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Earning money by doing work you love, while also traveling the world is the ultimate set-up. This digital nomad lifestyle is picking up traction as more remote work options are becoming available.
But it’s also not advisable to romanticize the idea of remote work too much. It’s not always about convenience and working on your own time. Rather, there are many intricacies involved in remote work success.
Here are five tips for anyone aspiring to become a digital nomad.
1. Scout for workspaces
One of the biggest perks of being a digital nomad is choosing places to work. While sightseeing may be part of the agenda, make time to look for conducive spaces with reliable Internet access where you can get work done — after all, your work is what funds your travels.
Kate Snowise of Thrive How Coaching & Consulting also advises not allowing yourself to work from your room or bed all the time to avoid conflating your work life with your home life.
2. Maximize productivity
The ability to create your own work schedule can be a double-edged sword. While you know what time you’re most productive, this also means that you can constantly make adjustments whenever you wish.
When you get to a new place, allow yourself to do a bit of experimentation on when you work best, as external factors like the weather or time zones can factor into this. When you find the right schedule, stick to it.
3. Manage your finances
Managing your finances is a responsibility that comes with any job. However, when you work independently or remotely, it’s even more necessary to focus on all the nitty-gritty that comes with allocating budgets for basic necessities, which also includes creating a safety net of some sort for unexpected circumstances.
An article on Marcus puts a premium on building an emergency fund. An emergency fund is crucial for good financial health. This is one of the most overlooked, yet most important facets of a person’s finances, as it’s what you can rely on should you encounter any emergencies while on the road.
4. Relish your bad experiences
Digital nomad Alex Ivanovs admits that traveling is hardly ever as smooth as you’d like to think it will be. You may face language barriers, culture shocks, scammers, and unfamiliar territory that makes you feel unwelcome.
Framing these bad experiences in a positive light is the only way you’ll be able to move forward. You may not notice, but you will slowly learn how to grow in places outside your comfort zone.
5. Remember your “why”
You have the privilege of choosing to be a digital nomad — remember this when you’re feeling stumped or confused. Knowing your motivations behind choosing this lifestyle or choosing a certain place will help you appreciate the little things when times get rough or homesickness kicks in.
They often say that travel is the best teacher. Following these tips will help you view the world as your classroom, and you will not only survive, but thrive.
Janica Brooks is a digital nomad at heart. Having quit her desk job in Manhattan with her sights set on seeing the world two years ago, she’s been traveling ever since. Aside from the occasional visit to her hometown to see her family for the holidays, Janica has visited most parts of Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent and is looking forward to more adventures.