Updated: May 29, 2020
I fell in love with travel when I visited India - it was a sensory experience like no other and from that trip, I knew I had to see more of the world.
The more I traveled the more I became fascinated with the world, with new cultures and meeting new people. I moved around a lot growing up, I was born in Canada and I grew up in Nigeria and South Africa - my family spent a lot of time in England too because we have a house there and then I moved to New York for college so I have always been adaptable.
When I first started my business I was working for a tech company in New York as a business analyst. I quite literally could not focus on work - it was a struggle getting by each day because all I wanted to do was to focus on building my own business and brand and that's when I decided it was time to take the leap. I made the decision to move from New York to Bali 2 weeks before I moved - definitely a spur of the moment decision and It was perhaps the single most life-changing thing I have done thus far. In am interesting turn of events - I walked into my meeting with my manager with a game plan and I was able to highlight why my role in the company could be taken anywhere and still be executed with ease. I ended renegotiating my contract so that I could work remotely as a contractor from anywhere in the world. This way I could dedicate the hours needed to work on my own business while also making a steady income and I could do all of this in-country I was absolutely crazy about (Bali!) This whole situation taught me that making yourself a key player is important, gaining skills that are location independent will end up being your magic power and taking risks to get to where you want to be is absolutely vital as an entrepreneur. I took a leap, making calculated risks and decided to focus on a business that had no profits at the time but I saw the potential and the gap in the market.
What are the keys to which I own my success?
Well, that is too easy - Brand, Passion, and persistence.
Advice that Inspired Her
Take advice from people who are where you want to be in life and have walked the paths that inspire you for your journey. Not everyone will be able to see your vision and hence naturally people will put their doubts and fears on you. Seek mentorship and advice from the people who take taken similar risks and can appreciate your vision.
If you can't stop thinking about it that's all the answer you need to the question of should I go for it or not. The world will reward you for following things that you are passionate about and overthinking will ultimately hinder your ability to achieve true happiness and success.
My advice to you
Save but don't get caught up in just saving - build streams of income that can keep you going as you travel. Start out with countries that are affordable with hubs for other digital nomads like Chiang Mai, Bali etc this way you will be inspired by being around other people who have similar goals to you.
I think people don't truly understand that this is hard work! Beyond the beautiful pictures from your new change of location - you have to balance a 25/7 job with navigating an entirely new environment. Your worries don't just go away they multiply and so you need to be incredibly organized and work on incorporating balance into your life - I have personally struggled with this. Building a new business while traveling you will deal with changing time zones, managing a remote team and everything else that comes with starting out. You have to fit that in with wanting to explore this new country and dedicating time to yourself for your own wellness.
Her Impact on the World
I want to encourage people to get out of their comfort zones and adventure more, there is so much to life and we live in a day and age were we see everything online but I want more people to seek those adventures for themselves and immerse themselves in new cultural experiences - to be truly aware of the world. I think travel, when done right, makes you more sensitive to global issues - you are able to put yourselves in the shoes of others and appreciate things that you may not have recognized before. Chidi Ashley Travels, my business is all about social entrepreneurship and giving back. We practice sustainable tourism and we partner with locals in the communities we visit to support small businesses. We also contribute by donating a portion of the profits towards local charities and causes we believe in. Beyond the beautiful pictures, there is more to travel and we want each person who travels with us to be culturally aware.
Her Favorite Adventures
This year I traveled to Seychelles and it was completely fabulous - it inspired me to travel more around Africa. I loved seeing unspoiled African local island life, the beaches were so pristine and the hotels were top-notch. But I guess I am biased because I live there now but Bali! No matter where I go Bali will always top my list.