On buying time to experiment

The first title of this blog post was “On taking three years off“, but that “off” felt vague and it also showed me that somehow I was implying that taking time off from work meant pressing on a pause button on everything else as well.

If anything, this change in lifestyle and the pressed off button on a traditional job will allow me to go forward with some areas in my life where I felt stuck until now.

My background: late twenties Romanian immigrant currently living in Switzerland, postgraduate (Master of Arts), working in corporate data jobs for the past three years in Germany and Switzerland.

The title of my MA dissertation is “Defining the Modern and Postmodern Flâneuse in Literature”, therefore it made much sense after graduating with honours to start working as a data analyst for an American grill company in Berlin. Leaving irony aside, I knew what I was signing when I signed the 40h / week contract, and I willingly accepted as I needed money to save in order to leave Germany where I moved to study and briefly work and start again in a new country.

My plan was to save 25% of my salary monthly for one year to cover the expenses to move to a country as expensive as Switzerland – and to start there again with another corporate job where I can save 50% or more on a monthly basis and speed up the process of having enough money in one year of saving to “retire” for three years in a mountain town in Eastern Europe – Brasov.

Now that my journey here is approaching an end and my savings goal is accomplished, I am planning ahead the experiments/projects/ideas that I want to explore and work on in my years “off”:

Ideas: creating/designing/organising art exhibitions in my new home town, around the world, and also virtually. I want to open an online boutique with different products to sell, including art objects*. I want to keep on writing on my book about places for thinking and the importance of aesthetic experiences. I want to still host salons and workshops for the Interintellect and to connect with curious minds. Long term I want to build a space (most likely a cabin) where I can host cultural retreats. Long, long term I want to own my own gallery and to support artists and bring them together.

Of course, even if in these years I will not be returning to a job I dislike, I will still try in some ways to aim for extra income streams doing something I enjoy which can prolong my three years experiment … indefinitely.

*extra note: I know that saving religiously every month is not the only way of leaving a traditional work life, I also invested a bit of money in 2018 which can be used as option B in case I run out of my savings in the following years

*extra extra note: I know some people can side hustle while working in a traditional job, but I personally cannot – my creative energy is limited, and I put a lot of heart and energy in everything I do – a job I dislike always proved to be a roadblock in my desire to create and to take more risks artistically & from an entrepreneurial point of view

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