A former high-flying Wall Street trader ditched the tie for a backpack and found himself living amongst Thai monks.
Harrison Hidee, of Norwich, landed on Wall Street straight after university, raking in six figures and quickly climbing the corporate ladder.
The 28-year-old spent most of his time in the office or entertaining clients until the earlier hours, and would even come into work the next day ‘wearing the same clothes’.
After four years in the wolf pit, he realised the lifestyle wasn’t for him and, two years later, finally hung up the suit for good to go travelling.
While his life is much different to what he’s used to, he said: ‘I am genuinely more happy right now, from an exterior perspective I have a lot less, but actually from my perspective, I have more.’
A former high-flying trader hung up his tie, jetted off to Thailand to live in a Monestary and documented his journey on TikTok
Harrison Hidee landed the job straight after university, but now says he wants to build a more ‘purposeful’ life
Speaking to MailOnline, he said: ‘The more my own time got taken up through work, the more I realised money is not the only measure of success.’
While Harrison was on the path to earning seven figures, he said he did not want to become like his coworkers who ‘never left the office’ and ‘had no time to see their kids.’
Instead, Harrison began a wellness journey and strived to live in the moment, to ‘soak up everything as it comes.’ While the ‘simplicity was a shock to the system,’ he said he stepped back into reality with a ‘different lens’.
From January of this year, he touched ground in Thailand, India, Bali, Turkey, Albania and more.
But a stand out experience during his four-month hiatus was his time living with monks at the Wat Pa Tam Wua monastery in north-west Thailand.
Harrison was intrigued by their way of living, having ventured into personal development and reading Jay Shetty’s ‘Think Like a Monk,’ but nothing could have prepared him for the day-to-day of Monk living.
Drastically different to his Wall Street life, Harrison spent his days in silence, reading scriptures and surviving off of two meals a day, which according to Harrison, consisted of ‘rice and slop’.
Harrison spent three weeks at the Wat Pa Tam Wua, while he was accustomed to a ‘certain lifestyle’ he ‘quickly got used to’ the slow way of living
Harrison told his TikTok followers his days were ‘filled with meditation’, he would also read and learn from Buddhist scriptures
Harrison admitted: ‘I was definitely accustomed to a certain lifestyle,’ but ‘got used to it after a while’.
Recounting his three-week stint at the monastery he said he would learn, meditate and read Buddhist scriptures.
He added: ‘We would do work around the monastery which could be anything from clearing leaves to cleaning.’
‘I spent the whole time just not caring, soaking up everything as it comes; I’ve never done that before.’
Elaborating on his TikTok account, he said: ‘Returning to normality after my time at the monestary was like viewing it through a different lens, the things that used to hold importance seemed trivial in the grand scheme of life.
‘I re entered the world with a new found clarity about my values.’
Harrison spent his time travelling with his girlfriend and adapting from the hectic lifestyle of New York.
His extended visit to the Monks, certainly prepared him for a slower way of living, and having returned from his journey, Harrison now lives in Norwich.
Following his travels, Harrison is now set on building a wellness retreat in the UK, which he said he wants to make a more ‘social experience’
Harrison posts his wellness pursuits to his TikTok account and is now pouring his focus into building a wellness centre in the UK.
Advising his followers on the process of living in the monastery, he said: ‘You have to reach out to a specific monastery and let them know when you plan on coming, there’s a quick interview and they run you through what your duties will be.
‘You can stay for as long as you like but a minimum of four days, food and accommodation is free but you are asked to make a donation of your choice.’
While many followers agreed his experience looked ‘so rewarding’, some questioned how long he ‘lived’ there for, describing it as more like a ‘vacation’.
To which Harrison replied: ‘If you think even staying here one night is a vacation you have no idea about the programming here.’