Who the hell is Ate? Why is she organizing retreats?

Hi! I’m Ate. Ate as in Atena not as in eat ate eaten. A Romanian girl set on discovering the world, learning and growing.

My desire to see the world was born early in life, and despite being little, I always somehow envisioned that work and travel will intertwine one way or the other. Since 7, my answer to “What do you wanna be when you grow up?” was an archeologist – not so much because I knew what this work entitles as I understood its essence: explore new cultures and learn about their history.

Growing up, my answer changed from archeologist to “Anything that allows me to travel, maybe a flight attendant?”. I was wrong again, because nothing could’ve prepared me for the multitude of peculiar jobs I was soon to undertake. 

At 18, after years of studying Math and IT at my parents’ pleads, I secretly applied to a British University… for International Tourism Business Management. A field that I loved, but a far shot from becoming a Software Engineer, like my father. The only condition for me to go was never asking for money while there. Oh well. Of course I asked for money. That led to lots of fights through FaceTime.

Once it became clear to me that my 3 £5.25/hour jobs weren’t enough to pay bills, I took matters into my own hands: I’ll start begging for money on Instagram (but in a professional manner🙃). I messaged my favorite influencer at that time: she had 4 Million followers, Travel/Social Issues content and a great business model: organizing retreats. Somehow, I ended up becoming her assistant. A fully remote position, that taught me how to run a business and later led to me organizing retreats and getting paid to travel. At 19, I was living my childhood dream! 

My experience organizing retreats

It became clear that there’s nothing quite as exciting out there for me as planning retreats is. My love for travel, combined with my passion to bring people together and throw parties really became my biggest asset. In just a few months, I organized multiple retreats in Bali, Tulum, Utah, Dubai, and… even 10 online retreats as the pandemic was at its peak!

The friendships I made during those trips were some of the most valuable I’ve ever made, and the memories I lived there will always have a special place in my heart.

But.. not everything was flowers and butterflies. The work environment was toxic and, no matter how much you love your job, you need money to be able to pay the bills. Ultimately, I had to leave. But the network stayed. My friends pushed me to start my business, charge more, reach out to clients and… here we are.

Currently: Owning my own business while traveling the world

Right now, I’m living quite the life. After finishing uni and leaving my old company, I started my own business. I’ve had clients from around the world, mainly in the US, and I help them market their products and services. I marketed quite a few different fields, like finance, publishing, events and conferences, jewelry and real estate. What many people don’t understand about my job – and why I’m so good at it – is that knowing marketing techniques is not enough: you need to master the field you’re marketing in order to actually be able to sell. I am obsessing over whatever it is that my clients provide.

Hence, having numerous clients in the Personal Finance world, I got obsessed with the FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) movement, to the point that my favorite way of spending money has become buying stocks.

Now, at 22, I am in the top 0.7% of income earners of my country. I travel the world as a digital nomad and here I am, opening up my second business, dedicated to my one true love: retreats. 

Moral of the story? My journey is unique, as is yours.

I don’t know it all, but what I know I’ll share with you. In my vision, these retreats are a way for like-minded people to talk about their lessons, their mistakes and how they did it their ways.  Whether you consider yourself “successful” (what even is success?) or not, my retreats are for you if you’re looking to better yourself. We embrace everyone: the career-focused, the hustlers, the confused, the wild. No matter where on your path you are right now, Ate’s retreats are for you if all you want is to get further.