A happy female entrepreneur in fuerteventura

My name is Lien De Pau. I was born is Belgium but I have been living a nomadic life since 2012. I run a couple of businesses to support my lifestyle: I have a consultancy firm called Morpheus, which specializes in project management for banks and insurance companies and I have a network for female entrepreneurs in Belgium, called www.zekervanhaarzaak.com (zhich translate like “she is sure of her business”. I also have a travel blog www.nomadbelgian.blogspot.com where I share my passion for authentic food when traveling. I decided to join The Hub because I needed a space for 2 months to get the sales organized for my business, which means lots of Skype calls and many hours behind my laptop. But what I found was much more than just good wifi and a desk. I mean, who has ever worked in an office full of surfboards?  where people come and go depending on the tides and the waves??  ;-)

Is not the first time you come down to Fuerteventura, I guess you like the island as much as we do but; what, in your opinion, makes this piece of sand and sea such a great place to be visited?

Fuerteventura is just stunning! The landscape is surreal, because of the volcanos and rocks and hardly any plants. That makes it look rough and I like that. The desert and rocks create some of the most stunning sunrises and sunsets I have ever seen. I like the laidback vibe of the northern part of the island. Surfers, hippies, nomads, they all meet here. And thanks to the Italians there’s great coffee and pasta! If you are into nature and water sports (surfing like me, but also supping, sailing, diving, windsurfing, snorkeling, etc I think it’s a great place to be).  

Do you consider yourself a “Digital Nomad”?

A nomad yes, I work, play and life from any part of the world. A digital one, not sure. I still love the analog world too much I guess 

digital nomadism a lot about eating out all over the world

Digital nomadism, a hype or the future of work?

Jobs as we know it (9to5 at an office) are becoming a thing of the past. More flexibility about how we get things done is becoming key to prosperity for all of us. Not sure if everyone needs to start traveling because they can work from anywhere or at any time.

Does working remotely improve your work in any way? and your life?

Working location and time independent definitely has improved my life for the last 4 years. Maybe also because I can’t work for a boss! The good thing about being a nomad is that I always want to make the most out of my time somewhere and therefor I be as productive as possible when I work (so I can spend more time outside the office). I try to limit my work to about 2, max 3 days a month and be very productive.

What is the biggest challenge for remote workers/digital nomads?

I think to stay connected with the world, the news, trends, keep seeing the global picture and in the meantime creating a future for yourself and your loved ones.

Why did you choose to become location independent?

I rediscovered my passion for travel 5 years ago and decided I needed to find a way to be able to travel as much as I wanted. So becoming location independent to make a living was key. Have been on the road for more than 4 years now. I do not have a base anymore.

Do you have any routines on your travels?

Not really, I think that is the beauty of being location and time independent. There is no need to have a routine (if you don’t need one, like me).

Do you find it difficult to be productive when you’re on the road without any structure to your days?

No, but I’m quite good at self-discipline. I think I benefit now from already running a business before I become a nomad.

What working environment do you prefer - coworking places, coffeeshops or rather rented flats?

Digital nomad -Lien de Pau-

I like the buzz of coffee shops and have no issue with being surrounded by coffee shop noise. But now that I have been writing a book, which is a very creative process, I discovered I needed ‘my space’ and loneliness to get the job done. A co-working space for me is great to get social, meet people and do things together outside of work. It’s a very easy why do build a network fast.

Do you usually work from a coworking space? how do you see the movement now? Where do you think is going to be in 5 years?

I don’t work a lot from coworking spaces. But, with more and more people working location independent (even if it’s within their own country), I believe the co-working facilities will stick around for quite some time and more and more people will use it. I also see that a lot of micro-entrepreneurs start craving for an ‘office’ after working at their kitchen table for a year. The social contact is one of the drivers.

How do you see the future of work?

I hope we can move into an era were ‘jobs’ as we know it no longer exists and we all can maintain and sustain ourselves and our lives by just doing the things we really love.

What would be your advice for people who are looking for a remote job?

Create your own?!

Were you able to work during the stay? would you say that working this way, with all this activities, the sun, the sea, and all of those “distractions” helps increasing your productivity or creativity?

I worked a lot on Fuerte! I started building my business to the next level and I have written a book. So I was very productive. I found the ‘distractions’ to be perfect! You grab a coffee during work and enjoy a few minutes in the sun watching the ocean. Best productivity tool ever! Or you go for an early surf and feel all stoked afterwards, ready to conquer the world!

What is your most favorite location for living and working remotely from those you have visited?

That is a really tough question and I’m not sure about the answer. Some places are amazing for food (like Malaysia), some are amazing for undiscovered culture (like Bolivia), some have amazing beaches and surf (like Bali) or stunning nature (like Galapagos). I’m not really sure which place has the best wifi though, but it is definitely not France 

Are you an active surfer? Did you go surfing in Fuerteventura? Tell us a bit about your experience in our waves.

Fuerteventura got me addicted to surfing! I found the surf spots to be wild and rough and real and pure. No facilities, no beach, no bars, no nothing. It is just you and the ocean and I really appreciate that. I found Fuerte to be a place where you really need to like surfing (when you are a beginner like me), because it can be cold and windy and rocky and painful. But so rewarding at the same time.

a digital nomad diving in fuerteventura

a digital nomad diving in fuerteventura

Were you able to work during the stay? would you say that working this way, with all this activities, the sun, the sea, and all of those “distractions” helps increasing your productivity or creativity?

I worked a lot on Fuerte! I started building my business to the next level and I have written a book. So I was very productive. I found the ‘distractions’ to be perfect! You grab a coffee during work and enjoy a few minutes in the sun watching the ocean. Best productivity tool ever! Or you go for an early surf and feel all stoked afterwards, ready to conquer the world!

Let's make it useful for the next people visiting Corralejo:
Tell me 3 places they can't absolutely miss (bars, ice cream shop, restaurants):

Pincha Cabra for food, El Gusto and Smooy for ice cream, Da Uli for after surf carb cravings and futalia for all your fruits and veggies. And piazza grande for coffee. And single fin for burgers.

- 3 activities they should do:

Surf, surf, surf. (oh, and hike a volcano, rent a car and go to Sotavento via de westcoast mountains), and go to the Barcelo spa and hang out with Sebas to talk about how to solve any global issue).

- 3 locations to visit:

Sotavento, the beach behind Tindaya mountain, pajara town

- 3 things or places to avoid:

most bars , the southern hotel strips, playa Morro 

Thanks a lot Lien. It's been a pleasure meting you, I hope you come back soon, so we can continue fixing the world ;)