could tolerate that level of risk.
The first year on the road we had no idea what we were doing. We had massive rucksacks full of stuff we never used, a classic traveller mistake. And we had to get used to spending 24 hours a day, seven days a week together. That’s how adventures work. You learn as you go. Consuming TripAdvisor for tips, then pushing back against recommendation fatigue.
Nomad Protip: Always take fewer things than you think you’ll need — pack clothes with dual purposes. Dresses for warm weather that can be paired with leggings in cool weather. Swim trunks can double as workout shorts. If you really find yourself missing something from the road, you can usually buy it. (That said, if you lose your iPhone in Mexico or Istanbul or Singapore… good luck.) We now only use carry-on sized rucksacks. It’s easier than you think.
t was just a long vacation to begin with. Then we got an email from a friend, the managing partner of a large advertising agency in London. Could we help out on a pitch? Do a couple days of thinking, have some ideas, send it through? Why not spend a couple days brainstorming on the beach in Bali drinking beer, we thought.
Then we got another email. And then another.