You are lucky enough to live in the era of technology when you can just set off into the unknown and make money on the way. For some, travelling and working is a dream come true. You can travel to distant, exotic destinations, get to know different cultures, people and yourself and support yourself with the money you make on the road. However, when you are a digital nomad, it does sound perfect, but it actually comes with numerous challenges that you need to be aware of before letting your wanderlust take over.
You need to know different types of digital nomads
There are different types of location-independent jobs that you can take on. So, make sure that you research your options. While working in your field of expertise is the easiest option because you already have the knowledge needed, you can also start a completely different career, but keep in mind that you might need to get some training. When it comes to your options, you can look for a position of a remote worker in a specific company, work as an independent freelancer and take on short- and long-term projects with different clients, or become an entrepreneur and start your own company by attracting investors. After you’ve chosen a specific career path, you can start making your plan for becoming a digital nomad.
You need a base of clients when you are a digital nomad
Although you’ll be able to start a range of new projects while on the road, having an already established base of a few loyal clients will ensure that you have a more or less stable income every month. Landing jobs can be a bit challenging at first because you’re a newbie to the field. After you’ve built up your reputation, you’ll have more clients and be able to choose projects that pay better. So, before venturing into the unknown, you should start building your freelancing career.
You need a routine and self-discipline
When you are a digital nomad, being your own boss is both an advantage and disadvantage of freelancing. While you don’t have another person breathing down your neck, you need to possess strong self-discipline and make yourself work. This can be a bit challenging when you’re faced with distractions like the most beautiful view of the ocean you’ve ever seen or a new vibrant city to discover.
However, creating a work routine is of the utmost importance for your productivity. Otherwise, you can easily fall behind with your assignments, start missing deadlines or even lose clients. For example, you should try working in the morning and then spend the rest of the day exploring your current destination. However, you also need to learn how to be flexible with your routine. You need to leave room for surprises and unexpected problems like not having Internet access or your flight being delayed. A great routine will ensure that you have time for both work and adventure.
You need to be aware of the drawbacks
If you decide to become a digital nomad, you need to know that it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. If you’re good at what you do and don’t have a problem with self-discipline, money won’t be such a big problem. Sure, there will be times when you’ll earn less, but you’ll find a way to manage, especially if you learn how to control your expenses.
However, there are other problems that you may have to deal with. You may feel both physically and mentally exhausted from being on the road all the time. You can also get lonely, with your friends and family being on the other side of the world. If you’re in a relationship with a person from home, you’ll need to deal with the challenges of a long-distance relationship. And if you’re not, you may get involved with someone you’ve met while travelling, which can get quite complicated. All of this can be quite overwhelming and stressful, so you need to keep these challenges in mind.
You need to take care of your finances
Financial (in)stability is one of the biggest concerns for freelancers. Not only do you have to deal with irregular income, but you also need to learn how to control your expenses while setting some money aside for the future. Without all of those financial benefits of a full-time employment, such as retirement funds, you’re left to fend for yourself. A possible solution is to apply for a pension program and create a financial plan for the future. You should find out what are the maximum age pension rates you qualify for and see whether that’s enough for your retirement. If not, you can come up with a plan to increase your savings and ensure a comfortable future.
Being a digital nomad can be truly rewarding and exciting. However, you need to be aware of the challenges it brings so that you can come up with a plan for your upcoming adventures.