There’s a commonality amongst the Instagram profiles of travel influencers. They showcase an assortment of pictures, all with a similar aesthetic and theme: a little VSCO, wide smiles, tagged geolocations, all accompanied by an extended caption about opting out of Corporate America to travel the world and the happiness that immediately followed. Some of these influencers offer free advice on how you can do the same. Some have guides and hold seminars for a fee. And then there are those who just flat out shame you while drawing a parallel between Corporate America and slavery, all because you’ve said no to their pyramid scheme for the tenth time. But the message is generally the same: Quit your job. And a lot of people have asked when I’m hopping on that bandwagon and I always respond the same way:

I absolutely will not.

Since I was a 13-year-old who taught herself how to code & design web pages, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in IT. Knowing this led to obtaining my undergraduate degree in computer science, and then entering Corporate America the following year to work at IBM. Now with 7 YOE in the tech game, I am content. And when that contentment fades, there are worlds beyond worlds that exist that need tech where I could easily do something else.

Truth is, I absolutely enjoy the type of work that I do. I also love to travel. And I’m grateful that I’ve been able to finally land a job that I love that also provides the flexibility to enjoy traveling via unlimited PTO. I also understand that this isn’t everyone’s reality. It definitely wasn’t mine just a few years ago. The fact of the matter is that it’s important to do whatever you feel is best for you.

I know for sure what works for me, my situation, and my family. I personally feel that even with 7 years of experience, there is still so much more for me to experience opportunities that provide room for my growth and development. I have yet to reach the pinnacle of my career, in my opinion. There’s so much more that I want to do and trails that I want to blaze before I make my grand exit.

And I say all of this as I take a break from my coding goals, pack for my flight to Amsterdam and Dubai, prepare my home for my absence, and get ready for GOT tonight. :)

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7 Comments
  1. Chantel

    April 15, 2019 at 7:26 am

    now this is the kind of content i signed up for. so many of these influencers quit their ‘9-5’ because it was one they didn’t enjoy and it was “stifling their creativity,” but they didn’t consider that there are other options out there with more flexible scheduled that *can* be enjoyed as a creative professional. maybe they just picked the wrong company to work for? just because you can sing doesn’t mean you’re meant to be a singer, and just because you racked up thousands of followers by following a formula and catering to an algorithm doesn’t mean you should be an influencer. at the end of the day, many (hashtag not all) are really only influencing each other anyway – how else can the cookie-cutter explore page be explained?? let me stop before you really get me going, lol.
    have fun in amsterdam & dubai! looking forward to your recap when you return.
    (p.s. unlimited pto? consider me jealous!)

    Xx http://theactivespirit.com/

  2. Faith

    April 15, 2019 at 7:34 am

    I am completely with you! I love traveling but have no interest in becoming a travel blogger. Social media has made it that you can’t actually enjoy your job or working in Corporate America without feeling like you are a “slave”. Not everyone’s goals or dreams are the same. At the end of the day we should all just mind our business and do what works and makes us happy.

    Hope you have the best time on your travels!

    1. Rae

      May 23, 2019 at 11:06 am

      This is absolutely key — us just minding our own business and doing what’s best for ourselves.

  3. Shannon

    April 15, 2019 at 9:32 am

    You are truly and inspiration! I’m so glad that you are in a comfortable place in your life and you have truly earned it.

    I’m reaching this milestone with my job. I have been here for 12 years. I don’t even know why I stayed, honestly. But I’m certainly glad that I did. We are now working from home 3 days a week, which allows me so much flexibility.

    1. Rae

      April 16, 2019 at 5:05 pm

      Thank you Shan! We’ve been following each other for so long & I remember the strifes you would share with us, particularly the hours. I‘m glad that your company is taking steps to make sure you all have a good work balance. More companies need to hop on this train!

  4. Amanda Nicole

    April 19, 2019 at 4:52 pm

    Scream it LOUDER for the people in the back. There’s so much more to just traveling the world like the debt that some of those influencers aren’t brave enough to discuss. I am super content with the work that I do, I want to continue to grow with the almost 10 years of experience that I have. I still get to jump on a plane from time to time to see another part of the world. Continue traveling and coding – I’ll be reading along. xoxo

  5. Mia J

    May 30, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    You know I am always lusting after your Instagram and your blog posts on your travel adventures and wish I did have the flexibility to travel and have UNLIMITED PTO. My job would NEVER, lol. But I do hate that this new generation has warped some minds in to believing that quitting your job and traveling the world is something we can turn into a reality when in some situations people are in DEBT or still living at home (no offense to anyone still at home). But you are an inspiration of what should and could be done if you living your life right ! #blackgirlmagic

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