In this Digital Nomad Jobs Interview series we had a chat with Charlie Ropsy – 30 years old – Feng Shui Consultant, bestselling author, and soul explorer. Read about her amazing journey that brought her the life that she loves!
Charlie is a brilliant young entrepreneur originally from Belgium but with a hard-core traveler background. In fact, she grew up in the South of France and has traveled the world for the past 6 years doing many different jobs while searching for her call until she found it. After being a digital nomad for a while, she has now settled in Spain where she works as a successful Feng Shui Consultant and works remotely.
In this inspiring interview, she kindly shares about her adventurous journey and how she found her purpose, doing what she loves and helping people building a harmonic living environment.
If you are struggling with becoming a digital nomad and don’t know where to start, check out my beginners’ guide to how to become a digital nomad.
You may also want to know more about the pros and cons of the digital nomad life before taking the leap.
What is your background?
I graduated as a Textile Designer in 2012 from ENSAV La Cambre, in Brussels, Belgium. No, it doesn’t mean I design clothing items, I actually don’t know how to do that. A textile designer is a person behind the fabric.
We create from the thread to the surface, looking at the materials, colors, patterns, and function.
I’ve always loved to feel and make things with my hands and I enjoyed navigating the infinite possibilities of what a piece of fabric can be! My life drastically took a turn at the end of 2013 when I decided to sell everything I had and book a one-way ticket to Australia.
I wasn’t happy at the time and I flew to the other side of the world hoping for life to have something more fulfilling to offer me. I left the Textile Designer behind and became a whole lot of things!
Starting with the “backpacker” label, I have done pretty much any kind of work you can imagine, from farmer to grape picker, from au pair to housekeeper, or even dropping flyers door-to-door and working at a turf club. I, later on, became a carer or support worker for someone with a spine injury. I was trained to give him personal care and was also his housekeeper and bookkeeper. In my last three months, I was the carer of someone who had a brain injury. As you can see, I took any path that was coming my way. Some jobs were very hard and the conditions terrible but I’m forever grateful for all the experiences they brought me.
What made you decide to become a digital nomad?
After my 2 years in Australia, I kept on traveling around the world for four more years. I got into affiliate marketing, studied dropshipping, started blogging. But I was doing it all from a place of need and survival. None of these things were aligned with my soul and I lost money and time trying to become someone I wasn’t. The opportunity to work for a coliving company came up which sounded perfect! I’ve always wanted to create a home so why not doing it for nomads around the world? Unfortunately, that wasn’t it either! I was so caught up in the “I have to make money” scheme I couldn’t find the answer inside myself. It’s only when I decided to settle down and take a break that it came to me. Once I could ground and reconnect to my soul, I knew I wanted to create environmental harmony. I had spent the last years experiencing how much my environment impacted me and how important it was for me to feel good wherever I was. I had been struggling with my circumstances so much I couldn’t find my peace or feel at home anywhere. This was my biggest pain and it was time to transform it into my biggest gift.
I became certified in Classical Feng Shui in order to give me tangible tools to create environmental harmony – from the understanding of the energies inhabiting a building to the physical elements in it. My vision is to transform houses into homes around the world and to help individuals create peace and harmony in their direct surroundings.
How was this transition from doing anything you could possibly find to earn a living to working towards your newly found goal?
I think it all comes back to mindset work. Allowing yourself to think outside the box and experience new things. Once you realize there is no right or wrong, no black or white, not only one way to living life, you open yourself to new possibilities. Your only enemy is yourself and you are your biggest challenge. Once I became clear on who I was and what I was here to do, everything started to flow. I do on-site consultations but most of my clients live abroad. I guess I started attracting people who fit my vision. From a technical view, you can be a Feng Shui consultant from wherever you want. You can find a house anywhere in the world using Google Maps and there are very accurate online tools you can use to do the analysis of a house. I also do remote space clearings which I find very powerful as I work directly with the energies without being overwhelmed by the physical world.
What do you think are the main skills needed to do what you do?
An open heart and a deep knowing this is what you feel called to do. A strong feeling of connection to the planet and nature and of course being open to a spiritual approach to things. There is so much we don’t know in life. However, this is shifting now as quantum physics and science is starting to talk about energy more. I was certified by the International Feng Shui School and Amanda Sophia is my Feng Shui teacher. I highly recommend that if you are called to do a Feng Shui certification, you find the right mentor and school for yourself. I knew Amanda was mine as soon as I saw her picture on her website but I did my research. If Amanda is not the one for you, I suggest you find another school listed on the International Feng Shui Guild website at a gold level.
Can you please explain what a Feng Shui Consultant does on a daily basis?
As a Feng Shui Consultant, I do many different tasks. Some are very down to earth and others more spiritual. This is also what I love about it and it allows me to manage my energy better than if I was always doing the same kind of tasks.
- There’s the analysis part where I study the structure, surroundings, energies, and directions of a building. This is more of a behind the computer, detailed work, which I love!
- Then I write it all down and create a personalized report for my clients.
- The consultation part is where I interact with clients, guide them, answer their questions.
- Remote Space Clearings are a beautiful practice where I use dowsing and meditative techniques. With the dowsing technique, I use my pendulum for remote space clearings.
- All tasks any entrepreneur needs to do to build a business (marketing, admin,…)
How do you stay focused and motivated while working on your own?
I use Notion to get organized and I create my reports on Affinity Publisher (highly recommend all their products – I use Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo too). I am an introvert and I do well when I am alone. However, I have to admit I am not always productive. I am still finding out what allows my energy to flow best. For example, I know that joining the 5 am club is not for me! I am not an early riser and even though some people out there say that to be a successful entrepreneur you have to get up early… It’s just not true! I believe you need to find what is right for you and that starts by getting to know yourself. Yesterday was Sunday and I was working on my client’s report because I wanted to! It doesn’t matter what day of the week or time of the day you decide to work as long as it feels aligned and that you do it in a balanced way. So that you still have downtime for yourself and you don’t burn yourself out…
How do you find new clients or new jobs?
For now, I have to say that they found me! I also was recommended by former clients to their friends. I don’t want to be hunting for clients. May the individuals I am meant to help come my way for the best of all. This is the intention I put out there and it works. I just want to clarify as this might sound woo-woo for a lot of people. It does not mean I am waiting for clients to come my way without doing anything about it! You need to have clarity on what you want and take action so that people can actually find you! It’s like the story of a guy who prays to God every day: “Oh God, please let me win the lottery” and God replied: “You could at least buy a ticket!”.
So how do you take action?
Honestly, so far clients came my way through recommendations and social media. I don’t have a marketing strategy in place right now but it’s something I am working on. It needs to feel aligned, I want to connect with the people who need my services and who I am the best to help.
I struggle with the idea of a marketing strategy – I’m working on my own beliefs around that idea so that I can work from a place of integrity. I do 100% stand by what I told you and I know I could do better by putting myself out there more (buying lottery tickets!).
In the end, becoming an entrepreneur is the best personal development course you can take! It makes you work through your self-esteem, worthiness, confidence. Now, buying the ticket means being aware of when those opportunities are there and being bold enough to catch them. The more we train ourselves to see the opportunities, the more we realize they’re there (It’s easier said than done), and the more we take action by catching them, the more of a ripple effect we create, people start talking about us, we start meeting the right people to help us out.
Where have you been traveling as a digital nomad and what is your favorite country?
I have now settled down in Spain however I have been traveling to Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Nepal, Spain, France, Belgium, Germany, Croatia, USA, Mexico. I believe each place is unique and brought me what I needed at that time. I loved Australia, New Zealand, and Nepal. Australia for the lifestyle, New Zealand for its breath-taking landscapes, and Nepal for its people (most beautiful souls).
How do you balance the traveling and the working duties? Doesn’t it get stressful?
I used to stay in one place for as long as my visa allowed me to. Now I have to say I have settled down in Spain so it makes it easier. It doesn’t mean I won’t travel again but I feel like I need to be here for a while.
Did the present pandemic affect your work/business? How did you face the challenges?
Yes and no. More people being in lockdown means they start to understand how important it is for them to live in a harmonious space. Many see it as an opportunity to take action and want to Feng Shui their house while others, unfortunately, can’t afford it.
How much can somebody earn with your profession approximately? Can you give a range?
It really depends on what niche they’re in and what services they offer. People working for celebrities don’t make the same amount as others. The same goes if you partner with an interior design firm or a building company then you can also build Feng Shui houses from the ground up instead of only be looking for homeowners… It’s very hard to give you numbers.
And last what advice would you give to those who want to follow your path?
To become a Classical Feng Shui Consultant:
1- Get certified – Becoming a Feng Shui Consultant is not a woo-woo thing. Feng Shui was born from the observation of our lands 5000 years ago and the art of Feng Shui has been developed ever since. Some created a simplified version of it for westerners to apply to their homes. And that is not Classical Feng Shui and it creates a lot of problems regarding the integrity of the art. Unfortunately many choose this vocation for money and use it without the respect it deserves.
2- Practice, Practice, Practice – Even though you might be a nomad there are a lot of aspects of Feng Shui that you can apply to your own life (it’s not just about a physical space). The more you work on yourself, the more you will be able to help others. This will also give you stories and experiences which will grow your confidence as you will see the shifts you create for yourself and your clients.
3- Never stop learning – There are so many layers to Feng Shui and there’s always more to learn. You might also become curious about the I-Ching, 9 Star Ki, Ba Zi. Follow what feels right to you.
Anything else you wish to add?
Embrace yourself and follow your heart!
Charlie is a Feng Shui consultant, international best-selling author, textile designer, and soul explorer. She has traveled the world for four years, learning about the planet, people, cultures and beliefs, and herself. She realized that our direct environment has a huge impact on our overall well-being and success in life and deeply believes that the more people harmonize their space, the happier the world will be. Her vision is to create environmental harmony, transforming houses into homes applying the wisdom of Feng Shui. Welcome, Home!