I was asked to lead a Masterclass on travel by my dear and amazing and hopefully soon-to-be travel buddy, RachelTravels, teaching her subscribers how I’ve learned to leverage my talents and skills to make enough money to travel the world and never go broke. These were my notes. If they don’t make sense, use context clues.
Our Goal: make enough money to TRAVEL.
1. Implementing a Strategy:
A. Clarify that strategy: It’s easy when working with groups and business, but here, you’re the only one, so you gotta be able to wear a lot of hats. We sometimes get so impressed with the ideas we have, but they never happen because we’re still out there somewhere patting ourselves on the back for the idea. Don’t forget you must also UNDERSTAND that idea FULLY, and be able to clarify that idea for everyone you plan to share it with.
Sidenote: Don’t share your idea with people who aren’t gonna cheer you on.
B. Communicate the Strategy: This is the sharing part. Share your idea with everyone who will be used as a resource. Take the Ryan Seacrest approach. Become annoying as hell, show up everywhere, say it often, get on people’s nerves, wear them down. But communicate it and communicate it well! Communicating these strategies make you that big ass nacho chip with the most cheese. When you pick it up, all the other chips come with it. Be the nucleus. The connective tissue!
C. Be the smartest person in the room: Put together a team of people who will promote the hell out of you and whatever service you’re providing. Even people who will manage you, and do the work for you. If you’ve communicated your strategy effectively, this part is easy. Look at the fools who worked for Hitler and Trump. And treat these resources like employees without making them feel like employees. Keep them happy by offering them your services for free or discounted. Give them power.
2. Understand your talents, skills, and strengths and spend a lot of time figuring out how far you can push those in all directions.
A. I’ve always been a writer, creative mostly, and can write anything but music. One day I found out people pay $400 for resumes, and suddenly I was a resume writer. I’ve always loved art, and one day at an exhibition, I found out artists paid to feature their work and I became a curator.
B. Just because you’ve never done it, doesn’t mean you can’t do it. You need to think about all the things you KNOW you can do, and figure out a way in there. I got a job once running the casting office of a major global tv show, and I have absolutely no experience, but I knew I could do it. And I did it so well, they moved me to LA.
3. Recognize the high potential opportunities, domestic and foreign:
A. In a hostel in Colombia, I met an IT developer who made pennies in his country. He travels around, offering his services to companies abroad, and they pay him. That set off an alarm. I have a degree in a transformative leadership (fancy ass words for organizational management in some ways). I travel now, and when I’m a customer at a shitty company or restaurant, I offer my services. It works more times than not. And people are MORE THAN WILLING to pay you under the table if you show them how it will benefit them. I just made 3 months rent in 3 weeks working in another country, teaching their wait staff how to provide better service. Do this well, and word will spread, and your international resume will begin building.
4. Use these travel apps! Hell, dating apps too:
A. Couchsurfing has gotten me more resources and money opportunities than it has couches. Those are my people: those who travel for the experience and will do whatever it takes to get those experiences, even if it means sleeping in a crack house on the balcony. These are true hustlers, and always willing to share their secrets because they can always create more opportunities.
B. Ask the couchsurfing community to help you identify opportunities in their country.
5. Leverage the value in learning activities and professional memberships:
A. It truly sometimes takes money to make money. Not always, but sometimes. Join these organizations that GREATLY benefit you. You know the ones you’ve been thinking of joining for years. Fundraise for the funds, and join. Hell, you signed up for Rachel’s class, so you can definitely join these other joints too. You will get your moneys worth if you COMMUNICATE once you’re in. Don’t be shy or modest or think you’re bothering people. BOTHER THEM! Exhaust EVERY RESOURCE they are offering, then join another.
Darnell Lamont Walker, a self-professed traveling foodie, has been found sitting at tables eating baby goat sweetbreads, drinking tequila, and laughing loudly with strangers. The writer, filmmaker, artist, and sometimes photographer puts happiness above all.