Paige Soucie shares her experience building a startup while traveling amongst twenty-eight countries during her nomadic stint with Remote Year.

What challenges does one face when attempting to build a brand new startup from the road while traveling the world? Tune into this week’s episode with Paige Soucie. Paige traveled with Remote Year in its third “Cousteau” cohort from March 2015-2016.

In this episode Paige shares what it was like trying to build Hopscratch from the road, her go-to travel hack for booking cheap flights and lessons in coping with overstimulation from the firehose that was her experience. Have a question for Paige? Leave a comment below.

Show Notes

Time Topic
0:01:39   Welcome and context
0:03:09   Can you tell me about your circumstances leading up to Remote Year?
0:06:24   Talk about your decision to do Remote Year specifically
0:08:05   Which countries have you visited so far?
0:09:46   How challenging was it building a new startup from the road?
0:11:45   Can you elaborate on any specific challenges you encountered in this regard?
0:15:12   Did your Remote Year deliver on your expectations going into it?
0:18:32   Are you done with the nomadic lifestyle and resettling now?
0:19:29   Have you become desnsitized given how much stimulation you received on RY?
0:20:52   What was it about Machu Picchu that made that experience top your list?
0:23:32   Act I = pre-RY. Act II = RY. What does Act III look like for you?
0:25:51   Any particular travel hack you swear by?
0:27:46   Any blogs or sites you read regularly and recommend?
0:30:04   What advice do you have for the person in a 9-to-5 job now pondering doing Remote Year?


Dax Shepherd Podcast
How I Built This Podcast


Udub, Indonesia - January 2017

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Intro – 00:00 – Nomad

Sean: 00:21 – Alright, welcome to nomad podcast. I’m your host Sean tyranny. And our guest today is page suzy and I first met Paige in Phoenix, Arizona. My hometown. She was one of the core organizers of this. The first ever event it was called Phoenix startup week, played a pivotal role in really rallying together the early tech scene in Phoenix. It’s grown into this massive thing now. It’s thousands of people that attended a webpage, was a participant on the third remote year group, a remote you’re cousteau. And in this interview she’s going to share her experience of what it’s like to build a startup from the road. Now, if you’ve ever tried to build a startup, it’s a super challenging feat onto itself, but throw in the variable of a traveling around the world on top of that. And, uh, it’s, it is definitely a difficult challenge. So she’s going to tell us all about that experience, um, pages and awesome interviewee. I just, I know you’re going to enjoy our conversation. So without further ado, here’s my conversation with paige. Susi. Nomad podcast is supported in part by no math prep, an online academy that teaches you everything you need to know to take your job on the road and crush it abroad. Enroll today at nomad, and get your first four days of training completely free. Nomad prep. Take your job on the road and take on the world.

Sean: 01:39 – Alright, welcome page. We are. This is episode two of the nomad podcast. Thanks for joining so much. So let me, let me kind of paint the picture here of how we know each other because this is interesting. We’re both from Phoenix. Um, I met paige at, at the. Yes. Was it? Yes, PHOENIX? Or was it the startup week? Phoenix?

Paige: 02:01 – They sort of overlap. I think they sort of emerged around the same time. So the branding may have been a little different then, but essentially it was the phoenix startup community sort of coming together for an event.

Sean: 02:13 – And that was like right before you left for remote. Yeah.

Paige: 02:17 – Yeah. So it would be a little over two years ago. Yeah, because I’ve been back from remote year for about a year now.

Sean: 02:25 – I just remember you were like in prep mode and leaving.

Paige: 02:32 – Yeah, it was, uh, it was quite the turnaround. We had been planning this event for like almost a year basically. And um, we had a 4,000 person event in Phoenix for a bunch of startups and entrepreneurs and um, and then yeah, the next day, that Saturday I took off 8:00 AM for remote year.

Sean: 02:50 – Yeah. And that was, that was an event that you organized, right? That was your thing.

Paige: 02:54 – Yeah, me and there was a team of like five people we worked together for quite a while. I’m not, so it was a, it was a very, uh, an exciting moment for Phoenix in general and I was definitely really proud of all the work that we put into that.

Sean: 03:07 – Cool. Well let’s, let’s back up from there. Tell me about the circumstances leading up to remote year because what I think is fascinating about your story is it seems like you were bitten by the travel bug early study abroad program, right?

Paige: 03:21 – Yeah, it actually went even before that. I went to Spain when I was in high school for a summer and we sort of traveled around and studied at one of the universities there and then, um, I loved it. So in college I decided to apply for study abroad and I considered maybe doing a year. Um, and then I was like, you know, I, I love the program I’m in, in Arizona, so they’ll come back. Um, and then I went for the first semester and I was like, I’m, I’m staying. There’s no way I’m leaving. So I ended up doing a year in Spain and it was to this day, one of the best years of my life,

Sean: 03:59 – but then you like crafted a career around that would enable that kind of travel, which I think is really cool.

Paige: 04:07 – Yeah. And uh, so I came back, uh, I did my junior year in Spain and then I came back and got an internship as sort of working in social media. And so I immediately went into this sort of startup tech world. My background or what I’d been studying with Pr. And so pr was sort of in that transitional state of like, Hey, we should probably be paying attention to the social media thing and I just love the culture and sort of the energy in that space and how creative you could get. And so I started to, I will, I worked with this company. I was the intern there doing social media and um, I just had that a fall semester left in college and I was able to do it pretty much exclusively online. So I was still working while I was finishing school. And then when I graduated I started looking at different jobs and opportunities and nothing was flexible enough to allow me to be able to travel and go sort of do what I wanted and have the flexibility that I’d had previously. And so I was fortunate to be surrounded by people who were already sort of down that road of working remotely and having more flexibility. And so they helped me actually set up my own llc right after college. And then I started consulting.

Sean: 05:20 – That’s awesome. I like rarely meet people who are that intentional about this type of path. You know, usually it’s like you, you have the corporate job and Oh, I aspire to be able to do this, but you are very deliberate in how you structured your life, which is pretty interesting.

Paige: 05:37 – Um, I’m not really sure what it was, but I just the idea of sitting in an office everyday from eight, the five or whatever it may be. Um, the monotony of that, just I couldn’t imagine doing it and to give a little bit more context, my dad actually worked at home, so he, um, had, when we had moved as a family out to Arizona for Maine, he worked at home and was remote and so, um, it was normal for me. It wasn’t like I had, you know, it was completely out of nowhere, you know, I had sort of had that modeled for me in a way that I was like, God, this is definitely something that should be possible and that I want to make happen for me.

Sean: 06:18 – Talk to me about the circumstances leading up to your choice to do remote year.

Paige: 06:23 – Oh Man. Um, well there were quite a few iterations of what I was sort of contracting and working on, um, when I graduated in 2011, um, I didn’t end up leaving for remote year until 2016. So for that five year period I was just sort of crafting and experiencing different types of work and figuring out what works for me. Um, I had partnered with an agency locally for a couple of years and sort of had essentially become almost a full time project manager for them but still have the flexibility to travel and do what I want, which was nice. Um, and then I just realized it was time for me to take the next step. And so I left that company and um, that was when I was actually approached by Jonathan control is one of them look entrepreneurs that a lot of people know and he was building a team for a new startup called hopscotch. And at the same time I was getting back into the groove of just doing my own freelance consulting. And so, um, I was, I came across the remote your ad and was like, hey, you know, this seems like a fun opportunity. And so I applied and got accepted like a Muslim,

Sean: 07:37 – The ad with the the suitcase and the diving on the bed or

Paige: 07:40 – I think I was, uh, I think I was retargeted because I came across the website and a list of resources for just people that were wanting to travel. I think I was actually planning a trip to South Southeast Asia on my own. And in like my research, I came across your website and then later on I saw another ad board and was like, all right,

Sean: 08:00 – it seems pretty cool list of countries. So I got to point this out. I’m just going to read these off really quick. Say Argentina, Belgium, Bolivia, Cambodia, Canada, Croatia, Chechnya, Dominican Republic, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Hungary, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Malaysia and Mexico. Montenegro and New Zealand. Peru. Hold on, I got to take breaths. Portugal, Puerto Rico, Serbia, Thailand, UK, United States and Vietnam. Is that all of them or did I leave anything out?

Paige: 08:31 – I think you covered all of them and I’m really excited because I get to Columbia to that list here shortly. So, um, yeah, I feel like I, I mean it’s funny because it sounds like a lot of places and it is so many places, but then you know, when you’re in a program like remote year, I was like, I feel like I’m like the Newbie on the block. Like you had some people that were like, like doubled as how many countries I’ve gone to. So it’s all about perspective.

Sean: 08:56 – Yes. I have a list that’s even longer than this.

Paige: 09:00 – I know it’s crazy.

Sean: 09:02 – Twenty nine. I counted 29 countries. That is really well traveled.

Paige: 09:09 – Yeah, I um, I, yeah, I guess one of the other things I left out as when I was younger, I actually did a student ambassador program when I was 12 years old and I went to Australia, New Zealand and um, for a couple of weeks and then yeah, my family loves to travel and so I sort of had that sprinkled in throughout my childhood as well. So that sort of was like definitely setting the pace for what I wanted to make my life sort of modeled after.

Sean: 09:36 – Yeah, it seems like you had kind of like all the right pieces in place to encourage this type of existence from the get go. Cool. Alright. Well, so you’re with hopscotch, you cited to remote year. How did that go? You guys are building this startup. It’s in the early phases, right?

Paige: 09:52 – Yeah. So we, um, we’re about eight months into building this company. Um, well that was how long I’ve been with the team. They had sort of started the, I like the ideation period a little bit before that. Um, and we really hit the ground running. We had a lot of great resources, we had a lot of great mentors and um, I definitely think that in terms of building a company, you have to create the framework for really, really effective communication if you’re not going to be in the same location. Like there’s just something about building a company and being in the same room and being able to just naturally share those ideas and you’re like, yeah, that’s a great idea. We should change that. You sort of lose some of that natural collaboration when you’re not in the same place. And I think that, that, you know, I don’t think that that was necessarily the detriment for, you know, why hopscotch didn’t, you know, didn’t succeed ultimately. But I think it definitely is something that I, we learned is crucial. If you’re trying to build and iterate and change so quickly, um, and you’re not in the same place,

Sean: 11:02 – do you think it can be done with the communication infrastructure and processes or is it something where you’d recommend not doing? Not splitting up like this in the early stages of a startup?

Paige: 11:14 – You have to be really intentional about it, I think. Um, and it’s shocking how little things can slip through the cracks if you’re not super intentional. Um, and so if you have a small team and everyone’s open to, you know, slack and digital communication, I think you can definitely make it work. Um, but if you, you know, some of the team members have an aversion to some of that online communication, it may not be the right time.

Sean: 11:42 – Okay. Well, so what were some of the challenges you talked about hitting some snags that are like specifically give me, just give me a scenario where something broke down or went wrong or like help me understand what kind of challenges are we talking about?

Paige: 11:57 – Well, it was, it was sort of funny. We brought on a team member to support with sales and um, he was sort of a contractor with one of the other main team members and um, the onboarding process for us as, because I actually, I was fortunate enough to actually have one of my business partners on remote year with me. Um, which was hugely beneficial because we still could like sort of have that brain share and you know, collaborate and, you know, work on things together. But in terms of the people that I was working directly with for the most part, they were back in Arizona. And so, um, I’ve had a few phone calls with this person and I think he was with us for a couple of months and then I think he left something for some reason he was no longer with the company and I remember getting back to Arizona and I ran into this person at a networking event and I was like, oh my gosh, your name sounds so familiar. And it was this guy that had been working with us for a couple months and I was like, that alone. Yeah. Yeah. We, I was like, I didn’t even recognize this person. And so, you know, what we should have done is probably, you know, we had weekly calls for us to like, I’ll check in. Um, but everyone knows that conference call dynamic of like one person’s texting, one person’s doing this, one person’s just not paying attention. Um, and so, you know, making sure that we’re doing video and like making it more, trying to recreate that in person experience as much as possible. I think it’s really important to continue to build on that.

Sean: 13:37 – Yeah, I mean I can interject here until like so pagely we’re virtual and I’ve been remote the entire time that I was on remote year and now I’m definitely. What I see is like what works well is a practice in our whole company is virtual, is that we do weekly standups with zoom calls like this where everyone’s on it. It looks like the Brady bunch, there’s like 40 people in the squares and then that is kind of like the glue and then, or I’m sorry, the weekly that slack, which is just all pervasive at every hour of the day unfortunately, but yeah, for better or worse. And then you’ve got like a, we do a bi annual or semiannual, I forget which is twice a year, but we do a in person meeting where everyone flies to the same place and that frequency of, you know, the in person meetings are like that infrequent yet high bandwidth face to face, the gels, everyone and the weekly standups and then the slack all the time. It’s like those are the perfect pieces and I feel like if you miss one of those Kinda doesn’t work.

Paige: 14:44 – Yeah, there’s definitely some really crucial pieces to that in order to. I mean, because that’s not say that like you can’t run a business without the video chat and all those things, but you’re not going to excel, you’re not going to grow, you’re not going to cultivate, you know, actual culture and relationships between your team members. Like those things will fall by the wayside for sure. If you’re not, you know, sort of supplementing

Sean: 15:08 – for sure. On the topic of business, I do pre questions and one of your questions was talking about business growth and asked you how was the year, did it match up to your expectations? What were you expecting? And you said it wasn’t, it was much different than I expected. What do you mean by that?

Paige: 15:27 – Um, I think for me, because of the challenges that I faced with hop scratch in terms of that sort of tapering off when you’re a co founder at a company and it doesn’t, it when it fails, I’ll definitely, um, that’s a huge emotional professional struggle to sort of address, especially when you’re not in the same place and you can’t sort of have a round table and talk about it. Um, so that was definitely a huge hurdle for me personally. Um, and then I think just as I had more time on my hands, I wasn’t being as intentional about being productive with that time as I probably shouldn’t have been. Um, and I thrive in chaos and so having so much time on my hands, I feel like I sort of lost my, you know, my edge and my productivity

Sean: 16:21 – for sure for sure. Was that hard. I mean, I imagine being that far away in like just the emotion of remote year itself already is such like a ups and downs that on top of it I’ve had to have been a pretty tough.

Paige: 16:35 – Yeah, it was, it was a challenge. Um, and you know, like I said, having my friend and co founder with me helped a lot because I wasn’t going for it entirely by myself, but um, I tend to be a little more emotional than Adam. Uh, so I think it was a little bit harder for me than it was for him, at least outwardly.

Sean: 16:56 – People listening who don’t Know Adam and Adam in Mexico City, I think we called you guys the old married couple.

Paige: 17:08 – Yeah. So I’m, I’m all the, all the fireworks and he is usually more of the stapling stapling for us. But um, yeah, so it was, it was a huge hurdle. I was really, you know, by the end of remote year I was ready to come home and stabilize my life, my finances, my professional side, like get back involved in the community. And um, yeah, I think for a lot of people that went on remote year and this was their first big time traveling abroad, it was just like, you know, their heads exploded. It’s just, there’s so much and there’s so much to experience and just, you know, being in different cultures in changing that every month is, there’s so much going on. Um, and I, I think just having had the year in Spain, I think some of that I had already experienced a little bit so, um, I think it was just a little bit different for me in terms of my personal experience with how things went. Um, and yeah, so it was amazing. Like there’s, there’s no way to really explain how awesome being able to see and experience and do as many things as we do during remote year. Um, and then yeah, I think it was, I was very much ready to come home and sort of get, start rebuilding, um, what I had had before.

Sean: 18:32 – So you’ve gotten the nomadic bug out of your system and you’re, you’re ready for the planted lifestyle.

Paige: 18:39 – What I find really funny is that, um, I don’t think it’s an either or. I think um, and it, it, it was sort of sad to me that some people are like, I have to get everything out now because I can’t, once I go back like this, this is it. Um, and I guess it’s not sad. It’s, you know, just some careers just don’t allow for the flexibility. Some, you know, it’s just not an option or it’s, you know, everyone’s lifestyle is different. But for me I’m like, my best case scenario is having a job that I love, that I’m passionate about. Um, and then having the flexibility to go travel, go to Mexico City for a couple of weeks, you know, and then go to Columbia for a month. Then sort of have those experiences and more like short stints as opposed to, you know, the permanent out of office, you know, sort of lifestyle.

Sean: 19:26 – Totally. Well, I feel like we’ve set the bar so high for stimulation or remote. You’re visiting some tropical rain forest one week I’ve been to the mountains and swinging on a rope swing the next week and you’re not doing it. Okay. And it’s like, it’s such an insanely like, out of touch with what normal life reality is in terms of that level of stimulation.

Paige: 19:48 – Yeah. But I think that part is, um, it’s, it’s almost sad for me personally in a way. And um, my mom came to visit me when I was in Thailand, so Thailand was 1:10 I think for me. And I remember just walking around and she’s like, Oh my God, this cafe is so cute. Oh my God, this is amazing. This is amazing. This is amazing. And I was like, I have lost that energy and excitement level because we become so desensitized because you just are exposed to so much. And it’s like if you were to level of excitement to everything, you’d probably have an aneurism or something because it’s just, there’s so much going on. So I think, and you know, when we ran into each other and Mexico, I like, that was almost, that was like the perfect trip for me. I feel like I was, you know, had the mind space to be able to go experience things, appreciate it, take some time and then come back and like feel rejuvenated and ready to go. So, um, yeah, I think that’s more of a, more of the style of travel for me

Sean: 20:50 – for sure. If you had to pick one because like you said, there’s so many crazy awesome experiences, but if you had to pick one, I know you put Machu Picchu. Why that one? What was it about that place that,

Paige: 21:04 – um, I’m, I’m a huge nature hiking person. So I think it just was like the simplicity of just being out in nature, hiking every day, meeting locals, meeting other people that are, you know, I mean it takes a little bit of, you know, it’s a special mind state to be like, yeah, I want to go trek for five days. And so, I don’t know, you just started to get back to basics a little bit, which is nice. And it just was special

Sean: 21:04 – Inca trail?

Paige: 21:40 – Yeah. And so we had a group of like eight remote your people, which was fun because it was, it was a smaller group. I know some of the Inca groups can get a little bit larger, but having a smaller group and we were, you know, sort of let our own way with that. And uh, you know, it’s a special bond.

Sean: 21:59 – That’s the one that’s like really high altitude if I remember, like we did the Inca trail, which was challenging, but I know that one’s like even higher.

Paige: 22:06 – Yeah, it was. I mean, and I always reminisce on this, just to put it in context, I think it’s amazing the first night it’s, the hike isn’t that bad, but you get to, um, the first camping. Yeah, the camping site and um, there’s actually glass Igloos that you sleep in, so when you’re sleeping you can actually see all the stars and then you can do like an extra little hike up the mountain that’s right behind you. And there’s this huge lake reservoir right at the top of the mountain. And so it’s just, um, I mean those are, yeah, just such awesome experiences.

Sean: 22:43 – That was my favorite, like when people ask me to, I got asked point blank at a conference and that was the very first thing that came to mind is like Machu Picchu is mind blowing.

Paige: 22:52 – Yeah. Did you go up to the highest peak when you went?

Sean: 22:57 – That was actually really dangerous. Really dangerous.

Paige: 23:04 – I know it’s going up. You’re like, um, there’s like about an inch or two and then that’s the, that’s the edge. So that’s a little unnerving.

Sean: 23:12 – The concept of stairs are like these little bricks, like super steep and about that wide. So

Paige: 23:20 – yeah, the American tourists that’s gone through there is probably going to have a little bit of a rough time for sure.

Sean: 23:26 – For sure. You’re settled in the US at this point? What does. I feel like it was like act one prior to remote your act remote year three look like for you. You’re going to, you’re working for will tell us about who you’re working for now.

Paige: 23:40 – Yeah, well it’s actually, it’s sort of funny. I sort of swung the other way pretty aggressively when I came back and um, took effectively my first w two job that I’ve ever had and I was a project manager for an agency over in Mesa. Um, and I think I was there for about like seven or eight months and I, you know, it’s sort of the ich hit again and I was like, this just doesn’t, it’s not the right fit. And so, um, I decided, you know, to leave that company and build up my consulting again. Um, and so I’ve had, I’ve been able to work with, you know, some of my old business partners, which has been a lot of fun. Um, and then I am sort of the main project that I’m working on is a company called emc. So I’m the community director there and it’s one of the main guys is someone that I’ve worked with for years and it’s a social listening platforms. So, um, there’s some service or some product involved and I’m just sort of building out the community locally and then working on the marketing. And so it gives me a lot of variety, which I love and then I’m working with another agency and Scottsdale doing some project management, so, um, have sort of a mixed bag and it’s just like the perfect scenario for sure in

Sean: 25:07 – Scottsdale culinary festival.

Paige: 25:10 – Yeah, stuff. As long as you’re not trying to park. If you’re trying to park in Scottsdale, it’s, it’s helped, but as long as that’s not a thing. Yeah, we just a did spring training so it was sort of Nice because we could like walk over to one of the spring training stadiums and have lunch and hang out, which is never a bad way to spend lunch and yeah. So it’s, it’s awesome. I love the variety. I love the flexibility. Um, yeah. Like I said, I’m going to be doing Columbia here in a couple months and we’ll be working remotely for two weeks and I’m just sort of traveling around for a couple weeks so I’ll be fun.

Sean: 25:44 – I’m going to pull it Tim Ferriss and ask a few questions here just about tactics and hacks and whatnot. Do you have any, did you learn any travel hacks that you can recommend or any, you know, kind of discreet things that you can tell someone like pack this way or do this thing or.

Paige: 26:00 – Um, well, so buying tickets on Tuesday is the to I feel like that’s my, my, my Bible for buying flights. Definitely very helpful. Kiwi is an amazing site for if you don’t mind, you know, dealing with some really horrible layovers, uh, but you can get really cheap flights, so that’s awesome. Um, and then in terms of packing you never need as much as you think and people always say that, but it’s like, I mean just yeah, I assume you will not use most of the things that you’re going to bring up. I actually scaled down from like irregular suitcase too just to carry on in Thailand. So the last like three months I just had my carry on and it was the most thing that’s ever happened. So that was amazing.

Sean: 26:48 – My, my footprint of luggage just go like this. I’m totally with you. I started out with this giant clamshells Samsonite thing and a hiking pack and carry on and it’s just like that thing shut down.

Paige: 27:05 – I mean he really, you don’t need much and I, it’s funny because I feel like I have my staples in terms of like dress plan, short tee shirts, like little jacket and that’s just rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat. Traveling is not about being fashionable. So um, yeah, that you never need as much as you think you do. So make, make it carry on

Sean: 27:30 – this shirt. I mean I’m wearing the same like shout out to Arizona Company. Seed spot

Paige: 27:38 – gotta. Love it.

Sean: 27:41 – Um, what about only a couple more questions. So what about are there any sites that you read regularly or resources or podcasts that you particularly like you turned me onto the skin. That was something I think you told me about.

Paige: 27:54 – Yes, I did that, that was going to be my thing, especially for people outside of the US, I feel like, and it’s just like right off the top, the high level details that you do or don’t want to know and um, that I usually just link from there and find all the, at least news and stuff like that. Um, I’m actually listening to Dac Shepherds podcasts right now. Um, so that’s sort of fun. I, uh, I’m more like I’m sort of inching into the podcast world and then um, I feel like I’m just always, always have like audible books save that I’m, I’m working on, I’m working on one about money right now, which is, I feel like that was a good thing for people.

Sean: 28:37 – I learned about audible books. I learned this couple of years ago. If you have an Amazon kindle, the you can get the audio book for it and it uses that whisper sync so you can be reading the book, jump in the car and start reading to you from where you left off, pick it up on your phone at the line, at the grocery store. It’ll figure out, audio stopped. It’s all coordinated.

Paige: 28:59 – That is amazing. I did not know that. Oh Wow. That’s awesome.

Sean: 29:04 – Learn something everyday.

Paige: 29:09 – Yeah. Sometimes you just can’t be doing both, but if you could, you know, be able to switch back and forth. That would be. That’d be great.

Sean: 29:15 – Yeah. I don’t know if it needs to. I just opened the account from my Amazon account and it did that. I don’t know if you need them. Maybe link your audible account somehow, but at least it does that online. Oh, well we’ll wrap up here. Any. What would you say? Okay, let let. Let me take us back last week. So the whole point of this podcast, or at least my vision for it is to just really unearth the stories, like you have an incredible backstory and how you came to it and what happened on it and everyone seems to have a different angle with which they came to this kind of experience. Like what would you say to the person who is listening, pondering, like in that office into the nine to five thinking like, Gosh, I don’t know if I can do this. I don’t, what advice do you have for that person who’s entertaining this concept?

Paige: 30:08 – Anything. Absolutely anything is possible. Like I mean remote year is a great example of that too. Saying that how varied the backgrounds are of each of the people that are on remote year and for me, my network has done has been everything for me in terms of helping me find new contracts and how in terms of connecting me with other people like yourself and um, so for me I would say talk to your network, find people that are doing what you want to do and just start building those relationships because no one is going to be able to work in a silo. Like everyone needs community, everyone needs support. And so the sooner that you start building those connections, the sooner you’ll be able to be in the place that you want to be.

Sean: 30:55 – All right. Well, how do people get in touch with you? But was an awesome blog by the way. I should probably pull it up

Paige: 31:02 – in dire need of an update. I’ve been neglecting it, but that is the next day on my to do list. So, well my website is, yeah, my website is paid, uh, twitter and instagram are at and yeah, my email is pc

Sean: 31:22 – Okay. And here’s a curve ball. No guarantees if this is going to work, but I’m actually going to try to make it so people can submit like video questions. Uh, I don’t know if it’s work, but if that happens are you down to the answers to people’s. You can just like answer his comments but I’m going to see if I can make.

Paige: 31:40 – Cool. I would love that. I um, it’s been an interesting, crazy, fun, some ride and I would love to share with anyone that has questions or feedback or anything.

Sean: 31:52 – Awesome. Thank you so much. Enjoy Scottsdale weather and um, yeah, I can’t think you enough for being the second guest.

Paige: 32:01 – I know. Thank you so much. I love being on. Thank you so much on.

Sean: 32:05 – Okay, a good bye. Okay. That was my interview with Paige. I hope you enjoyed it. If you have a question for page, you can leave a comment underneath this episode. You can also now leave a video question, so just record a quick video, view your Webcam, submit it, and we’re going to select the best video questions and do a followup episode with page on any of those, so take advantage of that. If you’re considering doing remote year or one of the other tribal programs like it, you can get up to $300 off select programs. Simply apply via our referral link in the footer, or you can go to note. If you apply direct to the programs, it notifies your eligibility for that discount, so be sure to apply via our referral form. No matter podcast is supported in part by nomad prep, an online academy that teaches you everything you need to know to take your job on the road and crush it abroad. Enroll today at nomad, and get your first four days of training completely free. No mad prep. Take your job on the road and take on the world. Lastly, if you haven’t already done so, I drew to get notified as future episodes are released, you can also subscribe to the various social channels via the subscribe link in the header next week we’ll be talking to Eddie Contento. Eddie was from my group, Darian. He’s an incredible visual storyteller, a videographer. You may have seen some of this stuff out there. His youtube videos have been seen like many thousands of times, so fascinating guy. Uh, so when you’re talking to him next week, until that point, it’s a big world out there. Get out there and explore it. I’ll see you on the road.

Pre-interview Questions

Guest Questions : Entry # 2   
Paige Soucie
Blog or Personal Site
Current Company
Current Title
Community Director
United States of America
Countries Visited
  • Argentina
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia (Plurinational State of)
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • Croatia
  • Czechia
  • Dominican Republic
  • France
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Montenegro
  • New Zealand
  • Peru
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Thailand
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • United States of America
  • Vietnam
Where in the world are you now?
Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Where were you living when you decided to start a nomadic life?
Phoenix, AZ, USA
What were the initial set of circumstances or motive(s) that led you to experiment with a nomadic life?
My last year in college, I studied abroad for the year and really got a taste of being abroad for a longer period and was obsessed. After college, I just couldn’t find a job I really was passionate about that could make me want to stay in one place. So, I opted to start freelancing so that I could continue to travel when I could make it work. Since then, I’ve been working remotely and traveling as much as possible!
What did you do for income/work while traveling?
I was working at a startup I had been a co-founder at called Hopscratch. I was also fortunate to have one of my co-founders on the trip with me!
Did that situation change at all during the course of your travels?
What happened?
As many startups do, we unfortunately ran out of resources and I needed to find other income to fund my travel for the last few months.
Are you still doing the same work today as when you started RY?
Did you find it challenging to do your work from abroad?
What were the main challenges of doing your job from the road?
I think one of the major issues we ran into was missing the day-to-day of knowledge-sharing when it comes to building a new business. While there are the tools to collaborate effectively while remote, I don’t think we effectively did that.
What type of personal or business growth did you expect to experience and how did that turn out in actuality?
I think for me the year was a bit of a reset. Before RY, I was moving a mile a minute, and then after Hopscratch came to an end, I really had all the time in the world to figure out what was important to me. I also got to realize capitalize on exploring local activities, so that was a plus. The year in general ended up being much different than I expected.
What was the highest high-point and lowest low-point of your travels?
The low point was definitely when I found out that we had run out of funding for Hospcratch. That decline/having to look for work afterward was a real hurdle for me.

Machu Picchu for me was one of the most magical experiences during the year. Getting to the end of our 5-day trek was such an accomplishment and overwhelming with how amazing it felt.

Was there ever a point at which you gave serious consideration to quitting the nomadic journey?
What made you stick it out?
Because I absolutely could not imagine quitting something. And plus, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity I wouldn’t let myself pass up.
What did you learn from your nomadic existence that was unintuitive or unexpected but obvious now in retrospect?
One lesson that I learned, as simple as it sounds, is the importance of being really present in whatever your reality is at the moment. It became incredibly easy to become desensitized or lose perspective about what was really important when you’re constantly on the move and things are changing so quickly. Remote Year reminded me to slow down and appreciate all the small things, even when life gets crazy.
Was it hard to re-integrate back into society after your travels?
What can you not “un-see” at this point?
That anything is possible – the idea that going or doing certain things are out of reach is just not true.
How and to what extent has your group kept in touch after the experience ended?
The group still has a Whatsapp channel that’s pretty active. For me, I keep in touch 1-1 with some of the core people I connected with during the year. It’s always fun to cross paths with someone in other cities around the world, too!
How do you think you’ve changed as a person from the experience?
I realized I’m ready to settle into a live in the U.S., with intermittent trips to new countries on my list, of course. 🙂
What would you say to someone considering doing Remote Year or a program like it?
DO IT. Everyone needs to travel and explore the world. I would recommend setting some expectations though if there are clear takeaways or goals you have for the year.
How (if at all) has your idea of work changed from the experience?
It hasn’t — If people want, they can do what they do remotely (with some clear exceptions, of course).
What’s your best travel hack?
Book travel on Tuesdays? Haha I don’t know…
Is there a piece of gear you could you not live without at this point?
Yes, my HoodiePillow
Any particular routines or rituals that kept you fit/healthy/sane throughout the year?
For me it was just a commitment to being active. Whether that meant getting a membership at a gym, going for walks, finding a running path, etc. I would have gone (even more?) crazy without being active.
What resources (if any) did you use in preparing to go abroad?
Anything and everything I could find. I swear I’ve read every resource online. Plus, our RY group had a trello board which provided a lot of resources and ideas.
If you were to do it again, what would you go back and tell your former self to do differently in order to get more out of the experience?
Set some clear guidelines for work schedules and/or restrictions on extra curricular. I think I was so used to having such a jam packed schedule at home, that having SO much freedom really made it so that I wasn’t as effective as I would have liked.


Sean is host of Nomad Podcast, author of the Nomad Prep eCourse to help others successfully transition to the nomadic lifestyle. Sean is also founder of Problemattic, a global movement to mobilize knowledge workers for good. Read more from Sean on his personal blog or his business blog.

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