Experiences > Things

Photo by Kevin Schmid on Unsplash

In a few weeks, one of my best friends will start into freedom. He has quit his job and will probably tour through Europe with his girlfriend and an old VW T4 for at least a year. He has decided to swap his stressful office life in Munich for a life on less than 2 sqm. He will mainly live from his savings, but also wants to do local jobs in between.

Location-independent living is the trend. More and more women and men, mostly from Generation Y, are giving up permanent residences and preferring to travel around the world.

Some work for a few weeks and then go on holiday again. This is called “Work&Travel”. Others look for digital business models, e.g. niche sites, AmazonFBA and much more, and connect their work with their holidays. Part of the day is spent working in cool places, then you visit the world. Those people are called “digital nomads”.

First I would like to share two definitions (or excerpts) about Generation Y with you:

“The fun doesn’t start after work for Generation Y, but they want to be happy while they’re at work — through a job that makes sense to them.”

(Wikipedia)

“The Generation Y cohorts … are used to living with uncertainties in life planning, adapting to new environments and keeping as many options as possible open — both privately and professionally. Generation Y is therefore the most international, locally flexible and multilingual generation that has ever entered the world of work”.

(Gründerszene)

I have chosen these two definitions deliberately, because each of them shows interesting facets of my generation, which I myself recognize more and more often. Of course also on myself. As you can see, the local flexibility also reappears here. Generation Y, by the way, usually includes the years from 1980 to 1999. Some sources also put it a little narrower.

Fill your life with moments, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.

I’m sure you’ve noticed this change. My Facebook timeline is full of people who are in great places or have just experienced something special. The new car or TV is much less likely to show up. Maybe because it’s considered snobbish to show such things.
But perhaps also because Generation Y now prefers to fly around the world rather than drive the latest car. Instead, car sharing or public transport will do the same.

Seen in this light, these experiences are probably the new status symbols. That should not make any valuation at all. It is ingenious to see the many corners of this world and I like to travel unbelievably.
My family and I lived good 3 years in a small place in Bavaria in a row house. Daily, I commuted 55km to the office in Munich, in the evening back home. For some it may sound stuffy or boring.

We have been very happy during this time. Later the wasted time in the car and in the train became just too much.

Nevertheless this thought comes to us again and again. The thought of what it would be like to live somewhere else and work anywhere.

“Somewhere else…”
That could mean three months in Canada.
But it could also mean four weeks with our families ( spread all over Germany).

Exactly that is the attraction and in a way I can understand it.
Flexibility and absolute self-determination.

Written on vacation in Cape Town. Which brings us back to travelling :-)

Cheers, 
Julian