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January 28, 2019

What is a digital nomad, and how can you become one?

by Caragh Medlicott posted in Lifestyle.

Ayoa | What is a digital nomad, and how can you become one?
Once upon a time, traveling the world was something that required a whole lot of money, and a whole lot of time – and while this can still be the case, our digital age makes spending your days wandering the globe increasingly viable. Digital nomadism is a trailblazing lifestyle choice which makes life as an expat more feasible than ever.

So, what is a digital nomad?

A digital nomad is a person who uses the digital realm to generate an income whilst living as a nomad – that is, moving between countries, and usually without a permanent base. Defining a digital nomad in any more certain terms is nigh on the impossible. There is no single right way to be a digital nomad; the range of careers which lend themselves to this lifestyle are broader than you might expect. While many digital nomads are, of course, freelancers – the rising number of jobs available for remote workers means that the freedom to work away from the office is being taken to a whole new level. In sum, there’s nothing an aspiring digital nomad needs more than a thirst for travel and a good Wi-Fi connection.

digital nomadism lets you work anywhere

What do digital nomads actually do?

While we’ve already established that there is no set way to be a digital nomad, there are a few general rules to live by when it comes to leading this adventurous life. One element which is pretty non-negotiable for nomads is the ability to work in each new place; that means a reliable internet connection is an absolute must. Though the Instagram feeds of these digital expats may give the appearance of a never-ending holiday, nomads still have to put in the working hours (regardless of whether these hours fit into the conventional time frame of 9-5, or not). For those who are part of a larger organization whilst working remotely, hopping between countries and time-zones is rarely a good excuse for missing deadlines or meetings – meaning digital nomads have to fit their adventurous lifestyle around unusual working hours. As such, being highly-organized is a very desirable trait for digital workers; having the ability to juggle priorities, deadlines and colleagues is no mean feat – and most will use a tool like DropTask [Ayoa], to stay on top of their workload and remain connected with their team. Being able to get an instant update on the status of projects shared by teams, and with the added assurance that everything is one place, task management is a major stress-reliever for digital nomads.

Keep on top of work as a DropTask nomad

How can you become a digital nomad?

If you think the life of a wanderer might be right for you, it’s time to start thinking about how you can make that dream a reality. Becoming a digital nomad is not a decision to be taken lightly; moving away from your native country and giving up a true sense of home is a real sacrifice. It’d be recommendable to do a trial period – that might mean leasing out your home and spending 3 months abroad, just to get a sense of the lifestyle. If after that you still feel certain of your nomad aspirations, it’s time to get planning. If you’re a freelancer, organizing how you’ll work on the road is entirely down to you – ensure you have a good, consistent stream of income, and that savings are at the ready should you need them. For remote workers looking to introduce the idea of working as a digital nomad to their managers, it’s important you build up a good level of trust. Traveling is something you want to do for you, and that means your company shouldn’t be inconvenienced by the process. Showing that you’re still prepared to be a dedicated, hard worker (even if you’re doing that work beach-side) will make work and travel a harmonious coupling.

Stay connected across oceans, time zones and continents with DropTask [Ayoa] – perfect for both individuals and teams, DropTask [Ayoa] juggles your workload, deadlines and priorities so you can make the most of your time seeing the world as a successful digital nomad. Sign up to DropTask [Ayoa] today!

Caragh Medlicott

Caragh Medlicott is a freelance writer and interim Editor of Wales Arts Review. After graduating with a First-Class Honours degree in English Literature and an MA in Creative Writing from Cardiff University she began a full-time writing career in Wales. She is the author of several published short stories and was shortlisted for the Lunate 500 award in December 2020, and a finalist in Narrative’s 30 Below competition in 2021. She is a regular contributor to BBC Wales' The Review Show.

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