Today we got to experience a work space unlike any other that I have ever seen before. Hubud (Hub-in-Ubud) was Bali’s first co-working space – and what a space it was! The entrance is a narrow, unassuming staircase; but once you’re inside, it’s like walking into everyone’s – or at least my – dream work-space.
Inside it’s cool and inviting, with the bamboo we have come to love in Bali lining the space. Like any other co-working space, it has a couple of open plan areas on offer, as well as quiet meeting rooms and a Skype pod for those who need a quiet meeting space.
An amazing little café corridor leads you to the garden where you are surprised with a rice field. There’s just no way anyone looking in from the street would ever assume it was there. Then there’s a stunning villa with rooms for rent (if you could be so lucky!).
It wasn’t so much the physical space that moved me, but the vibe of the place is just indescribable – but let me give it a shot. It’s one of those spaces where you can just imagine waking up in the morning, grabbing a bite to eat at one of the many local cafes and then finding a comfortable spot to get to work. And why not! For the most part, we live in such an interconnected, globalised world that gives us the opportunity to be placed anywhere.
We humans living in the Western world have a great knack for locking ourselves into exhausting, inefficient work practices. Typically, we work eight-hour days that are built around the amount of time you spend at your desk, instead of the amount of output you are capable of. Rather than figuring out the best way or best people to use to get things done, we isolate ourselves and become little cogs in a big machine. Sure, that’s a really stereotypically way of looking at things – boohoo we’re all cogs in a machine. But think about it! How often do we just split up work and send people on their merry way to get things done. At best, we meet to discuss progress and next steps. But how often do we actually work together? And how often do we make the choice to do that remotely, from somewhere that brings us joy?
For me, that realisation quickly turned into a sense of panicked excitement – on the one hand, I could totally have all of my work move to the online space, meaning that I could be based literally anywhere in the world. On the other hand, it means having an incredibly flexible team that is capable of dealing with a lack of physical presence and the potential travel that comes with making this sort of choice. As one of our facilitators put it, it’s about recognising the benefits that can be reaped with choosing this sort of life.
We were told about the amazing launch pad that a space like Hubud could be. For example, Hubud hosts a start up weekend where people can bring their ideas and work with amazing people with different skill sets to bring these ideas to life in 54 hours. This sort of accelerated pressure cooker is the sort thing I just thrive off and could still cry at the thought of being able to bring ideas – both mine and others’ – to life in such a cool and collaborative way.
Although this is likely to be my shortest post, today has definitely been one of the biggest for me. I am still trying to get my head around my own thought processes. I am playing with the multitude of options that are currently open to me and my little think tanking team (more on this later). I am at a crossroads where I can basically choose to figure out a way to move totally online and make a living for myself, or continue down the path that I have been on. Both are great options and both are terrifying. All I know is that Bali has changed me irreversibly. I should probably start apologising to the people who will have to deal with my crazy excitement and flurry of ideas over the next few months.
In December 2016, I went to Bali as part of a leadership tour run by Learning Options. On each day, I wrote a summary of my day, focusing on a major theme. To learning more about my tour, read here, or check out my adventures from Day 1 and 2, Day 5, and Day 6.
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