Happiness and remote work

Miami - Sanibel

A virtual event has taken place this week in the Canary Islands repeople.co

Nacho (Ignacio Rodríguez) and his team have been able to organize and execute an impressive event. This time, the event has been remote (with attendees from all over the world) and it is very likely that looking forward, it will adopt a hybrid model. Thanks to this transition, we will have to attend the events either virtually (during our time zone but around the world) or physically in the Canary Islands.

Whoever has read my contributions and opinions during the last months will know my point of view about the opportunity that this event represents for the Canary Islands. Allowing it to position itself as a reference for the so-called digital nomads and remote workers. Two profiles traditionally associated with young people, trained, with a medium-high income and based on the knowledge economy. Employees who work for an industry that does not consume territory and that would help to create an ecosystem. This new situation would facilitate raising the level of local talent and diversify the regional economy which is very sensitive nowadays to Icelandic volcanoes and global pandemics.

Getting media coverage and an article in the national newspaper ElPais.com was probably part of the strategy of the organizers, repeople.co, to promote the event. Another possibility that might have positively influenced the outcome is the mention that David Heinemeier Hansson (https://twitter.com/dhh/status/1326083757863022592?s=20) made on the Internet about that article, which highlighted the virtues of Spain (and the Canary Islands) as a privileged place to work remotely, even if this was not planned. Maybe, that tweet had more repercussion on the event and what it intends to promote, than many of the "public relations" activities that where planned.

Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple had a phrase that went viral: "Life is too short to be living other people's dreams and not your own". We will add to this, that the secret of happiness are relationships. With family, friends, co-workers, etc. This is a fact. Contrasted and studied. According to an individual who knows a lot about this, Dan Gilbert, we are the most social animal on the planet, no matter how you measure it, so it's not surprising that most of our happiness comes from social relationships.

One last fact to add: investing in experiences is much more rewarding than doing it in material things. The value of an activity with your friends or children is not measured in the price of tickets, accommodation or admission. The value is in the memories you treasure. That is really what we take with us.

The life expectancy of an average European adult is close to 80. It is likely that for some of you who read us, it’s a little more. Overall, that is the average, and not everyone is aware until a certain point that you discover that you pay for everything with time and not money. Many important decisions spontaneously begin to be considered in terms of time.

Here is where this crazy article might make a little bit of sense. Maybe you'll begin to understand what it really means to work remotely for many generations who value things that are different from the socially and traditionally established. And what it can mean to do it while working on your own projects. And maybe for some of us, it's really what it's all about. When we radicalize ourselves into considering paying the cost of our decisions with our time.