Guide for becoming a digital nomad
Do you want to work where you want and when you want and earn money online? Do you want more freedom? Do you know what a digital nomad is and how to do it? It is impossible to describe an entire lifestyle in one article, however, in this article, I will help you as much as I can, thanks to my 3 years working as a digital nomad. Hopefully, you will find my sharing useful if you wish to travel the world and make money online as I do.
What is a digital nomad?
The definition of a digital nomad: A digital nomad is a person who works through online platforms using his smartphone, laptop..., and an internet connection is enough to earn money online while he travels to places to get the inspiration for new ideas and motivation.
As you can see, the digital lifestyle consists of two parts: earn money online and travel or move ("nomad") from one place to another. This means that he has a remote job or that he is independent, he can also be a nomad investor like having real estate anywhere in the world, companies so he visits from time to time while savoring the joy of travel to many countries.
On the other hand, long-term travelers, who work locally around the world, are not necessarily digital nomads. He works 2 to 6 months in a country, then changes. They are surely nomads but they lack the digital part.
The myth of digital nomads: they generally don't work from the beach. The sun, the heat, and the sand make it very difficult to work with a laptop. So don't be fooled by the beautiful Instagram photos.
The advantages of being a digital nomad
Work wherever and whenever you want since you are independent and mobile, you can live anywhere in the world. Have you always wanted to see Bali? You just have to settle there for a few weeks or months and explore the country while earning money online. Want to escape the cold of the Scandinavian winter? Go to Southeast Asia for a while. Many digital nomads are freelancers or entrepreneurs and can manage their time. Aren't you a morning person? Start your day later. Or would you rather take a day trip to the island on a lazy Monday instead of working? Go ahead and do your work later this week or the weekend. You decide when and where you work and no one really cares.
1. Think about the reasons why you want to become a digital nomad
First and foremost, you should think about the reasons why you want to become a digital nomad: do you “only” want to travel the world? So maybe something like a gap year or a gap year would be better for you. Or are you tired of long journeys to your place of work? Then working from home without the traveling part would work better for you. Don't get me wrong, I don't want to talk to you about it! I just want to make sure you choose this lifestyle for the right reasons.
2. Take a test
Before selling all of your goods, as I did in July 2017, tell your boss that you've had enough and book a one-way ticket to Asia, you should test the lifestyle of digital nomads a bit. Can you do your work remotely for a few weeks? If so, take your laptop and try to work elsewhere. Negotiate with your employer (of course it depends on the sector of activity)
Do you have enough self-discipline to stay productive? Do you feel comfortable? You must be prepared to work long hours. These tests will help you find out if you have the skills you need as a digital nomad and if this kind of work is something that you might thoroughly enjoy. Maybe after two weeks, you discover that you hate working at the laptop all day or not!
Where the alternative, you're ready to change jobs, but you're curious about the life of a digital nomad. Take the step, in a country not very far from yours for one to 2 weeks, ideally 1-month minimum. The risk is not very great.
If you don't like it, you can easily come back to your life.
3. Reduce your expenses
I do not recommend that you quit your job and leave without any savings or even any debt. The first few weeks and months of your new lifestyle are going to be very exciting and you will have hundreds of things to manage. The last thing you want is to worry about any financial problems. So treat yourself and leave with a good supply of money before you go. This means: if possible, try to settle all debts or at least reduce them to a manageable amount. Set aside enough money to stay alive and go on a trip for about 6 months. Ideally $7000 minimum.
How to make money online
In my opinion, it's the best choice is to start making money by keeping your current job, if you are already self-employed, find out how to work only online with your clients. Before you quit your job, make sure you know how you are going to make money online over the next few months, if not years.
Of course, you can just book a flight and try to figure it out along the way. However, you can enjoy your life more without the hassle of looking for a job and the fear of running out of money.
So treat yourself and start making money online before you go.
Since this is a very complex problem,
I cannot give you all the details here. But hopefully, you will get a rough idea.
There are three options for generating income online:
- As a remote employee
- As a freelance - freelance online
- As an online CEO.
a) Remote job as an employee
If you decide the first way and want to work in a permanent position with a company, your options are fairly simple:
The easiest way to make money online is to continue doing your current job but from a distance. Talk to your boss and see if there is a way to stay in the business and do your work online;
If this is not possible, you can check with other companies that offer similar positions. They may be ready to hire someone from a distance. That way you could do your regular job, in which you have experience and skills.
b) Independent / Freelancer
In case you want to work as a freelance freelancer, you need to find clients. There are many independent platforms, such as Upwork or Fiverr, where clients offer their jobs and freelancers can apply (or vice versa: freelancers offer work and clients reserve them). These are popular starting points for freelancers. However, keep in mind that competition is massive and therefore rates are often very low.
Especially at the start, when you don't have a reputation, it can be difficult to get contracts. Read these tips on how to get your first job through these platforms, which also helped me generate thousands of dollars as a freelancer.
Facebook also does wonders. Join specialty groups in online work, nomadism, and see if you can find future clients or even partners. Even general groups on the digital nomad's lifestyle have job offers from time to time.
Alternatively, you can try your luck with your network. Check with former co-workers or other students and see if they know someone who needs your skills. LinkedIn is a great way to get and stay connected.
Another option would be cold calls. Create your professional website with your skills, experiences, projects that you have worked on in the past, and then approach potential customers who may need your expertise.
c) Being CEO of a company ( startup )
If you want to start your own business. Dropshipping, I will not explain all the details in this article, establish a plan:
- Talk to people who have started similar businesses,
- Join communities, like Facebook groups and forums
- Write a plan
- Make sure you have a plan to cover your investments.
- Do you have all the skills and resources?
- What do you need to do to break even?
- What are the risks?
- Can you predict economic trends that could influence your business?
Some ideas for employment as a Digital Nomad
now that you have a better view of what a digital nomad is, you are probably wondering what kind of work you could do. Maybe you can't do your current job remotely or you have had enough and want something new. But choosing isn't easy, right? I mean your future life depends on it, so it's best to choose wisely.
To give you some inspiration, take a look at some of the more popular remote jobs. Maybe you find something similar that you would like too.
IT jobs :
- Graphic / Web design and development
- UX / UI designer
- Application developer
- Usability / QA tests
- Online technical support
Admin / Support Jobs :
- Online customer support:
- Virtual assistance
- Research assistant
- Data entry
- Virtual recruiter
Content Processing Jobs
- Content writing (blog / technical / CV / book writing)
- Editing and proofreading
- Voice over artist
Marketing and Community Manager:
- SEO Manager
- Digital Marketing Jobs
- Social media manager
- Affiliate Marketing
- Travel agent
- Video montage
- Sales and telemarketing
These are just a few ideas. You can literally make money with anything that can be done online, as long as you have the skills and experience