06 Aug How important is money?
End of April 2019. The airplane has arrived in Tenerife. Meeting Rob, Kim and Tom for the first time. Eating dinner together in Abades. Staying at Rob’s and Kim’s home, and then the day after starting to work. But before I tell you something about how it is to work at Zenerife. I will tell you the setting and arrangements we made.
My first contract
I received my first two months of payment differently. We made an exchange deal. Work for all the basic needs, like food and drinks, a car, place to sleep. We even shared the same house for the first week. So not only working but doing everything together. The idea behind this was also that Laura and I could get a true Zenerife Experience. This exchange deal was great, and it made me feel very welcome and supported. No normal working relationship, but more friends that are also are working together. Well, maybe more a family than friends. Living so close together that you get to know each other very well. And by living together I also changed some small habits, like getting up earlier, eating healthier, being more outside rapidly.
The satisfaction of money
Having this exchange deal I did not even have to think about buying things for myself. Everything was arranged. The exchange that we made was a bit communistic actually. I always thought that communism was an interesting concept. Not having to worry anymore about money and owning things. Just sharing the materials that you have. Now I also got this. All the basic needs fulfilled. But somehow it was not fulfilling for me. I had a nagging feeling of not being able to give. Only to receive. Realizing that owning something also made me proud. I can surely say that I do not believe that focussing on big materialistic goals is more important than developing yourself and making connection with others. But after this experience I did realize that I also like to earn my own money and be the one to decide on what to spend it. I already knew that at some point we were going to change this exchange to a normal contract. But now that I realized this, I wanted to talk about it with Rob as soon as possible and invited him to talk about this. Thinking that it would be a difficult conversation as money conversations can be sometimes a battle in my opinion. That always has a winner and a loser, but the conversation we had was very open and transparent. Rob asked me to make a calculation what I needed to live a good life in Tenerife and on the basis of that outcome Rob facilitated to change the payment. It was a nice lesson in personal leadership, setting a clear goal and then having the courage (in this case having a money conversation, to act on it.