105 | You can Afford Anything but not Everything | Paula Pant

105 | You can Afford Anything but not Everything | Paula Pant

Paula Pant, creator of Afford Anything podcast and blog, dives into her love for travel, her rejection of the traditional 9-5, and how she built an income to match her lifestyle.

  • Paula moved to the U.S. as a baby, just after being born in Nepal.
  • Her only travel growing up was between Ohio and Nepal.
  • Travel has become a large part of Paula’s life, but her desire to travel only grew in her adult life.
  • Rebellion is a form of seeking identity.
  • Once Paula started traveling did she fall in love with travel immediately?
  • What does Paula consider a legitimate visit to a foreign country?
  • Two weeks of vacation in Paula’s first few years of work after college felt too limiting.
  • Paula made a lifestyle change, and then figured out how to fund it.
  • Learning about and trying out freelance work introduced Paula to the idea that someone could work outside of the traditional 9-5 work.
  • Did Paula receive criticism when she quit her job to travel?
  • When Paula traveled for her first few years, she budgeted about $1,000 a month for expenses and chose to visit countries where the dollar goes far.
  • Paula’s tips for building connection while traveling:
    • Stay at hostels – more economical, and more social.
    • Meet the American, Australian, British, etc., ex pats, and meet their friends (build relationships, and travel slowly).
  • How did Paula restart once she returned to the U.S. after her 27-month adventure?
  • In pursuit of writing what she wanted to read, Paula became a personal finance writer.
  • When did Paula begin to feel imposter syndrome?
  • Default to saving, instead of default to spending.
  • Why does spending money create anxiety for Paula, and how did the scarcity mindset actually push Paula toward financial independence?
  • Passive income (real estate) was primarily meant to give Paula some financial cushion, instead of a means to financial independence.
  • Humans crave autonomy, purpose and mastery.
  • Reading about potential scientific advances motivates Paula to be healthier because she wants to be around to see it.
  • Self-care is work care.


Links mentioned in today's episode:

Wait But Why

“How (and Why) SpaceX Will Colonize Mars” – Wait But Why


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2 thoughts on “105 | You can Afford Anything but not Everything | Paula Pant”

  1. lol, I do own an iron… solely for the purpose of putting wax on my snowboard so I can hit jumps faster

    It’s so cool to see what Paula has done with her life. There are so many parallels with my own life.

    I moved to Breckenridge after college because I love to snowboard and wasn’t all that interested in a 9 to 5. Spent a few years working at ski school, restaurants, touristy things. Started a freelance writing “career” flailing my arms and blasting out content for random clients and content mills (I once wrote 5000 product descriptions for a skateboarding website and was paid per piece).

    My major turning point happened once I niched down and started writing content focused on software development, an interest of mine. That led to a mobile app I built with some friends, then a much more lucrative freelancing career in software.

    Now I work remotely from the base of a ski resort, make passive income from my apps and stocks, and am actively working on opening up more avenues for passive income. I’m not FI yet but definitely on the path.

    What a great episode. So many of her points resonate with me 100%

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