Digital Nomads: Balancing Work and Outdoor Exploration
The digital nomad life is becoming increasingly popular. Some 35 million people chose to take their work on the road with them in 2023 while earning an average of $123,500 a year.
However, if you’re considering the digital nomad lifestyle, you must find ways to balance work and play.
Unfortunately, many nomads find themselves overworking when they should be spending time with their friends and family in the great outdoors. This is largely due to unfounded fears about income, job security, and inefficiencies while on the road.
Take an intentional approach to balancing work and outdoor exploration by scheduling your time effectively and maintaining proper financial management while on the road.
Effective money management is key if you want to sustain your life on the road. You can’t expect to keep traveling if you’re running low on funds or are stressed about expensive fees like plane tickets, hotel rooms, or eating out.
Instead of fretting about financial uncertainty, learn to manage your money on the move by leaning on high-tech apps and online banking. Most modern banks have 24/7 access online, meaning you’ll always be able to check in on your accounts. This means you can always check your accounts when on an outdoor adventure as long as you have cell service.
Remember to set a permanent mailing address before you move. This can be a friend or family member who you trust to forward your mail or a coworking space that will collect your post. A permanent address is crucial when you want to file taxes and manage your money.
Try to make the most of credit card offers while traveling. For example, if you plan on island hopping while on your outdoor adventures, consider signing up for a card that has perks like air miles. This will save you cash and could result in some well-deserved upgrades.
Remember to set financial goals when balancing work and outdoor exploration. The idea of spending a month in the Rockies may sound fun at first, but what financial position will that put you in? Instead, set savings goals and only spend big on outdoor fun when you’ve hit your goals.
When working remotely, you can’t afford costly slip-ups like missing power cables or run-down batteries. Failing to keep up with deadlines is the quickest way to run out of favor with your clients or employer when working as a digital nomad and, eventually, will cost you money.
Get ahead of potential issues by creating a digital nomad packing list that works for you. This should include items like:
- Magic keyboards and mouse
- Spare USB cables
- Charging docks for multiple devices
- Airtags for security
- Laptop base layers
These essentials ensure that your digital devices stay charged and are protected from the elements while you enjoy your outdoor excursions. Remember to conduct some research before packing out, too, as you may need to bring portable Wi-Fi routers and battery chargers with you.
Maintaining Your Energy
Balancing work with outdoor adventures can take a lot out of you. You’ll be racking up the miles while hiking, biking, or kayaking and will need to be on top of your game when you return to work. Maintaining your energy is key, therefore, if you want to make the digital nomad lifestyle work in the long run.
Get started on the right foot by embracing wellness basics while outdoors. Sleep for at least eight hours per night and stay hydrated throughout the day. Replace alcoholic beverages with water and lean heavily on healthy snacks to keep you fueled properly. Set aside some time for stretching, as you can’t afford to have your productivity derailed by a neck strain or sore calves.
Make good use of first aid tips and tricks. Regular employees can afford to take time off when they get sick but this may not be possible for you. Instead, rely on tricks like using antiperspirant to treat an itchy bug bite or applying duct tape to your heels before they blister. Just be sure to seek professional medical treatment if you fall ill or suspect that your condition is worsening.
Try to set strict “work hours” when living as a digital nomad. It’s all too easy to overwork when you’re living on the road due to fears about job security. However, this will sap your energy and make you a less effective employee. Instead, strive to find work-life balance by figuring out which days are dedicated to work and which are for outdoor exploration. Set clear priorities and lean on a weekly planner to organize your efforts. This minimizes the risk of burnout and makes it easier to focus when you sit down to work.
Balancing work with outdoor exploration is trickier than you might think. Make the most out of your time on the road by managing your money proactively and packing properly. This will take care of your biggest fears and help you focus when you sit down to work. Take steps to protect your well-being by sleeping enough and drinking enough water. Doing so will help sustain your productivity and give you the energy to enjoy outdoor exploration during your time off.