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This is my first live video from Valencia, new style. I am sharing my dream for the future, and the reason why I am in Valencia (Spain).
(Click on the small picture to watch the video)
But before I share my dream for the future, I want to share something about my past.
I graduated at Utrecht University and I got a job for 6 hours, which wasn’t enough to pay the bills. I also started my own restaurant in a harbour in the North of the Netherlands. I did both for the next 9 years.
I also had a very big farmers house with my husband and we had lots of animals: a dog and chicken and goats and a pig and lots more. In my restaurant I was like the mother hen, gathering all my clients and employees under my wings. We had lots of fun.
But at the end of this period I had many problems. I had to sell my restaurant, I had to leave everything behind and in just a few months I had lost everything I had. I had to start all over, or should I say: I had the chance to start all over.
I did. I became a trainer. I did a marketing education. I built my own training company and I earned a lot of money.
But in the end this money didn’t make me happy and I went looking for inner freedom. Two years later I became a digital nomad in a campervan. I traveled all over Europe. After 2,5 years I found a house in Tarifa.
There I wrote a book, the “Ellen in Wonderland” book. I never published it because in the first chapter I wrote about my divorce and my marriage but also about other traumatic experiences in my life.
Writing the book (opening the Pandora Box) made me sick: physically and mentally. I came back to the Netherlands to heal from all these traumas and I spent two years living alone, in nature.
Last December I suddenly felt better, as if the light went on again in my head, and I decided I wanted start a new life.
One Sunday morning I was drawing and I suddenly I had a clear vision for the future. This is basically my business plan. It has all the good elements from my past experiences and it also contains my views on about freedom, trust and connection.
In the middle of the drawing you see a big house, which looks a lot like my old house in the Netherlands. This is the place where I want to invite entrepreneurs, and my nomad friends. I will become another mother hen, taking them all under my wings, inviting them to work together and live together and create together. We will share food and ideas and plans to make the world a better place.
The house needs to be near a town so people can come by plane, but there should also be a garden, for my nomad friends who live in campervans and who want to park their vans. These nomads in campervans have trouble finding a community, because normally coworking places are located in towns. But if you live in a campervan, going into a town is not a good idea.
With more and more people living in cities who never go out in nature, and with more and more people traveling and working in campervans, the world needs co-working places in nature. Of course everyone who wants to come is welcome to stay: entrepreneurs living in houses, and nomads, and other people who are interested.
I also want to invite artists, because they are also creating something, like my clients who create a business. I have this idea that if I help my clients create a business, they can also learn from creative people creating art, or music, or whatever, and vice versa.
For example: in Tarifa I have friends who are really good flamenco artists and they can help my clients get outside their head and into their body, while my clients could help them with their marketing.
If you work in nature, you simply are more creative, and more productive. I am now living in a city and for me this is really hard work, because the walls of the house are also in my head. Working in nature opens my mind, it helps me to think out of the box.
So I want to invite the nomads and clients and artists, but I also want to invite locals, because when I am a nomad or an expat and I visit a country I also want to give something back to the community where I am a guest.
So I have a vision of artists and nomads and business owners and locals creating together.
Where you see the tree and the hammock: that is my office. There is an entrepreneur in the hammock. This is the place where I help my clients build a location independent business, so they gain financial freedom, and inner freedom, and the personal freedom to work where they want, when they want.
I want to take care of this coworking place with other people, because one of the campervans in the drawing is mine. Two of three time a year I want to take my campervan and go traveling myself. So I am going to be the host in the coworking place, but I also want to be able to leave when I want to, because for me this is also a freedom business.
Why I make this video, and why I share these ideas, is because I want to invite friends in Europe to also start their own coworking place. Then we make this one big online community and if you are part of this coworking place in Spain or in the Netherlands or in Germany, you can also go to the coworking places in other countries, and because they are all part of this online community you already know who is there to greet you.
Basically my whole idea for the coworking in nature is one big “Tertulia”: the parties I organised when I was living in Tarifa. There we also shared meals and ideas. We would have 20 people from 30 different countries speaking 40 different languages, all coming together, creating together, eating and enjoying together.
What I like about this concept is that you can come and go. You can come and live here for awhile, but you can also leave and come back and leave again. This is basically what I needed when I was a digital nomad in a campervan: a place to come home to, in nature, where you can leave, and come back again.
Now the question is: where, and how am I going to build it. I could have stayed in the Netherlands to figure out how to do this, but that is not how I do it. I just jump into the unknown and see what comes up. I open my arms and trust the journey.
When I sat in my caravan in the Netherlands I asked this question to myself: where do I want to go? The answer was: Valencia. This town has the advantage that it has an airport and there is lots of nature around it. It looks ideal for my plans. But after three weeks in Valencia I noticed that I am getting tired of the traffic. I have to do some more exploring to see if Valencia is going to be a good area for this coworking place.
Another option is Málaga. it has the advantage that I already have a big network there because I have been there many times, and I know lots of people who I can invite to do this with me. For other people Portugal would be a good place.
So if you are watching and you are somewhere in Europe and if you have some land and money (please): send me a message and talk about it and co-create. I can’t wait. I wish it is already true.
I was exited about sharing this, because this is my personal dream. And you know that in the last years I made more plans, but this one is the real deal. This plan has everything that I like in life and what I want to do in my private and professional life.
This is officially it. It is already true. The plan is ready and now we only have to build it. Thank you for watching, and reading. Let’s stay in touch.
I would love to hear your reactions, or ideas, or any offer for help. Please let me know!