Digital nomadism is taking the world by storm, and since the pandemic, thousands more people are choosing to adopt this lifestyle every year. However, it’s not an easy transition to make.
If you’re reading this article, it’s probably because you’ve been considering becoming a digital nomad yourself! I myself hesitated for a long time before embarking on this adventure. Oscillating between a nomadic lifestyle and a sedentary one.
Indeed, it’s a big life decision. That’s why I decided to make this post, a guide to starting a new life as a digital nomad. I’ll cover all the digital nomad tips that helped me get started, so you can get there too!
Becoming a digital nomad: beyond the myth
Several years ago, I decided to become a digital nomad, and I began a new life, a life of geographical freedom, meaning I travelled the world with no fixed base. In other words, today my home is the planet. I travel one way, and full time.
It may sound a bit crazy, but some estimates predict that by 2035 there will be one billion digital nomads in the world! Is it possible?
Between all the rumours and myths, the reality is that everyone can aspire to achieve this life of travel and adventure. The development of modern technologies and the internet has provided us with indispensable tools for managing a nomadic way of living.
I must say, although most of the photos shared on social media show a dream-like lifestyle where people travel to new and exciting destinations every week.
This, however, is far from the reality, and digital nomads do a lot of work. Not only that, but it’s not always easy. I’ve often spent hours looking for a place with decent Wi-Fi, and even when you do, it’s not always comfortable.
Most of the time, people ask me how I manage to travel for so long and visit so many places. Well, it’s important to ask yourself this important question:
“Do I agree to work on a daily basis while travelling, or do I simply want to travel?”
Take the time to answer this question sincerely, to avoid any future frustrations or surprises.
There are different ways of approaching this new lifestyle, so it’s important to find the approach that suits you best. That’s why I’ve decided to compile all my best digital nomad tips. So, let’s take a look:
1. Work ethic and consistency
As I mentioned earlier, this is a big decision, and a lot of crucial factors need to be considered.
This lifestyle gives you a great deal of freedom to move around, but requires a certain amount of professional discipline.
There are other issues associated with being self-employed. As a digital nomad, you’ll have to overcome them on a daily basis. The main one is maintaining consistency and productivity in your work, so this is something you definitely need to take into account.
We all have our own methods for maintaining our professional focus. As for me, I set myself two goals to achieve as soon as I get up, and I don’t go to bed until they’re completed, and as time goes on, you’ll learn more about your own work habits.
2. Make the most of your professional experience
Do you have a desire to make a change in your life and leave your comfort zone? This is a good sign, as it will be the fuel you need to stay on course and achieve your goals as a digital nomad.
Digital nomadism requires you to sell your professional skills to earn a living. If you don’t have the opportunity to work online at the moment, a good way of achieving this is to gain experience in a permanent job before heading overseas.
This will enable you to develop the necessary skills and knowledge in areas that are compatible with online work. Remember, no one becomes a digital nomad overnight.
As well as learning new working techniques, you’ll be paid and can save for your nomadic lifestyle. This advice is valid for those who have no experience, and are just starting out in their careers.
3. Becoming self-employed
There’s no need to drop everything and buy a single ticket without prior preparation. Most digital nomads who succeed in their new life start gradually, working remotely for a company.
The best digital nomad tip for beginners is to use your free time to become a microentrepreneur. This will allow you to launch other projects and build a client-base for your business.
It’s a great way to get started, and the risk of failure is low. Some platforms offer to put businesses and microentrepreneurs in touch with each other. Fiverr is probably the best known in the world, so it’s worth researching what’s out there.
4. Digitalising your business
Are you already running a business? Have you thought about your business’ digital presence? There are already a number of solutions that allow you to control your business from anywhere in the world, without having to be physically present.
There are a multitude of effective alternatives for managing the day-to-day activities of your business. Physical presence is no longer essential. Depending on which industry you’re in, you’re sure to find a suitable solution for its digitalisation.
5. Talking to your employer
If you’re happy with your current job, and you believe that you can work from your computer, with no real need for your physical presence, then it’s probably time to talk to your employer!
It may seem a little daunting, but if you prepare, and come up with some solutions and a suitable proposal, it’s worth a shot.
In some countries, such as the United States, this change in work dynamics has already begun. Even though Europe is still lagging behind a little, many European nomads have taken the plunge.
I’ve met plenty, in various coworking and coliving centres, throughout South-East Asia, Europe, and Latin America!
6. Online training to become a digital nomad
If you’re still a little unsure on how to set the process in motion, there are tons of online courses for things like digital marketing, online business administration, and university degrees. These platforms are becoming increasingly interactive and accessible.
If you live in a big city, your daily costs (rent, transport, leisure activities, etc.) are certainly much higher than in most of the countries you dream of visiting. Indeed, there is a way you can take advantage of this predicament.
Many nomads take online courses and travel at the same time. You may even want to write your doctoral thesis while travelling around Asia!
Whatever your background, whatever your skills, there’s bound to be a path open to you. The time has come to overcome your doubts because as the saying goes: “Doubts always promise, but never deliver”.
At Planet Nomad, we’re dedicated to helping you start a new life of geographical freedom, a life of travelling to new and exciting places while working on the road.
Check out the rest of out blog to read about digital nomad lifestyle tips, travel insurance, finance management, and much more!