When living the digital nomad lifestyle, there are a few things that should be avoided to ensure your experience is a pleasant one. We have some advice on what to avoid when you're working while you travel.
Aaron Gray is the co-founder of Studio 56, a digital marketing agency based in Melbourne, and has been a digital nomad for many years.
#1 Well-Known Dangerous Areas
Everywhere in the world has areas that are known to be dangerous hot spots -- and for good reason. In some countries you’ll find higher rates of theft and crime than other areas. Before traveling to a new and unfamiliar area, you need to do your research first on whether there are any areas you should stay away from. Your digital nomad life will be short lived if you have your items stolen or you end up in hospital. It’s also a good idea to know how to say basic words like 'police' and 'hospital' in different languages to communicate if you need help. You can also take down the address of these places to help you find them if you do get in trouble. When meeting new people in new areas, avoid telling them about what you do and the equipment you have as it can target you as a possible victim of theft if you’re talking to the wrong person.
#2 Not Calling Home
Many digital nomads make the mistake of not calling home at least once or twice a week. Always try to keep in contact with those that you love back home to not only keep abreast of family matters but also let them have a general idea of where you were last at if you go missing. This vital detail can mean the difference between being found alive and well or carried out in a body bag. It also helps to call home when dealing with homesickness. Believe me, it will come on fast and hard when you first work and travel away from home for months at a time.
#3 Not Exercising and Eating Right
Living a digital nomad life doesn’t mean you have to give up on eating healthy and exercising. Many tend to fall into the routine of eating fast food all the time and only exercising when they’re sightseeing. This can result in health problems which can dampen your work and travel experience. Try to schedule in at least half an hour of exercise per day. Also try to incorporate healthy foods into your diet and refrain from eating fast food to once or twice per week instead of every day; your waistline will thank you.
#4 Not Having Regular Medical Check-Ups
Traveling to different countries requires different medical check-ups and vaccines along the way. When traveling for years at a time, don’t forget to have your routine medical check-ups and make sure all your vaccines are up-to-date. Not only will this keep you from getting serious and life threatening diseases and illnesses, but it will also give you an updated report on how you are physically and mentally when moving onto the next country.
#5 Becoming A Hermit
Spending too much time alone is something you should avoid. It’s always good go out and meet people and make new friends in order to keep yourself mentally well and happy. While the friendships may not last, you'll at least get some short term company. Don’t be afraid to strike up new conversations with people, but be wary when you feel there is something that doesn't feel right with the person you're talking to. End the conversation and move on. Trust your ‘gut’ instinct; I know it’s gotten me out of a few complicated scenarios in the past. Another thing to remember is if you’re drinking at a bar, always keep watch on your drink to reduce the risk of someone lacing it with a sedative. If possible, buy a bottle of water and keep the lid on tight.
#6 Not Enjoying The Scenery
It's crucial to stay disciplined when you're working and traveling. But just because you need to work to make money it doesn’t mean you should miss out on enjoying the scenery around you. Make sure you set some time aside to enjoy the sights. If you work all day, take the next day to sight-see. The point of working and traveling is to see the world; don’t miss out on this amazing journey just because you have your eyes glued to the computer screen 24/7.
Whether you’re traveling through Europe, the USA or even Australia, these simple things can really derail your journey and life experience. Knowing what to avoid when living the digital nomad life is crucial to successfully enjoying it. So have you started your journey yet? Let us know in the comments.