Two years ago, a survey of over 1,500 people conducted by the leading job search site Flexjobs, revealed that nearly 80% of people would like to work remotely all of the time. What’s more, the survey also revealed that the majority of today’s young job seekers (around 75%) already have previous remote experience.
True, remote working is certainly nothing new, but what if you want to work outside of your home office? It turns out many people who are thinking about switching careers are changing their complete lifestyles by embracing the digital nomad trend.
What is a digital nomad you may ask? Basically, digital nomads are flexible workers who view the world as their office. And if that sounds too pretentious for you, look at it this way: a digital nomad is an independent worker who uses technology to work remotely, from anywhere in the world.
People who choose this lifestyle have freedom to travel and work from a number of amazing places around the globe. But you have to realize one thing: becoming a digital nomad is certainly not easy, and if you are thinking about becoming one, you have to be realistic, and ask yourself a couple of questions first.
Why Are You Doing This?
For starters, you have to be clear about why are you attracted to the nomad lifestyle and what you hope to gain from it. Some people are looking to travel more, others are looking for new challenges – perhaps maybe you are looking for a combination of both.
As Forbes reports, a whopping 93% of workers believe that they are more productive outside the office, and if you fall into that category, this lifestyle may help you get the creative juices flowing. Whatever the reason, before you take the first step, you have to define your personal and professional goals, and be certain that becoming a nomad will help you achieve them.
When Will You Be Ready to Quit Your Job?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, every month, over 2.7 million Americans voluntarily quit their jobs for a wide variety of reasons: minimal wage, lack of opportunities and encouraged teamwork, and many, many more. But before you quit your job out of the blue, you need to do some planning.
First, calculate just how much money you need to survive for at least 6 months. Next, cut down unnecessary expenses in order to save money. For instance, you could move out to a cheaper place, or to your parents’ place if needed. But you will not be living out of your savings forever, which brings us to our next question.
How Will You Earn a Living?
Unfortunately – yes, we still need to talk about money. Anyone that wants to adopt a nomadic lifestyle needs to earn a good living. Plane tickets will not buy themselves, and reliable remote support tools like Securelink that many digital nomads use will definitely cost you a couple bucks. So what actual skills do you have that won’t require being physically present with clients?
According to a recent Welance survey of more than 500 people, 22% of digital nomads are programmers and 17% are digital marketers and website designers. Of course, people are also in other professions such as stock-traders, DJs and even film producers. But realistically, working in the IT or marketing field will make your transition a lot smoother.
Still Sure This Is For You?
While we are not trying to discourage you by any means, you need to consider whether you will be okay with the loneliness and the inherent lack of stability you are likely to experience on your journey. Furthermore, if you have a long, steady relationship, you must consider how your partner will fit into your plan. And while it is true that some couples decide to quit their jobs simultaneously and become digital nomads together, there is a good chance that your spouse will not share your vision.
That being said, just because something is new and scary does not mean you shouldn’t try it; rather, it just means that you need to make sure it is in line with what is important to you.