All Change: The Mission

Something’s got to change.

Everything.

I’m not unhappy with my life; in fact, if anything, my life is pretty great, but there’s always things I could improve about myself. I could be thinner, healthier and stronger, I could learn more languages or skills, or I could have more experiences.

I’m 34 years old, run my own successful software development company and live in Brighton, United Kingdom, but I’ve lived here nearly nine years, in the same flat, and my flatmate of eight years has just moved to a different city for a new job and my girlfriend of 8 months has returned to her native Brazil at the end of her studies. This has left me with a decision: Do I stay in my comfortable life and look for a new flatmate, or do I decide it’s time to get out of my comfort zone and do something different, something amazing?

So, in the next two weeks, I’ll be selling all of my possessions and moving to Madrid for the next three months.

I plan to get rid of everything that I don’t need for my job, selling what I can, giving away where I can to charity or friends, or storing items I can’t. I plan to reduce my possessions down to what I can fit into a 70 litre ruck sack and a small back pack.

Why Madrid? There are many reasons for picking Madrid. The main reasons are location, cost and practical. I will still be working for my  software development business, which is based in the UK, and Madrid is a short two hour flight from London, which means that I can meet with clients in London or Brighton if there’s an emergency.

Another reason is that I calculated how much my flat in Brighton was costing me, and including bills, it was close to £1,000 a month. Thanks to the dire state of the Spanish economy, rental prices are considerably lower (and Brighton is unreasonably high), and my friend in Madrid has a flat that she’s willing to rent to me for €500. Saving over £500 a month is not to be sniffed at.

Finally, I’ve been learning Spanish for the last few years, and while the last eight months with a Spanish speaking girlfriend, have helped me become more confident talking in Spanish, I’m far from fluent and struggle understanding when people talk. The main challenge I’ll be setting myself over the next three months is to improve my Spanish to the point of being conversational.

Why three months? I think that three months is a short enough time to see if a nomadic existence is compatible with my job and lifestyle, yet long enough to improve my Spanish and give me a decent insight into Spanish living and culture. The plan after Spain is to find another country to visit for a new three month challenge. Learning Portuguese in Rio, or Mauy Thai in Phuket both seem appealing.

That explains the Nomad part of the site, but what about Experimental? I plan to set myself additional targets other than improving my Spanish and I plan to run experiments in the process of those targets to see what works and what doesn’t. I’m also planning on developing additional revenue streams to support my digital nomad lifestyle. I’ll be sharing details of those endeavours too.

So what am I planning on improving? The initial plans are to work on my health. I’m not in bad shape, but I could definitely be in better shape. At 76kg, I’m not overweight, but I’m definitely at the higher range of normal and my body fat percentage is around 18-20%, which is not ideal, and I’ve never been strong or muscular, which I’d like to change. In addition, 20 years of computer usage has left me with postural problems. I slouch a lot of the time, resulting in hunched shoulders and a rounded back and sitting at a desk has left me with tight  hip flexors in my thighs, which results in my pelvis being pulled down at the front, resulting in a non-neutral spine position. I also have tight calves which cause pain in my shins when running. I’ll talk more about these changes in future posts.

Hopefully those explains why I’m doing this and why I’m writing this blog.

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6 thoughts on “All Change: The Mission

  1. Good luck, it sounds like you’re ready for some big changes and adventure.

    You might want to check out Rio before moving there for a few months. I found the rich-poor divide so bleak when I visited ~10 years ago that I was happy to be leaving after a few days. It may be different if you’re there with a native though, and indeed hopefully things have improved for the poor over the last decade.

    1. It was a pleasure. Learning languages myself, I know how useful it is to speak to native speakers. If I can do anything further to help your class, let me know.

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