location independent

Being A Year Ahead Of GigaOm On Future Of Communication

Mathew Ingram of the emerging tech & disruption of media site GigaOm.com tackles a topic close to my heart in his column today: "The Future Of Online Etiquette Is Already Here, It's Just Unevenly Distributed". Ingram comes to the same conclusion we arrived at in our GlobalNiche webchat series more than a year ago with our guest speaker and world citizen, international worker and multidisciplinary strategy consultant Shefaly Yogendra on Communication Styles of Mobile Progressives.

In that hour-long live discussion (listen to the recording at the link!) we asked,

Do your friends and family and colleagues think you enter an 'international cone of silence' when you leave their physical sphere?

 

Out of sight, out of reach. Apparently, that’s how our global existence sometimes feels to people who aren’t in the habit of connecting every which way like we’ve grown used to doing. Someone left me a message on my new American phone line  in 2012 saying “I’ve been waiting 10 years to talk to you” — yet I know I’m more connected now than ever.

The GlobalNiche community talked about this literal and figurative disconnect, and how forward-looking, world-flung types like us can maintain our connections across vast geographical — and perceptual and behavioral — divides.

Our conclusion, which GigaOm just got to?

The more progressive party has to communicate with people where they exist, and that may be somewhere in the past.

 

What's A Digital Nomad?

Would consultants or other professionals who are constantly traveling be considered digital nomads? This is my answer to the question on Quora.

I think the main definition of digital nomads is being people who make their nomadic lives work through digital means.

Those techniques are being picked up more and more by people who are not really nomadic, but merely in transit, or location independent in general.

Like me.

I live in a particular place, but I partake of a wider world of opportunity through digital means, and envisioning myself as independent of my surroundings.

We all have the potential to be digital nomadlike, or use digital nomad strategies to make our lives more seamless.

Talking To Cigdem Kobu's Creative Solopreneurs

Anastasia Ashman interviewed by Cigdem KobuExcerpt from a profile in Cigdem Kobu's A Year With Myself program for introverted creative solopreneurs.

Are you location independent by choice, or necessity? Why?

Both!

First by necessity when I lived very far from my culture, removed by thousands of miles by people who knew me, who spoke my language, dislocated from my professional fields. Swallowed up by my foreign-to-me surroundings.

Then, as I realized the power of location independence, I became location independent by choice.

I believe that we all can tap into that same power no matter where we happen to be. If you think about it, we’ve all felt like a fish out of water at some point in our lives, and for too many of us, that’s an on-going feeling we have today. It doesn’t have to be that way.

That’s what GlobalNiche.net is about. You could say we teach people how to be globally unbound -- by choice.

Although expats and international types have more reasons than most to find a way to operate independently of where we happen to be physically, I see now that we don’t even have to leave home to do it.

It’s not about being mobile physically (and working on a beach in Thailand, as many in the location independent and lifestyle design movements talk about).

It’s about being okay with where you are, and setting up your life so you can be fufilled and, unlimited by your surroundings.

With today's economic uncertainties no matter who or where we are, we all have to embrace an enterprising view of ourselves -- a way to operate unlimited by the options around us.

We’re really lucky to be part of a trend toward entrepreneuring and indie creative careers, as well as using the social web and mobile devices to help us achieve what I call “psychic location independence”.

We don’t have to be a tech expert or social media guru to build a micro-yet-global base of operations with a professional web platform and virtual network for continuing education, professional development, and a close-knit but world-flung set of friends. We can be digital world citizens and achieve a cutting-edge state of being.

You believe that our metamorphoses choose us. Can you explain that a little?

I said this after a year on Twitter, back in 2009. I noted that the major undertakings of the year hadn’t rated a 2008 resolution. I didn’t plan any of them.

Nilofer Merchant, a cutting-edge entrepreneur I admire and author of The New How and the upcoming book Social Era Rules, recently tweeted, “Once you find your purpose it pulls you effortlessly into the future.” That’s definitely what happened when I opened a Twitter account and followed the trail of my interests out into the world of all possibility.

I was on soul-auto-pilot. Suddenly I took charge of my own web presence, an intention I hadn’t held, a vision I didn’t see, and a plan I don’t recall making.

All it took was that first microblogging step that lead to a curated-webpath to what I now recognize as my specific interests and larger intentions. I was pulled into my future, effortlessly, and without warning!

I was virtually attending conferences on publishing, interactive media, women’s issues, and participating in live webchats on branding, innovation, and literature.

I became a joiner and a beta-tester, signing on for an experimental blogging course before I even had a blog, and volunteering for a life design course for expat women entrepreneurs that helped me hone my vision and introduced me to my present day business partner, Tara Agacayak.

I experienced a reawakening of my inner student to learn exactly what I needed to know, and fresh direction on how I might contribute to the future of my communities.

I have seen this same thing happen with other people on Twitter too, so if you’re willing to dive in and let your metamorphosis choose you, that is the first place I’d recommend you go.

How do you help other women change their lives?

By sharing my own journey, and how I’ve combined my talents, interests and experience to create solutions for myself.

The largest solution I have to offer is the power to change our own lives by building a custom platform to operate from.

Also, by seeing in them what they could be, and telling them, which gives them the opportunity to see themselves and build their own place in the world.

The Native American Medicine Wheel card for hummingbird really resonates for me. The hummingbird is an agile creature which withdraws nectar from flowers and pollinates them at the same time, making them productive and viable.

I would love to be that force for the women in my life.

Mapping Your Complex World

Have you tried mapping the complexity and richness of your life (and career) with an overlapping Venn diagram?

Here's what turned up when I did one for GlobalNiche -- you can see all the relationships of our personal and professional influences and communities as we operate at the intersection of content, culture, and identity.

There's power in your diversity, how you combine your worlds, and the hybrid result!

If you've attempted a Venn of some part of your life, you're invited to share it on the GlobalNiche Facebook page here.

Recommended By Top Expat On Twitter In Telegraph UK

Top Expats On Twitter - UK Telegraph Thanks to former banker, veteran expat and expat coach Evelyn Simpson for recommending me and my GlobalNiche partner as top expats on Twitter to readers of The Telegraph UK.

Simpson suggests following me on Twitter if you're interested in knowing more  "about using technology and creativity to get the lifestyle you want wherever you are."

 

Top Expats On Twitter - Telegraph UK

Psychic Location Independence: Optimizing Life In Spite Of Where You Are

The website Location Independent Professionals asked why we want to be location independent. "Whatever you're looking for you can find where you are." It's simply not true. We can get what we want and need where we are -- but not with a local solution. Try a psychic one.

Take my short and balmy trip to Manhattan. I acted as a technology mule, bringing iPads to poor, under-served early adopters here in Istanbul, and reconnected with friends doing work I admire on scales and with methods I aspire to. My peers.

Right up my alley. But I may never live there again.

Most of us cannot (always) go somewhere on the ground where all our people and our perfect lifestyle exist. We must find that psychically -- our "global niche".

The meaning and purpose of location independence and digital nomadism is to live and work autonomously. Although it evokes mobility, it's especially crucial for long term living situations: to find a way to get what you want and need despite the limitations of your location.  Much like the cross-national quandary posed at expat+HAREM -- "are you a global citizen by choice, or necessity?" --  out of necessity to live and work to my abilities I aim to be independent of my specific location.

Are you location independent by choice, or necessity? Where and why?

Interview With Writer Abroad On Lowering Barriers And Raising Your Game

I’m thrilled and honored to be featured in Chantal Panozzo’s WriterAbroad Interview series. I join fellow expat and global nomad authors like the Petite Anglaise blogger-turned-novelist Catherine Sanderson in France, veteran Expat Expert publisher Robin Pascoe, Maya “The New Global Student” Frost in Argentina, and Alan Paul, the Wall Street Journal’s “The Expat Life” columnist based in China.

Chantal -- an American in Switzerland whose work appears in the dysfunctional family Chicken Soup anthology with mine, and guest posted last week at expat+HAREM -- asks how to connect with a reading audience back home.

People abroad have often turned to writing when other options for work and expression were limited. It tends to be a location-independent profession and pasttime.

Technology and the times now challenge writers abroad to do even more. Because we can -- and must.

We can make a bigger impact with less resources. Plus, even if we wanted to, we can no longer depend solely on high-barrier traditional routes.  We writers are now producers, and directors, and engineers of content.

Revisiting all my entertainment projects in development in this new light: how to tell the story of my ‘forensic memoir of friendship’ using 25-years worth of multimedia? Can two screenplays be converted to enhanced ebooks for iPhone or iPad -- incorporating images, sound, text -- or even made into a graphic novel?

What recent technology or industry shift both lowers a traditional barrier for you and raises your game?

I Dream Of GenY: In Sync With Today's 20-Something Worldview

If you're over 30 (OK, over 40) you probably don’t yearn to recapture 20-something days of gritty uncertainty. It’s even less appealing if you’re from the tail end of the Baby Boom, a generation gap in itself. My birth year alone meant I’d always occupy an entry-level position in that cultural generation.

Last week a visiting friend and I reminisced about our salad days in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District. Now Sex and the City types fill its fashion showrooms, art galleries and wine vaults but in the late ‘80s -- when our loft went Hollywood in the film Fatal Attraction and Madonna launched her naughty picture book from the basement nightclub -- it was a no man's land. Motorcycle gangs. Transvestite prostitutes. Bloody meatpackers in white coats and industrial rubber boots. You know, affordable. Plus, our landlady (a dominatrix!) didn’t complain about the party noise.

Unconventional freedom after-hours compensated for our brick-wall career prospects in mainstream media, entertainment, architecture and advertising. Unlike the disaffected GenX slackers a couple years behind us, my downtown loftmates and I refused to embrace the fact we'd never build equity with our marquee employers.

We still had our eye on the ball! Just. Needed to. Get. A foot. In. The door. No surprise the rising tide of GenY and its status quo rebellion has recently uplifted me.

Even with today’s dismal economy, the blogosphere is abuzz with possibility for young adults. A location-independent lifestyle design site launched this week challenges us to “live an awesome life on your own damn terms” while top blogs of young entrepreneurs spearhead social renewal.

The idealistic, brazen careerist mindset resonates because I'm old enough to have faced the corporate cubicle and young enough to frolic with a novel and unbounded reality.

Time travel to GenY’s brand of 20-something grit is a trip I'm willing to take. Ever felt in sync with a different generation?