5 Mistakes Budding Digital Nomads Make & How To Avoid Them!
There are 5 common mistakes that many Digital Nomads make.
Becoming a Digital Nomad means that you can live & work pretty much anywhere you choose – it’s an incredible experience and something that is certainly worth the time and effort. But it would be remiss and dishonest to try and ignore the potential pitfalls and downsides that can come with this type of living.
Some of these pitfalls are very simple logistical challenges. How do you manage a business while travelling? How do you balance work and play? Some are more complicated.
Here are some of the top mistakes you need to avoid:
- Not doing your research
It is absolutely essential that you research the destination you’re going to before you head off! Think through the processes involved in your day to day operations & make sure you have contingencies in place.
You should consider aspects such as;
- Visa requirements for extended stays or working
- Availability (& cost) of internet access – is it reliable, fast? Etc
- Health services – are you covered if you fall seriously ill?
- Personal security – how safe is the destination?
- Language requirements – will you be able to communicate with people whose services you require (eg; if your laptop needs fixing!)?
These are by no means all of the considerations but at least they provide you with a starting point.
2. Time zone
Another big mistake is getting confused by time differences in different countries. You’re going to have to work with people hours behind or ahead of you and this can make life pretty tricky when you’re trying to arrange a Skype meeting or meet a deadline. Make sure that you avoid this mistake by using an app like ‘World Time Buddy’ which will keep you in sync with your business partners and clients.
3. Not having a contingency plan
It’s also crucial that you always have a contingency plan for in case things don’t work out. In other words: know what you’ll do if you get to the café and WiFi is down. And know what you’ll do if you get there and your laptop runs out of battery. Here are some other elements to make sure you have contingencies for…
- Lost passport
- Money lost or stolen
- Lost luggage
- Delayed travel timings
4. Not having the right equipment
Your tools are everything when it comes to working as a Digital Nomad. You need a computer that is light, powerful and has great battery life. And you need a good camera, a good mobile etc. This is absolutely worth the investment and will make all the difference to the way you learn and work.
Make a list of all of the things you are going to need to be able to generate your income & have a back up plan for each & every one of them.
5. Achieving the right work/life balance
One of the major attractions of the Digital Nomad lifestyle is the freedom it can deliver – but don’t make the mistake of not working enough (or too much or too hard!) Remember, whilst you are out here to enjoy the country you’re visiting and to explore – you will have to fund that lifestyle through your chosen business model. Whilst you’re not out to create an empire, you will need to strike a balance between work & play. Have a clear, documented, plan that shows the minimum amount you need in order to make your travel goals possible. This is all about balance and it’s about not being ‘pulled in’ by the temptation to earn more or to do less.
One of the main skills you will have to develop is self discipline – knowing when & when not to work, when to have fun, when to knuckle down. Depending on who you are travelling with or meet along the way, that means being able to say “No” when everyone else is off having a good time!