Example Generation Y - Surfing & Travelling instead of Master & Career

Published on: 11 Sep 20:03

When someone’s born within a specific period, it doesn’t automatically mean that he identifies himself with the characteristics of the appropriate generation. But others live exactly the cliché of their generation, like Nayelli, our marketing intern who is a representative digital native, born at the time of the Generation Y. But what makes her a typical millennial and how did it come about?


Between Germany and Mexico

Nayelli was born and has grown up in Bamberg, a small city in Germany. She went there to school and moved afterwards to another city in Germany for studying “Languages And Business Administration”. Due to her mexican roots, she travelled almost every two years from the earliest age to Mexico for visiting her mother’s family. After graduating from school, she spent there half a year and learned surfing which is her greatest hobby since then - besides travelling.

Against the current from the beginning

Instead of collecting internships during her semester breaks for improving her CV, Nayelli travelled a lot. In winter, she visited big cities like Brussels, Amsterdam or Porto, in summer she spent four weeks working as a teamer supervising youngsters in youth camps in Spain and Italy. For her year abroad during her studies she chose a small town at the Atlantic coast in France, so she could surf in her freetime. Furthermore, she wanted to do the obligatory internship in a campsite in the Basque region, also for being close to the sea. However, she didn’t listen to her intuition as usual, but to her intellect which made her do a “looks-good-in-the-resume-internship” in the Mexican Embassy in Paris - which was a total flop. 40h a week sitting at the reception, sorting documents from 1998 and looking forward to the weekend - a nightmare for Nayelli. She got back pain and counted the days until the end of the internship. Already at the age of 12 she mentioned frequently, that she would never work in an office and wear an “ugly skirt and uncomfortable high heels”. Why did she do it though?

Three months trip to Asia

Nayelli began having doubts about her studies and her future. She started encountering herself to figure out what she wanted in life and if the path, that society defines, was fitting to her. She decided to travel to Asia after the internship in order to get to know herself and other people with similar views of lifestyle and especially in order to surf. Indeed, she met a lot of people with interesting professions and ways of living: Some of them where surf or dive instructors, others were independent photographers or were selling products online, many of them were doing Work & Travel or Working Holiday in Australia and New Zealand and others were permanent employees in Germany, having three months a year off.

Future planning after the journey

After the trip, Nayelli knew that she wanted to continue to be on the way, to surf and, and the best, to make money on the side. But instead of taking a so-called gap year for escaping the vocational and social commitments for a while, she wanted to LIVE like that. But first, she had to finish her studies and write her bachelor thesis which was about online marketing and creating a website for a new established surfschool in Spain. Meanwhile, she was thinking about what to do afterwards. Contrary to her environment, which advised her to take a master and to pursue a career, Nayelli decided to learn surfing instead (it may sound banal to some people, but it was what she really wanted to do).

Process of self-discovery

Nayelli could only take this difficult decision thanks to the many books, talks and podcasts about self-discovery she was consuming for months. The podcasts of Laura Malina Seiler and Christian Bischoff, as well as the speakers of GEDANKENtanken and the Instagram posts of Gary Vee have remained in her memory. Her favorite books are Boarderlines (about a graduate who leaves his normal life for surfing around the world), Das Café am Rande der Welt (about discovering your dreams), The Big Five For Life (about the things you want to do before you die), Hectors Reise oder die Suche nach dem Glück (about a psychiater in search of happiness travelling around the world) as well as Der träumende Delphin (about a dolphin who wants to live a different life full of joy). All that helped her to oppose herself to the opinions of her environment and to trust in her own intuition. She decided to move to Spain after graduating (July 2018) and to work for the surfschool she had been designing the website. This would permit her to live right at the beach and to have free access to surfing equipment and surf lessons. The agreement was: work in exchange for accommodation and food.

Internship at Global Talent

Just before finishing her bachelor thesis, she coincidentally came across a job advertisement of Global Talent with the title “Do you want to become a digital nomad?” – Exactly what she was looking for! She applied immediately and was accepted for an internship in the field of online marketing, which she would also be able to do from Spain. Nayelli could hardly believe her luck and couldn’t wait any longer for graduating and finally doing what she longed for.

Current status: Sri Lanka, next stop: Lombok

In August 2018 Nayelli moved to La Coruña, a city in the region Galicia. She registered herself there, she’s got the spanish health care and her own flat. She worked there for one month in the surfschool and wanted to go to Portugal for one week because there was the Digital Nomad Festival (DNX) in Lisbon. She was working there as a volunteer and got a lof of impressions and connections. Afterwards, she found a surfhostel near Lisbon, where she could work and stay for free. Actually, she wanted to go back to Spain, but she fell in love with Portugal, so she stayed in the hostel for four weeks. Then she met two guys from Norways while surfing who asked her if she would like to join them for a trip to Sri Lanka. So, without hesitating - well, actually she thought about it for four days - she just booked the flight to Sri Lanka. She still had 10 days left for going back to Spain, cancel the contract of her flat, making sure that the health insurance covers the trip and for taking her stuff to a friends house. Then she left to Sri Lanka. She's been there for two weeks now and is already planning to fly to Lombok next. She loves that lifestyle and can't believe that it all happened only because of following her intuition.

Just let it happen

Nayelli isn’t afraid of becoming unemployed or to go broke. She believes that everything happens because it has to. That’s why she doesn’t make plans for the future. Her only plans are flying to Lombok, then to Germany for her mum's birthday, and then travelling through Latinamerica. No, she’s not scared of being left with nothing or to miss Germany some day. Her only fear is to get caught in the treadmill of life and never to fulfill her dreams.

When you reach the age, in which you could, you have passed the age in which you can. – Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach