Rolling Remote With Kalila Bodden

Kalila Bodden | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

Kalila Bodden found a way to build her business, get sweet 1:1 time with her husband and dog, and travel every 4-6 weeks — all while working from her home base in the Caymans. A significant part of her work is helping others, particularly women, accomplish their own goals. “I support introverted women in creating their freedom lifestyle, including growing their online business to 4 + 5-figure months and attaining work-life balance success,” Kalila explained to Remoter.

The medical doctor, former health insurance executive, and wellness coach makes the most of her own work-life balance: Her computer is often in her lap when she’s traveling, but that’s in large part because she’s traveling so often. She’s got an envious work-from-home office setup, but it’s balanced with a pool in the backyard for unwinding. Below, learn more about Kalila’s remote work lifestyle and the mindset she credits for achieving it.

Woman holds out her hand to feed two elephants, one of which is extending its trunk to grasp the food
Kalila during her travels to the Chiang Mai Elephant Nature Park | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

Quick-fire profile

How many years have you worked remotely? 3

Where are you based? The Cayman Islands

Where do you spend most of your remote work hours? It’s a mix of her home office based in the Caymans and lots of coffee shops or airplanes while she travels. “A huge bonus of having an online business is that I get to work from anywhere with WiFi, so frequent travel has become a regular part of my life,” Kalila told Remoter. “I’ve been fortunate that in the last two years I’ve had the opportunity to work from: Miami, Ireland, New York, Spain, Mexico, Thailand, Halifax, Honduras, Cambodia, Tampa, Belize, Dallas, Vietnam, and Trinidad.”

woman works on airplane with laptop in her lap
Kalila takes her work with her when she travels, but her lifestyle allows for travel every 4-6 weeks. | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

When are you most productive? In the afternoons.

Coffee or tea? Both! “I’m a tea lover (anything organic and herbal I will probably love!), but I do enjoy the daily cappuccino or mochaccino,” Kalila said.

Kalila’s home office setup and decor

What type of desk and chair do you use? Kalila uses a typical desk and office chair when she’s working from home, but she’s used to working with whatever a local coffee shop has while she’s traveling. “The rest of the time, the laptop is on my lap: At the beach, in the airport, on the plane, and at the pool,” she said.

Large bright room with white modern desk next to armchair and bed
We’re envious of the natural light and beautiful aesthetics of Kalila’s home office! | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

What features do you like most about your work space? “I love my third-floor home office that is beautifully airy, overlooking palm trees and a designer pool,” Kalila said. “I also love that my ‘office’ can be fluid – it is wherever I choose to work that day or week, whether it be in a hotel lobby because I’m traveling, in a coffee shop, at home, or visiting family abroad. It’s awesome that anywhere in the world I travel I can still service clients and run my business.”

Do you share your work space with anyone? Tell us about them! “I love having my Chocolate Labrador, Hershey, curled up at my feet when I’m working!” Kalila told Remoter. “You can tell he loves having me work from home so that I can keep him company during the day. We take walking and tea breaks together, and then he usually naps under my desk when I’m on client calls.”

Woman sits with cell phone smiling at camera, next to chocolate Labrador on her left
Kalila with her chocolate Labrador, Hershey | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

Remote work pros and cons: Kalila’s take

What are the biggest pros and cons of remote work for you?

Pros: Schedule and travel flexibility, more focus, a better work-life balance, and a less stressful work environment.

“I feel so grateful to be able to schedule my work hours and client calls around my spin classes, lunch with friends, flute lessons, evening walks with Hershey, and dinner time with my husband,” Kalila said. “I love to travel and I’m usually on a plane every 4-6 weeks, so being able to run my business and coach clients from any amazing destination with WiFi is the freedom lifestyle that I have fallen in love with.”

Cons: More personal office and tech expenses, and fighting the stigma of not working as hard as non-remote peers

Working from home tips and tricks

Kalila often works with coffee or tea in hand. | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

What software do you use on a regular basis? GSuite, Calendly, Zoom, Microsoft Outlook, Dubsado, ActiveCampaign

What habit allows you to be more productive during the day? “A strong mindset practice is extremely important, especially when you’re running your own business and don’t have a boss to tell you what to work on and when projects are due,” Kalila said. “Procrastination, fear of failure, and self-doubt are all very real for solopreneurs and online business owners. Therefore having a strong mindset practice to move past these blocks so that you can excel in your business and truly embrace a freedom lifestyle without guilt, overwhelm, or worry is essential for a thriving business and life. Making sure to prioritize meditation and fitness have been wonderful additions to my life since I started my online business.”

Woman stands at base of steep pyramid while looking up the steps toward the top
Kalila Bodden | Photo submitted by Kalila Bodden

What are the 3 items you can’t live without while working remotely? (If you have a brand you love, please name them!) 1. My laptop — it’s my lifeline! I have a Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme – super quick, very light, and a great sized screen. 2. My iPhone 3. My customized Coach laptop bag – perfect fit for my laptop and chic! Plus it fits under the seat in front of me when I’m flying.

Answers have been lightly edited and links were added. 

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