Number 5 – Taking the Family


 

We are often asked:

 

  • 1. How can I have freedom when my partner has a full time job?
  • 2. How can we work together when we do such different thingst
  • 3. How can we travel when we aren’t confident that the money will keep coming in?
  • 4. What happens when one of us isn’t so keen on travelling?
  • 5. How can I travel when I have kids?
  • 6. What about my children’s education?
  • 7. How can I leave my parents/pets/best friend?


 
We answer all these questions (and plenty more) in a lot more detail as part of our group program. But here are some real examples which might help for now.
 
Jo runs an internet-based business from France. She moved there with her 4 young children while her husband works in London, and travels to visit them every weekend.

Karla worked in customer service and admin support. She became a virtual assistant and as her business got busier she needed more and more support. Her accountant husband quit his full time job and taught himself further technical skills. They now spend 6 months of the year in Indonesia, and 6 months at their home in Auckland

 

Simon and Victoria in New ZealandTravelling with kids in New Zealand

 

Sara and Scott enjoyed travelling before they had children and were determined to continue to do so even once their family grew. Their children are all aged under 6 and they home school the older ones while they learn as a family from exploring the world.

Caroline worked freelance as a management consultant. When enough money was coming in they decided that her husband would quit his sales job for 6 months to allow them to travel. The consultancy business has developed in different directions and even though some months were more financially secure than others, they managed it so John never needed to go back to work.

Stuart was keen to use the freedom of his accountancy business to travel but Sue, a teacher, wasn’t so keen. They compromised and spent the school vacations travelling, during which time Stuart would balance maintaining his business and also enjoy being in European countries with Sue. When the vacation ended Sue returned to work but Stuart would stay on for a couple of weeks. He was also able to take other breaks throughout the year as a ‘retreat’ to plan projects or deliver to deadlines from the creative atmosphere of a different country. Sue has gradually come to see the benefits and is planning to quit her job next year to do tutoring full time so she can share more of the sort of freedom Stuart has.

 

Travelling as a coupleCouples travelling and working

 

Simon and Suzanne worked together from home but felt they couldn’t travel because of their daughter, Amy’s, education. Eventually they shifted their mindset after being inspired by the stories of all the families who travel and develop the potential of their youngsters. When Amy was 12 they took her out of school for a year to travel. They covered the curriculum with her on the road and were supported through online tools and tele-classes from around the world. She learnt far more than her classmates from all her different experiences throughout Asia. Simon and Suzanne grew their business whilst enjoying this incredible family trip.

Siobhan was concerned about her elderly parents and felt this was stopping her pursuing her dreams of travelling as she felt responsible for their welfare. After discussing her perspective with other people with similar concerns she created a comfortable compromise whereby she did not travel for longer than one month away 2 or 3 times a year and was always only a short flight away.

Case Study of a family travelling now!

 

Lea Woodward

Lea & Jonathan Woodward were the first travelling small business owners to come up with a name for the concept of being “Location Independent.” They have been running a fantastic resource for those aspiring to follow in their footsteps and those of us who already do, since 2007.

Lea & Jonathan have a home base in the UK but have travelled extensively for several years, both before their daughter came along and since her arrival as a family. They have a pretty comprehensive product and services range, proving that you don’t have to jeopardise your income or creative path in order to live a more flexible lifestyle.

Lea has written loads of inspiring and informative content on travelling with families which you can find at www.locationindependent.com She covers practical tips from home-schooling to potty training and if you have some time to put aside it’s WELL worth a browse.

But we caught up with her to get her take on a few of our own questions:

 
You’ve done a lot of travelling both before having Mali and since. What’s the most unexpected or surprising result of travelling with a little one?

The fact that it enables us to see everything with new, fresh eyes again. We’ve been – and still are – so excited to show her all the things we’ve seen and can’t wait to expand her little horizons to take in more of the world.

Of course she rarely reacts as we think she might – not delighted by the splendour of the scenery and instead enthralled by the nearest souvenir shop!! – but seeing the world through the eyes of a child again is a privilege and not something we’d ever really considered.

 
You’ve written a lot of articles which relate to travelling with a baby and toddler and we’ll look forward to reading further tips as you go through different stages and ages with her. Are there resources you refer to for guidance on travelling with a child of an age you haven’t reached with her just yet?

Google!! Also, having run the Location Independent site for so long, I’ve made lots of connections across the travel world and know of plenty of families doing the location independent thing with kids. Jenn Miller of The Edventure Project is one person I’d ask if I needed any tips on travel with kids of all ages. She’d probably be able to plug me into a world of other families doing it too.

 
What are the things you find most difficult (or impossible!) to do when you are travelling or settling overseas
with a child?

Work! Or more specifically grow the business. We can run it quite comfortably in maintenance mode but we usually try and avoid travelling if we have specific business growth plans we want to implement as we just can’t divide our time and energy to do it all when travelling.

Also, making new friends who share our mindset and values when we’re moving around a lot can be tricky. It’s been simpler in some ways with a child because we tend to seek out activities for Mali to do and we’re then forced to meet new people (left to our own devices, we’ve never been the most socially active or outgoing couple!) but that doesn’t mean they’re “our” kind of people who get the lives we live and the way we do things.

 
Is there anything you wished you had known before you started a family in relation to location independence?

How easy travel is with a baby versus a toddler! More specifically the actual transport and getting to places. So much easier with a baby who can’t move than with a toddler who wants to move all the time :)

Also, as your family and your own emotional needs change your definition and way of being and living location independent can also change. I’ve known this all along but many people have a very fixed definition of what location independence is i.e. nomadism and tend to forget that it’s your lifestyle to create whichever way you want it. Make up your own definition of what being location independent means to you and your family and make it work for you.
 
www.inspiringventures.com
 
www.startuptrainingschool.com
 
www.leawoodward.com


 

 
 

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