Working from anywhere rocks. Beaches, pools, rooftops, castles, ranches... you name it, we've worked there. At the same time, wanting to work from anywhere without having a strategy in mind seems like a surprisingly effective way to miss out big time.
Here are two ways to strategically choose a place to work that will give you an advantage by being there instead of somewhere else.
If your problem is that you have a ton of ideas but you are never getting started, go to Silicon Valley or another place within your reach that is known for start-ups. Being surrounded by people who are about to start a project or business and more experienced start-uppers that can share their experiences with you will inspire you enough to get you started on at least one of your ideas.
You actually can't help it even if you wanted to. It's psychological. The monkey in all of us wants to join the majority of people we are surrounded by, so if everyone is starting something, you subconscious will likely crumble under the peer pressure and you will feel the strong desire to start something also. (Well, this is a very basic way to describe behavioral economics in a nutshell, fun intended!).
If your weakness is people skills, go to any place with a strong Latin American community such as Miami and you will instantly feel more social because everyone else is. If you are never getting along with your outsourced nerdy freelancers, go to Comic-Con and you will get a unique inside in what fascinates the mind of a nerd. (No offense against nerds if this was an inaccurate description, after all, my husband and I were interviewed for the #MarketingNerd podcast by Search Engine Journal and I haven't been to Comic-Con).
These are just examples that might not apply to you but you get the idea! Pick a place where the majority of people have the skill you are looking for and stay long enough to get the hang of it.
#2 Surround yourself with mentors
Chances are, you could grow your business or your career a lot faster. If not, you are my personal hero but if there is a slight chance you feel stuck or just need that break-through you know you deserve, keep on reading.
I have found that the best mentors are people who have the same goals as you do but are further down the road. The common advice here would be to just talk to someone who achieved what you want to do which is the biggest mistake you could make. Success is gradual and you learn the most if you talk to someone who is one step ahead of you, not 20 milestones further down the road.
Does it harm to talk to Mark Zuckerberg if you want to start a social network next year after you quit your job? Nope. I doubt that you would get a chance to talk to him and learn a lot though since the next steps you are facing have nothing to do with what he is doing right now. You would be much better off talking to someone who just acquired funding for a company that has a similar setup regarding the team and the required skill sets to translate your idea into reality.
How to find the right mentors? Live where they live. If you have just one person in mind, live in the same city for 2 months, join that person's dinners and evening walks. If you have nobody in mind, think about where the people you would want to learn from would live and go to restaurant openings, charity events and other potential get-togethers for 4 weeks.
If you meet nobody useful doing all of that, spend a year as a buddhist because there is something wrong with you. Just kidding, I just meant to say that it is highly unlikely to not learn anything from someone more successful than you.
Where you live can significantly influence your life and career. The people you meet because they live where you live, the people who will come to meet you because of where you live, people you meet because they work the way you work or the magazines that share your story because of the way you work - all of those things depend on choosing the right location(s) and will have an impact on your success.
Christina Baldassarre, Founder & COO
Christina is an online advertising entrepreneur and trainer. She is the founder and COO of 1DollarAd.com and ZebraAdvertisement.com and has been shortlisted by the US Search Awards 2014 for "Best Use of Social Media in a Search Campaign". Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for consulting regarding online advertising.