February, the Month of Digital Nomadism and Minimalism
Hi all! The short month of February is now over, but it was such an eventful month. I left MIT, I spent one week traveling and working as a digital nomad PhD, and I came back from Portugal in the middle of the month and have worked from home. In the view of my Happiness Project for 2018 and the monthly reviews, here I am telling you if I reached the goals for this month.
1 - Travel in the US for a week, work and visit historical landmarks at the same time:
YES! As I already mentioned in this post about the digital nomad week in Washington DC and Philadelphia, I consider it to have been an amazing success. I managed to work and take care of bureaucracies regarding the next steps of my PhD (I won't lie, having rained quite often helped) and still explore a lot of museums, beautiful parks and historical monuments, as well as nice cafeterias and the lifestyle of a local. Having stayed with locals in DC and in an hostel in Philadelphia certainly helped. I even managed to do some networking, you never know when you'll meet someone who works in the same field. I met people in the same field through house stays and also in the hostel and even randomly speaking to a lady in a cafeteria on a rainy day. People saw me working and they ask :p
2 - Spend less on that digital nomad week that I would spend on a full month of rent in Boston:
Well, that would have me spend less than $900 total. As a rough estimate of all the expenses of that week that had not been prepaid, and knowing that I had to spend an unexpected additional $90 due to a missed train from Newark to Philadelphia, I spent $712. Adding up all that I had already spent in the travels ($141), it made the grand total of $853, so I barely passed the mark! Of course I could have spent less if I planned my meals better and spent less on Uber or public transportation, and also if I didn't miss that damn train, but I am quite happy with how it turned out! Since I would return to Portugal soon, I knew I would save money anyway.
3 - Work from different locations in Portugal:
Considering I have been with an illness and I have to stay home as much as possible, working from the bedroom and from the living room can be considered different places, no? Also, when I went to Braga and Guimarães, I worked from the bus since the internet is good.
4 - Donate most of my clothes and belongings and pack my Boston life in a suitcase:
Success but oh my, this was HARD! I had no idea I had accumulated so many things. And I consider that I have few things. Well, most of the kitchen utensils I had were good for the new MIT Portugal students at MIT and I donated a lot of clothes to MIT Reuse that I hope lots of people need. Also food, I should have cooked way more. When I returned home, I spent a few days cleaning my room and also collected 3 bags of clothes that don't fit anymore or that I don't like/need anymore to donate, along with multiple stationary items. One day I'll make a tutorial on how to have a capsule closet that fits a large suitcase for a year-round wardrobe.
And now for the recap of the year-long goals!
- Be punctual: I've been trying!
- Keep my promises in time management: Since I spent a lot of time alone these days, I don't feel I let others down in terms of time management. Just one that I was late due to an extended phone call.
- Commit to only one large event daily: No commitments lately. Just committing to recovering. That's a huge event.
- Talk more with loved ones: Well, I have seen my family a lot since I hang around the house a lot. For my friends, this has to wait one week due to my illness.
- Be more present in my interpersonal relationships: I have been doing this pretty well. I become mindful that, when I want to check my phone, it's because I'm no longer interested in the conversation, so I either have to plug myself back in or attempt to switch the topic.
- Meditate daily as much as possible: I set up a meditation space at home and have been trying to improve at this. Maybe a calm mind will heal my body faster?
- Sleep 7h daily at least: In the hostel in Philadelphia I wasn't sleeping that much, especially in the first night of the aftermath of the Eagles' parade. But now I've slept so much in the nights that I can breathe well.
- Run twice a week: HA-HA again! I was advised by the doctor to not make any strenuous sports at least for 6 weeks after my illness.
- Prepare weekly PhD reports: I did 1 after my digital nomad week and it turned out to be quite good. There's a lot to catch up on though.
- Write a weekly post for the blog: YES! =D I've been keeping consistent and this has been so helpful to set my mind free. It's always great to exercise a passion.
Monthly Takeaway: I hope to carry this minimalist and healing vibe to my life into March, the month I designed as the month of Celebration. It's not strange since it is the month of my birthday and also the month of the two-year anniversary of the blog! Now it's time to update the Celebration board on my Pinterest that you should definitely check out with ideas to celebrate yourself and your achievements this month.
For the next post, I will start talking about celebration by reviewing a special event I hosted on Twitter. Stay tuned!