Charged Up! podcast: Becoming a suitcase entrepreneur

Episode 28 with author, traveler, entrepreneur Natalie Sisson

Charged Up! with Jenny Hoff

 



Natalie Sisson, also known as The Suitcase Entrepreneur, is living the dream many of us have: traveling the world and making a lot of money at the same time. By zeroing in on her skills and passion, devising a plan, automating her services and using her credit wisely, Sisson has lived all over the world and is bringing in a six-figure salary as she does it. In this episode, she shares with us her strategies, best practices and advice to take our jobs to the next level ... or at least to the next country. 

Let’s get Charged Up! about learning how to be suitcase entrepreneurs!

Transcript: 

Jenny Hoff: Natalie, thanks so much for joining me today. First, I need to ask, where are you now? Where do you live? 

Natalie Sisson: I am in Wellington, New Zealand, as we speak right now. 

Hoff: OK, is that where you’re from originally? 

Sisson: It is where I’m from originally, yeah. After seven years of traveling the world, it’s the place I’ve come back to because it’s paradise. 

Hoff: I’ve heard that. So first, before we launch into how you live this awesome travel-filled life while continuing to make money, can you tell us a little bit about your journey? When did you get the idea that you wanted to live around the world and then what steps did you take to actually make it happen? 

Sisson: That’s a juicy question. So the idea came after quitting the corporate world after eight years, flying off to Vancouver, Canada, to start my first business, which actually was a tech company that I co-founded. That was an incredible journey: 18 months of a roller-coaster ride, trying to raise money, trying to get the business off the ground, and I essentially used social media and anything without any budget to promote the company and get customers on board.

It was during that time that I actually started my blog, which I called “Woman’s World” because I was just really interested to see why there weren’t more women in tech, especially founders, and started interviewing women. I used the blog as a platform to learn, to share my own experiences, and interview women, and ultimately, that blog became such a passion of mine that my business partner suggested maybe I make it a business, and I was like, “Great idea.”

So we split amicably, and we’re still doing really great today, and we keep in touch. But then I was just left with the blog and no way of making money, so I hustled for six months and ended up running workshops for entrepreneurs and how to use social media to grow your business, and that had been my direct experience, and they were a sellout, which was incredible to me because I was really putting myself out there.

And then I thought, well, I can just turn this into an online course and travel the world, so I feel like I jumped maybe a little early. I left Vancouver where all my networks and credibility were and I flew to Argentina, I developed this course while there and then started to try and promote it and sell it.

So I wasn’t going to say that it was an easy road, but that’s pretty much what I’ve done ever since: developing products and programs for my audience, growing my audience, understanding what they need, and then learning and producing things for them which has allowed me to essentially run my business from a laptop, a smartphone and a Wi-Fi connection which is incredible. 

Hoff: That is incredible, and I think a lot of people would love to live your life, but they don’t have any idea where to start, so what is your recommendation? Is it to first come up with a business idea, build it out as a side gig then make plans, or what have you discovered as you’ve traveled and met entrepreneurs such as yourself? 

Sisson: I do really think it depends on the person because I love change and I can adapt really quickly but I’ve met a lot of people who have decided to just travel and run a business or a freelance career and they really can’t handle it. They might not have Wi-Fi or can’t deal with the interruption of not being in a great place or a quiet place, and having to change plans and schedules, etc.

So I think it is smart to have a little bit of backup funds behind you, not as much if you’re traveling in a place like Southeast Asia or South America, or even Europe, to some extent, is actually incredibly affordable, but just having a little bit of a backup run, maybe three or six months of funds behind you is good.

I do think it’s good that you have started a side hustle or have the ability to freelance in an area so know what your skills are. I call it your ’sweet spot,’ that intersection between what you’re good or really good at, what you love doing, and what people will pay you for, and there is always a sweet spot that you can find.

But I would suggest that having an idea of what that is and potentially even some clients or an online business model that’s going to work for you before you head off isn’t a bad idea, just so that you feel a bit more grounded when you do start traveling because it throws out whole lot of other challenges at you. 

Hoff: I bet. And let me ask, what are some of the places where you’ve lived, where you worked, and did you meet a lot of other entrepreneurs like you who were from other countries who were doing the exact same thing? 

Sisson: It’s changed so much since I started.

This was 2010 when I was out there, and co-working spaces existed but not really. There were digital nomads and location-independents, but it wasn’t a very common thing, and so you would meet people from time to time, but these days, there’s so many co-working spaces. There are all these services like Coworkation, there’s a digital nomad cruise, there’s all these spaces that you can actually live and work with other entrepreneurs who are traveling and being location-independent that are all set up for you.

It’s actually very easy these days, so I feel like people have got it made. But at the time when I was there, no, it would be a little less common. I met a lot of travelers but not many who were trying to make a business until I started traveling to say, Southeast Asia, there was quite a strong community there. In Vietnam, in Ho Chi Minh City, in Bangkok in Thailand, in Bali, obviously. It’s because they’re beautiful places to live, well, and somewhat and also really affordable, and the internet’s good, and so that’s where you sort of find these congregations of people. Now, there’s places in Colombia, where you start seeing these little hubs around the world, Berlin, Lisbon, where people are starting to meet up and actually live and congregate together. 

Hoff: That’s incredible. And so when we say entrepreneur, it’s not necessarily people with companies with a lot of employees. A lot of times, it’s a single person who’s freelancing or doing their work, or they have a product online and so they’re not managing employees and having to manage a big company. What they’re doing is, is they’re managing clients and really using the internet to scale what they can offer, correct? 

Sisson: Absolutely. And I should add the caveat that some of these people are just freelancers. They’re doing part-time work that affords them the ability to travel and then take time off. A lot of people are hustling too hard, I think, and probably not earning a lot but they’re living the lifestyle, and then there’s some people with really serious businesses, six figures, seven figures who just base themselves in different places, have a lot of automated and they’re using things like e-commerce or selling, like I do, products and programs online.

A lot of that can be automated so you don’t have to always be there; you’re not client-facing, you’re not trading time for money. But a lot of that comes from experience, and most people start off doing the client work or one-on-one web services like consulting, teaching, coaching and then move into something that suits them from there. 

Hoff: Yeah, I want to definitely get into how you scaled from being client-facing and again, trading time for money, which means you’re a little bit limited, right? Unless you’re a high-power attorney, there’s only so much that you can charge per hour when you meet with people versus what you did, which is when you turned it into a serious business that makes serious money because you figured out how to automate it and how to use the internet to scale it so you don’t have to meet with each client individually. How did you make that transition from, “I have this blog that I’m writing about and I want to travel the world” to talking to a business that can make you good money? 

Sisson: Yeah, it’s a great question. Trial and error, and also probably just waking up one day going, “Hang on a minute, I didn’t quit my job and also leave the tech company to be working harder than ever and paying myself very little,” which I think is a reality that a lot of people wake up to.

Also, just with traveling at that stage there was the unreliability of Wi-Fi and quiet spaces or places to actually work from when you need it the most, especially around launches. And I just realized what I’m going to have to do is scale through having programs and products that can be bought any time, anywhere and delivered instantly that I don’t actually have to be involved with. So I put my all into them, and then once I had my marketing and my salesmen in place, essentially, they can work without me so I can be offline, I can be having a great time, I can be traveling, and the business is still running really well.

And I think that probably happened in around year two to three, quite honestly, when I started getting a bigger email list, bigger community and still doing a lot of free stuff including blogging, podcasting and videos. But all of that really acted as the way that people found me, and then would actually come in and say, “Hey, Natalie’s got a great product or a program.” So I think it was a bit of a mental thing, for sure and going, “I’m not going to do one-on-one coaching anymore. I’m going to see if I can do group coaching.”

And from group coaching, I progressed into, “Well, how can I offer this in a way that’s really scalable?” Because I’m limited by myself; I can’t help and impact that many people if I’m just doing it one-on-one. So I think it was a mindset shift and the ability to also build the systems along with it. 

Hoff: So what suggestions would you have to somebody who says, “OK, I have a business that I’m starting with. I’m in communications and I can write really good press releases,” or “I can teach people how to publicly speak,” or “I’m an amazing photographer,” or whatever it is I am, “and I want to go live this lifestyle.” What would you suggest, as far as marketing goes, if you’re marketing primarily to the U.S., but you’re living in other countries but you’re not there in the U.S. to kind of meet face to face? What are the top three suggestions for really utilizing social media and utilizing the web to market effectively? 

Sisson: That’s such a great question because I meet a lot of people from North America who are like, “But I’ve got a web design business and my clients absolutely need to see me in their office,” and I might know they don’t.

It’s just that you have to set up boundaries and expectations from the beginning, that you’re remote but the work is still going to be amazing and delivered on time. So I think three ways to do that, as I mentioned, is set boundaries, so be very, very clear about when people can contact you, your turnaround time, and also getting them used to the tools that you’re going to use. Is it going to be Zoom? Is it going to be Skype? Are you going to communicate through Slack? Just so that they do feel really good on that front.

And then in terms of social media, all the social media tools are so incredible once you know which one’s the right one for you, and I will say to most people that you can’t look past Facebook. There’s over 1.4 billion people on it now, so it’s very likely your ideal customers are there, but just getting savvy about knowing where to spend your time.

I think Facebook groups and the news feed are an incredible source of gold to find out what your customers and your ideal audience are really looking for, and then using Facebook Ads these days. It’s incredible what you can do with Facebook Ads and Facebook Live to really get across what you’re doing and attract people into your sales funnel. And then people will use Instagram and Twitter, and Snapchat for all sorts of different things, and YouTube, but I think you just have to be smart about what you pick.

So if you’re a visual branding agency, or if you have products that look great visually, using YouTube and putting videos there and on Facebook would be really smart. If you’re more in the media or news facing, Twitter is a really great real-time tool. If you are an artist or an e-commerce person, Instagram is great for being able to showcase your products.

And I think what people do is they stretch themselves and try to be everywhere rather than really understanding who their demographic is, who their audience is, and what tools they’re on most because that’s where you want to be. So we could go into a whole social media strategy, but that’s a great place to start, is know your audience and know where they are, and then find them there, meet them at their place, create the communication, and be of service, be of value, and you’ll start to see people definitely coming back to find out what you do and work with you. 

Hoff: And you definitely mentioned how you did a lot of free services to kind of build your brand and your client base, such as podcasting and blogging. Is that something that you see as necessary for effective marketing? Not just advertising yourself but offering information that’s very valuable to people at no cost so they can see what you offer? 

Sisson: Yeah, that’s a really great point. I think there’s a certain balance to it, so yes, absolutely, it shows your credibility, it shows that you’re the expert in your area, it shows your depth of knowledge, and it also shows your personality depending on which platform you’re using. Is it videos? Is it podcasting, etc.? But it is a fantastic way to hook people into the work that you do, to let them resonate with you, to understand what you offer first -- it’s like that taster, and then people will generally fall in love with or be attracted to people that they like and trust and know, and so those mediums are a brilliant way of doing that.

And there’s a point at which you can ease off a little, when people come to know you and you’ve built up enough of the community that from there, emailing or Facebook Groups, or whatever way you’re building your community is enough. But initially, when you’re starting, it is great to get some exposure and not just on your own site but definitely, guest posting on other sites, interviews on other people’s podcasts, putting yourself out there in the media is also a quicker way. I think, often when you are focusing on working with your own site it often feels like you are operating in a silo, especially when people don’t know you yet. It’s a bit like having a party at your house and not sending out any invites. 

Hoff: Absolutely. You’re sitting there talking and you’re like, “Is anybody actually listening to me?” But yeah, trying to gain some exposure, building partnerships with other people, and if you want to be a guest on a podcast did you write out to people? If you wanted to do a guest blog post, did you just write to blogs or podcasts that you admired that you thought could use your information and suggest yourself? 

Sisson: Absolutely, and I think that’s one thing that maybe people overlook. They see all these people doing so well and they’re everywhere and anywhere but they don’t appreciate the work that’s gone on behind the strategy of choosing the top 10 podcasts they would love to be in and that are in their nation, and their industry whose work they resonate with, who you feel you could offer something to.

The same applies to guest posting: looking at the sites you’d love to be on, seeing if they accept your guest post in the first place. And it really, I think it’s picking your battles because you can’t be everywhere and anywhere, and so really be strategic about which ones have the biggest reach, the most relevant audience, and work from there. 

Hoff: Absolutely. And I want to back up a little bit when you mentioned the sweet spot and it’s finding something that you’re good at, something you love, and something that you can make money from. How do you figure that out in the first place? Let’s say somebody’s kind of starting from scratch and they have a job and they maybe work in some sort of field that could become remote, but they don’t really know how to make that happen yet. How do they find that sweet spot between what they love and what can actually make money? 

Sisson: I actually have built an entire course around this because it’s a question I get asked so much and I call it “Idea to Income,” but it’s a really great question. It’s a little hard to summarize but there are a couple of things that I get people to go through and do, so for example, things that you love you generally know, but I don’t think that everybody should be going into business doing all the things they love.

For example, I love playing tennis, but I tried tennis coaching when I was young and I was just like, “No, I just want to play,” so it’s understanding which of those things do your friends, family and colleagues tell you all the time that you’re really good at. Some people will say, “Hey, you’re so good at networking,” or “You’re so good at relationship building or matchmaking, or making amazing cakes,” and just these little things that we often take for granted that we’re naturally good at but other people see as a value.

When people continually ask you, “How did you do that?” or “How did you make that happen?” that’s the time to start really listening and going, “Look, people always ask me how I managed to do this, this or this, so maybe that’s something that they’d like help in.”

It sounds so simple, but that’s because it is. It’s looking for a need that people have and thinking, if you’ve got the intersection of skills and experience, how can you help them?

I often talk about being a leading learner because I think there’s too much emphasis these days on becoming an expert or people waiting until they’re going to be the absolute expert in this area, whereas you just need to be, as you know, probably, just a couple steps ahead of that person. If you’ve learned things, you’ve applied them, you’ve practiced them, and you got a great hang on it, then you just can step up to the person who’s a few steps behind you and say, “Look, I can show you how to get there more quickly or more easily,” and that’s what people will actually pay for.

So honestly, sometimes it is just about writing down a list of all the things that you love to do, and then writing down a list of the things and asking your friends and family and people who know you what they think you’re good at. And then also going, “Well, how will these things merged actually allow me to earn some money that’s going to provide me with enough to be able to either go full-time or part-time?”

Or try it as a side hustle, as you mentioned, so on the side after your day job, and see how it feels for you as well because you don’t always need to be doing the thing that you set out to do, and a lot of people will stick with something because they think they have to but if they’re not enjoying it, that’s not going to work either. 

Hoff: Yeah, very good advice. And it is true, right? A lot of times that you don’t need to be this expert, and I feel like that happens in a lot of situations, where people want to write a book or people want to give advice but they feel like, “OK, I don’t have the training for that yet, I don’t have a Ph.D. in that,” but as you said, it’s almost like having an intern at your company; you’re a few steps ahead of them. You’ve worked there for a few years but you offer some very valuable skills to them and information, and you can actually probably relate to them even more than if you were really far ahead. 

Sisson: Absolutely. And I often felt like I was faking it until I make it.

When I ran my first social media boot camps, I really felt like a bit of like a fraud, because I was like, “Well, I don’t have a Ph.D.,” and social media was still pretty new back then, three or four years old, but people weren’t using it for business, and it wasn’t until I started teaching the workshop that I realized how much I knew, and as people started asking me all these questions I was like, “Oh, gosh, I can answer all of these questions,” which was really the time I appreciated that we often don’t know what we know until we teach it.

It’s just something to be really mindful of. You’ve accumulated so much knowledge over your lifetime and all sorts of different experiences. It’s just packaging that in a way, monetizing yourself is what I call it, that people will find it valuable and step up and say, “Hey, I want to work with you.”

Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. And what about permits in other parts of the world? How did you figure out logistically how you were going to legally be able to live in the country and earn money without having to deal with work permits or visas, necessarily -- well, probably visas -- but work permits and taxes in the other country. How did you set it up that way? 

Sisson: That’s a great question, and I will just say, I’m not an expert in this and I’m not a legal or qualified immigration specialist. I do have a whole chapter on this on my book, “The Suitcase Entrepreneur” because I was quite flabbergasted by it. It’s still a little bit of a wild west area, I would say, and then a lot of things and governments are coming up to speed with these remote location-independent hub people who travel the world.

I’m fortunate that I have a British passport so I can work in Europe, and I have a New Zealand passport so I can work here in Australia, and at the time, I had a Canadian permanent residence so I could work there, but the thing that is really interesting is, you can be in any country in the world for three months or less, and if you are earning online and you’re not being paid by a company in that country in which you have to pay tax, you actually don’t need a work permit or a visa.

Don’t quote me on this, but this is pretty much the rule that I’ve brought to many lawyers and many specialists, and this is how a lot of these people do it now. They’ll travel to Bali for one to two or three months, then their visa, their tourist visa, will come up. They’ll cross the border, go to Vietnam for a day, come back. And as long as you’re earning online and you’re not due to pay any tax from working as a consultant, for example, say, in Hong Kong, in that country, then you’re not liable to pay any taxes there which is really interesting.

And a lot of people will have a go at that and like, “What about the taxes for infrastructure, like roads, etc.?” I was like, “Yes, but you’re not actually in that country using all those services quite often,” and often, you still do have to pay tax back in your home country.

For me, I’d left New Zealand and I’d been away for so long that I didn’t need to but I was still a tax resident of here, and that’s how I worked it. And now I’m obviously fully paying taxes what with being back, but there are lots of little loopholes and windows and all of them are actually legal, so people are quite smart about how they do it, and just being really mindful of reading up on the country you’re wanting to go to and making sure you’re on the right side of the law.

Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. And that’s interesting, and I’m wondering, if you set up your company in the United States, and it’s an online company and you’re using PayPal or whatever, then in a sense, you’re paying your taxes to the United States, but you could be anywhere that you want to be during the time, running that company. It’s like that as long as you’re not dealing with businesses in that country, correct? 

Sisson: Yeah. And it’s all bit of a tricky one because you guys have to pay tax even if you’re not living or working in the U.S. 

Hoff: I know, I know. I lived in Germany for five years, and yes, that was fun. 

Sisson: But with other countries, you can renounce your citizenship. It really depends how far you’re going to go with this, but I think if you’re just looking at it as, “I’m going to take three months off or six months off, or a year,” a lot of the online platforms now that you use for payments such as Stripe, or if you’re running courses, say, through Teachable, they actually often do the tax already so they will pay the e-tax, they will pay the GST, for example, in New Zealand/Australia, and they do that automatically.

It’s a rule and regulation that came about in about the last 18 months to two years that you have to charge taxes in appropriate countries, so that has made it a little more complex. It typically is about cracking down on businesses that have massive revenues of seven or eight figures, but often a lot of platforms will account for that so you don’t have to. And it is great to have a financial adviser on your team, just someone that you can talk to and say, “Hey, this is what I’m planning on doing. What do you think?”

Hoff: Tell me, what apps or what programs like the ones you just mentioned do you suggest for somebody who says, “OK, I want to take my business abroad. I want to be living abroad,” which programs like this would help them automate the whole system and make sure that they get paid through there and whatever taxes they owe get through there, and it gives a little bit less stress on them to have to figure it all out? 

Sisson: Yeah, that’s such a great question, and just so many different answers. I think I’ve profiled over a hundred tools in my “Suitcase Entrepreneur” book for this very reason, but the ones that I could run my entire business off of and do is Google Suites, so Gmail, Calendar, Drive, everything is amazing. I run my websites off WordPress. I use Slack for my chain communications. I use Asana for all my project management and to-dos, and I use a combination of PayPal and Stripe.

PayPal is pretty ubiquitous around the world. It is a great starting point. Every single payment provider has a percentage of fees depending on where you’re at, but I do feel PayPal is pretty universal and trusted now. On top of that, Stripe is becoming available in more countries, and it avoids the whole reason of having to go through and set up a merchant account which used to be a pain in the ass, so it’s brilliant for being able to take credit cards and other payments. So they’d be two great starting points.

Then, you do have to have a couple of cool tools like Gumroad and SendOwl. They’ll actually do all the payment automation processing for you and you just need a deposit account, whether that’s in the U.S. or wherever it is, or you just need a PayPal account.

More and more of these services and tools are starting to integrate, which is fantastic. I use Xero for my financials, and I know that they integrate it with Stripe and PayPal, and everything, so more and more of them are realizing that they have to do that. And then it also depends what’s available in your country and what is the kind of go-to that the people are using, and it does differ around the world. 

Hoff: Obviously, at CreditCards.com, we talk a lot about the pros and cons of different credit cards. Are there certain cards that have facilitated you when you got started, then and also now, as far as traveling or saving money when you’re flying between countries or places to stay, etc.? 

Sisson: Yeah, I’m a huge fan of the Chase Sapphire Preferred and I’m very lucky that I had that card as a non-U.S. resident. I think I got it back when you could actually open a bank account as a foreigner, and then wrangled my way into talking to my account manager about getting one. So I’m really fortunate, and I love it for all the air points that I can use, and I do book a lot of travel through that.

I think North America is super fortunate in the amount of amazing cards that they have for travel rewards. Outside of that, I think it’s very dependent on your own country. So right now I have a Mastercard Air New Zealand Platinum because I love flying on Air New Zealand and you’d know this more than me, Jenny, but I think choosing the airlines that you really love to fly on and then looking at their reward points and credit cards that they have specifically is a pretty good damn good idea, or picking the preferred alliance that you’d want to be with, whether one of the three that are out there, and choosing which airlines you’re mainly going to fly on and accumulating them all under one airline there.

There’s a whole lot of people who talk about travel hacking out there. I do have a section in my book and they’re far smarter than me, and you can get incredible flights for free, but it’s also a lot of work, adding up and doing all the points, etc.

I’ve always been one person that I just want to fly now and I want to fly direct, so I’m happy to pay the money and then use my credit card for the points. So it really depends on your preference and how savvy you want to get. 

Hoff: OK, but your Chase Sapphire Preferred is one of those go-to cards for you where you feel like you get some good value for everything you spend on it? 

Sisson: Yeah, I really do. 

Hoff: OK, great. And then if someone is listening to this thinking, “OK, I’m ready to go. I have a small business that I can scale online. I want to actually live somewhere that inspires me where I’ll meet like-minded entrepreneurs, and also perhaps, save a bit of money on living costs.” What are your top three recommendations of where to go? 

Sisson: That’s a very good question. OK, it really depends on the person, once again. I’m going to say Bali, just because I think it’s a beautiful country. It’s incredibly reasonable. The food is super healthy and beautiful, and tasty, the people are lovely. The internet is improving and they do have neat places like Roam now, which is R-O-A-M, where you can co-work and live. The cost of living there and finding villas, etc., with swimming pools is really, really affordable, so that would be one place.

And then you’re sort of on the doorstep to a lot of Asia. The flights around there are really, really reasonable.

I’m a huge fan of Portugal. I actually bought a house there last year as it has incredible food, incredible people, amazing wine, beautiful coastal area, good internet. Lisbon is an incredible city, really great hub, very funky, and very pro entrepreneurs.

And then I have not been there yet but I really want to go, and all the people I have talked to have been there, Medellin in Colombia. Might have to love to speak Spanish. It’s really amazing people. Once again they’ve put up a huge structure into that city. High-speed internet, great apartments to rent, and a really budding entrepreneurial community there as well. So that’d be my top three picks, a little mix there for you. 

Hoff: Yeah, fantastic. Those are all great places, and also, I like the affordability of it, because that’s maybe something that you need to keep in mind. And I quickly wanted to ask you, how did you deal with kind of fluctuating incomes? I know that a lot of people, when you’re an entrepreneur, one month might be great, another month might not be so great ...  are there some tips on what people can do to even out the income, or at least have some stability so when they’re living abroad they don’t freak out that they’re not going to be able to meet their bills? 

Sisson: Yeah, and I guess that’s what a consistent systemized business that is somewhat automated would really help you with. So I think having a product that you don’t have to be present for, whether you can put that into an e-book or an audio, or a training or something you can offer online, that you can get leads through to it, through some of your free content is a great idea. So that provides like the baseline for you as an income.

You might also choose to do affiliate marketing, getting credits for tools and things that you recommend, supporting other people’s products so that you’re not always having to do all the work, and actually having a strategic plan each month what you’re promoting or what you’re supporting.

Another way, potentially, could be through sponsorship or advertising so that you’re getting consistent income, and those things I think will at least allow you to have revenue that consistently comes in, outside of anything else that you may be launching or doing that requires more time and effort and setup costs to get running but will have a really great financial benefit at the end of it.

It totally depends on the type of business you’re doing as well. You can always go back to trading time for money and know that when you’re settled in a place, you want to take on as many clients as you can, and then when you’re traveling again, you don’t want to because it’s really difficult to deal with clients when you are traveling often. 

Hoff: Yeah, absolutely. And your book, “The Suitcase Entrepreneur” really lays out the plans for people, if they want to do something like this, what are the programs out there, what are the apps that they can use, how to get started and all of this. You give a lot of advice that people could then follow and say, “OK, now I can envision this a little bit more.”

Sisson: Yeah. I’ve broken it down into the perspective you need in order to travel, and then I’ve gone into the business-building, so building online business, and I’ve gone into the lifestyle and travel and what you really need to know, even coming down to relationships and how to handle that when you’re away. So a lot of people have said it’s like the location-independent’s small-business bible, and that they can keep coming back to each chapter when they’re at that point that they need to dig in, so I’m really thrilled to hear that. 

Hoff: Fantastic, and finally, our show is called “Charged Up.” What gets you charged up about living a life on the road and making money while doing it? 

Sisson: So many things. I think just absolute freedom. I’m all about freedom. It’s my highest value in life, and so just the freedom to be able to choose to work from an amazing location, work from your own home, and to stay as long as you want, just experience so many different cultures, people and beautiful parts of the world while doing work that you love and that actually makes an impact. 

Hoff: Absolutely, that sounds fantastic. And thank you so much, Natalie, for joining us. I know you’re on the other side of the world, so I’m glad we were able to coordinate this, and it’s very inspiring. I know a lot of people are now looking at opportunities to do what you’ve done. So thank you so much for sharing your experiences and your advice.

Sisson: Thank you so much for having me and for allowing me to share that.

Hoff: Thank you.

See related: Charged Up! podcast: Master the art of negotiation

 


Join the discussion
We encourage an active and insightful conversation among our users. Please help us keep our community civil and respectful. For your safety, do not disclose confidential or personal information such as bank account numbers or social security numbers. Anything you post may be disclosed, published, transmitted or reused.

If you are commenting using a Facebook account, your profile information may be displayed with your comment depending on your privacy settings. By leaving the 'Post to Facebook' box selected, your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below.

The editorial content on CreditCards.com is not sponsored by any bank or credit card issuer. The journalists in the editorial department are separate from the company's business operations. The comments posted below are not provided, reviewed or approved by any company mentioned in our editorial content. Additionally, any companies mentioned in the content do not assume responsibility to ensure that all posts and/or questions are answered.




Weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, advice, articles and tips delivered to your inbox. It's FREE.


Updated: 11-17-2017