After a little research, anyone looking to break out of the traditional path in life, especially those of you who want to do some traveling, will undoubtedly discover an abundance of websites and people declaring that a life involving just a few hours of work per week, or even no work at all, is just around the corner and oh-so-easy to obtain.
Now that’s fine and all, despite it being complete nonsense, but I have a question.
What’s wrong with work?
I like to work. And while I would prefer not to spend 50+ hours per week in front of my laptop, as I generally do these days, I certainly don’t find the idea of a 4- or 3- or 0-hour workweek any more attractive. What’s wrong with a 40-hour workweek?
Work gives me a purpose, it gives me structure and it ensures that I am constantly using my brain. Also, work leads to new opportunities through the connections I make, helping me meet an endless number of amazing people and to have an endless number of amazing experiences that I otherwise would have missed out on.
Besides, if we choose our work wisely, work allows us to create and build and to actually observe the results of our efforts. And it feels mighty good to create something and to see it through until the end.
In my case, I genuinely enjoy spending time working on this blog, watching it grow and of course, having a chance to interact with all of you. I also enjoy creating other websites and travel-related eBooks and then witnessing how the months and months of hard work I put into each of these projects ends up benefiting other people in some way, shape or form.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to bamboozle you into thinking that I only work for the love of work. I won’t hesitate to admit that I get quite excited about earning money through my efforts as well, money which allows me to continue living this nomadic lifestyle. Money does play a role. We all need it to travel and that’s just an undeniable fact.
But my point is that I don’t mind working hard to earn my money. I’m not bothered by a long, 40-hour workweek at all. Instead, I accept it and welcome it as an integral part of my lifestyle.
And I’ve always tried to stress on this website that without the long workweeks I’ve been putting in over the years, whether teaching English, working on board cruise ships or working online, I simply wouldn’t have been able to travel this world of ours for so long.
As lovely as it would be, immigration officers stationed at the border of every country unfortunately do not hand every traveler $1000 upon arrival. You need to earn your money, and in order to earn it, you need to work. The good news is that if you have a healthy mindset, work doesn’t have to be such a negative thing.
And in all honesty, what would you do if you didn’t have to work? I sure have no idea what I’d do. The immediate answer would be to travel more but that’s really a silly answer as I travel quite a lot already. I just don’t know. I’m quite sure I would feel somewhat lost and even bored if I didn’t have to sit down at my computer every day and continue building and creating, finding solutions to problems and working on new ideas.
Again, I want to work. I enjoy work. And I don’t really understand the anti-work movement at all.
Instead of wasting time trying to chase after that unobtainable goal of 4- or 2-hour workweeks, I recommend spending time trying to find a type of work that interests and excites you, some kind of project or occupation that you are motivated to sit down and spend 20, 30 or yes, even 40, hours per week working on.
And once you do find something that you actually enjoy, then you can take the necessary steps to transform that work into something you can do while traveling and/or living overseas.
That’s how you turn travel into an actual lifestyle and I urge you not to be fooled by those who claim otherwise.
Any thoughts on a 40-hour workweek? Does the idea of working a few hours per week appeal to you? Or are you perfectly happy to work hard for your money as well?