Our Story

Imagine two people stuck in life. So mired in mediocrity and the mundane that they both feel they are losing the best parts of themselves. Aimlessly, they mentally and emotionally wander down their separate paths. By some serendipitous fluke they end up meeting and find what they are missing. Through each other they rediscover their individual greatness, and reawaken the courage to intentionally create legendary lives…

When Aris and Stephen met in August of 2015, things were going relatively well for both of them, but there was still something missing in each of their lives. After an 8-hour conversation which lasted from evening into the late morning hours, they realized that they connected on a deeper level than with most people in their lives. Which left them with a conundrum: What should they do with this new relationship?

As the relationship developed into something deeper, it became apparent that their shared passions for problem-solving, business development, technology and even life-hacking was leading them to make massive life changes with which each of them had been seeking someone very unique and special to share.

Stephen had been traveling extensively around the United States for 2 years (check out his personal story and learn how he walked across the country) and was terrified that the adventure he had lived was over. His family and friends were constantly asking when he would settle down, get a life and a job . He had tasted greatness on that journey–the bittersweet experience of pushing as far as you can go until you break, and then farther; the terrifying excitement of not knowing what the next day will bring. He felt all of this was coming to a halt.

Aris was very involved in the Tampa Bay community in entrepreneurship and the arts and traveled occasionally, but had wanted to ‘jump ship’ for a long time and do something which most people would consider either daring, or ridiculous (find out about Aris’ unique skills and talents). She had always envisioned traveling the world, sharing her knowledge and helping others in huge ways, but several things kept her from taking the leap.

Both were fans of well-known people who had used internet business and marketing to create lifestyles deliberately. It was this concept which led to the idea of Backpack Entrepreneurs (since Stephen had been living and working out of a single backpack for years) and obviously, the next logical step was to uproot everything and go on a global life quest–what else do you do if you’re a visionary with a goal to positively change the world in big ways?

How do you break stagnation, force exponential growth and live a life of legend? Their answer was to begin with an entrepreneurial quest around the world, to reawaken the passion and adventure that so defined them when they were at their best.

They set out to design a year-long travel quest which would meld each of their unique intentions with online businesses, consulting, cultural discovery and global understanding. They wanted to create something way bigger than just themselves as they moved throughout the world, learning more about different places, people and economies, as well as bringing back that sense of awe and wonder which can often be lost in the shuffle and bustle of modern-day American life.

The more they shared the idea, the more excited people would get. Complete strangers felt like long-time friends and the way that people offered to assist, connect, cheer them on and follow them vicariously became invigorating.  It was clear that they were creating momentum and that they had, in fact, created something larger, just by sharing their intentions.

With each conversation, they got better at explaining themselves and with each meeting, they improved their ideas on how to make it a feasible reality. They chose ‘Backpack Entrepreneurs’ because it really says a lot in a couple words–and people are genuinely excited over this new movement which includes digital nomads, virtual workers, lifestyle designers and entrepreneurs of which they are a living, breathing model.

They hope to help people see the immense possibilities that the world offers and the potential that lies within us all to create experiences and follow our dreams. They’ll share the tales of their trials and triumphs as travelers, entrepreneurs and as a couple through their  blog, podcast and social networks.

If you’re looking to discover the world, find meaning in life, implement lean strategies in your business, or create more passionate relationships, become a part of their story.

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