Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

In this episode, you’ll meet our guest Heather Markel who is a best-selling author and nomad.

Listen in as Lindsay asks Heather about her experiences traveling the world.

Heather will also share three tips for success that she has learned through traveling to dozens of countries.

You can apply these tips to your life abroad or international business.

Heather Markel, The Nomad

Heather Markel is the guest in today’s episode.

She is an international best-selling author, full traveler and a traveling coach.

Lindsay is amazed that she travels and helps other people who want to travel themselves.

Heather’s story and purpose resonates with her so much because when she was in her early 20’s she did travel around the world.

Lindsay asks Heather what the word “nomad” means to her.

Heather answers that she defines nomad and travel in several different ways.

It took her a while to quit her job and become a nomad.

She only was familiar with the concept of a “digital nomad” before and she also thought that this was only for younger people.

She was already a certain age when she decided to live the nomad lifestyle.

Now, Heather defines nomad as someone who essentially discovers the meaning of their life through traveling the world and makes a home wherever they are.

Lindsay asks, why does travel add so much meaning to someone’s life when they experience it?

Heather shares that your authentic self is revealed when you are traveling.

When you are working at your job you are not yourself.

You put up this professional facade at work and when you go out to travel you shed these layers and reveal your true self as you are exposed to a much more raw environment.

Three Tips for International Business and Travel

Lindsay asks Heather to share three tips with All Ears English listeners regarding travel which they can apply to their lives or when doing business internationally.

Tip #1: You are the creator of your own experience

This is the first tip shared by Heather that she learned the hard way.

She realized that she was in control of the type of people and situations she was attracting in her life.

This is a powerful realization because this made her understand that she has power over what happens to her.

You have to say to the right people what you want. Lindsay agrees with this and says that we are not a victim of our circumstances.

Tip #2: Learn the language of the country you are living in

Heather speaks 6 languages.

When she was 16 years old, she lived with a French host family which helped make her fluent in French.

Learning a different language has helped her make deeper connections with local people.

But when she traveled to countries in Asia or Scandinavia, it was difficult for her to pick up their language.

Instead of fully learning it, she learned the essential sentences and phrases like “do you speak English?”, “thank you”, “please”, and many more.

This has helped her profoundly in making a connection with the locals.

Lindsay is happy to hear this from Heather because it is the same message that the All Ears English community supports which is to build Connection NOT Perfection.

In order to relate to the locals of the country you are in, it is good to be able to speak at least the essential phrases to get across your message to them.

Tip #3: The people of the country are not the same as the government of the country

Heather uses the STEP program for travel safety. It gives you alerts when countries are having threats or a demonstration.

We see a lot in the news where we prejudge countries and places based on what we see and hear.

Heather has been amazed how her prejudgments are wrong whenever she actually arrives in the country.

Colombia was an example of this.

Before she traveled there, she thought that it was full of guns, violence, and drugs.

But when she got there she had amazing experiences, met great people, and ate good food.

Lindsay agrees with this and has learned this when she traveled as well.

This also goes for the listeners who don’t travel but are dealing with international clients in their business or work.

It’s always best to connect with the people first and not make judgements based on just the news.

When you have business meetings with a client who is from a country you’ve heard bad news about, you have to put aside your prejudices.

The Commonality Among People

Lindsay asks Heather what is the common thing that she found among people that goes beyond culture.

The first thing that came to Heather’s mind is the genuine curiosity to learn about other people.

Everywhere she has gone she has found people to be very welcoming and compassionate towards her because they want to get to know her.

She has understood that we must challenge our perceptions of a nation and not be clouded with the judgment made from information from the news.

It is better to meet the people and break those barriers and make that connection for a better understanding of the various cultures when traveling.


Lindsay is inspired to start traveling again because of Heather’s stories.

Going out and seeing the world and meeting people is a fulfilling experience that anyone can try.

If you don’t physically go out, connecting with our nationalities, even in business, is also a good start in growing perspective and an understanding of the world and the people around you.

You can learn more about Heather Markel and her stories at

What are the things you learned when traveling or when dealing with other nationalities or cultures?

We’d love to hear about them in the comments down below.

Heather’s Bio:

Heather Markel is a corporate-worker-bee turned full-time-traveler. She quit her job in 2017 and, since then, has been to 27 countries and 6 continents. She turned her travel dream into a reality and now helps others with the tools, resources and confidence to afford full time travel around the world. She’s been featured in The New York Times and is an International Best-Selling Author.


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