One unavoidable part of being an adult is having a job. Having a job guarantees your financial security, even if it means waking up at 6 am every single day and doing the same tasks over and over again. It’s not uncommon to wish things are different. I mean, there are a lot of beautiful things the world has to offer, not to mention all the beautiful places in the world you’re yet to discover, and there’s more to life than just working and doing the same job every day in the same office or location.
If you’re wishing for a different lifestyle– one that involves more traveling but still earning money at the same time, then maybe you should try becoming a digital nomad. A digital nomad is someone who can work remotely across the world, as long as they have a reliable internet access and a working laptop. Digital nomads are also not bound by a typical 9-5 schedule. They work at their own pace– normally for just a few hours each day– so they that they would have more time exploring and traveling to different places across the world.
You think you’re ready for that kind of lifestyle? First, here are 13 things to know (good and bad) before becoming a digital nomad:
1. You won’t have the usual job benefits.
Normally, working in an office entitles you to some common employment benefits, like your medical insurance or retirement plan, which is usually deducted from your monthly salary. The salary you get from working as a digital nomad usually don’t cover these stuff, so if you have a scheduled monthly payment for these kind of things, then you have to shoulder them yourself.
2. You’ll get to meet a lot of new people.
Bouncing from location to location can be a daunting prospect, especially if you’re alone. However, there a lot of other digital nomads out there, and there are apps and forums where you can meet and interact with them. Also, don’t be a hermit in your travels; try socializing with the locals as well.
3. You have the ultimate freedom to do anything.
Becoming a digital nomad means you’re solely in charge of your life. Not anymore should you wait for your boss to agree on your vacation leave so you could get a few days off and do whatever you like, and you surely are not required to come in on a specific schedule every day of the week. As a digital nomad, it’s up to you when or where you want to work, and how long each day you want to do it.
4. Procrastination can be very tempting.
Since digital nomads set their own work schedules, it’s easy to put off some work and do it at the very last minute. This is one trait you would have to look out for, as it’s easy to become distracted especially when you’re in a new environment. Always remember that being a digital nomad still involves work, and it’s better to finish your task first before setting out to explore.
5. You are your own boss.
This is one of the best things about becoming a digital nomad. No more should you be under the will of a tyrannical boss who checks on every single thing that you do. If you’re a freelancer, chances are you get paid by every project that you make, and as long as you adhere to the requirements of your clients, then there’s no problem even if you do the job in the middle of a beach resort with a margarita in one hand.
6. Relationships can be tricky.
If your dream is to travel around the globe and work while doing so, then it’s probably best if you sacrifice having a relationship in a while. Having to live in constant separation with each other is not ideal to most couples, and being in a relationship means spending a great deal of time with your significant other, time digital nomads don’t have because of constant travel. Maybe hold off than thought until you plan on sticking in a place for a long while.
7. There would be fewer expenses involved.
When you work as a digital nomad, mostly you just bounce off from place to place as you travel constantly across the world. This means not having a permanent house or home, and you’re no longer entitled to pay your monthly mortgage, telephone bills, electric bills and other usual expenses. This means you get to take for yourself more of your profit instead of it being cut in half to pay such bills.
8. It can get lonely.
Leaving your home, family, and friends behind as you set off in your lifestyle can be lonely at first. Of course, being a digital nomad means meeting new people all the time, but it’s not always like that. Sure, traveling and a discovering a new place can be exciting, but it’s better if you have somebody with you. You can try working in a co-working space so you could meet new friends while working.
9. You don’t have to commute to work.
This is one of the many hassles of a typical office job– time spent commuting or riding in public transport. Every day, you commit an hour or two just commuting to and fro the office, and it can get especially frazzling, especially when you’re stuck in a traffic jam. As a digital nomad, you don’t have to be subjected to this horror anymore.
10. You have to learn how to multi-task.
As a digital nomad, this usually means working on two or more projects at the same time, depending on how much money you would like to make. Usually, these projects are also from different clients, so it’s important that you know how to properly delegate your tasks as different projects mean each has different sets of requirements or so on. Since you don’t have a boss, you will be managing yourself, and mastering the art of multi-tasking is one of the keys to success.
11. You may become less materialistic.
Digital nomads are like backpackers, all of what they need is in their backpack and they invest money through experiences, not material stuff. If you decide to become a digital nomad, the constant traveling you will make means you cannot buy that new TV that you want, or that new posh shoes you saw in the mall– it’s really not practical having to lug so much baggage around. It may be difficult at first, but in the end, you’ll learn to accept that there are more important things in life than material wealth.
12. You usually get culture-shocked.
Living in different places abroad is more than just lounging on the beach and climbing mountains, you know. The constant travel means you have to deal with different cultures every time, as well as different currencies and norms. It takes some time to adjust, and some cultures may be even bizarre to you– but you have to adjust if you want to blend in.
13. You get to travel and enjoy the wonders of the world.
This is the unique perk digital nomads have that make all of us green with envy. Traveling to all the beautiful places in the world? Yes, please! Although being a digital nomad is more than just traveling and exploring, still, the prospect of getting out of a typical 9-5 everyday life is an exciting and highly inviting prospect. However, make sure that you know all the pros and cons of living this life before ultimately deciding to go through with it!
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