Nowadays, more and more people are becoming interested in becoming a digital nomad. While the term may sound unfamiliar to some, it is an increasingly popular way of life among workers and even employers.
Being a digital nomad is a unique experience that offers many advantages, such as seeing new places and not being tied to an office, but it also requires certain skills and strategies to do it successfully. Here’s a definitive guide to becoming a digital nomad, with everything you need to know to start your adventure.
What is a digital nomad?
A digital nomad is a person who uses the internet as their work tool and can fulfill these duties from anywhere in the world. In other words, they do not have a fixed location and therefore have the freedom to work from anywhere they have a stable connection. This allows them to travel the world, live new experiences, and learn about different cultures while maintaining a steady income.
Benefits of being a digital nomad
Many people want to become digital nomads because of the great advantages of this new style of work. From geographic freedom to the ability to manage time at one’s convenience, the digital nomad lifestyle has become a role model for many young people. Here are some of the pros of adopting this type of work.
The flexibility of schedules: you can set your own times and work when it suits you best, according to your established habits. If you are more productive at night or need to take an afternoon off, you can do so without having to ask anyone’s permission.
Geographic freedom: this means working from anywhere in the world. You can do it if you feel like spending a few days at the beach or living in a different city every month. This concept is known as “traveling” and encourages you to make any place your office.
Cost savings: by not having a physical office, you can save the money you would spend on transportation to get to the same place of work every day. In addition, it allows you to take advantage of lower prices in different parts of the world to reduce clothing or food costs.
Higher quality of life: not spending hours in traffic or following a fixed schedule means that you enjoy a higher quality of life, where leisure and work are well balanced. You can practice sports, spend more time with your family or just relax without the stress of traditional work.
Types of digital nomads
Now, not all people who perceive themselves as digital nomads have the same work structure or the same contractual situation. In fact, they tend to fall into one of the following categories:
Remote workers: these are those who have a contract and a permanent position in a company but do not have the need to attend the office. The most common in this type of employment is having to comply with a schedule. However, some have a dynamic of work by objectives, which gives them more freedom. So, such workers are sure: I can code anywhere, my paper help will be useful wherever I am, or I can consult people online from any place in the world.
Freelancers: these are workers who offer their services to various companies or individuals on a delocalized basis, i.e., they do not need to be in any particular part of the world. They do not have long-term contracts or schedules, but they themselves decide when to work and in which projects to participate.
Entrepreneurs: this worker profile refers to those who decide to be their own bosses. Entrepreneurs have their own businesses or company, which they can manage from anywhere in the world, with their schedules and dedicate the necessary time.
Although such a lifestyle can be very tempting for many people, the truth is that it is essential to have certain things clear before facing the challenge of being a digital nomad. There are 3 points in particular that you must have in order to be able to carry out this adventure:
This is perhaps the main requirement to be a digital nomad. Although traveling and seeing the world is very appealing, you must maintain focus that you are also fulfilling a work responsibility, and you must do it with the utmost professionalism, no matter where you are.
Responsibility also includes continuing to fulfill your obligations and commitments, such as insurance, legal and tax payments, even if you are not in your country of origin.
2. Learn to live with recurring income
The life of a digital nomad is usually like a roller coaster. For this reason, it is essential to be prepared to have an unstable money income. It may be that one month you get a great figure and the next you have less work; or, depending on where you travel, it may mean more or less expenses. At this point, it is essential to know how to save and learn to live with the money you have.
3. Relocation and the desire to travel
The desire to travel is essential to becoming a digital nomad, as it is one of the main pillars governing this work style. However, the desire to see new places must be accompanied by a job that is 100% delocalized, that is, that needs a physical place to attend. So if you are someone of habit, who likes to go to the office every day, it is possible that this lifestyle is not the most suitable.
Steps to follow to become a digital nomad
Becoming a digital nomad is a very important decision, as it implies a complete lifestyle change. If you want to become one of them, here is a guide with the necessary steps.
1. Identify your skills and specialties
The first thing you need to do to become a digital nomad is to identify your skills and specialties. Are you good at graphic design, programming, writing, or digital marketing? Make sure your skills are in demand online to have a wider job market. Think about what kind of work or services you can offer remotely and how to monetize them.
2. Set a budget
Although being a digital nomad can be cheaper than working in a traditional office, it is important to set a budget to ensure you have enough money to cover your expenses while working online. This should include the costs of accommodation, transportation, food, and clothing, among others.
3. Acquire the necessary tools
To work as a digital nomad, you need to have access to the right tools to work from anywhere in the world. This includes a good laptop, a stable internet connection, applications, and programs to communicate with your clients and collaborators, as well as tools for project and task management. It is important that you invest in quality apps and programs and that you know how to use them correctly.
4. Create a client portfolio
Once you have identified your skills and acquired the necessary tools, it is time to start looking for clients. You can do this through platforms specialized in remote work, social networks, and freelance websites, among others. The important thing is that you create a solid portfolio of clients, which will allow you to generate income constantly.
5. Plan your trips and expenses
As a digital nomad, you will have the possibility to travel and work from anywhere in the world, but you must plan your travel and expenses properly. You should look for options for places and countries that fit the budget you have already set up. In addition, you must have a financial reserve for unforeseen events.
Being a digital nomad: a path to learn and explore
Work methods evolve all the time, and nowadays, working and traveling are possible. To embark on a path as a digital nomad, it is essential to get rid of prejudices and understand the new dynamics proposed in today’s world of work.
However, there is no doubt that starting out in this style of work and life is a great personal challenge, which requires a lot of prior organization and commitment. But it is also a great way to live new adventures and unforgettable experiences that will make you grow as a person.