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travel-money1

About Me

About Me

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Hi, I’m Elaina and these are my thoughts on the most important decade of our lives.

 

Originally from New York State, I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a degree in International Studies and Mandarin Chinese in 2011. I worked for a Fortune 500 company as a management consultant in NYC until April 2013, when I quit in pursuit of growth and adventure. I took a job in international business development and moved to a new country every 3 months for two years. During that time I lived and worked in Nigeria, Ethiopia, Turkey, Mongolia, Paraguay, South Africa, Qatar, Oman, and Guyana.

 

In September 2015, I left that job to travel for 15 months through India, Nepal, Southeast Asia, and Europe, paying my way as a digital nomad: writing, career coaching, travel planning, and blogging.

 

As of November 2016, I've taken on a new challenge, landing a job as an international operations lead for the highest valued start-up in Silicon Valley. This job will take me to Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, and beyond.

 

When I'm not busy at work, I'm on here writing 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.

 

Most importantly, 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 coaching session with me: elaina@lifebefore30.com.

As Seen On

Career

How Money May Be Blocking You From Reaching Your Creative Potential
How Money May Be Blocking You From Reaching Your Creative Potential
Published On: May 15, 2017
I’ve spent the past month squirreling away on a project that’s hopefully going to play a very interesting role in an industry I love — but it’s also set up to make exactly $0, for now. In fact, I’m actually dumping a substantial amount of money into professional design work, branding, and domain negotiation. It’s a little labor of love and I’m really excited about where the process of creating it will lead.   When I mention my current undertaking to the Australian friends I’ve made here as an expat, they want to know more about the concept and what it’s going to do and how it's progressing. They sound excited for me. When I mention it to American friends back home, the first thing they Continue Reading
Confessions From Someone Who Looks Like She Has Her Shit Together (And How to Actually Pull It Together When You Feel Lost and Hopeless)
Confessions From Someone Who Looks Like She Has Her Shit Together (And How to Actually Pull It Together When You Feel Lost and Hopeless)
Published On: April 4, 2017
If you’re a frequent reader, you may have noticed I’ve taken a long break of silence for the past month. The truth is, I’ve been going through a crisis of my own and it seemed ironic to write anything where it seemed like I knew what I was talking about during a time when I’d lost all sense of that.   So what have I been struggling with? For starters, I’ve been completely mentally consumed by work -- I’m guessing you’ve been there at some point, too. It’s incredibly frustrating to see that with less than six months back in a competitive corporate environment I’m unable to maintain sufficient reserves of creative and independent energy in order to write, read, Continue Reading
Life

Doing This Will Help You Save More Money Than Anything Else in Your Life
Doing This Will Help You Save More Money Than Anything Else in Your Life
Published On: May 29, 2017
“Why should we all use our creative power…? Because there is nothing that makes people so generous, joyful, lively, bold, and compassionate, so indifferent to fighting and the accumulation of objects and money.” -- Brenda Ueland   Money is an inconvenient but necessary evil we all have to deal with. We’re too far down the rabbit hole to pretend it’s less important than it really is.   In my own life, I’ve been able to change jobs, leave jobs, travel to 55 countries, and build my own small business mostly because I’m an expert at managing my money -- and I’m always motivated to help more people become financially savvy. Because if you can stay out of debt, become a minimalist, and Continue Reading
My Secret Little Practice for Being Creative, Getting Shit Done, and Staying Sane
My Secret Little Practice for Being Creative, Getting Shit Done, and Staying Sane
Published On: May 21, 2017
I’ve come to accept that being a blogger means giving all my secrets away.   Today I’m going to tell you my biggest secret for coming up with new ideas, getting and staying inspired, and maintaining my creative productivity while still working a full-time job.   It's pretty simple. At least once a month, I spend a Sunday in solitude from sunrise to sunset -- no technology or other people allowed -- and take the day to fully disconnect myself and engage in purposeful thought, creative exploration, and self-care.    I call them Sundays for the Soul and they are a sacred practice in my life. They help me get inspired, work on important projects, and recalibrate my physical and mental health.  Continue Reading
Travel

Looking for a Job Overseas? When to Pick Up and Just Go
Looking for a Job Overseas? When to Pick Up and Just Go
Published On: May 27, 2017
If you're serious about taking your international job hunt to the next level, I often recommend taking an actual trip overseas. Not a quit your job and buy a one-way ticket type of trip, however, but a strategic "vacation" to the destination where you ideally want to relocate. You'll need to do a lot of homework beforehand, but I've seen it deliver remarkable results for serious international job seekers.   I wrote an article on this tactic for Fast Company this week, so check it out for the full details: Want to Live and Work Overseas? Take This Two Week Trip First. 
How I
How I’ve Managed to Fit My Life into 2 Suitcases for 4 Years: A List of Everything I Travel With as a Full-Time Nomad
Published On: February 28, 2017
I'm coming up on my fourth anniversary as a nomad this March, which means four whole years of living out of two suitcases! I've gotten a lot of questions on what and how I pack, so I'm finally going to dig into the details for those of you who are curious. A good friend of mine also just recently got hired in the same international position as me for Uber and is facing the challenging of packing up her whole life for a year of on-the-go travel for work... so I did this mostly for her (Hi, Adrienne!).    Except when I did my 9 months backpacking through Asia, I've always traveled with two suitcases: a small carry-on and a HUGE checked bag, Continue Reading
Health

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
You Don
You Don’t Always Have to Quit: Ways to Actually Be Happier at Work
Published On: February 12, 2017
  Some blogs talk mostly about quitting your job to travel the world. Some talk about becoming a digital nomad or full-time entrepreneur. And others talk about helping you find your dream job.   Mine talks about how to do all of these, because there are many ways to build a lifestyle that works for you.    I’m a digital nomad, small-time entrepreneur, and freelance writer, but I’m also an international project manager who has worked for several major companies over the past 5 years. I lead parallel careers, sometimes working the 9 to 5 grind, sometimes spending extended time on the road paying my own way. I’ve come up with a formula that works for me, using my corporate Continue Reading

About Me

About Me

IMG_5937

Hi, I’m Elaina and these are my thoughts on the most important decade of our lives.

 

Originally from New York State, I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a degree in International Studies and Mandarin Chinese in 2011. I worked for a Fortune 500 company as a management consultant in NYC until April 2013, when I quit in pursuit of growth and adventure. I took a job in international business development and moved to a new country every 3 months for two years. During that time I lived and worked in Nigeria, Ethiopia, Turkey, Mongolia, Paraguay, South Africa, Qatar, Oman, and Guyana.

 

In September 2015, I left that job to travel for 15 months through India, Nepal, Southeast Asia, and Europe, paying my way as a digital nomad: writing, career coaching, travel planning, and blogging.

 

As of November 2016, I've taken on a new challenge, landing a job as an international operations lead for the highest valued start-up in Silicon Valley. This job will take me to Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, and beyond.

 

When I'm not busy at work, I'm on here writing 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.

 

Most importantly, 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 coaching session with me: elaina@lifebefore30.com.

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Current Location

Currently in: Australia

 

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Previously in: Mexico

 

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Coaching

Coaching

Step into my office!

 

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

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Current Location

Current Location

Map

Current Location

Currently in: Australia

 

IMG_2444

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Previously in: Mexico

 

IMG_0803

Coaching

Coaching

Step into my office!

 

Three 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