Professionals have more power than ever before to live their lives in the way that they want to: traveling, and prioritizing their personal happiness without giving up their ambition of having a successful career. So why are they holding back?
The amount of power that workers hold has changed many times as new generations have entered the workforce. For baby boomers, getting a job was an expected next step in life. Though not all of them had the luxury of pursuing a profession that would make them feel fulfilled, they prided themselves on hard work and their ability to put food on the table and support their families.
Generation X followed in their parent’s footsteps, but their increased access to media and higher education gave them more power to go after a job that aligned with their interests. They impressed the importance of living a life in pursuit of happiness into their children, the millennials, with the mantra, “You can do anything you set your mind to”.
Now, millennials are ready to fulfill that mantra. They represent a large portion of the workplace, making up 35% of the U.S. labor force according to a Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data.
And yet, even though they listened to their parents and went after careers they were passionate about, their lives may still feel a little lackluster. They were told they could do anything, and, after putting in the time and hard work to get to where they are, they still feel like something is missing.
The realization that many millennials (and even members of previous generations) are coming to is this: work isn’t everything for everyone. Work is an essential part of our lives. It allows us to support ourselves, our families, and our day-to-day goals. For some, work is a primary driver of personal fulfillment. But, a life of all work, without meaningful relationships and diverse experiences, falls flat for many.
The most recent generation of professionals have more power than ever before to live their lives in the way that they want to: traveling, going after their personal goals, and even prioritizing their personal happiness without giving up their ambition of having a successful career. So why are they holding back?
Live your dream life, without sacrificing your professional development, on a work and travel program
The world’s current workforce is in a better position to “have it all” because of one thing: technology.
Technological advancements are allowing the concept of work to expand beyond the four walls of a conventional office. Professionals have been completing projects at their kitchen table and checking in on work after-hours for years, but with the proliferation of high-speed Wi-Fi the number of tasks that can be done outside the office has expanded.
Enter: the remote worker.
Remote workers have found a way to use technology to their advantage in their quest to live their dream life. They either run their own businesses, hustle in the freelance world, or hold a full-time job that allows them to work wherever, and sometimes whenever, they feel like they can be most productive.
For remote workers, it’s less about work-life balance and more about work-life flexibility.
Improvements in video calling services, project management and team collaboration tools, and remote servers allow them to excel in more and more physical locations.
When work blends into your life, instead of controlling it, you’ll have more opportunities to maximize the every day. Working remotely is one way to really can “have it all”.
Many remote workers not only get to choose where they want to work (from coworking spaces or home offices), but also when they work.
More and more companies are adopting core working hour models, allowing employees to flex their schedules to spend time with their families, make it to necessary appointments, or have more time to pursue their personal projects. Remote work gives them access to a life that is filled with meaningful memories and close relationships, without giving up their professional passion.
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Single professionals find value in flexibility as well. They can block time in their calendar to attend networking events or a professional development classes during the day, improving their skills and expanding their community while continuing to work for a company in a role that inspires them..
For those whose dream life requires a leap outside of their comfort zone but don’t want to risk losing the security of a successful professional career, remote work can be the answer. Because remote work doesn’t require you to consider a commute, these risk-takers can choose to live and work from wherever they want around the world. This cohort of aspiring location independent employees is niche, but growing. A recent survey by Remote Year and And Co called “Anywhere Workers” said that 9% of respondents who worked remotely chose to become a remote worker specifically so that they could travel.
Many of these traveling professionals aren’t doing it alone. Thousands of remote workers have joined a work and travel program like Remote Year in order to see the world while maintaining access to coworking spaces and high-speed Wi-Fi that allow them to successfully do their jobs. Work and travel programs don’t provide participants with a remote job, but they serve as an incredible platform for community, growth, and the expansion of global perspectives.
Truth be told, there are many ways that remote work allows us to “have it all”.
From giving us the flexibility to work when we are most creative, to greater opportunities to use our free time in more effective ways, to paving the path for permission to pursue the life we’ve always dreamed of living.
Remote work gives us all of this without asking us to give up on the career we’ve spent so much time pursuing. Remote work opens up a world of possibilities.
Flexible work just might be this generation’s most defining professional pursuit. In seeking out a way of life that is inspiring, productive, and most of all, free, we are creating a world in which future generations can not only strive to be the best they can be and maintain their professionalism, but also to live a life that is truly fulfilled.