Being a digital nomad is quite literally the balance of work and lifestyle – well in my experience anyway.
Earlier this year I took remote working a little further afar than my favorite Bondi hotspot and ended up in Bali.
I’ve always wanted to enjoy a taste of the digital nomad lifestyle; I loved the idea of feeling free and spontaneous and not chained to a desk eight hours a day. I love to work, and I love to travel, so what’s not to like, right?!
But it wasn’t all about #picoftheday moments.
I had to disciplined enough to get my work done – the first time in my life that this has even come into question. I had to set clear boundaries with myself around ‘work time’ and ‘playtime,’ but when I did, Happy Hour never tasted so good!
Like any experience, there are pros and cons, but here’s a quick recap of some of the benefits that I found during my time abroad.
The four hour work day
Let’s be clear here, any typical work day in the world of PR (the other side of my hustle), and four hours would simply not be possible. However, I channeled my inner Tim Ferris and set myself a window to maximize my output in as little time as possible. No emails, no meetings, no mobile – zero distractions other than the countdown to my 5 pm cocktail. Once I removed the opportunity for distraction and became motivated by a goal (in my case this was time) I was able to give my full attention to the task at hand.
Time to read
A typical morning for the life of PR means that before 99 you’ve already consumed every major newspaper and website, you’ve surfed Twitter, and checked emails for google alerts updates. There rarely feels like enough hours in the day to read anything for, pleasure. Yet, somehow the part-time holiday-mode moved me to make time for books, articles, blogs that fed my soul – beyond business – which was bliss.
Time to write
I’m a big believer in slowing down, to speed up. When you shift from a human ‘doing’ to a human ‘being’, the words start to flow. Waking free of an alarm, to the stillness of a morning sunrise followed by meditation to clear the head, really gets the creative juices flowing.
Time to plan
On the topic of ‘doing,’ how much time do we give ourselves to think about our life 2, 5, ten years from now? Having the space to create my very own personal blueprint for long-term success (business, relationship, health, family, friends, and adventure) gave me another level of motivation when I got back to ‘reality.’
Fair to say, my first digital nomad experience was a hit, possibly not as productive as an eight hour day in the office, but with my laptop in one hand and a cocktail in the other, I never felt so…balanced.
As I write this I’m half-way through packing for my next jaunt in Singapore…keep you posted!