Nomadic [nō-ˈma-dik]: adj. Relating to, or characteristic of, being on the move.
What does it mean to be nomadic?
At Nomadic Leaders, we believe “nomadic” is, first and foremost, a state of mind.
To be nomadic is to be a mover and a shaker, regardless of where you are.
It’s about moving from within.
It’s about doing what it takes to move forward: from where you are currently, to where you’re headed.
It’s about building momentum, propelling a movement, moving hearts and minds, and moving and inspiring others into action with you.
It’s about trail-blazing.
It’s about the exploration and discovery of unpaved roads and new horizons.
It’s about creating a ripple effect.
It’s about setting new ideas into motion.
It’s about speaking up.
It’s about challenging the “status quo”.
It’s about unleashing potentials and welcoming new perspectives.
It’s about immersion into new experiences.
It’s about following where an idea leads.
It’s about believing in your dreams and taking action on behalf of your deepest desires.
It’s about embarking on a brave personal journey, an exploration of what’s around the bend, beyond the horizon, and above the clouds.
==> Do YOU consider yourself to be nomadic? Why or why not?
In that moment, I felt I had no history, no reputation, no expectation, and no obligation to be who I had been yesterday.
For me, “far enough” was Australia.
The year was 1996. I was 20 years old and on a 16 hour flight from Los Angeles to Melbourne, Australia, when, in an instant, I was moved to tears by the realization – and the profound freedom – that NO ONE, in the entire country that I was on my way to, to live in for the next 6 months, had any preconceived notion of who I was.
Forty thousand feet in the air, this was a time-stopping awareness for me.
And seeing as the woman seated next to me on the plane ALSO had no preconceived notion of who I was, I didn’t hold back. I allowed myself to feel it. Tears of relief streamed down my face in tandem with the release and the profound opening that was happening in my chest. Sitting on that airplane, I processed a sudden and life-altering realization of a new kind of freedom.
It was a freedom that had only come from traveling far enough to meet myself.
In that moment, I felt I had no history, no reputation, no expectation, and no obligation to be who I had been yesterday.
I was just me. On a plane. Luggage in tow. Enroute to a new land, for a 6 month journey.
I grew up in a really small New England town where everyone knew everyone. Every trip I went on up to that point, was with people I knew. Some high school classmates went to the same college I did. Not bad things, but it’s important to understand that up until this singular moment on the plane, I had never known the experience of not being known.
I had never known the experience of others not having any preconceived expectations about who I am. I suddenly had – and was – a blank slate. I could be just me – whoever that was.
Me, with no one to please, and no pre-conceived notions or expectations influencing me.
IT WAS SO PROFOUNDLY FREEING!
I wiped my tears and smiled at the lady in the seat next to me.
Little did I know, she would end up hosting me, opening her home along with her family of five, for a full week during a visit I’d make to Brisbane that December. She even asked me to stay for Christmas, insisting that I should be with a family. I was touched, but I declined, having made plans to meet my “framily” of other international students who’d agreed to meet on Bondi Beach in Sydney for Christmas (think: Christmas in a bathing suit, with a santa hat). 🙂
All this to say ….
If you want to get closer to the truth of yourself: travel.
And travel plus coaching is a truly life-altering combination!
It really can’t be understated: the power of receiving coaching while on an international travel journey is the ULTIMATE opportunity to grow and to meet yourself: as an individual, as a citizen of the world and, in this case, as a leader. It’s this combination that makes the Nomadic Leaders program so incredibly unique: Travel is integrated into coaching. And coaching is integrated into travel.
You can only have this level, and this kind, of personal development and leadership education, while you travel.
Add that you’ll also be amongst a community of some of the most extraordinary people you’ll ever meet – individuals who, like you, are also committed to this awesome and expansive growth journey … and the possibilities are truly boundless.
So, here’s a question to seriously consider: Who do you think YOU would be, if no one knew who you were?
Make the world your office!
I love the fact that I can work from anywhere. My location serves as my canvas.
One of my favorite places to work from is an artful hotel lobby. The elegant and alive-with-energy setting of an upscale hotel inspires me – in both on and off “work hours”.
In case you’ve never done such a thing, allow me to offer a nudge: You don’t need to stay, for example, at the Ritz Carlton to use it as a perfect excuse to get dressed up, walk in with confidence, be greeted with grace by the concierge, and find a comfortable place to sit with a notebook or laptop. You can embrace the social atmosphere and order a beverage too, if you’d like – it’s 5 o’clock somewhere, right?
I introduced my sister to the fun of this while visiting her in Vermont. Two miles from her home, we found a swanky hotel that she had never walked into. We decided in advance to order coffee and when we did, much to our surprise, we were shone to a complimentary fresh coffee bar and invited to please help ourselves. Following my lead, she and I expressed our thanks and proceeded to enjoy free coffee. 🙂
Make the world your office! You never know who you’ll meet, what you’ll find, or what impromptu conversations you’ll have. A simple “Where’s home?” or “Are you in town for business?” are easy conversation starters.
I encourage you: Do it, and let me know how it goes!
The pictures seen here are of my recent visit to Hotel Monaco, which served well as Nomadic Leaders virtual headquarters for a day. Seeing and hearing the comings and goings of people from all over the world, were the perfect backdrop while I chipped away at preparations for your Nomadic Leaders experience of a lifetime.
Tell me: Where are YOU working from today?
Birds need a nest, and they still fly. ~ Gloria Steinem
In our digital age, more and more people work from home. A few commonplace examples of this 21st century lifestyle are: corporate employees who log in from home, entrepreneurs with a virtual business, location-independent freelancers, and the growing number of students and teachers of online learning.
This rapidly changing virtual landscape is creating changes in not only how we think about and do our work, but also how we think about and identify ‘home’. How one defines home is, of course, very personal – and it’s also fluid – often changing along with changes in circumstances, relationships, and stages of life.
For me personally, home has been many things: It’s been a place I run away from. And it’s been a place I can’t wait to come home to. It’s been a place I’ve identified as an address. Other times, as a town, or a city, or a state, or a country, a continent, a hemisphere. For reasons I don’t fully understand, the most sincere definition of home I’ve ever held, has been to identify home as Planet Earth. Even that at times feels like it only tells part of the story.
I identify as a citizen of the world. But – I also really like my bed and having a home to come home to. I love ‘home’ being not only defined by location but by the people in my life. If my heart’s not there, my home is certainly not there.
But where’s the heart? If home is where the heart is, and your heart spans across continents, how do YOU define home?
My most recent evolution around how I define ‘home,’ is to embrace that, for me home is untethered, it’s too complex and too big to be defined by one place.
In other words, I’ve stopped trying to answer that question.
And with this release, came a new question: Where is my home-base?
Home-base doesn’t get me confused, and it doesn’t cause me to feel flustered or confined by its definition.
Home-base is where my bed is. It’s where my clothes and toothbrush is. It’s where I return to after wandering and journeying based on my unapologetically expansive definition of ‘home’.
This works for me. To know where my nest is, and still fly.
Join the conversation and follow the journey! Please share your thoughts on these questions:
Where’s ‘home’ for you? What does ‘home’ mean to YOU? How do YOU define it?
Pack whatever you want, then take half.
Without question, my least favorite thing about travel is PACKING. Maybe you relate?
One time, while stressing about what to pack for a 6 month stay in Australia, my uncle (a world traveler himself) gave me some great advice: “Tara, pack whatever you want – then take half.”
This was 20+ years ago, my junior year of college. Yeesh, hard to believe that math is right! Time marches on, and over the years, I’ve come to embrace and whole-heartedly believe that less truly is more.
This didn’t happen overnight. My growing affection for minimalism has developed in stages, and most recently it reached a new height when I moved: from a spacious, high-ceiling, 2-bedroom, double-parlor home in Rhode Island with a back yard and a front porch … to a 600 square foot 1-bedroom with a little balcony just outside of Washington DC.
At first, the prospect of down-sizing felt incredibly daunting. What would I keep? What would I get rid of? In moments, I even considered not moving so that I could hold on to “stuff” – my cherished dining room table in particular. It sounds pretty ridiculous to me now, but I loved that dining room table. It was large. It was wooden. I coveted it for many months before finally making the purchase and was thrilled when it arrived.
I loved so much about it. Aesthetically, it served as the central focus for one of my two parlors. Its functionality, with a leaf that I could insert when I wanted to make it even bigger, allowed me to fit many friends and family around it. It had symbolic meaning to me, representing a certain degree of success. This, plus the memories made at that table added up to a whole lot of sentimental value.
But – however much I cherished it, my dining room table could NOT come with me. Two stools and a ‘breakfast bar’ would be serving as its replacement.
Now, perhaps you’re wondering ….
“Tara, what the heck does your dining room table have to do with MY packing?”
** A lot. **
Packing for travel requires you to be discerning, thoughtful, and intentional about what you bring with you. There will be those cherished how-can-I-possibly-live-without-(fill in the blank) items that tempt you to either stay put, or to lug them around with you. There will be things that you need to leave behind – both physically and metaphorically. By releasing what’s heavy, you’ll replace it with the freedom and wealth of mobility, the lightness of heart, and the gains that come with a shift in priorities. Similar in spirit to down-sizing a home, extended international travel requires you to be very selective about what you take with you. That’s why “pack what you want, then take half” is damn good advice.
You can find a plethora of packing lists for traveling light, but ultimately, we here at Nomadic Leaders believe that without a mindset shift those won’t be of much use to you.
Adopting a mindset that welcomes less “stuff” in lieu of experiencing more “stuff of life” is what makes all the difference.
Ultimately it’s about BEING more. It’s about defining wealth not just in terms of money but in terms of human capital and the everyday abundance of that which is truly priceless:
==> More freedom.
==> More timeless memories.
==> More growth opportunities.
==> More adventure.
==> More fulfillment.
==> More positive impact.
==> Expanded levels of understanding.
==> Boundless new possibilities.
==> And deeper levels of connection – to yourself, to others, and to the world.
More “stuff of life” experiences … experiences so valuable, they truly are priceless.
The memories and invaluable experiences that travel brings are yours forever. They get infused into your soul, forever stamped on your heart. They exponentially expand your mind, thereby expanding your understanding of the world and your role in it: a value that is truly incalculable.
Put this alongside a dining room table, for example, and there’s no contest.
So, what is it for YOU? What’s YOUR “dining room table”? Whatever it is that has you holding on, staying put, or weighed down … imagine: Letting It Go. Let it go and you may not even miss it. My bet is, you won’t.
All this said, it’s the extraordinary few who actually take the gamble to find out.
Nomadic Leaders are examples of these extraordinary few. They rise to this challenge, and they understand that present “stuff” is a just mirror of who they’ve been. With a focus on living full out and being the fulfillment of their potentials, they make brave, bold decisions now. They take action, now, to support the quickening of who they are becoming.
Pack what you want, then take half – and get ready for the experience of a lifetime.
Blessings on your journey. Onward and upward!
By disrupting assumptions we’re able see things with fresh eyes and renewed curiosity.
One of the most stimulating and controversial images of the world, the Peters Projection World Map was first introduced by historian and cartographer Dr. Arno Peters in Germany in 1974, generating a firestorm of debate. The first English-version was published in 1983.
Representing a round planet on a flat surface is a challenge. The Peters Map is an area accurate map, and in contrast to many of the more commonly seen maps of the world, North American and European countries appear smaller, and Africa and South America strikingly larger. The map has passionate fans and staunch critics.
Here at Nomadic Leaders, we think the Peters Projection World Map is pretty awesome. Why? Because we welcome and celebrate opportunities to see things in new ways. By disrupting assumptions we’re able see things with fresh eyes and renewed curiosity. The Peters Map offers an unorthodox, mind-bending new angle on how to perceive and understand our world.
What do YOU think of Peters World Map?
I often think about, read about, talk, write – even speak – about leadership. It’s my work, my Masters degree, my curiosity, and my muse for so much of what I do and create.
Given how much there is to know, I also know how little I know. Good leaders are those who know that they don’t know everything and who, frankly, also know that they don’t need to. The best leaders are those with a sound sense of clarity about the inevitability of mis-takes.
Obama spoke to this in his 2016 DNC speech, pointing out that for those with the wherewithal to get “in the arena”, mistakes are “what happens when we try.” True words.
The opposite of leadership is not bad leadership.
There’s something called Servant Leadership (a great little book by that name was required reading in the Holistic Leadership Masters Degree program I graduated from. Robert K. Greenleaf is the author, and I encourage you to read it). ‘Servant Leadership’ is proof that leading from behind can be an extraordinarily powerful Model of Leadership, exemplifying the inter-dependent dynamics of leading and following.
The influence of servant leadership isn’t just evident in books and political arenas, it’s everywhere a lead-and-follow dynamic is. You can even, for example, see it on the dance floor of a salsa club. I say this as an admitted salsa dancing addict: Watch a couple dancing, a good lead and a good follow. Then, watch another salsa dance with a good leader but a poor follower; you can’t tell me that follower isn’t “leading”!
In any leadership “dance”, on or off a dance floor, the leader and the follower are inherently inter-dependent parties – not opposites. The opposite of leadership is not bad leadership, and the opposite of leadership is also not following, however good or bad. At Nomadic Leaders, we believe that the opposite of leadership is Spectatorship. The two are wholly incompatible. You simply cannot be a leader and always sit on the sidelines.
For all my faults and weaknesses, and however imperfectly I lead – and follow – on and off the dance floor … I make a point to live in the arena, not watch from the sidelines.
My qualifications on the subject of Leadership are growing and expanding rapidly and in real time. The recent launch of Nomadic Leaders is requiring me to step up, in the arena, and walk-my-bold-talk on an entirely new level. Rather than waiting to have every answer, Nomadic Leaders is a metaphorical plane that I am building while I fly it. I know from experience that this cart-before-horse approach is an immensely powerful and provocative force – one that propels visions and innovation and collaboration forward into manifestation.
Leadership roles aren’t new to me. As entrepreneur of a start-up for the last 12+ years, I’ve been the lead coach, mentor, and owner of my thriving first business, Create Your Life! … and there’s my formal education and training … and, a fun fact for you astrology and birth-order buffs, I am a Leo and first-born child (for better or worse, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are too).
Since early in my childhood I was frequently told I am “a natural leader.” It is true that my instinct has always been to lead. I was Student Council President. I was cast in leading roles in school plays. I was president of the AFS Club, and captain of the soccer and softball teams. Perhaps years of bossing my little sister around counts for something too. It was a rarity that, when given the possibility of leading, that I was not leading in some way. (In full disclosure, I was co-captain of those sports teams. The other captain was the “natural athlete” 🙂 ).
But I digress. What I want to share is this:
It is so important to know that there are many Models of Leadership. I spent much of my Masters Degree studying them, across cultures, and what is so *glaring* to me about the 2016 presidential election is seeing the various models of leadership at play. For example, Trump has said that, as a leader, Putin gets an “A”. And truth be told, when looking through the lens of a hierarchical, military-style, top-down Model of Leadership … he’s right! So would Hitler for that matter. (I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention here too, that even the “A” to “F” grading system lives within this model.)
Thankfully, this model of leadership is NOT the only one, despite the fact that those who work solely within this top-down leadership model would tell you that it is.
Ask a Native American tribe leader who is looking through the lens of a Consensus Model of Leadership, for example, to ‘grade’ Putin or Trump or Hitler or Kim Jong as leaders… and you will get a very different assessment.
Our 2016 presidential election is about so much more than The Donald vs. Hillary. It’s about which Models of Leadership we are willing to subscribe to, vote for, participate in – and which ones we won’t.
It’s about refusing to be a spectator, summoning the audacity of hope, and getting in the arena.
This is what the Nomadic Leaders movement is about. At Nomadic Leaders we stand for people coming together to contribute to our world and to empower one another through collaborative leadership models. We support and coach and nurture those who are willing to get in the arena and lead – from the front, the side, and at times from behind.
The opposite of leadership is spectatorship. And the opposite of spectatorship is engagement.
Engagement, contribution and participation is what makes YOU a leader. Anchored by action, together we are forming a movement that others are inspired to follow, engage with, participate in, and contribute to. We are joining forces and aligning the power, potential, and momentum to nudge our planet forward. Let us move together in the direction of love, collaboration, teamwork and care for our human race and our planet.
Nomadic Leaders is leading a growing movement, a dance, a lead and follow of Awakened People. Join us on this great journey together to see new places, in new ways. To make new discoveries, not only about the world, but about the intricate and expanding landscapes of your mind and heart.
YOU are a contributing part of this evolution and this awakening. Do not be a spectator. Do your part to engage and lead within our human family. Together we really are so much more. Come and join forces with myself and other innovative leaders – alongside you, behind you, and in front of you.
==> How do YOU lead?
==> How do YOU follow?
==> Where in your life is it time for you to get off the bench and in the arena?
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