Before you decide jumping on the digital nomad wagon, it's a good idea to have a plan how to deep-dive into this life changing adventure with a feasible plan.
In this article we gathered some great tips for those who play with the idea of becoming digital nomads.
Start with shorter "workations": Keep in mind that when practicing with a shorter vacation, the focus should be on being productive abroad rather than only vacationing. The test runs are meant to help you understand if you’ll have the motivation to work as a digital nomad. A digital nomad isn’t a full-time traveller. It’s a part-time traveller, part-time worker.
Have a steady stream of income: We wrote an article on money-making ideas that might help you build out your revenue streams. You can also find digital nomad jobs on freelance websites. There’s two main ways to make money: passively and actively. Passive income would be renting out your flat or invest, anything really where you don't get paid for your work hours. Actively is where you trade time for money such as freelance copy writing. Ultimately, it’s up to you how you want to/can split making money through your possible income sources. If you ever run into money problems, digital nomad jobs like freelance writing are usually easy to find for emergencies.
Have your finances & insurance in order: You’ll want to make sure you know the laws about taxes for running a business abroad. It’s also a good idea to have insurance for your business and yourself while working abroad. Make sure you also have limited or no debt and that you have a steady income before taking the leap.
Practice living out of a suitcase: Most digital nomads practice a life of minimalism. Since it can be expensive to bring all your possessions as you travel the world, most digital nomads only bring their essentials. Practice living out of a suitcase while at home. Put everything you want to bring with you into a suitcase. For at least two months, only use the things in the suitcase. Can you do it? Did you cheat and add something else? Did you miss anything? Many digital nomads feel exhausted living out of a suitcase, usually the ones who change location very often. Over time, they begin to miss certain outfits and products that they had before they left.
Join social groups: Digital nomads often experience loneliness. Combat this by signing up for our digital nomad Facebook group to connect with other nomads, attend meetups to learn & socialise in your area and alternatively you can also work in coworking spaces. It is great to join local digital nomad groups for your area to learn more about the nomadic lifestyle from digital nomads in your community, because it is always inspirational and motivational to connect with other free spirits.
Stick in one place for several months: The most exhausting part of the nomadic lifestyle is the constant travel. Most digital nomads prefer sticking in one place at a time. For your first run at it, you might choose to stay in one place for a month to see if you like the area. This also gives you time to get to know the area and determine if you want to maintain the nomadic lifestyle. Since you’re used to being settled in one place, it’s the easiest transition. And it helps give you a change of scenery.
Create a schedule: You’ll want to create a schedule for yourself. Are you a morning person or a night owl? How do you want to balance your work and travels? Some digital nomads work on projects for weeks and then take some time off. Other digital nomads work daily for a couple hours each day. Some treat it like a 9 to 5 job in a foreign country enjoying mostly evenings and weekends abroad. You need to find the schedule that works best for you. If you’re running low on funds, you need to invest more time finding digital nomad jobs.
Get the business skills you need: Running a business abroad requires several skills. This means that as a digital nomad you need to be able to adapt to new environments. You need to know how to make money online. Self-promotion is probably one of the most important skills if you’re working as a freelancer. But overall marketing skills are a must for digital nomads. Do you have the skills to run a business online? To succeed as a digital nomad you’re going to need them.
Go with the flow: Obstacles are going to present themselves throughout your travels as a digital nomad. Don’t become afraid of failure. You’ve got what it takes to succeed as a digital nomad. Taking the opportunity to experience the nomadic lifestyle will be to your growth in many ways. Most importantly, you’ll learn about yourself & at least will have some interesting stories. Challenges that you face along the way can be shared to help or even inspire others. Learn how to triumph when you experience a few rocky days. You’re strong enough to handle any roadblock you face.
Make sure you have your own roadmap & milestones to check before taking the leap. Tell us more about you checkpoints and what stage you're at to fulfil your digital nomad dream. Find support and tips in our community who's all about helping each other! :)