As I'm writing this piece, I'm sitting in a two-floor house on the beautiful island of Bermuda. I flew here on a Friday evening, made sure there were no emergencies at work and I'll be going straight back to work on Monday.
This weekend is not very different than many of the weekends from the past year.
A few weeks ago, I was sitting in my office and I decided to book a trip of a lifetime. Flying the world’s first apartment in the sky, spending a few weeks traveling through Dubai, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Sydney to get to the South Island of New Zealand. I'll be renting a car and camping along the way until I get to Milford Sound. After that, it’s time to drive back and find more adventures along the way. The trip is booked entirely in first class and a lot of it is being left up to day of planning.
The reason I booked the New Zealand trip for June and the way I booked the trip coincides with something important in my life. I started working very early on in my career and was consulting for companies like Adobe by the time I was 17. I've worked really hard in my life but apart from the strange work stories, I don’t have anything to show for it.
A few years ago, I walked away from a very lucrative career in broadcast production only to end up in advertising 3 days later. I worked in advertising for a few years and I left that industry to pursue my dreams. First, via a company called PaLaCart and then to start, join and advise many other amazing companies.
Over my time building startups, I realized that despite being extremely stressed and overworked about professional aspects, startup founders are the happiest and most driven people in the world. Their passion to be themselves and to pursue their dreams is amazingly powerful.
I would love to be paid my former salary today, but only if it didn't come with just 2 weeks off or limit me to a certain bubble.
Some of the greatest things in my life happened because I decided to jump off the cliff. There is no way I would have ever been able to spend a week in Maui celebrating a friends birthday or been able to go to family weddings in the middle of a work week. Or realize that someone I’ve worked with in my periphery is going to be a huge part of my life. Those things are far more important than sitting in an office and indispensable when leaving behind a legacy.
From cliff diving in Maui to buying a last minute plane ticket for the FIFA World Cup and spending a week exploring the Great Barrier Reef are all stories from the past 12 months. Those memories will last a lifetime.
And only because I walked away from a paycheck 400 days ago. Whether temporarily or permanently is yet to be seen. But life, despite its uncertainty, has never been better.