Under30CEO » Travel http://under30ceo.com Thu, 24 Apr 2014 17:00:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6 Under30CEO interviews successful young entrepreneurs to hear about their story and journey while starting their company. These young founders have over a million dollars a year in revenues and have been through many ups and downs to get there. These stories are meant to inspire, educate and motivate more young people to take a leap and do what they are passionate about. Under30CEO clean Under30CEO jared@under30ceo.com jared@under30ceo.com (Under30CEO) Under30CEO Interviews with Young Entrepreneurs on Starting Businesses entrepreneur, business, interview, young entrepreneur, business advice, startup advice, founder interview, ceo Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/u30logo300x250.png http://under30ceo.com/category/travel-2/ What If You Took The Leap to LIVE BIG? http://under30ceo.com/took-leap-live-big/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=took-leap-live-big http://under30ceo.com/took-leap-live-big/#comments Wed, 23 Apr 2014 13:00:30 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=39101 What if….? It is a question that most young professionals ponder on a weekly and even daily basis. It is a question that far too often individuals will let sit on their conscience as it slowly manifests itself into a metaphorical ball and chain of excuses for not going out and experiencing the world as […]

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Under30Experiences Alaska

What if….?

It is a question that most young professionals ponder on a weekly and even daily basis.

It is a question that far too often individuals will let sit on their conscience as it slowly manifests itself into a metaphorical ball and chain of excuses for not going out and experiencing the world as it was meant to be.

I remember sitting at my desk a month ago contemplating the next team building exercise I could implement with my associates or a new action item I could generate to boost the efficiencies of my work area. I had hit a wall and I was tired of the monotony and the daily routine in the professional realm. I was in need of a new arena to express myself, to make my ideas and dreams a reality, to experience destinations and cultures through immersion rather than a tv screen or computer monitor.

So instead of asking myself “What If” I started asking myself “Why Not”.

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

When I travel, I don’t just want to see a glacier. I want to climb it.

I don’t just want to make out a volcano from a distance. I want to feel its heat as I scale it.

I don’t just want to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights. I want to fall asleep under them.

So I decided to take the plunge and go to Alaska with Under30Experiences and create a journey outside of mass tourism.

Mass tourism has turned travel into a glorified sightseeing tour. One that caters toward feeding knowledge to you through an ear piece and a tour guide rather than putting you into a situation where you can experience a culture and be the source of your own information.

Through Under30Experiences you know that Machu Picchu is 7,970 ft. above sea level. At its summit you were short of breath not just from the picturesque landscape, but also from drawing thin air into your lungs while standing over a mile high into earth’s atmosphere. You know that Alyeska, Alaska receives, on average, 860 inches of snowfall a year because you fell face first into the 3 ft. of fresh powder that fell the night before. You know that Nicaragua is home to some of the most beautiful beaches on earth because it was in its waters where you learned to surf. You know that Costa Rica’s rainforest has five layers to it because you saw each one below you as you zip lined across its treetops.

Bali

U30X brings new meaning to the phrase “been there, done that” because after you have experienced even one of these trips you can truthfully speak those words where as many travelers accomplished the first part but fell short on the second.  I firmly believe that every morning you have two choices: continue to sleep with your dreams, or wake up and chase them.

U30X quite literally is a vessel to accomplish the latter. It brings together young adults likeminded in their adventurousness, but diverse in many other aspects and turns their dreams, ideas, and willingness to live life to the fullest into a reality. It has redefined forever the way young professionals will travel by fostering the idea that experience lies in action. It comes from doing instead of seeing. My life and the lives of the individuals on these trips will not stand in monotony, they will not be grayed out by the daily grind of a 9-5 job, and our worth years from now will not be measured monetarily but instead will be found in the experiences and memories of a life well lived.

Under30Experiences provides the opportunity for every individual who seeks to have an effect on the world rather than stand affected by it who aspires to do instead of see who longs to live instead of exist.

Nicaragua

 

Don’t be the person that saw the world, be the person who experienced it. So drop every fear, take every chance, and live big!

Stephen Skolnik is a Under30Experiences Ski Alaska Alumni and spends his days as a design liaison engineer with BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greenville, SC, and his free time embracing people and adventures that challenge and broaden his world.  Passionate about self-improvement, he is an aspiring motivator and seeks to drive others out of their comfort zones & toward their dreams.  Find Stephen on Linkedin here.

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How Climbing to the Top Put Life In Perspective http://under30ceo.com/climbing-top-put-life-perspective/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=climbing-top-put-life-perspective http://under30ceo.com/climbing-top-put-life-perspective/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:00:39 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=38979 No, I’m not talking about the top of the success ladder (still climbing), but rather the top of Las Vegas’ most scenic rock reserves. Around mid-March, a close friend and myself went to Red Rock Canyon, a national conservation area in Las Vegas. One word: beautiful! At Red Rock, you’ll find different trails from easy […]

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No, I’m not talking about the top of the success ladder (still climbing), but rather the top of Las Vegas’ most scenic rock reserves. Around mid-March, a close friend and myself went to Red Rock Canyon, a national conservation area in Las Vegas. One word: beautiful!

At Red Rock, you’ll find different trails from easy to moderate to strenuous in order to get to different focal points at the top. The entire experience put life, both personal and professional, into perspective.

Red Rock

Choosing Your Path

We arrived at the reserve, received a map (“our life plan”) and it was up to us to decide the trail we wanted to take. We took one of the moderate (more like semi-strenuous) trails and we knew we would work collectively to get to the top. In choosing our path, we understood that it wasn’t a trail we could take alone; we knew that we wanted a trail that would challenge us.

Whether personally or professionally, there are choices to be made; choices that will dictate your life path. In everything you do, from relationships to career to financial investments, the choices you make should always be about improving yourself. Improvement and growth rise out of challenges.

Getting Lost

Have you ever gone on a hike with no signs and didn’t get lost? Probably not. We made some wrong turns, meaning we had to turn back around, stop and find the more sensible route. When we were nearing the end, it was very questionable if we were even still on our trail or not. But, we kept going. We had some reassurance from those coming down from the top saying, “you’re going the right way” and “you’re almost there.”

In spite of getting lost, we made it to the top. That came from persistence and perseverance. You may have a business venture that took a wrong turn, but that doesn’t mean it is the end of your business. It just means you need to re-work your plan, seek out advice along the way and push to see that venture through. You never know how lives can be changed from your idea.

Red Rock 2

Find Joy in the Journey

Hiking to the top with the sun out and being dressed in all black (genius) isn’t an easy task, but I would do it over and over. The entire experience from deciding our path to getting lost was so worthwhile. The good, bad and ugly all happen to build character, mold excellent students of life and create forward-thinking entrepreneurs. So with everything, find joy in the journey.

Natasha J. Benjamin is a two-time founder of a digital public relations consultancy and a performing arts nonprofit. When she’s not building brands in the PR sphere or focusing on school communities through the arts, she is blending media and culture through her penned thoughts. Natasha loves to connect with new people, so tweet with her here: @natashajoleen

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5 Humbling Life Lessons I Am Learning Living In Costa Rica http://under30ceo.com/5-humbling-life-lessons-learning-living-costa-rica/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=5-humbling-life-lessons-learning-living-costa-rica http://under30ceo.com/5-humbling-life-lessons-learning-living-costa-rica/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:00:16 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=39437 I packed my shit up and I left. Just like that. It didn’t take much planning. I booked a plane ticket and hoped on a plane, Costa Rica bound. When I arrived it hit me in the face. My big city girl’s ego was too big for the place. After 20+ years of life in Paris […]

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I packed my shit up and I left.

Just like that.

It didn’t take much planning. I booked a plane ticket and hoped on a plane, Costa Rica bound.

When I arrived it hit me in the face. My big city girl’s ego was too big for the place. After 20+ years of life in Paris and six in New York, some serious adjustments needed to be made.

costa rica

 Here is what life has been teaching me since I’ve arrived in paradise:

1. “All we know, is that we know nothing.” Aristotle

I arrived in Costa Rica thinking that I had nothing to learn from this place. My thought process was basically something along these lines: “What can be possibly so extraordinary here? I speak Spanish and I’ve been to Mexico, I think I know what this is all about.”

Huge ego-check.

Nothing here is like what I’ve experienced before. Out of fear I had convinced myself that nothing could surprise me anymore. But being immersed in a country and a culture completely foreign to you is all about opening your mind and admitting that you don’t know.

No assuming.

No guessing.

No comparing.

Just learning to experience everything.

2. The people who care won’t care.

The people who truly and deeply love you from a genuine and unconditional place will always support you no matter what your endeavors are.

They won’t hold you back; they will push you away with a smile. They will want the best for you and they’ll accept you for who you are.

These people are rare and the best way to add more of them into your life is to be one of them yourself.  Give people the support and positivity they need to grow and make their own leaps of faith.

3. Life is not limited to what you can see right now.

This morning I saw four baby monkeys playing in the tree in front of my house. Then, two iguanas walked by. The wind blew in the palm trees. I took a deep breath and I thought how disconnected we are in our big city lifestyle… we worry so much all the time about useless stuff and we forget about the world out there.

Life is not limited to what you can see right now. There’s a whole world out there waiting for you to discover it. And I know that deep inside you know that you’re not on this planet to meet deadlines or sit behind a desk all day.

4. To travel light, you must be willing to detach from what you are clinging onto.

It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, peace will always come from within.

Don’t think you have to quit your job and jump on the next plane to Brazil to find serenity. Relocating might help but know that wherever you go, you bring your emotional baggage with you. To travel light, you must be willing to let go, detach from what you are clinging onto. Know that when you are far away from home grudges, deep insecurities and unhealed wounds might show up to the surface for you to release them and move forward.

5. Life is pure.

If you ask a Costa Rican what’s up? He or she will probably respond, “Pura Vida” (Pure Life) with a huge smile.

When you get close to nature, life becomes pure. When you remove all the conditioning society empresses upon you to keep you small, you expand. When you’re not worried about where the cool spot to be seen is, no fancy car to drive, no designer clothes to wear and no 9 to 5 to show up to, all of a sudden your attention shifts on what truly matters: the beauty and purity of life as it is.

Garance Clos is an Integrative Life Coach and Yoga Teacher. Get your free De-stress Manual: 5 Easy Instructions to Build the Relaxed Life You Want.  

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5 Life-Changing Tips We Learned From A Sport We’d Never Heard Of http://under30ceo.com/5-life-changing-tips-we-learned-from-a-sport-wed-never-heard-of/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=5-life-changing-tips-we-learned-from-a-sport-wed-never-heard-of http://under30ceo.com/5-life-changing-tips-we-learned-from-a-sport-wed-never-heard-of/#comments Wed, 09 Apr 2014 13:00:33 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=39123 It’s like you’re tiptoeing a thin guardrail on the side of a bridge. You’ve been to this edge before, over and over again in your mind. Calculating the possibilities, pondering the rationality. The water is dark below. You can’t see the bottom, but you’re pretty sure it’s deep. There has never been anything that has […]

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It’s like you’re tiptoeing a thin guardrail on the side of a bridge. You’ve been to this edge before, over and over again in your mind. Calculating the possibilities, pondering the rationality. The water is dark below. You can’t see the bottom, but you’re pretty sure it’s deep. There has never been anything that has felt so right, like you must do it. At least you’ll survive to tell a crazy story, right? Butterflies in your stomach.

Close your eyes.

Go.

My girlfriend Shaina and I found ourselves coming home each day, complaining to each other about the frustrations we experienced working for other companies. Now, don’t get me wrong, we had great jobs. Both working for a major media outlet, Shaina freelancing as a cinematographer and video editor on the side, we had good things going for us. Steady pay, a nice apartment, plenty of disposable income. Nice things. But we clearly weren’t happy.

Tip #1: Don’t settle for comfort or fear uncertainty. Embrace the possibilities of an unfamiliar path.

During this period of our lives, Shaina began working on a freelance project that evolved into a story that would forever change the course of our lives. Inspired by this project and motivated to “do it better” than the accepted standard, we started a video production company focused on creating amazing videos and short films that truly matter.

So now, I am sure you are wondering “What exactly is this project that inspired you to quit your jobs and follow your passion?!”

Shaina had begun filming the Miami Heat Wheels wheelchair basketball team several months earlier to create a short video clip as a favor to the coach. About a month or so into filming, it was so evident that we had happened upon a story that has never been told (but needs to be).

A story about a fraying wheelchair basketball program on their quest to earn a National Championship. The power of an overlooked sport to instill hope in the face of extreme adversity. Our ability to overcome great challenges despite the odds.

The Rebound Documentary

So, for the past 21 months, Shaina and I have been self-funding our efforts to make a full-length documentary about these athletes who consistently rise above extreme physical challenges to pursue something they are passionate about, a game they truly love, and above all else, an action that gives them hope.

Tip #2: Let life inspire you in unexpected ways. There’s probably a reason you were moved by that story – don’t be afraid for your next project to choose you, rather than you choosing it.

It’s kind of funny how things happen. You might call it a coincidence, but Shaina and I truly believe in synchronicity, that “Things happen for a reason.”

We met Cesar Romero, Community Manager for Under30, at a social media conference in Miami.  Connecting and sharing our “leap of faith” experiences with each other sprouted a friendship that eventually led to an opportunity to attend an Under30Experiences trip to Costa Rica where we were introduced to a group of super genuine, adventurous  individuals. Not only did we come back from that adventure with a fresh perspective on where we are in our own path, but we also gained an ever expanding network of like minded, passionate, driven individuals.

Under30Experiences Costa Rica

One of the things that is so special about Under30 is that it truly doesn’t end with the travel experience, the blog you read, or the email that you connect with – this is a community that can transform and nurture your dreams. For us, this has come full-circle. Thanks to the Under30 community, as well as our friends and family, we’ve been able to grow our core support network for this project and truly evolve our approach and the potential impact we’re going to make. It has always been about telling an inspirational story and the tale of an overlooked sport, but it’s blossomed into so much more.

Tip #3: Explore the world and get out of your comfort zone. You never know what you’ll find.

We’re on a mission to achieve three main goals.

  • First, raise awareness for wheelchair basketball, an adaptive sport that provides invaluable opportunities for people to find hope despite facing a mountain of challenges.

  • Second, break down social misconceptions of what it means to be disabled.

  • Third, inspire the world and motivate people to embrace and rise above their challenges.

We all have the power to overcome great adversity and achieve amazing things.

Tip #4: Don’t be afraid to dream big and share your ideas with the world.

The story that first inspired us to take our leaps of faith, leave our desk jobs behind, and go after our passions has now become the heart of the feature film we are working to share with the world.  After nearly 2 full years capturing this story on our own, we know that in order to make an epic positive impact on the world we need to surround ourselves with a passionate community of people who believe in the power of stories to change the world and impact the lives of others.

Tip #5: Persevere through the tough times, never stop learning, and surround yourself with people who make you better.

For those of you that feel that fire igniting inside, don’t ignore it.

It’s real.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t plan before you leap, but explore your options.

How can you make your dream a reality?

Don’t be afraid to take that risk. You have 168 hours each week. Give your passion just 6 hours a week to get started, no matter what it takes. Test those dark waters. Now is the time to do it, before it’s too late.

The Rebound

Take a look at this community, built from scratch out of two people’s dream, with countless incredibly scary leaps of faith.

Now you’re here reading our story, is that just a coincidence? We would love for you to join us on this mission and help support the making of “The Rebound” by contributing whatever’s in your heart and sharing our mission with your networks.
TheRebound-Chad_Andreo_MHW-Mario-Jeremie-v2-1024-638 copy

From the bottom of our hearts, we appreciate you reading our story and we hope you’ll join us in making a difference in the world. If you want to help us make a positive impact, check out our Indiegogo campaign: http://igg.me/at/reboundthefilm

<3

Mike & Shaina

Image Credits: Shaina Koren Cinematography

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Regain Your Spark! How Traveling Can Inspire You http://under30ceo.com/regain-your-spark-how-traveling-can-inspire-you/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=regain-your-spark-how-traveling-can-inspire-you http://under30ceo.com/regain-your-spark-how-traveling-can-inspire-you/#comments Fri, 04 Apr 2014 13:00:26 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=38896 Its crazy when you are little, the idea of growing up is such an exciting, mysterious realm. Your imagination kicks in and you fantasize about all the amazing things you plan on doing when you grow up. You think about how happy you will be when you are finally taking care of yourself and calling […]

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Under30Experiences Alaska

Its crazy when you are little, the idea of growing up is such an exciting, mysterious realm. Your imagination kicks in and you fantasize about all the amazing things you plan on doing when you grow up.

You think about how happy you will be when you are finally taking care of yourself and calling your own shots.

“Go away Mom! I can take care of myself!”

Now the question I have is if we were so excited about the future and what life will be like when we are older, why is it that most of us fall short of those expectations? Why is depression and stress such a huge part of an adult life’s? Now obviously there are a lot of responsibilities that we inherit that we never really thought about as a kid, but are they really powerful enough to cause us to be unhappy and feel empty?

I don’t think they are, now obviously there are a lot of things that happen in our lives that are out of our control. Like the Subway not showing up on time, or your car breaking down on your way to the most important meeting of your life. It sucks I know, but these things happen, you can’t control them so stop trying to.

You can only control how you react to the uncontrollable.

So what’s the point in getting upset? Throwing a tantrum and ruining your mood for the rest of the day, in a week you will probably forgot all about it. The point I’m trying to make is that we are all constantly getting caught up in the little things, the muck and we forget to truly live our lives the way we imagined we would when were seven.

Under30Experiences Alaska

For me traveling and meeting likeminded people has always been a priority to keep myself grounded and not let the muck in my life consume me.

When I was a kid I dreamt about traveling to Alaska, as an obsessed skier and the co-founder of two ski businesses it has been the top destination on my bucket list since forever. As someone who travels a good amount I can honestly say that this trip was the best trip of my life. Not because of the destination. Obviously having the chance to go skiing in Alaska is a dream come true, but because of the people on this trip. There were fourteen of us, all from different parts of the world, from Hawaii all the way to Europe. There is something to be said about surrounding yourself with likeminded people. Driven people, that inspire you to be the best version of yourself and to never settle.

Going on a trip like this, with all of these amazing individuals has brought the seven year old version of myself out.

Not the immature, silly version.

While that does show on occasion, but the I can do anything self.

The never take no for an answer self.

The follow your dream self and the happy fulfilled self.

I feel for anyone that is serious about breaking out of the status quo and living their life to the fullest and having a huge impact. Taking part in one of these trips from Under30 is the best way to jumpstart yourself into that life you pictured for yourself when you were a kid.

You can think of a million reasons why you shouldn’t go on one of these trips but I can say from experience that you will never regret taking the risk and saying yes.

I thought of a million reasons why I shouldn’t go on one of these trips but after getting back I can honestly say I would have regretted not doing this for the rest of my life. Take the risk, it’s worth it.

Josh Salvo is a young entrepreneur and a passionate skier who Co-Founded both AmericanYeti.com and ReddyYeti.com, two niche businesses in the outdoor industry.  His goal is to inspire young professionals to follow their dreams and become the best versions of themselves. You can follow him on twitter @reddyYeti

Image Credits: Under30Experiences and Courtney Slade

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5 Tools for Travel Freaks Who Love to Work Remotely http://under30ceo.com/5-tools-travel-freaks-love-work-remotely/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=5-tools-travel-freaks-love-work-remotely http://under30ceo.com/5-tools-travel-freaks-love-work-remotely/#comments Fri, 28 Mar 2014 15:00:23 +0000 Under30CEO http://under30ceo.com/?p=38587   Maybe you have always dreamed of working by the pool, with the sun shining and access to cool, refreshing water in which to take a dip when you feel like taking a break. Or, perhaps the idea of sitting on your mountain-facing balcony in the French countryside makes you smile. If you are a […]

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 uberconference-web-1

Maybe you have always dreamed of working by the pool, with the sun shining and access to cool, refreshing water in which to take a dip when you feel like taking a break. Or, perhaps the idea of sitting on your mountain-facing balcony in the French countryside makes you smile. If you are a travel junkie who needs to get work done on the road, today’s technology has made it easier than ever to maintain your productivity while enjoying the freedom of being able to work remotely. In many instances, you just need a reliable internet connection and a trusted service, and you can easily connect and collaborate with people from all around the globe.

UberConference

As the official UberConference website says, conferencing can be a pain. Fortunately, tools such as this one make conferencing a bit more enjoyable and easier than ever before. You can effectively plan meetings and catch up with coworkers using the UberConference free conference call service. One of the big attractions of this product is its general ease of use. To begin, either you call in to the meeting or you will receive a call. In addition, UberConference is compatible with just about any kind of phone, whether it’s the latest smart phone, an older flip phone, or even a land-line.

Skype

It may have been around for awhile, but Skype is a trusted and reliable form of communication for people all over the world, particularly when it comes to video chatting. Whether you want to connect with your cousin overseas, or get an opinion on your latest project idea, this is a useful tool for staying in touch with others. American Bar notes that Skype has well over 600 million users, and it makes communication simple and inexpensive, which any remote worker will surely appreciate.

As long as you have a reliable internet connection, you can use Skype. However, it works best if both you and those with whom you are communicating have relatively fast and stable connections. A better connection means fewer interruptions and freezes, and allows for optimal communication.

DropBox

Compared with some of the other networking tools, DropBox is relatively simple and straightforward. For some individuals, it can be just the right program to cover basic needs. A big advantage of DropBox is that it lets you back up all your files so you can access them from anywhere. If you leave for Italy and don’t want to bring your own computer, for example, all you need to do is log on to a computer and you will have access to your files, as long as you saved them before leaving. Another advantage of this program is that it lets people access files from you, as long as you have given them permission. This makes it easier on you, as you don’t need to sit at your computer just for that purpose.

Google + Hangouts

This program is similar to Skype, but it allows large groups of people to effectively communicate at once without the added price tag. Whether you need to talk to just a handful of people or a larger group, Google + Hangouts can make the task much more manageable. In addition, it is a great way to set up virtual meetings so that you don’t have to trudge to the office while you are enjoying the peace and quiet of your natural surroundings. Users should be aware that it is possible to include up to 10 people on this software at no additional charge. To utilize it, a Google + account is required, but it enables iOS and Mac users to take part in the exchange as well. Features include the ability to share screenshots, take photos of the hangout, and use certain apps to give presentations.

World Time Clock

It might not seem to be an essential part of your work routine at first, but think back to that last time you tried to call your boss to discuss something important that your client just said to you, only to realize that the time difference means that you are actually calling him in the middle of the night. Mistakes like this can happen all the time, and if you find yourself frequently working in different time zones, it’s essential to have the appropriate time zone converter to keep yourself on schedule as much as possible. Your computer may have a time zone converter built in, but other suggestions include World Time Buddy and Every Time Zone.

Don’t get left behind at work. Whether you are lounging by the beach or hanging out on your couch, these tools make it easier than ever before to effectively work and communicate from your favorite places around the world.

A question for all travelers…

Traveling can be fun until and unless it does not include away from regular workload. Are you a traveler by choice or profession? Is there any app/tool/software that makes you traveling easy? What’s your must have travel kit? Share with us…! 

Peter Davidson works as a senior business associate helping brands and start ups to make efficient business decisions and plan proper business strategies. He is a big gadget freak who loves to share his views on latest technologies and applications.

Image Credit: appcenter.evernote.com

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22 Ways to Get You Out of Your Funk http://under30ceo.com/22-ways-get-funk/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=22-ways-get-funk http://under30ceo.com/22-ways-get-funk/#comments Fri, 28 Mar 2014 13:00:14 +0000 Cesar Romero http://under30ceo.com/?p=39028 According to the most recent Gallup study about employee satisfaction released on 10/9/13, from 230,000 full-time and part-time workers in 142 countries, only 13% of workers feel engaged by their jobs. Only 13%? Something’s totally wrong here. Everyone deserves to do the things they are passionate about and wake up each day with the drive […]

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comfort zone

According to the most recent Gallup study about employee satisfaction released on 10/9/13, from 230,000 full-time and part-time workers in 142 countries, only 13% of workers feel engaged by their jobs.

Only 13%? Something’s totally wrong here.

Everyone deserves to do the things they are passionate about and wake up each day with the drive and fulfillment that comes from doing work that matters.

I think it’s about time to dig deep within yourself, grab some courage, and start doing some epic sh*t!

U30X

I’m not saying quit your job today and go backpacking throughout the world, although that would be epic and you could do that if you wanted to. I’m talking about doing things that are outside your comfort zone and finding your true self in the process. Look, I understand we all have responsibilities and bills to pay and there’s no escaping that, but we do have the power to choose what we do with our time.

Feeling stuck in a rut?

Choose yourself and take a day off, three days, five days, one full week and do one thing you haven’t done before or haven’t done in a while. I promise after you come back from your time off, you will feel reenergized with a different mindset wanting to do more things outside your comfort zone, and most importantly, take action upon those feelings because somehow they already know where you want to go.

Here are 22 ways that can help you get out of your rut:

  1. Buy a plane ticket to a place you’ve never been before and hang out with people you’ve never met before.
  2. Grab a cup of coffee or tea at your local shop and start a conversation with someone. You never know what opportunities it might lead to.
  3. Go for a walk/run on the beach with no technology.  Just you and the sounds of waves calling your name.
  4. Look for places where you can have a clear view of sunrise/sunset and just sit there meditating about your life and what direction you want to take it.
  5. Reach out to someone you look up to and ask that person to share his/her own personal story with you and look for at least one way how you can help.
  6. Book a flight with long layovers and go explore around. It’s all about the journey not the destination.
  7. Take some dance lessons and have fun. Who cares if you can’t dance? That’s the point.
  8. Grab a group of friends and play a sport you haven’t played in a while. Soccer, baseball, basketball, volleyball, hockey, etc.
  9. Do some volunteer work helping people less fortunate than you. It will change your perspective.
  10. Go surfing even if you have never done it before. When I tried it, I wasn’t only outside my comfort zone, but it made me realize that discipline and persistence are keys to success. After spending a whole afternoon attempting to surf, I was able to stand up on the board for about 7 seconds.
  11. Read a book, meditate, or just stay still while sitting on the beach.
  12. Try horseback riding. It might be intimidating at first, but once you establish a connection with your horse, you’ll feel like a true Spartan. I promise.
  13. Have meaningful conversations over a beach bonfire with your friends.
  14. Start a blog and share your writing with the world.
  15. Eat something you’ve never eaten before.
  16. Learn a new language and its culture.
  17. Have a karaoke night with your friends and sing the night away.
  18. Teach someone a language you master. I can help you practice your Spanish.
  19. Help a friend with a side-project. You might learn new skills and meet new people in the process.
  20. Organize a local meetup in your city around subjects that get you outside your comfort zone or that you are passionate about.
  21. Next time you have dinner with your family or a group of friends try playing the Rose, Bud, Thorn game. The Rose is the best part of your day. The Thorn is the worst part of your day, and the Bud is what you are looking forward tomorrow. Powerful exercise to practice mindfulness.
  22. Take action now and do one thing that will take you closer to the life you’ve always wanted. Making a decision takes less than five minutes. Do it now!

Here’s a clip that sums up what life is all about and how lucky we are to be alive with an opportunity to have fun while doing things that matter.

Share this with someone you think will have their day brightened from watching it.

Let’s go out there and do some epic sh*t!!!

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How Having a Red Carpet Policy Can Attract People Who Refuse to See You Fail http://under30ceo.com/red-carpet-policy-can-attract-people-refuse-see-fail/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=red-carpet-policy-can-attract-people-refuse-see-fail http://under30ceo.com/red-carpet-policy-can-attract-people-refuse-see-fail/#comments Mon, 17 Mar 2014 13:00:54 +0000 Cesar Romero http://under30ceo.com/?p=38663 Is the people around you supporting you or dragging you? Back in 2006, when I was a senior in college, I secured my first formal job at a local bank as a customer service representative and it was one of those moments where I felt proud of myself because I knew I had reached a […]

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Is the people around you supporting you or dragging you?

Back in 2006, when I was a senior in college, I secured my first formal job at a local bank as a customer service representative and it was one of those moments where I felt proud of myself because I knew I had reached a milestone in my life and I was excited for the transition. At first everything was great learning new skills and meeting new people, but three months into the job and I started to feel worn-out juggling between college and work responsibilities, but more importantly I felt like I didn’t belong there and something inside of me kept telling me to move on but didn’t act upon it until several months later.

In February 2008 I took a plane to Miami, Florida and $300 in my pocket just following my gut knowing that I needed to make a change. I stayed at my sister’s for a while and applied for jobs every single day for a month but not really knowing what I was looking for, I just knew I needed a job and it wasn’t going to be flipping burgers at McDonald’s. Fortunately my persistence paid off and 45 days after I moved to Miami I was able to secure a job at a major local bank in Florida. I was proud of myself and I’ll never forget the feeling of getting that first paycheck, but just like my old job, the novelty quickly wore off and I started to feel like I didn’t belong there only this time I decided to suck it up because I thought it was normal to sit around all day long working with people that I didn’t choose to work with.

I didn’t feel accepted, supported, encouraged, inspired, and empowered by the people I was interacting with at work but I settled and accepted it because I didn’t know any better. They were good people, but just not the people I was looking for to take me to the next level.

18 months later into the job I met a co-worker who became one of my best friends and he’s the one that showed me I had the possibility to choose the people I was surrounding myself with.  He’s the one that got me introduced into the startups and entrepreneurship world by sharing with me his side project (now full time) of building a social network for professionals called Moomkin. My first collaboration with Moomkin was reaching out to other entrepreneurs requesting to interview them about their entrepreneurial journey, something that was totally outside my comfort zone but that exposed me to many other bright minds with a fresh new perspective on life. After the first interview I knew this was the kind of people I wanted in my corner.

Look around you right now and give some real deep thought to your surroundings….

Are you proud of it?

Do the people around you allow you to have the impact you want to have by fully expressing yourself?

Do they support who you want to become?

A few weeks ago I spent 5 days in Nicaragua with 20 other strangers who now have become lifelong friends and part of our community. What made it special was that we were able to have dinner as a group fully expressing ourselves, opening up to each other, and feeling comfortable being our true selves.

In this same trip I went on a run/workout a couple of times with the group leaving me energized after the workout and inspired by sharing our ideas and possibility of change.

Most recently I shared my intention with a good friend of mine about attending StartingBloc this coming June and my overall intention of creating and participating in transformative experiences that serve as a launching pad to help people figure out their next step.

His words were: “Just go for it. Set your intentions out and the universe will take care of it. Don’t worry about the how.”

How often do you have this kind of interactions?

How often do you feel accepted, inspired, and empowered by your surroundings? 

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How Quitting Your Job or Getting Laid Off Can Help Finding Your Life’s Purpose: New Beginnings http://under30ceo.com/quitting-job-getting-laid-off-can-help-finding-lifes-purpose-new-beginnings/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=quitting-job-getting-laid-off-can-help-finding-lifes-purpose-new-beginnings http://under30ceo.com/quitting-job-getting-laid-off-can-help-finding-lifes-purpose-new-beginnings/#comments Fri, 14 Mar 2014 13:00:00 +0000 Cesar Romero http://under30ceo.com/?p=38620 In my last article I explained how a transition in life is an opportunity to being intentional about our next step to truly understand what we are here to do in this world. I thought that losing my job was going to be a disaster but it became the biggest opportunity I’ve ever had to […]

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In my last article I explained how a transition in life is an opportunity to being intentional about our next step to truly understand what we are here to do in this world.

I thought that losing my job was going to be a disaster but it became the biggest opportunity I’ve ever had to really find my path and change my life.

I accepted my situation. I embraced it. I got in touch with my innate.

What resulted was definitely not on the script I had been given for years.

I don’t know how this is going to end but what matters is that I made a choice to choose myself and get started.

Here’s what happened once I decided to choose myself:

1.     Traveling

Traveling has given me a whole new perspective on how I see the world experiencing new ways of doing things. In 2012 I took two weeks off from work and went on a trip from Fort Lauderdale, Florida all the way to Kazakhstan stopping by Toronto and London and it completely changed my perspective and made me realize that I wanted to travel more. But once I got back from the trip, I got sucked back into the routine, even though my desire was still there.

A couple months after getting laid off, I moved from Miami, Florida and I have been traveling back and forth for four months now between Costa Rica and Nicaragua building an exceptional community of young adults passionate about life and traveling. I’ve had 5 people look into my eyes and told me personally that these trips have changed their lives and inspired them to follow their passions.

Under30Experiences

Wow!!! That really hit home for me. 

I’m even more excited for the upcoming months because we have trips planned to Peru, Iceland, Bali, yoga and fitness retreat to Costa Rica, but even more than the trips, I’m really looking forward to the community we are building; that’s what makes all the difference. Just being surrounded by people passionate about life, traveling, and refusing to settle is so inspiring to me that makes me keep pushing forward towards what I want out of life. This community of young adults has become my support system.  We share laughter and love. Fears and Dreams. Ideas and Potential. We push each other.

When I first became involved with Under30Experiences, I really wanted to travel fulltime and help Matt and Jared with their vision of making traveling more accessible to young adults and I remember having this concern in the back of my mind of not being able to travel because of my job and all the limitations that came with it, but now I see how the dots connect.

Remember that quote from Steve Jobs?

Again__you_can_t_connect

I just needed to take a leap of faith and follow my gut.

Traveling has also given me the opportunity to sit back, meditate, and embrace life for what it is and not for what we want it to be. Too many times we get caught up in the everyday hustle that sometimes we forget what’s really important.  I first learned about meditation during our Costa Rica retreat back in October when I took my first ever yoga class surrounded by fresh rainforest air, abundance of local flora and fauna, singing of tropical birds, gentle breeze, and sound of the rushing river.

 

Costa Rica Under30Experiences

If you don’t practice meditation I strongly recommend you give it a shot because it allows you to get in touch with your thoughts and emotions, lets them flow through your system, and decide what’s truly important coming from a place of love.

2.     Writing

People say they like my writing and I’m thankful for that, but as a writer I’m always hard on myself and probably my biggest critic when it comes to putting my thoughts in writing. Ever since I got laid off, I’ve been writing more often to get the ideas out of my head and reflecting on things that matter to me, and occasionally hitting publish on my blog or submitting articles to different publications. The more I write and publish, the more comfortable I feel in sharing my thoughts and ideas with the rest of the world using my own voice.

writing

Also, writing has become one of my main sources of income doing freelance work during this transitional period. Sure it’s a big pay cut but the biggest reward is that I’m providing value through my writing and have flexible schedule to work from anywhere in the world.

3.     Learning about myself

This is perhaps the most valuable outcome I’ve received from getting laid off: the opportunity to better understand who I am and what I want out of life. I have realized that most people rarely take the time to truly learn about themselves following predetermined scripts that society puts upon us. Go to college, get a degree, get a high-paying job, big screen TV, white-picket fence house, work for 40-50 years, climb the corporate ladder, and then retire. Even if you want to climb the corporate ladder, how do you even know that you have it leaned against the right wall? It’s all part of The Matrix. I have realized that learning about yourself is a natural process that is ongoing and there are no hacks about it or fast tracks. It takes time and we must make the time to determine whether we want to follow a predetermined script or if we want to write our own.

Cesar Romero

A few days ago I shared my big intention for life, business, and career with the universe with a single tweet and it is the following:

My big intention is to truly serve others in their journey within by writing, dancing, spreading smiles for miles and positive energy, creating and participating in transformative experiences that serve as a launching pad to help young adults figure out their next step.

The word is out!

It took me a few hours to write that short concise piece and I was fearful in sharing it through social media but I feel so much better now that I did. It might sound silly but that’s truly my intention and of course I know it can change as I grow older, but for now, that’s where my core true self resides.

There are moments when I feel fearful and doubtful and start to question myself about my decision to follow my own path, but I recognize it and don’t give control to doubts and fears. Instead, I remember that I’m being intentional about what I want out of life by doing things that allow me to fully express myself.

So let me ask you, what transition are you going through in your life right now and what are you learning from it? 

Image Credits: www.imgion.com, www.shutterstock.com

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Travel Hacks: How to Save Money and Find Cheap Airfare http://under30ceo.com/travel-hacks-how-to-save-money-and-find-cheap-airfare/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=travel-hacks-how-to-save-money-and-find-cheap-airfare http://under30ceo.com/travel-hacks-how-to-save-money-and-find-cheap-airfare/#comments Mon, 10 Mar 2014 13:00:29 +0000 Matt Wilson http://under30ceo.com/?p=38574 Finding cheap flights is a science.  As the co-founder of a travel company, we bring our team all over the world, and try to do it as wisely as possible.  We take travel hacking very seriously.  The more money we save on flights, the more money left to spend on incredible experiences. Here are ten […]

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Cheap flights and travel hacking Matt Wilson

Regional flights can be a lot of fun. I scored this seat on Cape Air to Nantucket…

Finding cheap flights is a science.  As the co-founder of a travel company, we bring our team all over the world, and try to do it as wisely as possible.  We take travel hacking very seriously.  The more money we save on flights, the more money left to spend on incredible experiences.

Here are ten awesome travel hacks to help you find cheap airfare:

1) Book during the right time of the month

If you are booking on your credit card, you should be paying attention to your cashflow.  My billing cycle turns over on the 28th of every month, so you’ll almost always find me booking flights after that day.  Through American Express, I will have nearly two months to pay that off…

I just booked my flight for our Under30Experiences April 2-6 trip to Costa Rica.  Luckily for me, March’s bill will come to me at the beginning of April, and I’ll have until the end of April to pay it.  Pretty sweet.

2) Book during the right time of the week

By looking at historical data and watching trends over the last several years, you’ll notice that sitting down to book flights in the middle of the week, Tuesday – Thursday is most economical.  FareCompare.com did a study here and said Wednesday at 3PM ET is the best time to book flights.

3) Find off-peak flights

Most people need to fly home on Sunday afternoon to get back to work on Monday.  But if you have more flexibility, why not fly home off-peak hours?  Nobody wants to fly on Saturday night, or on red-eyes, or super early in the AM.  Be sure to use the +/- 3 days button on Kayak.com to see what day is cheapest, and you can save a fortune.

4) Search other destinations and buy a connecting flight

Flying to Asia or Europe?  This works really well.  If you are flying to Bali, first research flights that fly in to the Bali’s DPS airport.  Then, compare those prices with flying to other cities like Hong Kong, Singapore, and Shanghai. These major hubs are going to be way cheaper, so, search a local carrier like AirAsia to get you the rest of the way there.

For our U30X trip to Bali, I found JFK to Taipei nonstop for $1000, and then TPE to Bali for $300.  Even more fun I’ll get to check out Taipei for however long I want… remember… it’s all about the experience!

Superhack: Search your flight to Bali, and then see through what airports the cheapest flights connect in.  This is how I found Taipei– not a city in Asia I would ever thought to fly into, but it’s where most of the cheap flights were stopping. I’ll buy a second ticket and get my to Bali for less.

5) Take advantage of free-stopovers

A lot of the cheapest flights are the ones most people consider the worst–with long layovers.  This mindset is for people who simply aren’t good at life.

Last year, I found myself flying Emirates Air (amazing) with a long layover in Dubai.  I called the airlines, and arranged an even longer, 24 hour stopover, and had a blast.  I rode camels in the desert, swam in the Persian Gulf, saw the Burj Khalifa, Palm Islands, indoor skiing, and had dinner with a friend from college.  Not a bad day.

Icelandair offers up to seven days free stopover if you connect in Reykjavik.  Flying to Europe this year? Book your flight on Icelandair, and go spend the day relaxing in the Blue Lagoon. It’s natural beauty will blow your mind, and it’s very close to the airport.

6) Watch the price predictors

Many sites including Kayak and Bing Travel use data from past flights to predict the prices of upcoming airfare. For flights to places that are undiscovered like Nicaragua, we always notice that the price predictors say to wait.  It’s not uncommon for flights to go to Managua only half full, and get cheaper as time goes on.

Keep an eye out, because on any given day flights can jump up if it gets too close.  I recently couldn’t get on a flight from Miami to Managua, because our attendees bought up all the flights.  I had to pay a lot more on another airline and travel alone.

7)  Buy travel insurance ASAP

This one sounds obvious but you need to protect yourself against flight cancellations, or unforseen circumstances.  We suggest World Nomads Travel Insurance to protect yourself against trip cancellation, if you or a business partner get sick, a relative dies, or your trip gets interrupted because of inclement weather.  This might not save you money off your flight, but it’ll save your ass in an emergency.

8) Find the right credit card for you

My life and business is devoted to travel, so I choose to pay for an expensive charge card with American Express Platinum. This isn’t an article about selecting credit cards, but yes, I did get 30,000 miles just for signing up… Find mileage bonuses on a low APR credit card theoretically will let you travel with no money down for a year or two… Be careful here.

9) Know your frequent flier alliances

Mainly, be sure you are signed up with one of the big three airline frequent flier groups, Star Alliance (United, US Airways, Copa, Luthfansa, SWISS, EVA Air)One World (American, British, Cathay Pacific, Iberia, LAN, Qatar), and the new Sky Team (Delta, KLM, Aero Mexico, Air France, China Airlines…)

Try to book with them, even if they are a little more expensive. You’ll make up for it in the long run with free flights.

I prefer Delta because when I book via American Express Travel I get triple points. Yup. Double points for every travel dollar I spend with AMEX, and then the frequent flier miles with Delta on top of that. You get this deal with any airline on AMEX, but the nice thing with the Delta / AMEX partnership is that you can transfer your points between the two programs.

10) Know your booking sites

With Kayak they let you compare to the big guys like Orbitz, Expedia, Booking.com, etc… but don’t forget about the other sites like CheapOair, Airfarewatchdog, Skyscanner, and Google Flights. Of course, you should always check the airline’s website directly, and local regional carriers.

11) Setup price alerts

You’ll be able to setup fare alerts on a lot of these sites, and they’ll notify you via email of any price change. You want to watch the flights for a little while, but in general, the earlier you book the better. You’ll be able to wait until the right time of the week or month (as mentioned in tips #1 and #2), but don’t wait too long or you’ll miss out. Price predictors (as mentioned in tip #6) rarely say they flights are going to come down in price.

Superhack: Put it all together. Here’s my general process when booking flights:

Search Kayak for the flight you want, and check the price predictor.  If the flight is more than 3-4 months away, I’ll set a fare alert, and watch the price. On a Tuesday or Wednesday, at the beginning of the month, after my credit card is on a fresh billing cycle, I’ll check the flight on the search engines again, and then head over to American Express Travel where I can pay with as many points as I have, bringing down the fare, and put the rest on my card.

Happy travels!

Matt Wilson is co-founder of Under30CEO and Adventurer in Residence at the travel company Under30Experiences.  Read his free e-book The Escape Manual, the secret to temporarily escaping your job, living a life that makes your friends jealous and making memories that last a lifetime.

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