Life here in Ubud Bali is something of another nature. By another nature I mean it is simply indescribable in words, healing beyond expectation, all eye, heart and chakra opening. I never understood why so many people move here? It used to baffle me thinking of the Bali I once knew – the one in my experience that was dirty, and dangerous and too touristie. This time, living in Panastanan , Ubud with many other ex packs, I finally get it. The ease of life every day and the flow that carries you as you live and breathe the calm. The sunny mornings that make you want to get out of bed and step into the rice fields on your door step while sipping on the sweet cup of your Bali coffee. The friendly smile from the local Balinese granddad that you’re renting your villa from even if he’s encroaching on your space. A villa that for so cheap offers you more than just a tropical paradise, but a home.
I mean I know Bali is a tropical paradise, but there’s something more going on in the town of Ubud. Living here you experience touching up against nature while you brush up against entrepreneurs and digital nomads and yogis, the rich and famous from all around the globe and of course the beautiful local Balinese people and their culture. There’s a movement taking place here, a movement of journey back to self, back to source, an experiment, a beginning and a way back to nature. Something growth-inducing and all inspiring.
I open my eyes when the roosters start crowing at sunrise. This is when I stick my earplugs in deeper and snooze for a few hours. I think the days start early for most Ubudians but they do not rush to start their day and emerge late from their houses.
The day is comprised of things that are nourishing and good for you. Yoga, meditation, spiritual practice at home or just lazing in bed or sipping tea slowly. The mornings are taken slowly. There is no rush to get out of bed when tired, to jump in your car and sit in peak hour traffic moving at the pace of a metre per minute or sitting on a train full of people that look lifeless travelling to jobs they can’t stand but that pay the bills. There is no rush to be somewhere and do something all the time to feel half productive. In Ubud, you flow, you take your time, you remember to breathe.
Digital nomads here operate based on the belief that the way we work, and live, is changing and evolving. There are digital co-working spaces everywhere, or me for example sitting here every morning at the Yellow Flower Cafe. Ubud offers an eclectic electric mix of people to get together and sit alongside one another to share their thoughts and ideas. There are freelancers everywhere. We have all come here from all over the world to unite and share ideas and experience change in the way we work wherever we want, whenever we want. We have come here to escape the matrix and to be freed from a Western slavery model that keeps us stuck in a repetitive cycle. The cycle of not feeling enough no matter what material gain or financial freedom we may bear. The feeling of a complete loneliness in and amongst a wealth of a first world country. The feeling of a barren missingness when nothing attained seems ever enough or satisfying. Living in a villa in a rice field I feel more at calm and an inner contentment than I have not felt in a long time.
People here always smile at you and say hi. If you’re not working as a digital nomad or freelancing here, you’re still working on your inner health and wellbeing in many senses. The town offers so many different types of yoga which feels like the best remedial massage you could have ever received for no less than $60 back home. Meanwhile, massages here are offered in every corner starting at $3. A mecca for everything from sound healing in the Chi Pyramids to breath work, ecstatic dance, Balinese healers, astrology, reiki, naturapthy, meditation, waterfall purification and the list goes on.
Doing things that are good for you seems no choice here. This is a place where your health is valued more than your material gain. This is a place where you can live and breathe a connectedness to self and delve deeper into authentic self. A place where you can rediscover your passion and your mission because you once forgot. A place where you can come alive again, a place where you can flow again. A place that offers you a space from where you can manifest from again. Somewhere where you can start fresh again from when you once not long ago thought that you no longer could.
Maintaining your energy levels is a necessity in life. Something I stopped being able to naturally do back home comes second nature here. I think that emerging myself in this world just naturally lifts me higher, allowing me to experience life at a higher vibration.
This is a place where looking after yourself and your energy is not an afterthought or a remedy for someone who’s unwell. Doing things to improve your wellbeing is a valued, productive part of everyday life here. I have to believe that maintaining and even improving your energy over time is possible. I think it accumulates all these good feelings and lifts me higher, allowing me to go out into the world and do what I need to do with a higher vibration of energy.
Life in Ubud is also mostly centred around food. It’s so good here! I eat out all my meals everyday because cooking this food at home would cost me the same as dining out daily. So much variety from vegan, vegetarian, raw, activated, Ayurvedic, Indonesian/Balinese, Indian, Mexican, Italian, just basically everything you want and more. You pay from US $4-7 for a meal and its mostly local produce of very good quality. The food has a way of making me so happy here.
I’ve never lived somewhere where you’re so completely immersed in nature as you are in Ubud. All the elements are here from water, fire, earth, wind, it’s all here. This place is about walking on the earth in your bare feet, bare skin, bare face, there’s nothing between you and the natural world you live in. Theres no need to pack on the makeup and wear those uncomfortable heals. Theres just you and your bareness. Your raw and natural beauty immersed in and around the green all around you, exposed and not afraid to be seen.
Thinking of moving to Ubud or spending a few months here as a digital nomad? It sounds scary and overwhelming, but it really isn’t. Its so worth it I promise.