One Helluva Busy Summer

Summer of 2016 was a summer of big plans for us. We had LOTS to do for our parents, kids, us and just accumulated business to take care of while we were in the U.S. Not unusual. This is the typical expat’s life when they go home each year. There is always stuff to take care of, but for some reason this summer was absurd.

Seriously, I felt like I was flung in every direction. And when I walked out with my shirt on the wrong side, I realized maybe, just maybe I overextended myself.

Summer Stress
The day never seems long enough when you have work to do. PC: Pixabay.

How do you know when you’ve been stretched too thin? When one little shift in your schedule equates to a Jenga puzzle toppling down. Your mood shifts. You become salty, and everyone is annoyed with your energy.

Sometimes we digital nomads have the habit of being overly optimistic about these things and think we can Get er’ Done right quick and it will all be an easy-peasy no-brainer.

Well, we are almost, always wrong with that.

Things don’t always go as planned.

My summer “break” was really a workcation. So I had to juggle my university assignments and freelance work while simultaneously trying to give my family the time they deserved and very much needed. Sandwich generation issues are no joke. The demands are high, especially if you live so far away and only come home once a year. You have to make up for the whole year in one short-duration.

There were barriers from the moment I landed. I had to deal with near heat-strokes, poor Internet service, delays, the usual jet-lag, lots and lots of distraction where I had to literally tell everyone to fuck off at one point so I can work peacefully.

This is muddy territory, folks. Think about it hard and plan well, always anticipating and being prepared for the worse.

Think of it this way. On a regular basis, successfully working and studying from home is a real art. Yes, it’s really cool…but not always “dreamy” as portrayed by the media.  It requires an epic amount of planning, organization, discipline and determination.

Throw in a workcation and you’re in for a surprise.

So here are my lessons learned this summer about working from “home” while back home for the summer for an extended period.

  1. Plan well and have a backup plan. Find out ahead of time if your Internet connection will be stable and you have a space to work that’s quiet and comfy.
  2. Don’t be afraid to tell everyone to give you space so you can work. Hopefully, you won’t have to use profanity. 🙂
  3. Be sure to make time to do something fun each day. Try a new resto, go for a walk, see something new. Anything! See my pics below on some of the best moments I had. Sadly, I never made it to Skyler Grey’s exhibit in Miami.
  4. Most of all, set realistic expectations before you decide to take on added work.
  5. And remember this: No matter how much you plan your workcation, there will be occasional hiccups. Just breathe. You will figure it out. This is why we do what we do for a living. If we’re smart enough to have figured out how to freelance from home, we’re smart enough to tackle any obstacle that comes our way.

After all, this is why we are the Remote SuperHeros we are. 🙂

Summer. Puerto Rico's mountain view
Breathing in that wonderful Central Puerto Rico’s oxygen often gave me the boost I needed.
Summer. Walk on Biscayne
Walks in the park with my son in Miami were the best therapy.

 

Summer. Biscayne shoreline
Being cooped up in a Miami apartment working sometimes drove me crazy. Stepping out to eat our din-din outdoors was wonderful.
Summer. Puerto Rican Hammocks
In Puerto Rico, at end of each work day. This was all I needed.
Summer, Miami Lab
If things get overwhelming at home. Find a coworking space and RUN to it. So grateful to Miami Lab for letting me work there for a few days.Thank you, Andrew Quarrie, for hooking me up!

 

Summer, morning fruit bowl
Make sure you start off your day well. You are already tired from all the travel and nutrition is key to help you get over the first few days.

 

Summer, Fresh coconut water
Hydrate often! Especially when your family offers you fresh coconut water just cut down from its tree.
Summer, Coffee at Miami Lab
Caffeine always helps. As seen in Miami Lab. 🙂
Summer, The Salty Donut, Miami
And artisanal donuts, with bacon. Oh yeah! Totally destroyed that. 🙂

 

Summer, Wynwood Art District
Art therapy also helps. Wynwood Art District in Miami is amazing!
Summer, Miami, Venetian Causeway
And try to end your workcation day by catching a beautiful sunset.

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