Personal Sovereignty & The Global Economy

How geopolitical and economic events impact personal sovereignty & influence the next part of the digital age.

The world is changing. And there’s a good chance you’ll get caught with your pants down if you’re not paying attention to the intersection of personal sovereignty, geopolitics, and the global economy,

The good news is that our digital society gives individuals more control over their choices in life. And these choices can now be made with limited outside influences. But self-sovereign lifestyles built on freedom of choice also require personal responsibility.

What does that really mean?

For most people that adopt a lifestyle built around freedoms of choice, there won’t be anyone telling them how to navigate the ups and downs of our changing global society. And no one is immune to the changing geopolitical and global economic climate. 

The point here is that If you’re not focused on how geopolitical and economic events impact personal sovereignty, you’re going to find yourself out of position for the next part of the digital age.

Here’s what you need to know.

First a definition: What is personal sovereignty?

Personal sovereignty means making your own choices in life while minimizing outside influences. 

In the industrial age, personal sovereignty was limited by influences from governments, religious institutions, employers, transportation logistics, and a society based around mass production.

Ie: at the time, you were at the mercy of the laws of your country, the rules of your boss, the morals of your God, and the opportunities available to you in the town or city you grew up in. There was always someone telling you what to do or how to think. 

On the one hand, that provided people with  “conventional wisdom” and decision-making frameworks to live easier lives. But on the other hand, it meant that individuality was minimized. The industrial age was a mass formation society where people followed standard paths through life.

Personal sovereignty is the freedom to live your life the way you want and is an expression of individuality.

As the world transitions away from the industrial age to the digital age, technologies provide us with many new ways to take more control over our lives and embrace individuality. 

One key example is how the internet led to an ability to easily move around the world, while earning money from anywhere, and maintaining access to goods and services. The tech of the digital age provides us with a means to leave behind standardized lifestyles in favor of an infinite number of ways to customize our lives.

What Influences Personal Sovereignty?

Personal sovereignty is influenced by money, technology, and government policies. It’s also influenced by the public’s evolving understanding of what freedom is (or isn’t). New tools, policies, ideologies, and perceptions of how tech should be allowed to influence society greatly impact the choices we make in our lives.

So, if you’re interested in a self-sovereign lifestyle, the intersection of these topics will influence the choices you can make.

How governments and people react to the changing world (especially the policies they decide to adopt) will greatly impact your ability to pursue a self-sovereign lifestyle.

Here are some current event examples.

How Geopolitics And Personal Sovereignty Intersect To Influence Your Life

The intersection of money, geopolitics, the global economy, how they impact freedom and the emerging digital lifestyle has started to change.

We’re living through a global financial ecosystem in the chaos that accelerated because of Covid.

The world is experiencing disrupted supply chains, rampant inflation, and rising nationalism. Simultaneously, technology now supports a growing number of remote work jobs. This means that large portions of the population can now earn an income from anywhere. 

Individuals are now reevaluating where they choose to live and why. A trend that marks a major shift toward personal sovereignty.

Now consider this new type of mobility in context with personal sovereignty and the rapidly evolving global economic and geopolitical environment.

For example: say your government has mismanaged its currency, your country is experiencing food or fuel shortages, and/or your government is contemplating the nationalization of private assets. How would this impact your personal sovereignty? Your ability to make life choices while be greatly influenced by these factors.

Would you as someone interested in personal sovereignty be more or less willing to relocate as a means to maintain your lifestyle? The choice: stay in a place in where your lifestyle is constantly shrinking or relocate to a place that has less of an impact on your lifestyle choices.

These are real events that are taking place with increasing frequency. And they each add further incentives for remote workers interested in personal sovereignty to relocate. Check out this thread for some examples of why people are choosing to relocate.

Why You Need To Pay Attention To These Events If You’re Interested In Personal Sovereignty

The digital age provides new levels of personal sovereignty that are empowering a new type of choice for individuals on a large scale: to stay or to go.

It’s unclear to what extent remote workers will take advantage of this tech-enabled exit. But what is clear is that as these “geopolitical events” continue, they create a self-reinforcing feedback loop, incentivizing people to relocate, and compounding economic hardships in the places they leave behind.

As people choose to leave, it’s likely that more people will explore their new mobility-provided freedom because no one wants to be left behind in a lousy economic environment.

To that end, anyone interested in personal sovereignty must follow global events and the changing political dynamic they create. You don’t want to be the last person stuck in a bad situation.

You have to think to yourself:  how might these rapidly evolving situations impact my ability to live the life I want to live with minimal outside influences?

How Do These Events Actually Impact Your Choices?

When faced with lousy conditions locally, self-sovereign individuals will embrace digital solutions that help them to relocate.

One of the major motivations behind the desire for relocating is called the cost of living arbitrage. Think about it like this: your salary stays the same but inflation in your current location is going up. That means your purchasing power is eroding.

This chart on “real wages” does a good job of showing how this works. Ie: the average worker’s wage adjusted for inflation:

What else might be important for understanding the motivations behind the cost of living arbitrage?

Your home country’s inflation vs the rest of the world is critical for understanding how your income and savings are eroding:

You should also consider the difference in purchasing power of your domestic currency vs what you can be paid in elsewhere. For example, it wouldn’t be the worst thing to get paid in dollars that are appreciating in value while living in a country with higher inflation while the local currency loses value.

To be clear, most people don’t really want to permanently relocate. They don’t want to leave behind friends, family, and community. And it’s unlikely that most will permanently relocate for these reasons.

But they might be more inclined to take an extended workcation. Traveling around the world for 6 months or so while working remotely to ride out the economic turmoil in places where their incomes maintain a higher standard of living. Ie: a quasi-temporary snowbirding.

This is most likely what will happen moving forward. People that want to maintain self-sovereign lifestyles will leverage remote work and other digital age opportunities to maintain their lifestyles. They’ll look to relocate temporarily or semi-permanently to avoid economic hardships, unfavorable policies, and live the life they want to.

The bottom line is that you cannot afford to ignore the war in Ukraine. You can’t ignore how Russian aggression impacts fuel supplies. Or how Western nations scramble to maintain their green energy policies while lack of fuel causes their economies to implode.

These factors will impact your ability to make choices with minimized outside influence. But if you pay attention, you might be able to take action to maintain the continuity of your lifestyle.

I write a weekly newsletter called The Sovereign Individual Weekly focusing on the intersection of money, technology, freedom, lifestyle design, & personal development & how they relate to the Sovereign Individual. You’ll get stories showcasing the digital transformation and how they impact personal sovereignty.

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