If you want to learn how to level up your life skills through travel, you are going to love this blog.
I left my cosy office job in London, UK to focus on my own company nearly five years ago.
My company does things like create amazing invitations for weddings attended by celebrities and European Royal families.
However, it wasn’t always like this… (Continue reading below the map)
My name is Francis Shenstone, I have visited 69 countries and been travelling the world full-time for three years while running a successful company.
I have lived in the UK, Spain, and the US. The places I most identified with are NYC and London.
I have also stayed in Japan, Taiwan and Vietnam for a few months at a time as I prefer slow travel and visiting a country for at least a month. Soaking up the culture of a place, meeting and hanging out with locals and avoiding the tourist traps.
The green countries I visited and the orange countries I lived.
My Journey continued
One of my lowest points was when I first began and was selling cards in a London market. I was dragging two big heavy suitcases full of cards across London at 6am on a Sunday morning in December.
I was commuting on public transport for an hour and a half across London to get to the market and set up my stall. To make things worse, engineering works meant I had to change my route and take a bus for part of the journey. The tube in London likes to do engineering works on weekends!
As I finished dragging these suitcases up the stairs, someone asked me, where are you going on holiday?! I laughed and said, I’m going to a market to work, not on holiday!
Working seven days a week, and 16 hour days made me wonder why I left my office job where I had evenings and weekends off. I also had a nice temperature controlled office instead of standing in a freezing cold market in December!
I decided things had to change, I thought about my goal of running a business to travel and have more freedom in my life. The aim was not to just be self-employed but to have a business that would make money while I wasn’t there.
This helped steer the direction of my business after that point. I chose to make less money than I could have, but instead be in control of my time. The first step to doing this was hiring other people to help and building a team.
A great example of sticking to my goal was last year when I said “No” to a famous Hollywood studio that wanted to place an order for over £100,000 of custom designed cards for an upcoming blockbuster film release.
People told me I was crazy, but the project didn’t fit my plan to be in control of my time. I passed on the opportunity and referred them to someone else.
When you are great at what you do, many people will come knocking on your door. However, you stay successful by learning what to say “No” to.
Now I manage an analogue business remotely while travelling the world. Some people don’t believe this can be done, but I’m proof that it can.
I have six stores in the UK and a website from which we sell cards all over the world. I manage my team and business while travelling the world and have currently been doing this for four years.
As you can imagine, I have learned a lot in scaling up a successful business and setting up systems and processes so that I can manage it remotely. Through sharing my journey, I have inspired and helped others start businesses to build more freedom into their lives.
This blog is where I share what I have learned from my travels and some things I have learned as an entrepreneur.
I also do consulting to help businesses reach an international audience and expand their business through digital marketing as well as automating and streamlining their internal processes.
I am writing a book about what I have learned from my travels and business. At the moment I am sharing those ideas for free to my email list.