Digital Nomadic Lifestyle
A loose description of a digital nomad is a person who chooses to work online while traveling outside of their home country.
Quite often, they'll set up shop in a foreign country with a low cost of living. (and beaches)
A digital nomad doesn't have to be an entrepreneur, they can just as easily be working for a large corporation that isn't too strict on their employees' location and/or working hours. i.e., an all-star internet programmer can easily negotiate remote full-time employment.
If they want your services badly enough, they agree to your terms.
Digital Nomadic Blogger
The full-time digital nomadic blogger does work for themselves, a digital entrepreneur. I love the sound of those two words, digital entrepreneur.
Why should you become one?
For starters, it’s not for everyone. If you are already truly happy with your life, career, relationships, etc. then It’s probably not for you.
I doubt I could give a good blanket answer to this question because everyone has their own very unique set of circumstances.
This is why I did it, maybe by explaining my story I can give you a clear picture of my thought process, and what finally made me make the leap of faith.
Life Before the Change
This part bores me, so I'll make it quick. I was a medical IT consultant, where I'd fly to hospitals all over the USA, encounter problems, attempt to fix problems, bribe hospital staff with lattes and steaks and if all went well, fix the issues.
For the better part of a decade, I flew on multiple airplanes weekly, lived in hotel rooms 200+ nights a year and ate expensive company paid for dinners each night.
Remember George Clooney in the movie 'Up in the Air,' that was me.
The job did have its perks, but it was last the time I'd work for someone else. (not including Bibi of course)
Why Kelly Became a Digital Nomad
I like traveling. I wanted a lifestyle that allowed me to travel more when I wanted, where I wanted. Brace yourself, there are a lot of (eyes) coming.
I wanted to be my own boss.
I wanted to create something.
I wanted to be the one that determined my financial fate. Working harder and smarter truly meant a more significant financial reward.
I didn’t want to continue playing and being part of the drama and backstabbing needed to climb the corporate ladder.
I didn’t want to be made redundant someday, not being able to control my financial fate, especially later in life.
I felt my relationships were unfulfilling and I was floating through life without a purpose.
I didn’t want to look back at my life and have regrets, and I still don’t.
Lastly, I felt a large part of my free time was spent sedating myself with beer and wine.
Oh ya, I almost forgot, that damn book, the 4 Hour Work Week. After I read Tim's book, I've never been the same. (Just a side note, it is a great book, but the actual execution on how to do it, i.e., Work 9-5, Live Anywhere, it's very vague)
Why did I have to go Nomadic?
You get it. I wanted to work for myself, but why didn't I just stay in Vancouver and build my online business there?
Plain and simple. If I stayed in Vancouver, just food and rent alone, I'd pay $3200/mo. ($2000/month in rent and $1200/mo in food)
I know this might sound extravagant but I was 37 at the time, Vancouver is an expensive city, and this was the lifestyle I was accustomed to.
Let's round it to $4000 for easy math. If I worked on making a blog or online business for 2 years while living in Vancouver, I'd burn $96,000. Guess what, this was almost exactly how much I had in the bank...what if the blog didn't succeed, I'd be broke.
What if I lived in Thailand instead?
Rent is ~$150/mo, and the food is $10/day tops, so together they add up to $450/mo. (This is very doable)
$4000 vs. $450
This is why you become a digital nomad.
Even if I go crazy, get a $300/mo apartment, get daily Starbucks lattes $5, and eat yummy sushi and Thai food, $20/day, the monthly bill is still only $1050.
My then $96,000 bank account divided by that lavish Thai lifestyle of $1050/mo, meant I could build my online business for ~90 months before I'd go broke.
Even after you add in flights, visas and other miscellaneous expenses, living abroad can afford you the time you need to build a money making blog.
I didn't mean to end up in Chiang Mai, a city in northern Thailand. I came to Thailand in 2006, 4 years before I made a move here. I loved Thailand, the people are friendly, the food is terrific, and the weather is ten times better than Vancouver.
In 2010, Chiang Mai was actually my second choice but when I flew over, the island of Samui, my first choice, was flooded. In the end, it really worked out for me.
This northern Thai city is charming, historical, affordable and nowadays, a mecca for digital nomads.
There are zillions of us here!!!
Shoo, I came first!
There will never be a perfect time to start a blog. You don't need to study and learn everything before you start.
The most important step is starting, the rest of the pieces will fall into place later. Maybe you're still two years away from being ready to make the jump full-time, perfect, start the blog now so it's a mature blog when you do quit your job.
Just do it.