Ask yourself a question: what if you didn’t have to go to work today, get dressed in that uncomfortable office attire, fight the traffic or go through a hectic day-to-day commute to sit at your desk while you complete that stressful project. If that wasn’t a key requirement of making a living and putting food on the table, would you still do it?
Many startup entrepreneurs escape that environment by starting a new business. But apart from losing the suit for a t-shirt and swapping the cubicle for the bedroom or parent’s garage, the rest is pretty much the same old.
So how about adding location independence to the mix? Enter digital nomads — a growing cross-section of the working population who have leveraged the Internet and technology to allow themselves to work or startup almost anywhere in the world.
It’s the proverbial university gap year, but it never ends. It’s the “I’m going travelling” mentality, but instead of working in bars or doing odd jobs to fund the next plane ticket, they take their careers with them in their carry-on.
While some digital nomads themselves cringe at the term, it is used to reference a relatively new type of worker/entrepreneur who does their job on the go.
Arising mainly out of the tech and web-based industries, it is a philosophy of adventure and self-autonomy.
Digital nomads choose the environments they wish to work in, make their own schedules, and spend as much time as possible taking in new cultures and experiences. They pick lower-cost locations to bootstrap their business and then move or go back to the big tech hubs when investments and more specialised talent are needed. They leverage location independence to their advantage and the benefits are astonishing.