The ocean breeze blows in through the open door as I sit in my rocking chair—a surprisingly favorite Nicaraguan furnishing. Sunlight glitters on the ocean, almond and coconut trees sway in the wind. This is my office for today, a four-bedroom house right on the beach that we rent for $350 a month.
Previously we spent time on the shores of Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, beneath the shadow of three majestic volcanoes…swimming in one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, shopping in the local markets, and interacting with the indigenous people who still wear their traditional clothing and speak Spanish as their second language. Our entire family liberally learns of language, culture, and tradition—one of the major reasons we love to travel.
Our family of seven has spent several months exploring the richness of Mexico, climbing ruins, swimming in rivers, and exploring world-famous museums. We’ve snorkeled in the Caribbean waters off the islands of Belize and eaten pupusas (thick corn tortillas) in El Salvador.
How can we afford it? With my laptop and an Internet connection, I have the freedom to work from anywhere. Sometimes that has been in the highlands of Guatemala, on a tropical island in Belize, or like today, beachside in Nicaragua. Next month, it may be in the Central Valley of Costa Rica.
What sort of “job” provides me with this lifestyle? It’s actually more of a business than a job—I’m a professional blogger.
I earn a living through writing about my opinions, expertise, experiences and more.
As with anything, the more effort and focus I put into my blog, the more money I can make. I spend between 20 and 30 hours a week writing about our travel experiences…and the blog provides 40% to 80% of our total income.
People love living vicariously through our stories, photos, and videos about family travel, which brings traffic to my website.
That traffic makes me money three ways:
- Visitors buy products that we’ve created ourselves, like our book: Living Deliberately: How to Create a Ridiculously Awesome Life.
- Affiliate sales—visitors buy other people’s products. This includes products that have been created by other bloggers. I can even sell products from Amazon and receive a commission. For example, if I mention a recent book I’ve read, or talk about what kind of camera I use for taking photos, I can reference an Amazon affiliate link and earn a percentage of purchases made.
- I also earn money through my blog by placing advertisements on it. Advertisers pay me for every month their ad is displayed on my website.
Our family loves to travel. We love the fun of adventure, the beauty of exotic locations, and the enlightenment that comes through exposure to culture and language. Blogging as a business gives me the freedom to work from anywhere in the world, doing something I enjoy, and spending time with my family exploring the world.
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