The nomadic lifestyle has been in existence for years. Early civilizations embraced a hunter-gatherer lifestyle that involved moving from place to place to make a living. Many people moved around in nomadic tribes, and others moved individually.
Slowly, this lifestyle became less popular as civilization set in. However, in recent times, a newfound nomadic movement has become popular again. The digital age has ushered in a new generation of digital nomads.
5 Things Every Digital Nomad Should Know
As a digital nomad, there are certain things you need to be aware of. Below are some of the things you need to know as a digital nomad.
1. Only Bring Essential Items
It can be difficult to choose which items to carry along and which items to leave behind when you live and travel as a digital nomad. Apart from the technical equipment needed for work, it would be best to pack essential toiletries and hygiene tools. These are basic products that you may not easily find at all foreign supermarkets, especially if you are used to specific brands.
The items you carry should weigh under 10 pounds. Otherwise, you will end up burdening yourself with unnecessary luggage. When adding things to your luggage, it is essential to remember that every extra item adds to the luggage weight and increases the load you have to carry. Sometimes, this may also add a fee you have to pay if traveling by air.
2. Learn About the Latest Apps and Tools
Since 2019, the number of digital nomads worldwide has increased exponentially. This growth has occurred nationally in the U.S. and also all over the world. People have begun leaving the traditional working systems and opting for the benefits of being a digital nomad. The COVID-19 lockdown was a major contributing factor to people trying out the digital nomad lifestyle, and since then, more and more people want to be able to work from anywhere they want around the world.
To be an efficient online worker, you must stay plugged in to the latest tools for project management, financial management, and more. Some of these apps help you with work, while others assist you in organizing your personal life. They include:
- Google Workspace
- Toggle Track
- Anytime Mailbox
3. Be Prepared for Different Cultures
Moving abroad can be exciting, but it can quickly become overwhelming. Moving and adjusting to a new place can be stressful for many people, especially as you try to get used to your environment.
Initially, the first couple of months could feel like the honeymoon phase because of all the new adventures and experiences. However, the excitement eventually wears off and, if not managed, can lead to stress, fear, anxiety, and feelings of disorientation.
With time, you will adjust, but many people initially experience these feelings attributed to the phenomenon called "culture shock." However, digital nomads can prepare themselves for the nomadic life through cross-cultural training.
There are a few other things you can do to prepare yourself for your move, and they include:
Learn the basics of the language where you are headed
- Practice speaking with a foreign language tutor
- Connect with other foreigners online before your arrival
- Create a routine for yourself in your new surroundings
- Try to avoid comparing the new country with your old one
- Talk to people about how your experiences as a digital nomad have affected your life
4. Learn How to Save on Taxes While Working Abroad
It is understandable that while working as a digital nomad, taxes may not necessarily always be on your mind. The digital nomad experience is such an adventure that it's normal to forget about some of the details. At times, it can be easy to forget about taxes while also sorting out visas and housing.
The good thing is that there are several benefits available to digital nomads working in foreign countries, such as housing exclusions.
Digital nomads moving across different countries may often experience tax challenges due to the various time zones. Hence, it is essential to accurately track your time as a digital nomad. Different countries have different tax obligations for digital nomads, so you need to determine the taxes you may be required to pay beforehand to avoid being taken by surprise.
5. Starting Your Online Business From Scratch
We live in the digital age, meaning there are now numerous ways to make money using the internet. Many people have online businesses that serve as an extra income stream to either supplement their work income or as a backup plan in case of any unforeseen circumstances. Starting an online business is a trusted way of making money as a digital nomad because you can handle your business wherever you are.
There are many advantages to owning an online business as a digital nomad:
- It can be run from anywhere, meaning you do not need to have one office. You can run it even while traveling.
- You have flexible working hours, and you can start anytime.
- Many online businesses do not require much capital to create them.
- There is no limit to the kinds of business you can start online.
- You can complete a lot of the required legal and admin steps online.
It is important to note that the digital nomad lifestyle isn't for everybody. Some individuals are more suited to living in one place and working their regular 9-5. Some people require a sense of stability to function, which is okay. Before opting to be a digital nomad, you will need to ask yourself if it is something you can handle.