What is a Digital Nomad?

November 24, 2018 · 4 minute read

Digital nomads are individuals using digital technologies to support themselves while living in a nomadic manner. Typically working remotely for anywhere they see fit, be it their home, coffee shop, library, or their vehicles. Giving up on the standard work lifestyle to have a life outside the confines of the 9 to 5.

Digital nomads tend to the question the status quo and believe that you can make a living and enjoy a lifestyle as they see fit. Replacing the confines of an office and a daily commute with something more fulfilling. It could be long-term travel while working from coffee shops and exploring cities around the world, or living in a van/airstream traveling the country while working from campsites or public lands.

A digital nomad working from a local cafe.

Photo by: @andrewtneel

There is no one set way to be a digital nomad, it all comes down to your preference and what kind of lifestyle you want to achieve. You don’t have to be traveling to a new city every week, you may just not want to work from an office or get rid of that hour commute. It’s up to you to choose your own destiny. For us, we knew we wanted something that wasn’t held back by the typical work schedule, you know the ones we are talking about. The 9 to 5, Monday through Friday kind full of daily commutes that you don’t get paid for. We want to work smarter so we can live a full and happy life based on what matters the most to ourselves.

With today’s technology and opportunities online, there is an endless array of ways to make a living online while pursuing your dreams. The lifestyle you choose is solely based on what you want out of your life. Being able to have the freedom to be location independent and get rid of our daily commutes, was a good reason for us on our path to becoming digital nomads.

When you take a hard look at how people live and work, you can start to see some issues that trigger someone like yourself, to find a different way of living. By the time we graduate college, we are told you need to find a good job with benefits, then work until you retire some 45 years later. What they don’t tell you is the side effects that most people get with that deal.

By the time you realize the side effects, you may have thousands of dollars worth of debt, a mortgage, and a ton of other stuff filling your life that may not be adding any value. You are forced to work to pay off the interest and pay for that lifestyle you were told that would make you happy. They don’t teach you the true cost of that lifestyle. Working to pay off loans and all of the stuff to keep up with the Joneses.

If you take a step back and ask yourself what you truly want out of life, you can begin the transition to becoming a digital nomad, if that’s what you aspire to. You have to learn to be critical of your lifestyle and ask yourself, is important or bringing value to your life? Is there something you’d rather be doing? Do you dream of traveling the country or world, or even just enjoy a simple life that allows you to create your own schedule?

Could you give up the big city condo and nice car for more time and freedom to pursue your passions? Could you replace that huge house with a smaller house so you end up with a smaller mortgage payment? Or maybe you want to get rid of your house all together and live out of a van and live by the beach. If you start to question your current lifestyle and where your money goes, you’ll be able to start to see where all your money goes each month and start on your path to finding a different type of lifestyle for yourself.

We all have to start somewhere on our journey, and there will be rough patches to get through. I worked over the past few years to get rid of my debt, simplify my monthly overhead, and truly discovered the things that brought me joy in life. It wasn’t easy by any means, and there were plenty of setbacks to overcome. But, by questioning every aspect of my life, I’ve been able to unlock a new lifestyle that is true to myself. What will you create for yourself?

Becoming a digital nomad is all about creating a lifestyle that brings you joy while being able to sustain your lifestyle while making money online. Take a look at your life, and ask yourself if you want more out of life than what you currently have. It may mean giving up everything you have to travel the world or get to a simpler lifestyle. Some want to trade the house and cars for a van they can live in and see the National Parks. It’s all up to you!

Nomadic, is here on your journey to becoming a digital nomad. We want to help you figure out your path, and give you the tools and resources to achieve all of your dreams.