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About Me

About Me

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Hi, I’m Elaina and I want to help you live life on your terms, find a career you love, and travel as often as you want. 

 

I’ve lived, worked, and traveled to more than 60 countries, including some pretty off-the-beaten path destinations like Mongolia, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Paraguay. I’ve also lived out of a suitcase as a full-time nomad for the past 4.5 years, ever since leaving my management consulting gig in New York back in 2013 when I landed an international role at a media company that sent me all over the world to work. You can read my full story here

 

What makes my story unique is that I’ve traveled AND built a professional career, working for companies like IBM and Uber over the years. I’ve also spent long stretches of time freelancing and traveling adventurously through South America, Asia, and Africa. I’m currently freelance writing, coaching professionals through career transitions, and working on a few small business ideas while splitting my time between Berlin, the US, and India. 

 

I write about self-development, digital nomadism, charting unconventional life paths, finding REAL jobs overseas, pursuing long-term travel, and living more purposefully in a fast-paced, confusing world. There’s simply no one-size-fits-all model for creating a life you love. I’m not a full-time digital nomad and I’m not a full-time corporate professional: I’ve done things a bit differently and I think it’s feasible for more people to live “off the beaten path” this way. I hope my blog lets you see that it’s both possible and practical.  

 

I started this blog because I want to help you find an exciting career, travel the world, break the norms, and develop yourself both personally and professionally. Read on or get in touch to set up a 1:1 session with me: elaina@lifebefore30.com.

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Career

3 Strategies to Change Your Life (And How I’m Employing These While Traveling the World for a Year)
3 Strategies to Change Your Life (And How I’m Employing These While Traveling the World for a Year)
Published On: September 25, 2017
Not many people go from riding around the desert on a fire-breathing dragon for a week to working in one of the poorest countries in the world. And I definitely overestimated my ability to go from the corporate world of Uber to my alternative life in Berlin and Burning Man and then straight to rural Africa in the course of just 90 days.   Biking around Burning Man   A week later, biking around with bicycle taxis in Malawi    Clearly I'm on the verge of a massive life and career pivot, not something uncommon for me having gone from non-profit work to consulting to sales to operations to being a freelance writer/digital nomad to now working out how to make Continue Reading
11 Inspiring Hustlers Show You How to Create Off-The-Beaten-Path Careers and Escape the 9 to 5 Grind
11 Inspiring Hustlers Show You How to Create Off-The-Beaten-Path Careers and Escape the 9 to 5 Grind
Published On: September 7, 2017
By now, we all know that the future of work is autonomous, location-independent, skill-based, and increasingly creative. Studies predict that more than 50% of the US workforce will be freelance by 2020 and global GDP is expected to get a $2.7 trillion boost from “gig economy” roles by 2025.   At this point, we can continue to talk about trends, predictions, studies, and surveys -- or we can look at the people whose lives are already being transformed by the modern labor market.   By looking at real people who exemplify the future of work, we break the stereotypes that have been popularized by the mainstream media. We see that this type of work is no longer limited to web developers Continue Reading
Life

Why I Signed Up For One of Those Expensive, Scammy-Sounding Courses to Learn to Sell Things on Amazon (Part 1)
Why I Signed Up For One of Those Expensive, Scammy-Sounding Courses to Learn to Sell Things on Amazon (Part 1)
Published On: October 3, 2017
Well I’ve just gone and done something I never thought I’d do in a million years, something further stamping the cliche “digital nomad” label on my forehead. But, for better or worse, I’m excited: I just signed up for an online “sell a product on Amazon” e-commerce course.    I see your eyes rolling. And mine definitely were too when I plunked down a couple grand of savings on my wacky intuition.    I start the course tomorrow so I wanted to make a public post now to 1) be able to compare my perspective before, during, and after the experience, 2) to promote some accountability in myself because now all of you know I’m doing this so I have to Continue Reading
Hate Networking? Try a Kindness-Based Approach
Hate Networking? Try a Kindness-Based Approach
Published On: September 1, 2017
I work with a lot of people on career transitions: helping them change industries, find jobs overseas, or work for themselves. What many of them don’t realize is that the entire strategy for getting them to the other side lies well within their reach — the opportunity they’re waiting for already exists somewhere in the tangled web of their personal network.   They just have to sit down and untangle that web.   However, most of these people also hate networking. My job then becomes to show them how painless networking can be if you just take a slightly different approach.   The ones who bite the bullet and use my approach wind up changing their lives. One of my clients Continue Reading
Travel

My Ultimate Guide on How to Save Money for Travel (Or Other Big Projects and Adventures)
My Ultimate Guide on How to Save Money for Travel (Or Other Big Projects and Adventures)
Published On: July 25, 2017
  Money and freedom go hand-in-hand. If you’re planning a long-term travel adventure, you’ll need to save up a good sum for housing, airfare, local transport, and daily expenses. Even if you plan to travel with very little money by volunteering or couchsurfing, you still need an emergency fund.   I’ve saved up for three big trips over the course of the past decade: 4 months in South America (2011), 14 months over 3 continents (2015-2016), and now I’m embarking on another adventure of 9-12 months through Europe, Africa, and India (2017-2018). I’ll share my personal strategies with you here in the hopes it inspires you to pick and choose what might apply to you or inspire you to develop Continue Reading
9 Ways to Grow Your Career While Traveling
9 Ways to Grow Your Career While Traveling
Published On: June 20, 2017
The following is a guest post contributed by Joaquim Miro, founder of The Alternative Ways   The first time I told my friends and family that I was going to quit my job and travel, it didn’t go so well. They were nervous, anxious, and even scared for me. “How will you find another job when you come back? How will you make enough money on the road?”   While I didn’t have answers to these questions at first, I knew deep down that as long as I worked hard and continued to develop relevant skills, I would be okay. 10 months later, I'm proud to announce that I’ve been offered jobs, year-long volunteer programs, and promising business opportunities.   What Continue Reading
Health

7 Rules to Simplify Your Dating Life
7 Rules to Simplify Your Dating Life
Published On: October 1, 2017
  I’ve been single for 8 years now, so this may very well be one of those “take my advice because I don’t need it” situations. Take it for what it’s worth, but being a single nomad for as long as I have has allowed me to stand (quite happily) at the sidelines as the relationships of most of my friends regularly go down in flames.    My objective point of view and deep fascination with the human animal has always allowed me to see what the once-happy couple couldn’t see and identify the root causes of such painful heartbreaks.    That — and I’ve also been casually dating on every continent on the planet for the better part of Continue Reading
Two Years Later: Why Changing My Relationship to Alcohol is the Best Thing I Ever Did for Myself
Two Years Later: Why Changing My Relationship to Alcohol is the Best Thing I Ever Did for Myself
Published On: April 4, 2017
The last time I got drunk was in May 2015, when I was (ironically enough) living in Qatar. It’s a big thing for Doha expats to do boozy brunches on the weekend and that was officially the last time I went out with the intention to get intoxicated.      It’s been two years now, and I’d never go back to how I lived and partied before.    At the time, I didn’t expect to give up drinking permanently. Ramadan was approaching and that was simply the last boozy brunch we’d be able to do for awhile as the country moved into a religious period of fasting, sobriety, and reflection. Coincidentally, I also lost all of my friends in Qatar Continue Reading

About Me

About Me

IMG_5937

Hi, I’m Elaina and I want to help you live life on your terms, find a career you love, and travel as often as you want. 

 

I’ve lived, worked, and traveled to more than 60 countries, including some pretty off-the-beaten path destinations like Mongolia, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Paraguay. I’ve also lived out of a suitcase as a full-time nomad for the past 4.5 years, ever since leaving my management consulting gig in New York back in 2013 when I landed an international role at a media company that sent me all over the world to work. You can read my full story here

 

What makes my story unique is that I’ve traveled AND built a professional career, working for companies like IBM and Uber over the years. I’ve also spent long stretches of time freelancing and traveling adventurously through South America, Asia, and Africa. I’m currently freelance writing, coaching professionals through career transitions, and working on a few small business ideas while splitting my time between Berlin, the US, and India. 

 

I write about self-development, digital nomadism, charting unconventional life paths, finding REAL jobs overseas, pursuing long-term travel, and living more purposefully in a fast-paced, confusing world. There’s simply no one-size-fits-all model for creating a life you love. I’m not a full-time digital nomad and I’m not a full-time corporate professional: I’ve done things a bit differently and I think it’s feasible for more people to live “off the beaten path” this way. I hope my blog lets you see that it’s both possible and practical.  

 

I started this blog because I want to help you find an exciting career, travel the world, break the norms, and develop yourself both personally and professionally. Read on or get in touch to set up a 1:1 session with me: elaina@lifebefore30.com.

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Current Location

Currently in: Malawi

 

 

Previously in: Berlin

 

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Coaching

Coaching

Step into my office!

 

Five years ago, I changed my whole life in 30 days. I scored the job of my dreams, quit my job in New York, sold everything I owned, moved to West Africa, and never looked back. Read about it here.

 

Now I use Office Hours to help my clients do the same.

 

Do you want to travel but are scared to quit your job?

Do you want to find a job overseas but don’t know where to start?

Do you wake up in the morning dreading what’s ahead?

Read more

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Elaina on Instagram

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As Seen On

As Seen On

Sign Me Up

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I'm planning something big! Stay in touch and be the first to know what I'm up to.

Sign me up

Current Location

Current Location

Map

Current Location

Currently in: Malawi

 

 

Previously in: Berlin

 

img_6015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coaching

Coaching

Step into my office!

 

Five years ago, I changed my whole life in 30 days. I scored the job of my dreams, quit my job in New York, sold everything I owned, moved to West Africa, and never looked back. Read about it here.

 

Now I use Office Hours to help my clients do the same.

 

Do you want to travel but are scared to quit your job?

Do you want to find a job overseas but don’t know where to start?

Do you wake up in the morning dreading what’s ahead?

Read more

Like Me on Facebook

Like Me On Facebook

Follow me on twitter

Follow me on twitter

Instagram

Elaina on Instagram