How I Became An Expat
My Ordinary Beginnings
I was just like many of you, someone who grew up in America, went to college, got a job, and bought a house. Basically doing what was expected of me and following the rules of society.
I was comfortable but numb. I had a decent salary.
My job was relatively secure despite a weak economy, but I was only a small cog in the large corporate wheel.
I was a corporate drone.
When I was younger, I would silently laugh at people who used dry and robotic corporate language. But to my chagrin, after years in the corporate world I found myself using the same corporate language.
Every Day Was The Same
Wake up early. Get dressed.
With no time to cook breakfast, I grab a Kashi Chewy Granola Bar on my way out of the door. My favorite was cherry dark chocolate.
Spend almost an hour in bumper to bumper Los Angeles traffic. Change lanes, then get frustrated when the other lane started moving faster.
Rush into my office building trying to cram my door-to-door to within 59 minutes or less, so I could proudly tell myself that my commute is “under” one hour.
Get a coffee. Park my ass in that comfortable swivel office chair in front of two 17-inch computer monitors. Open Excel and Outlook, one on each monitor.
Stare through my own mental fog at the screens. Check email and crunch numbers for eight hours. Ok, I’ll admit — half of that time was spent surfing the Internet rather than working.
Say “yes, boss” with a smile every time he makes a request, no matter how ludicrous.
Eat pizza or fast food for dinner, because I was too tired to cook, never mind my ever swelling waistline. And I skipped going to the gym.
Watch The Modern Family before going to bed.
Wake up early and repeat. Same old shit. Every. Single. Day.
Wanting to do something different, I impulsively booked a trip to the Philippines. I wanted to get away from it all. I figured the best way to do that was to go to the other side of the globe, almost ten thousand miles away from home.
I spent three weeks in the Philippines, and it was an eye opening experience. I made so many new friends and my network in Southeast Asia started growing. I enjoyed the company of several exotic, sexy and feminine women. It was a sexual, spiritual and mental awakening from a long soulless slumber I had endured most of my postgraduate life.
One filipina and I went on a trip out to the country’s provinces for a two day trip. We spent some time at a quiet and secluded beach. It was peaceful. I enjoyed it even more than the honeymoon with my ex-wife after we got married.
It was healing and rejuvenating for my soul. I felt truly happy and free again.
At a Crossroads
There was still that job I depended on for a biweekly paycheck. After getting a taste of what life was like outside of my country through my Philippines trip, I could not look at life the same way again.
So I used up all my remaining vacation time and went back to the Philippines six months later. After another fantastic trip, I still wasn’t done. I wanted to visit Thailand. Indonesia. Vietnam. China. Japan, Europe, Russia, and parts of South America.
The world is a huge place. So much to visit and experience, and so little time. The only problem? My job obligations and limited vacation time would not allow this.
This left me at a crossroads in life. The question was:
Do I want to stay in my country and at my job where every day is more or less the same?
Or do I want to travel, enjoy my freedom, meet people, and experience different cultures?
Of course, the answer came easy for me. But the hard part is all in the execution!
In this blog, I chronicle my journey and show how I was able to break free from the rat race to become a location independent and financially free expat.
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