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What is a Digital Nomad?

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Girl on beach working on her laptop as a digital nomad

What is a digital nomad? Well, I can very briefly sum that up for you. A digital nomad is me. I’ve been a digital nomad for 2 years now traveling across the United States in my converted school bus (Skoolie) and I have been loving every second of it except for the times my bus broke down and I was left stranded.

Overall, living life as a digital nomad has been gratifying, less stressful, more fulfilling, has given me a feeling of purpose, and has brought me back in tune with nature.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A DIGITAL NOMAD?

Girl on beach working on her laptop as a digital nomad

A digital nomad is an individual who works remotely from various locations of their choosing relying on technological devices (such as a computers, cell phones, and tablets) and an internet connection to complete work related tasks that would generally take place in a stationary work environment. Digital nomads tend to continuously travel while conducting work for their clients or employer.

Obviously internet isn’t readily available for all digital nomads so some visit coffee shops, cafes, co-working spaces, shared offices, public libraries, fast food businesses or any place that offers internet access.

More than a million Americans have made the leap to break away from fast paced society to living life as a digital nomad.

TYPES OF DIGITAL NOMADS

Not all digital nomads conduct their life in the same manner as other digital nomads do. There are digital nomads who work from their RV’s traveling the country. I suppose I fall into that category. The only difference is I travel in a converted school bus. There are people that work out of even smaller vehicles such as vans or SUVs. The term vanlife or buslife are generally related to the digital nomad lifestyle.

NOT ALL DIGITAL NOMADS CONDUCT THEIR LIFE IN THE SAME MANNER

There are “backpacker” digital nomads meaning that they travel with just a backpack containing all of their belongings. They generally stay at hostels, hotels, Airbnb’s, or may even pitch a tent somewhere. As long as they have a laptop and an internet connection that’s all they need to earn an income.

Boat living is another way that digital nomads can live. Some individuals travel the world sailing the seas.

WHERE DOES A DIGITAL NOMAD FIND WORK?

There are a lot of different ways that digital nomads find remote jobs. Some previously worked for an employer that made the shift to location independent work. Others build up there own business through consistency and hard work. A very common way for digital nomads to find work is by using remote job listing websites or contract-based freelance websites such as UpWork and We Work Remotely.

WHY THE SHIFT TO A DIGITAL NOMAD LIFESTYLE?

Weekend warriors and vacationers are generally the ones that periodically indulge in recreation but digital nomads find themselves surpassing periodic recreation and embracing more of a fulltime approach. So digital nomads are, in a sense, always on vacation.

And you’re probably thinking to yourself, well digital nomads work so how can they always be on vacation. Well, digital nomads can set their own schedule.

Regular 9 to 5 workers normally have the same repeating schedule. They wake up, shower, eat, then go to work. After work they go back to their stationary home watch tv, eat dinner, go to bed, and repeat. The 2 days that most 9 to 5ers have off isn’t enough time to vacation so most will loaf around, work on house projects, hang out with friends/family but most aren’t able to, lets say for example, go to the beach, visit a national park or monument, go hiking in the mountains, visit exotic places, and the list goes on.

THE DIGITAL NOMAD WAY OF LIFE

Digital nomads are always on the go. Well perhaps not all of them but most have that option. Seeing the world in its most raw form is pretty common for digital nomads.

The digital nomad way of life is a way to recreate your daily life where you can control your own path. Modern society has people programmed in a way where it seems like everything operates like a piece of computer code or script. A computer script is a command or list of commands executed by a program. Now this kind of sounds like modern society. We go to school, go to college, get a job, buy a car, get married, buy a house, have a kid, and work work work until you pay off all your debt.

So by the time you’ve worked worked worked and paid off all your debt you’re too old and don’t have enough energy to fully enjoy life. Digital nomads seek to escape that. Escape the illusion of programmed freedom. Escape to a life of intention and purpose

SHOULD YOU BECOME A DIGITAL NOMAD?

Guy on laptop outside on phone working as a digital nomad

If you are a person that feels like you’re lacking something in your life or if you’re growing tired of the mundane 9 to 5 work week at a stationary job then the digital nomad lifestyle may be the change you need in your life. Learning how to become a digital nomad can lead to an adventurous lifestyle that offers rewards but can be challenging from time to time.

 

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