There’s nothing quite as lovely as a going on a holiday. You get to enjoying new sights and meet friendly locals, or simply enjoy the uniqueness of everyday life in your chosen destination. The only downside, however, is the fact that all holidays must come to an end, and at some point, you have to re-pack your bags and head back to normal life and work. But as a creative, you might be thinking that a gorgeous holiday spot is more conducive to working than a confined office desk — and you’re not alone. Working in some of the most beautiful places on earth just so happens to be the life of a digital nomad.
Digital nomads are people who have chosen a life that goes beyond the traditional office for a location where they feel free. While it may sound like being on a perpetual holiday, it’s actually the ideal setup once you strike a good work-life balance when working remotely. And all you usually need is a trusty laptop and good Wi-Fi. What’s more, a study shared by Business Insider reveals that full-time remote workers are much happier than office-based ones.
So, how does being a digital nomad fit for a creative? Whether you are a photographer, writer, or a graphic designer, it’s important to have the space to find inspiration and move freely. The four corners of an office can’t always tick those boxes. Creatives need to explore. Indeed, Heidi Luerra, CEO of RAW Artists, highlights how essential it is to invest in things that will strengthen your creative repertoire. So if you’re thinking about taking the big leap towards a change of scenery, read on to learn more about how you can thrive as a creative digital nomad.
Enjoy your location
At the start, it can be challenging for you to adapt to your new home, especially if you’re accustomed to the structured working environment of an office. You might find yourself habitually checking your emails or obsessing over your to-do list at every hour of the day. Yet, as a creative digital nomad, it’s important that you make time to immerse yourself in your new environment, too — especially if it’s a holiday hotspot. Indeed, as we’ve previously shared on our guide to ‘Taking a Holiday When You Are Self-Employed’, taking some time off is crucial in your creative journey as it broadens your horizons.
If you’re a writer, take a notebook with you as you explore to record anything that piques your interest. If you’re photographer, ask locals for secret spots that tourists aren’t aware of. No matter what creative field you’re in, it’s important to embrace and enjoy your new space. The world is your oyster. But when you’re a creative digital nomad, the world is also your office.
Bond with the community
Being on the road a lot can be a little lonely. Working from hostel to hostel can make you feel disconnected or isolated. So, it’s important to reach out to others. Whether this means connecting with fellow digital nomads at your hostel’s common areas, or working outside to be able to meet new people.
Many cities across the globe have seen the rise of co-working spaces that allow you to do just that, as these collaborative environments meet the need for people to connect all around the world. Industrious points out that co-working spaces allow you to have a private office or, if you prefer, to work in a shared workspace with people from various industries who can inspire you. These thoughtfully designed spaces tend to have a great energy for working, learning, and connecting with others, and might be just the thing you need to thrive in your own creative path, wherever you may be. Nearly all major cities will have co-working spaces allowing you to plan and book ahead as you travel.
Don’t forget to strike up a conversation or attend a community event, as these are typically filled with like-minded people who not only can stimulate your creativity, but also help you feel more welcome in your new location.
Stick to a budget
Although most digital nomads move to breathtaking destinations where expenses are much lower, such as Bali or Chiang Mai, you still have to consider the fact that they are holiday locations. This means you’re more likely to spend more, as there are more places to see, restaurants to eat in, and of course, lattes to try. It’s even more tempting when the prices are cheaper — next thing you know, your little expenses have all piled up.
As a creative digital nomad, having a monthly budget set in place can make all the difference for your finances. A great way to get started is to first compute the costs of your living expenses, such as rent, commute, groceries, and going out. Then, compare the total amount of your monthly expenditures with your monthly income. If your income is greater than your expenses, then you have a good budget set in place. But if it’s the other way around, try to cut back on expenses that aren’t necessary so you can live more comfortably wherever your feet take you.
For more on reaching big creative goals and making a living while enjoying life, be sure to have a look around our site at Creative Women International.