Lessons learned from my five-year journey of leaving my desk to running a business from my RV

podcast Mar 22, 2022

A lot of people hype the idea of starting a business so they can travel more or have more freedom. Few people are willing to share how challenging that journey can be and what you can really expect.

This vulnerable episode is meant to be interesting and informative so that if you plan to ditch your day job like me, you can learn from my mistakes.

I talk about the good, the bad, and ugly and pretty much bare my soul. But hey, I like to keep it real!

In this episode you’ll learn:

  • What remote work is really like
  • The mistakes I made (and people often make) when transitioning to remote work
  • How to choose the right remote work options
  • Lessons learned, both good and bad

Here’s what you can find in this episode:

[2:10] Background on my early ”remote work” experiences backpacking in the 90s. I worked at an internet cafe and so you could say it was my first remote job.

[3:40] My second time working remotely was in 2009 and these experiences were early remote work experiences in no way prepared me for the “real remote work” world. 

[5:04] 2016 is when my internships ended and they had nowhere to put me except for back in my old job. This led to me and my husband, Bryce made the decision to quit our job, get rid of almost everything, move out, and then moved into an RV full-time.  Our first mistake was not doing enough RVin enough before actually doing it. So consider getting some RV experience first (more to come on this in a future episode)

[8:18] So we got on the road in August of 2016 and I lasted about 2.5 months before I started to panic about money. Our big plan was “we’ll figure it out”. But my identity of being a “hard worker” really got in my way. Our More Than A Wheelin’ blog started that same year, but I had no real blog experience. I found my first job on Craigslist while our RV was at the dealer for repairs. I applied to four jobs and got two offers and did this one random acting gig. Lessons learned: Be open to what’s happening in the present moment, always apply to a job

[13:14] 2017 was a pivotal year because I met new people from the Xscapers Bash and the RV Entrepreneur Summit and learned about the wide world of digital business.  Make sure you have a network of people because that led to remote work opportunities. I was a blogger, freelance writer, contract training work, Pinterest “pinner”  etc. Transferable skills became key to me finding new job types. I also sold my first digital product that year. Lastly, I collaborated with my friends to launch Full-Time Freedom Week, the first virtual RV event of its kind. On top of all of this, we were moving too fast—about every 3 days—which can burn out. Even though I was doing a lot, I felt stuck on my work “identity”. This happens to a lot of people especially people over 40, 50, 60 etc. Be sure to do skills inventory so you don't throw yourself at every job as I did. I put myself on way too many learning curves, and technology that was all new to me. What I learned in 1 year working myself than the last 10 years working for someone else. 

[23:44]  I quit the Pinterest job because it turns out that I was really bad at it.  It’s a good idea to do work that is aligned with your skills, interests, and risk tolerance. Then I learned that I could sell Remote Work School before actually building it. I learned that you can sell something before building it, which is a good idea before you go all in. I used a relatively small email list and promoted the school in email only and 50 people paid me $47. I was surprised that I made $2,000 from something I built! I created something of value that people actually wanted. 

[27:44] 2018 I got to speak at the RV Entrepreneur Summit all about blogging and spoke at the Nomad Summit, By Johnny Jen from Travel Like a Boss,  and met some “older” digital nomads. I resigned from the project manager role for the RV Nomads Movie (found on YouTube). The big thing I did was travel to Thailand to help deliver a retreat about launching a freelance business.  I learned that working remotely overseas was much harder because of the 12 hour time difference. While things were getting more settled, I was still throwing myself at too many things, because of imposter syndrome and that work “identity” I couldn't seem to shake. And even more, technology made things more complicated, so I started to burn out 

[34:10} Wrap-up of Part 1 of this two-part series. IN the next episode I’ll share my best year in business followed by my worst year in business. 

Looking for remote work training? SIgn up here for my free training: 

How To Get Remote Work Tp Have A Flexible Lifestyle 9Without Running Out of Money), https://www.camilleattell.com/remote-training

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Resources and links in this episode: