Who am I, and why am I so obsessed with this idea of creating a life of geographical freedom?
The idea behind creating a life o geographical freedom is that it allows you to be where you want, when you want, with who you want. To do so you need to build a business that can operate without you, develop an income portfolio that can be managed via the internet, or ideally, both. Although online education and eCommerce are becoming the new norm as we move into the digital age, I do think it’s important to put a face behind the information and advice that we find online which is my motivation for letting you know more about myself.
Hi, my name is Tom Wright, and for years I was aware that there are many ways to earn an income online, however, technology was never my strong point so I kept putting it off, and with what I know now, I wish I had started years ago because the limiting belief that it was too hard for someone like me stopped me from even trying.
Learning how to earn an income online has made the quality of my life so much better and in the current climate with what is going on, I want to inspire others to take that first step towards a happier more fulfilled life with more time, joy, and freedom.
Although I’ve run a few businesses, I was definitely a technophobe up until just a few years ago, but the more I learned about business and where the world is going, I knew that to live the life I desire, and to keep up in the world of business, I needed to transition my skills to the online digital age, so I started looking for options and mentors.
In today’s digital world, finding a mentor, especially to build an online business is as simple as, a quick google search! So why listen to me?
After all, I only started my online business in 2018, however, although I still have so much to learn, it all makes so much sense to me now, and from my experience, the most rewarding and best way to learn is by teaching others.
In a lot of ways, it’s better to learn from someone who is closer to your level than someone who is years ahead of you.
That said I have an amazingly experienced team of mentors behind me that I will gladly introduce you to, in fact, if pop your details into the “start here” page, I will personally send you an excellent free video training series by one of my personal mentors who completely opened my eyes to the possibilities online.
I believe in karma, you get what you give, and although financial freedom is important, how you get there and why is even more so.
I believe you should enjoy what you do over how much you get paid, yet I also know now that when we tell ourselves that to earn good money doing something we love “sounds too good to be true”, that we are putting limiting beliefs on ourselves and compromising true fulfillment for an average safe life.
One of the things I’ve learned over the years is that I truly love working with and helping other like-minded people to grow and enjoy life as much as I do.
I profoundly believe that with the opportunities that the internet provides, the traditional educational system and 9-5 work models are somewhat obsolete. Mastering online business in this day and age will dramatically improve your quality of life.
If you are looking for someone to tell you that building an online business and the lifestyle you desire is easy and can happen overnight, (laughs out loud) that’s not me, there are a ton of scams out there that will lead you to believe so, I say that as I lost thousands of dollars on some of them whilst trying to figure this whole online income business out and I want to help you avoid some of the same mistakes I made.
Want a get rich quick scheme? look somewhere else. If you’re like me, and at the age of 30 couldn’t even touch-type let alone dream of building a website, no sweat, with the right advice, persistence, and focus, there’s no reason why you can’t learn these things.
And if that gives you the freedom you desire, wouldn’t you agree that it’s worth a bit of effort?
I was not born into money nor do I have a university degree.
Yes, that is actually my legs in the photo, and although I had a nice pay-check and pretty cool office in my last corporate job, if you are looking for a university-educated business mentor in a three-piece suit, sorry, I’m not your man.
However, if you’re looking to get support and advice from someone that loves his life, loves helping people grow, works from all over the world, and wants to share how he does it, I’m you’re man!
So who is this Tom Wright guy (That’s Me)?
Blessed to be born in Byron Bay, Australia in 1986 to an incredible musician and the best mum in the world, I am extremely grateful for my hippy upbringing.
I could tell you a sob story about how my dad had an affair whilst on tour in Europe when I was 8, and how mum was left to care for 5 kids with no money, meaning we often didn’t have food on the table, and how she was working two jobs just to make ends meet, but I think my mum did an admirable job as we still had an amazing childhood, plus I know how many people have had it so much worse than my siblings and I.
My work ethic and entrepreneurial mindset started when I was 10 years old in order to fund my passion for skateboarding, I needed to learn how to earn money myself as mum couldn’t afford to pay for my skate equipment.
The combination of the tough times with mum, her heart of gold, plus living in such a beautiful and forward-thinking part of the world, inspired not just the work ethic but morals and gratitude I have today.
At age 18 I just couldn’t see the sense in committing the next four-plus years of my life to study at university a career path that I wasn’t 100% sure I even wanted, so my plan was to travel instead to see what options were out there.
I found myself in a job that allowed me a bit of travel around Australia but I somehow still ended up getting hooked on climbing the corporate ladder like so many of us do, this was within the direct sales/marketing industry.
By age 23, I was running my own company, had built a successful team of sales contractors and staff, I was making far more money than most university-educated professionals, let alone people my age. Some of my friends from high school were studying marketing at university and I would often help them with there homework, so whilst they were clocking up huge HECS debts (Higher Education Contribution Scheme), I got hooked on learning through doing and was earning serious coin at the same time.
Again I honestly think the current education system is seriously flawed but that’s a whole different conversation. As an ambitious youngster, the truth was I got carried away and had no life outside of the company.
I hope this photo makes you laugh as much as it does for me these days.
My work-life balance was 100% work.
I’d go out for dinner with my girlfriend at the time and be thinking “hmmm this would be a great place to bring my high rollers as a bonus for hitting targets”, I even slept in my office a number of times due to late-night preparation for important morning meetings.
I learned a ton of important life skills there’s no doubt about that, but due to burning myself out, I needed to close the company down.
What did I learn?
- The value of mastering sales and marketing.
- The importance of daily self-development and a positive attitude.
- Preparation and consistency are key.
- Lead by example and always put your team first.
- Work smart, not hard.
- Have a crystal clear destination (in other words goals)
- Take 100% responsibility for your results.
- Don’t rely on just one income stream or client.
- Work to live, don’t live to work.
After a few months off, I was poached by a solar panel installation company that one of the sales reps I’d trained had managed to get a sales role in.
It was the start of the solar boom in Australia and he was making crazy money just as a sales rep. He convinced me to come on board and within 3 months they asked me what it would take to convince me to manage one of the branches so they could expand into a new state.
My pay packet plus commissions were worth confidently over $220,000 that year but once again I had no life. To mask the stress, I was spending money almost as quick as I was earning it, so when a good friend tragically died, it was like being slapped in the face with the reality that we could die any minute, so I quit and decided to travel the world to “find myself” again.
What did I learn?
- Take time to know your product and learn from the best.
- Results provide opportunities.
- Money isn’t everything.
- Make sure you love what you’re doing as you never know when it might be your time to go.
The old saying goes, “money can’t buy you happiness” I do agree, however, I also believe that it sure helps solve a lot of problems, unfortunately, the problems I needed to address were internal.
Give a 24-year-old boy with next to no financial education that kind of money and I’ll tell you right now it’s also a good recipe for disaster, but again some valuable lessons learned.
NOW THIS IS WHERE THE ONLINE INCOME FIRST CAME TO MIND
After a year of traveling the Americas, I was hooked on this wonderful world and the joys that traveling had to offer, however, my savings were starting to look dismal. With a creative eye for business, even back then before there was a Facebook marketplace, Amazon fulfillment or many of the other e-commerce platforms we have today, I started a simple online style business through Facebook and PayPal, called “My Mexican Mission” selling physical products from the south of Mexico to people all over the world.
It was mainly friends though because, to be honest, I really had next to no idea what I was doing or how to leverage social media, SEO or any other online marketing, that said, by taking and fulfilling orders myself, I was able to make enough money to live a comfortable life in Mexico but this essentiality was my first taste at the value of online business.
What did I learn with “My Mexican Mission”?
- Earning Dollars but Spending Pesos = Easy lifestyle.
- The Power of Social Media and the Internet.
- Basic principles of an e-commerce business model.
- Supporting the local community is extremely fulfilling.
I eventually made enough money to make it to Colombia to help my friend with his new adventure tour company “Elemento outdoor adventures“.
I instantly fell in love with “La Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta” and got hooked on this lifestyle type of business that my friend was building so, I decided to stay and collaborate.
With some seriously hard work, networking, and a bit of creative thinking, I opening up a number of my own products and tours under the company name “SNAP” (Sierra Nevada Adventure Paintball) and started living the dream, at least for a while.
After 3 years living in Colombia, I had seen my fair share of incredible adventures and learned so much about Colombia and myself, what I wanted and didn’t want in life and business, the most valuable lessons being,
- You can build a business around your passions or something that you love.
- There is nothing more satisfying than providing a product or service that you know 100% that you would use and pay for yourself.
- Choose your business partners wisely and get contracts in place.
- Create a job description and record systems for every single aspect of your business, especially the jobs that you might like to do yourself.
- Make sure that you nor any-one person is a critical cog in the system because if that person gets sick, injured, or can no longer perform that role for any reason, your business will not only stop but go backward.
- Make sure you know when your private health/travel insurance runs out (or any insurance policy for that matter).
Of course, amongst all of this there were plenty of other lessons and skills learned, a second language for example, but I got seriously ill and couldn’t work.
The biggest mistake I made was not training anyone or developing a training manual for the role I had.
This meant that during the time I was in the hospital and the 2 months that I was recovering, not only did business stop completely, it went backward, my guides that I’d spent time and money training understandably needed to jump ship, I was paying a large hospital bill, paying for ongoing leases for two bits of land, basically all business expenses on top of my own personal expenses.
After 6 hard months trying to get my health back to normal and the company out of the red, yet again I was burnt out.
My girlfriend at the time had also moved into the center of Colombia to finish her medical internship at one of the better hospitals in the country, so I sold up and after a quick stint managing “Colombian Bike Junkies” in San Gil, not far from where she was posted, we made the decision to get engaged and come back to Australia to introduce her to my world and start to build something there.
I went back first whilst she finished her medical internship, I then brought her over once I had a stable situation.
Unfortunately/fortunately depending on how you look at it, things didn’t work out once I got her to Australia.
Working within the IT industry and interacting with developers and software engineers re-opened my eyes to the wonderful world of the internet, computer software, and what the future of business looked like.
My mind started thinking about business again, things like, how I could come up with the next best App idea or how I could have run the previous business better if I’d only had or known about some of these technologies.
I even tried my hand at learning how to code with “Ruby on Rails” but to be frank, you need to be pretty smart to code but also a certain type of person.
Not long after this, a good opportunity came along working back in the renewable energy market, I took an elite sales role for Australia’s largest energy company, it sounded like a great opportunity and although it was the first employment role that I’d ever had for a major corporation, I did question if I was selling my soul to the devil, however, I knew it was within a field (Renewable Energy) that I was passionate about and there is something to be said about understanding how large corporations operate.
I stuck it out for over 3 years earning a decent income, learning a bunch of new skills, and making some great new connections within the renewable energy space.
After my manager left due to frustration around the red tape and office politics slowing down progress, I was given the opportunity to take his place, but after getting to experience first hand why he left, I knew that climbing the corporate ladder and hiding in the false belief of a “secure job” whilst playing the ass-kissing game of office politics, bureaucracy and red tape just were not where I was going to grow and make my mark on the world, let alone enjoy.
I started looking for new opportunities that were in line with everything that I had learned over the years about what I wanted in work and more importantly life, the key areas being, Family, Fulfilment, financial and geographical freedom, and personal growth.
Family – is everything to me, so finding something that would allow me to spend more quality time with loved ones was high on the list.
Financial stability – Although I said money isn’t everything and can’t buy you happiness, poverty can’t buy you anything and at the end of 2017 my gorgeous mother was diagnosed with bowel cancer, it hit the family hard, naturally, we wanted to be able to provide her with the best treatment possible, however, I was the most financially capable in the family at the time and even though I did what I could, I wasn’t in much of a position to help financially on the scale I would have liked, so improving my financial game became even more important to me.
Personal development and growth – After things were put into perspective with mum, I became fanatic about increasing my quality of life both financially and internally.
I started reading books like “Rich dad poor dad”, plus probably every other book that Robert Kiyosaki has written, I read “The Barefoot Investor”, “Think and Grow Rich”, ” Millionaire Success Habits” and just about any other book I could find on, finance, Realestate, how to make more money and then multiply and keep it, along with other self-help books on inner peace and emotional intelligence, you name it, I honestly think in the first half of 2018, I read more books than I had in the rest of my life, and I was feeling better than I ever had too! coincidence?
I signed up to audible and started listening to books or podcasts whenever I was wasn’t able to physically read, I even got a waterproof mp3 player to educate myself whilst doing laps at the pool.
I started going to seminars on the weekends and public holidays instead of going out partying with my friends, often spending money to pass an entire Sunday in a workshop learning about these kinds of things, something had changed in me, I was fired up, I was hungry, I was even excited to read about TAXES for god sake!!!
I was on a mission to spend more time with family and to earn a decent income without being tied to any one location if anything like what happened with mum or anyone I love was to happen again, I wanted the freedom to be by their side, by the way, in the end, I’m over the moon to say that Mum is one of the lucky ones who can say she is a cancer survivor.
My family live all over the country and sometimes the world so, this notion of “Geographical freedom” also aligned with my passion and desire to travel and “earn dollars whilst spending pesos”, furthermore with my desire to build a Sustainable adventure eco-retreat in Colombia, teaching people about personal and environmental sustainability.
Maybe you can see where I’m heading with this?
I knew based on what I wanted to achieve that although computing skills was a major weakness of mine, I was willing to do whatever it took to find a way, so although I was earning great money in my normal job, I even got a second job because admittedly, I must have spent in the tens of thousands of dollars, on seminars and self-education products that year. I was determined to learn how to earn a decent income online.
Sure, some of it was a waste of time and money but sometimes you have to dig through the dirt to find the gold.
I was also very verbal about what I wanted to do, so not surprisingly, in the end, it was actually the word of mouth that found me the opportunity I was looking for.
One of my good friends Shelly was asking me why I was giving up my weekends and social life and spending hard-earned cash to go to all these events, after explaining what I wanted and why. Shelly mentioned that she had a friend who had recently started an online business and that I should talk to her. I organized a breakfast meeting with Kathryn, (the friend) and she introduced me to an online training program.
The step by step program outlined a clear path for someone like myself who wasn’t good with technology to be able to start from scratch, with a variety of training programs to build my own sustainable online income stream (I built this site with WordPress based on the training that they gave me).
As cliche as it sounds, the rest is history!!
I am now also working on a number of other online projects that are all in line with these goals but this is truly all where it started.
Mastering the ability to earn online was the best thing that has ever happened to me, I’ve spent more time with family in the last few years than I did in the decade prior, plus I’ve traveled to multiple new countries and had the time of my life and it’s only getting better.
Thanks for listening to my story, If you have any questions about anything at all, please get in touch as I’d love to help save you from a lot of the pitfalls that I experience to get things moving.
Peace out hippies!
Tom Wright, AKA Mr. Wright 😉