By Shitika Anand, Social Media Manager, Unsettled
Some of us dream of working from our pyjamas in the comfort of our living rooms. Others dream of the more exotic - working from the beaches of Bali, the cafes of Buenos Aires, and the mountains of Colombia.
At Unsettled, we find ourselves attracting those who wish to take their work, life, and adventures beyond the bedroom or home office, to somewhere a little more adventurous.
But the essential question remains: How the heck does everyone get paid for living a life that gives them the flexibility to combine work and travel in their own unique way?
Meet Hussein Hamoud, a 26-year-old Unsettler from Lebanon who’s currently in Barcelona with us, and getting paid while he embraces the unknown.
Part of a dynamic group of 24 participants from around the world, Hussein doesn’t just crave the autonomy, flexibility and serendipity that comes with the remote working lifestyle. His choice to live Unsettled is a little more grounded: It’s about personal growth.
“At some point in life I want to be my own boss. I want to be able to live, work, travel and have fun at the same time. Even though I'm happy with my current job in Beirut, I wanted to explore other aspects in life which my current set of skills can help me reach… and this is why I joined Unsettled,” says Hussein.
Born and raised in a small town in Southern Lebanon, Hussein joined Unsettled Barcelona in October with a goal to get out of his comfort zone, facilitate new ideas and figure out his next steps in life. His gameplan? Be part of a community where 24 strangers from all over the world come together to get inspired, skillshare, socialise, and make memories. Oh, and do all this without having to take a sabbatical or quit his job in his hometown.
“I'm a software engineering consultant in the finance domain. I was employed by a multinational in Lebanon straight out of college in 2013, and I’ve been working for them since. I recently moved to the product evolution department where I now design financial software solutions for banks.”
While living Unsettled in Barcelona, Hussein has been working an average of five to six hours a day, but spending more of this ‘off-time’ in a new location to develop ideas for a new project when he’s back home. “Not everyone has to quit their job to come on Unsettled. I'm in Barcelona on a paid leave from work, and yes, I consider myself lucky to be able to live in a wonderful city, meet an amazing group of people, focus on my own personal growth and development and work on my own projects and business ideas while still getting paid from a job I love. What’s special about this month is I’m able to do all of the above with minimal risk, and that makes this Unsettled experience even more special.”
“I was at that point in my career where I just wanted to throw myself into the unknown and see what I can come up with. Unsettled's hashtag #EmbraceTheUnknown was definitely influential before I booked this trip.”
So far, his favorite memory of his month in Barcelona was when the entire group spent a weekend away in an 800-year-old private monastery.
“The weekend was an opportunity to share a breathtaking place with a new group of people and getting to know each of them individually. I don't think I would ever be able to recreate that moment, even with my own friends,”
Truth is, not everyone has the luxury to take paid time off work and live Unsettled in a different continent, but Hussein recommends it for everyone going through an odd transition phase in life.
“This entire month is an opportunity to step out of your bubble or comfort zone and take a look at your life from a completely different angle. The people you'll meet are often from a different background than yours, they will provide you with a new perspective of your life. They will help you realize some of your hidden/unused skills… Moreover, I think travel is the best education anyone can have...”
So, where’s next on Hussein’s travel-the-world-and-get-paid-for-it itinerary?
“...Paris! But I work 10-hours a day when in Paris.”