What purpose will do to you

I can’t believe we’ve been here for almost a month — it feels like just yesterday we decided to buy tickets to Bali. Planning this trip has been such a great part of the journey, but oh boy… It was nerve wracking. Four of our friends decided to embark on the trip at the same time we did, each with their own idea and project, so between the six of us we had our fair share of nervous butterflies. Each of us have tangible goals to complete here, of course, but it runs deeper than that. We’re all here for a purpose, which is informing everything we do.

“Jan, I hear what you’re saying. But do you really think a trip to the sunny shores of Bali really offers the sense of purpose you’re seeking?”

It absolutely can. Here’s why.

Your definition of purpose might be different to mine, so before we go any further let me explain what it means to me. It’s the force that gives me strength to carry on no matter what. I mean sure, this experience is all still new and exciting, but I’m confident in three months time I’ll be singing the same tune. I’ll let you know.

This place is incredible. I feel great right now and by the end of the day I’m sure I’ll feel about the same. It doesn’t matter if it’s Monday, Friday, Saturday or Wednesday — getting up to work every day feels good and my mind and body are at peace with it all. I have time to think and reflect — two incredibly important (but often skipped) elements of achieving anything. That’s what purpose does. It instills a sense of excitement for the future, and despite the uncertainty of it all, there’s a spring in my step every morning.

I’ve said it before and will say it many times more — Woala isn’t just an idea to us. It’s what we stand for. It’s the fundamental belief that there is more to life than the monotony of a 9-to-5, day-in-day-out, living-for-the-weekend existence. It reflects our personal values, and gives us a chance to live in accordance to those. The best part about it actually, I think, is that if this crazy little thing works, we just might be able to inspire others to take up this way of life too…

For us, Woala is about giving. Not taking.

We’ve not felt discouraged by the challenges we’re facing here thus far, and I’ve a feeling that has a lot to do with how driven (and happy!) we are to be here. I’ve an example for you. Since we arrived, we haven’t managed to speak properly with a single business owner yet and we’ve only 6 days left in this area. Another challenge is that Indonesians don’t speak English as well as we’d have hoped (not a criticism, but an observation) — so pitching business and stirring excitement about what we’re doing is a difficult task. No one wants to enter into a partnership if they can’t even understand what we’re all about!

It’s a good challenge to be having at this point though, to be completely honest with you. By showing them what remote working can be, and the potential that comes along with it, we’re opening their minds to what could be. We’re building a community from the ground up and truly wouldn’t want it any other way. This isn’t just an opportunity for us, it’s an opportunity for them.

Those butterflies I mentioned earlier reappear in my stomach every time I have a conversation about what we’re doing with cafe owners or business managers. But the butterflies are there because this matters to us, so I hope they remain for some time to come. We’ve only been to about 10 cafes so far, so it’s certainly still early days. But at this stage we’re opting for quality over quantity, so are approaching some of our favourites in Ungasan/Uluwatu:

Cafe La Pasion

The Bukit Cafe

The Coffee Network

Drifter Surf Cafe


And that’s what our days look like now. We’ve been starting early with beautiful breakfasts at home, then a visit to one of the cafes above. We want them to get to know who we are, remember us, and to slowly begin to understand the ‘new’ type of customers that we are. So we keep at it every day until the sun goes down (and beyond).

The weather is perfect and the sea is breathtaking, but I like to think that this feeling has more to do with Woala, and how effortless it can make working remotely.

As the days go on the challenges are growing, but we’ll keep at it with smiles on our faces. Purpose tends to have that effect.

Stay tuned for next week, whatever that may hold.

Until then,

J x