Hey there. My name is Ken, and I want to personally welcome you to my blog about self discovery, location independence, and living life with purpose.
I am a former accounting and finance executive who spent 17 years working prestigious firms up and down the California coast. I quit my corporate job in early 2017 and began a journey that has allowed me to set foot in 10 countries and 3 continents within a span of 10 months.
I've explored ancient temples, storybook castles, historic ruins, and UNESCO Heritage Sites. I've eaten pierogies, crickets, and durian ice cream. I've been too chicken to eat the actual durian fruit.
More importantly, I've spent a lot more quality time with my family and girlfriend wife than ever before.
I was born in Taipei, Taiwan, and immigrated to the United States at the age of 10 without speaking a single word of English. I was the center of attention at primary school for all the wrong reasons, and I couldn’t wait to assimilate as quickly as possible.
And assimilate I did. Within 2 years, I had gotten rid of my Chinese accent. I was on my way to becoming an American.
But I was trying so hard to fit in that I ended up not fitting in. My high school years were all but forgettable.
Despite my struggles, I was still on track to attain the American Dream. I attended a prestigious undergraduate business school, got my CPA, my MBA, and passed Level I of the CFA exam.
I held high level jobs and made lots of money. I was living the good life and helping my parents out at the same time.
But something was still missing. There had to be more to the American Dream, right?
In late 2016, I was sitting in my Hollywood apartment, scared that my current life was slowly draining me dry. My girlfriend was half the world away, and my job stress level was through the roof.
I knew something finally had to change. I took a hard look in the mirror and thought about what I really wanted out of life.
The answer became clear. I had to start living a life on my own terms, instead of living a life that society chose for me.
I finally decided to change my life.
Whether you are on the road to location independence or simply want to learn about a different way to live, you've come to the right place.
My goal is to give you an inside look into my life and hopefully inspire you to ask questions within your own life. Are you holding yourself back, or are you reaching your highest potential? I've sure held myself back for a long time, and I'm now searching my own voice and living life on my own terms.
So stick around, take a look inside, and make yourself at home. Think outside the box and open your mind to new possibilities.
Before long, you'll be on your way to starting your own unique journey.
"Start with Why."
- Simon Sinek
After a whole lot of self reflection, I came up with a 3 fold version of why I needed to embark on this journey:
- Relationships: Spend more quality time with my parents in the US, my two nonagenarian grandparents in Taiwan, and my
girlfriendfiancé wife in Poland.
- Travel: Explore the world. Learn other cultures. Heck, learn my own culture. Live a life full of adventure.
- Income: Discover a new career that aligns better with my interests and passions while not being tied to an office.
an act of traveling from one place to another.
Because life is more than just about standing still.
The prospect of a 30 year mortgage, keeping up with the Joneses, and buying material possessions no longer excite me. Perhaps they are attractive to other people, but they are not right for me.
What matters more to me are building everlasting relationships, learning something new every day, thinking outside the box, and forging memorable experiences.
It seems so simple. Yet, it took me almost two decades of being confined to the traditional way of living to get to this point.
I didn’t have the guts. I didn’t have the support.
After all, why give up the comforts of a six-figure salary, a sports car, and a fancy home?
"Once a year, go some place you've never been before."
- Dalai Lama
Because Nothing is More Valuable In Life Than Time
Trading time for money is a losing proposition. Time is the most precious commodity we have in this life. Once time passes, we can never get it back.
I thought long and hard about how I would look back at the end of my life. Would I be ok with not doing what I could have done? Would I be happy with making lots of money but never enjoying it?
And the answer was clearly no.