Sabbatilife is where I share the ‘Sabbatilife Code’ to leading a rich purposeful and free life, living and traveling around the world, the treasure map I followed to financial freedom, my philosophical ramblings on the nature of it all and well, pretty much everything I hope just might be of interest.
And just in case you wish for some more background on how it all came about, here’s some more.
The term Sabbatilife itself was coined some 4 years back. At the time I was making frantic arrangements to place my career on hold for a year, in order to steer off the London City corporate hamster wheel, and to re-calculate what I figured back then a no longer exciting enough route to freedom, happiness and purpose. And of course, this computing exercise had better take place whilst celebrating life. And what better way than whilst having a blast doing what I love most. Backpacking through a far-away continent! Obviously. How else anything truly positive could ever emerge.
And so, as I’ve always done previously, whenever these big life changing crossroads would make themselves known to me, I would simply plant the seed of change at the back of my mind, like making a formal request from the subconscious me to take on this little project, and then just give it time to work itself out. And trust it fully, to all by itself emerge back onto my conscious mind, exactly when it chooses to, when the time is right. Ideally no later then by the return date of my flight of course. I wouldn’t wanna go back to the office without a brand new super exciting secret master plan would I. It’s a pretty cool way to multitask if I’d say so myself. Or maybe it’s what you all do. I just wouldn’t know. But in case this isn’t how you normally figure your life out, than you’d have to trust me on this. It works like magic for me every time. My best ideas in life, at least as far as I’m concerned (my mother might deeply disagree), were always born in this way exactly. All by themselves. Effortlessly. And only when I was fully committed to celebrating life and doing the things I love most.
The implementation of the plan again. Well, that’s a whole different ball game. We won’t go there quite yet. I’ll tell you this much. The subconscious me doesn’t get to do it for me without the conscious me being present I’m afraid. That’s where it gets complex. Don’t worry about that for now though. We’ll touch more on that later.
And so I parked my life into cardboard boxes and stored them at a friend’s garden shed, as you do. I then rented out my heavily mortgaged flat, packed my old North Face 80L 15 years old backpack, and headed to the airport to catch my overnight flight to Lima, ready to explore the continent’s exotic indigenous cultures, dance to its music, climb its mountains, trek through its jungles and deserts, sail its rivers on makeshift rafts, drink buckets of mango, kiwi, lemon and strawberry caipirnhas whilst sunbathing on its tropical beaches, climb its active lava spewing volcanos, rest on its hammocks reading exciting books I never had time for…
But most importantly, to allow my mind to empty itself of the corporate world. The urge to over-achieve on sales targets. Be free of suits and ties. Let alarm clocks and shared calendars aside. Make way for others to enjoy toxic office politics and made up pointless admin. Thousands of miles from endless soulless grey corridors and hot desks. No longer subject to sociopath executives’ whims of a moment for a while. No longer breathing airconditioned artificial air or getting headaches from ever too bright artificial lighting. In the sun again, breathing clean mountain air, the wind in my hair, free at last, free at last.
Well, for a moment or two at least before my flight back home and to “real life” is due. But by then, I would get re-chained and iron masked and set behind bars again, but I would have a plan. A new treasure map to follow over the rainbow and far away. And so the airplane took off and I was gone.
Sabbatilife at the time was meant to document this little adventure in a publicly available blog. Slowly filling it up with funny stories of endless adventure and random encounters or just contemplations. Spicing it up with exciting videos of breath-taking pristine nature, great travel ideas for fellow minded backpackers and travel fevered vagabonds and all that jazz.
But ideation to one side and reality to the other. The travel blog itself never quite materialised. The minute I landed in Peru, I simply ended up too euphoric tasting the intoxicating and highly addictive drug of life that goes by the name: Freedom. It was the first time in over 10 years since I was backpacking long term. From touch-down onwards I was instantly way too busy enjoying myself in what proved to pass frame by frame but in the speed of light 365 days of adventurous mind-blowing bliss. A life changing era like no other. I had little time and zero willingness left in me to write a travel blog in that state of mind. And indeed most of my video footage and stories are still unedited on a hard drive or stored in my brain 4 years on.
But as Sabbatilife the concept was always more about finding a formula for living a free purposeful and happy life to the very fullest again, replacing an old map with a new one, rather than just taking a year off only to return to square one a few brief moments later, it very stubbornly refused to disappear from my mind.
A day after my return to London, I was already back in full motion on the corporate hamster wheel all suited and booted. But albeit mad busy navigating my high stress corporate day job, on the side of it I was spending every minute of every free hour, evenings and weekends and occasionally whole school nights awake trying to figure out my new treasure map and how to implement it. Turning it, and checking for invisible ink, signs of fraud or hidden traps. My map was showing it first destination en route. Financial freedom, I became convinced, would serve as the basis for a new chapter in my life. From there, free of the mental and financial slavery of my 18 years long monthly salary addiction, I would be free to explore deeper into the triggers that enable the life that I was after.
And so Sabbatilife the blog re-emerged in its latest incarnation, when the treasure map to financial freedom that I came across on my travels, I can’t quite remember where or when, perhaps somewhere between Columbia and Guatemala, and which I now follow so meticulously, (the details I will make public on another blog post) started slowly proving the treasure is very real!
And once in sight, only a few years after setting foot on this difficult yet rewarding journey, I just like having drunk the magic potion of Asterix, one drop on each day that went by but without realising, and suddenly in a cumulative compound interest impact, and not at all just due to the financial factors, no not the money or some magic number but the work and discipline and life skills and learnings I acquired. The entrepreneurial spirit and trust in myself more than anything, started filling me up once more with every breath that I took with fresh trust in the bigger plan.
And so the old made way to new excitement, renewed energy, a sense of purpose, focus, drive, passion and courage to re-write my next chapter…
That is which brought words onto these pages and this blog into the public domain. And yes, I also made it to Financial Independence.