My Story – Combining Work and Wanderlust

Hi, this is Klaartje from the Netherlands.

My whole life I experienced a high degree of Wanderlust.

Freedom to travel has always been an important consideration for me.

I planned my working life around my desire to go places.

Digital Nomad in Portugal

Becoming Self-employed was the Best Decision Ever.

For twenty years, I was an independent maternity nurse in The Netherlands. I could choose my own clients and roughly plan my own agenda. To be honest, the babies decided when my work week eventually started; I would get a call when a mother went into labor. But for many years, I blocked two months in winter completely free from work to travel, plus some weeks in May and September.

During School Holidays in the Summer, I took on Extra Work.

I was single for the first years that I worked in maternity care. Most of my colleagues had young children. So I did them a favor, working with a few extra families during the summer holiday. I didn’t mind working more hours in July and August.

I live in The Hague, close to the sea, so after work, I could go to the beach for a few hours or go for a walk with a friend. The extra work hours that I took during summer, paid for my holiday in winter.

Winter in Holland? Wanderlust in Asia!

My favorite escape from gray, wet winters in Holland?

Travel to India, Laos, Thailand, or another Asian country.

I love Asian cuisine, I love hiking in the rainforest or snorkeling with turtles. I love meeting people from different cultures.

Plus, Asia is very affordable as a travel destination for Europeans. It wasn’t hard to save for my winter trip during the summer months. I had some wonderful years, as a part-time nomad…

In 2016 I took a 3 day cooking class in Chang Mai. What a great experience!

I took the apron and the recipe book home with me, as a souvenir from this class.

Reality Kicks in; What if Something Happens to Me?

During the years I became more aware of the risks of being self-employed. Around me, people got ill, burnt out, or physically disabled. My own situation had changed also: I wasn’t single anymore, but a partner and stepmom.

I had modest insurance, but my life would change drastically in case I got sick. I decided to take care of myself, in every possible future scenario.

Instead of saving all my money for my next trip, I also started to save and invest for my future.

While I was still coaching young mothers,

  • I learned to trade and invest,
  • started blogging,
  • rented my beach apartment out during the summer holiday,
  • started with affiliate marketing,
  • and learned the basics of WordPress, Excell, and SEO,

to name a few of my activities to create sidestreams of income.

Not everything succeeded, I fell for a couple of scams, and lost money during my early trading days (I didn’t know about proper risk management yet) but it didn’t bother me too much.

Sometimes you earn, sometimes you learn 😉

My Transition to full-time Location-independent Work

In 2019 my side income streams were growing steadily, and I made the decision to leave maternity care in 2020. I longed for more freedom and physically less straining work.

I told everyone around me, that I would quit my nursing work and planned to work from my laptop instead. Most people reacted with anxiety and worry, even though they thought I was brave and adventurous.

But I also got two requests for a couple of hours of Virtual Assistant Services from people in my inner circle!

I accepted and became a virtual assistant in 2020.

Combined with my other income streams, the generated income made it possible to stop working as a maternity nurse in early 2020.

Expressing my dream of becoming location-independent worked out very well for me.

In 2022 I made my Nomadic Earnings working from my laptop in Cadzand in the Netherlands, Portugal, Greece, Thailand, and Indonesia.





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