If you know a thing or two, whether it’s about music, fashion, IT, gardening, babysitting, beauty, business, coffee, carpentry, relationships, you name it, there are people out there who want to know about it too. So why not share your knowledge online and make a living anywhere in the world?
Meet Gregory. Gregory is an entrepreneur of many spectrums, freelancing and consulting his way around the world. He knows a thing or two about business practices, creating value by utilising his knowledge and skills to help others. And the best part? He can do it all from his very own laptop in any destination of his choice.
“I am free to do what I want so long as I have the discipline to keep up with all the assignments I take on.”
We caught up with Gregory to find out exactly how he makes a living while travelling and to pick his brain on tips to get you started!
Interview with Gregory V. Diehl of Market Fit
Hannah: Could you briefly describe what you do for a living, how you make an income from it and how you got started?
Gregory: I am a lot of things, and constantly becoming more. The bulk of my income comes from copywriting, direct sales work on the phone (cold calling), and consulting for clients who need help refining their company narrative and strategy. I’ve found there is an endless market for people/businesses who need these things. The hardest part is just getting in front of them. My short-term plan is to move into personal development coaching as well. Narrowing yourself down to a specialty is important, and the hardest thing for some people.
Hannah: What does a typical day go like for you?
Gregory: I wake up, make a strong cup of coffee, and try to enjoy the scenery of wherever I am. Presently, I am housesitting on a jungle farm in Costa Rica, which is a country I have been to many times. I often have a project backed up waiting for my attention, so I put on some violin music and get to work to burn through it. Other times, I wake up and have no idea what I am going to do that day and suddenly find myself inundated with Skype contact requests, and emails from people suddenly needing hundreds of dollars of work done.
I get a lot of repeat business, so I guess my clients like me. My only complaint is that it is too sporadic, and I’d like to move to a more consistent schedule and income level. All in all though, I’m making far more than enough to get by even in slow months. It’s kind of nice because anytime I want I can just take a day off to hike to a waterfall, or drive around, or whatever. I am free to do what I want so long as I have the discipline to keep up with all the assignments I take on. It’s not something everyone can handle.
Hannah: Being a digital nomad means you generally have the freedom to go where you like, when you like. Do you travel a lot or do you like to have a base to settle? What kind of impact does this have on your work?
Gregory: I’m a slow traveler. I’ll usually spend 2-3 months in a country before moving to the next so that I get enough of a sense of actually living there. Things change when you don’t feel like a tourist anymore. Backpacking is exciting, but ultimately hurts productivity and becomes a headache. Humans need some semblance of stability and consistency to function right. But you get better and better at setting up short-term homes wherever you go.
Hannah: Where is your favourite destination as a location independent entrepreneur in regards to networking, internet connection and lifestyle?
Gregory: I’ve now lived in the US, Mexico, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Thailand, Bali, Philippines, Italy, and Iraq. They all have different appeals. I bought some land in Ecuador for a long-term plan of semi-retirement and child rearing, but it’s not necessarily where I want to be right now.
I was very impressed with three months in Davao, Philippines because the people were exceedingly friendly (and spoke English), the internet was decent, the weather was great, and it was very cheap. It wasn’t perfect, but probably the best combination of good things I’ve seen. Some other parts of Asia can be too “weird” for westerners to really settle into. I’d go back to Davao any time, and may soon do so. But I’d like to keep exploring new places.
Hannah: What are your 3 best tips for young people who are looking to turn in their 9-5 jobs and enter the digital world for more freedom?
Gregory: I wrote several tips in the below linked article, but the best things I would emphasize are:
a. start seeing the world of human interaction in terms of always seeking and exchanging value. This is the mindset you must have if you ever want to start convincing strangers to give you money, and creating value where it did not exist before.
b. Stop being a farmer, and start being a hunter. A hunter doesn’t know where his next meal is coming from, but he is always alert, agile, and ready to strike. Desperation moves him to grow and expand. He is never satisfied because the hunting grounds may dry up tomorrow and he’ll have to learn how to use a new weapon if he wants to keep eating. If you aren’t ready to be a hunter, you are much better off having a traditional “job”. But hunters would rather die than be locked into a system.
c. Your old jobs probably consisted of you doing one thing for eight hours on end. As an entrepreneur, you will have to wear many hats. I might get paid to write a page for someone, but I still had to build a web presence, learn what people like him are looking for, get on a call with him, and close a sales pitch to get the cash in my hand. If I need something I don’t know how to so, I start learning it. An entrepreneur is many things, but he is always a strategist.
If you would like to find out more about the services Gregory offers and how he is able to utilise the online world in order to travel more, check out his site: www.marketfit.net
Recommended reading: Article – 13 Starting Tips For Pre Entrepreneurs by Gregory V. Diehl