Many financial advisers recommend that workers aim to save between 10 and 15 percent of their pay. But other experts say millennials should save much more, up to nearly a quarter of their income, to avoid running out of money in old age if stock market returns fall.
By using and developing your emotional intelligence, you can put a stop to burnout—for you, and for others.
It can seem like our lives are filled with busyness, noise, distractions, and often meaningless activities. What if we could filter out all that noise, and focus on the meaningful?
Norwegian is hoping to break a decades-long pattern and make a success of cheap transcontinental flights.
Thanks to Wi-Fi and laptops, work is bleeding out across your entire home.
What are some things that I can do to make travelling easier, and perhaps save some money in the process?
Two-thirds of Americans believe robots will soon perform most of the work done by humans but 80% also believe their jobs will be unaffected. Time to think again.
“I’ve been traveling since April. I have no deadline,” says FJ, a iOS Engineer and a member of the Mokriya team. Originally from France, FJ is now on the road permanently, bouncing from continent to continent, all while holding down a steady job.
Work asynchronously, keep a single source of truth, avoid management overhead and communicate.
Here’s a New Year’s challenge for the mind: Make this the year that you quiet all those negative thoughts swirling around your brain.
After sending out hundreds of copies of my résumé to dozens of companies over the last year, I realized that I was getting nowhere because my approach was wrong.
So this is the post I wish I’d read myself back when I decided to work remotely. If you don’t want to read the whole thing, I can even summarize it for you, right here: different people like different kinds of work environments; “working remotely” doesn’t have to mean “working from home”; and if you’re going to work remotely, you should find the work environment that’s the right fit for you.
Digital nomads, how do you handle health insurance?
Some companies strive to make the office fun, so we’ll work harder. But forced positivity has a negative side.
The Diderot Effect states that obtaining a new possession often creates a spiral of consumption which leads you to acquire more new things. As a result, we end up buying things that our previous selves never needed to feel happy or fulfilled.
Edward Burtynsky photographs changing landscapes—each one an imprint of human ambition.
Think you’d hand in your notice if you suddenly struck it rich? You’d be surprised.
We jumped at the chance to interview the man who’s inspired us all, about what tactics, habits and routines pay off when you’re away from home and office.
Social isolation is a growing epidemic, one that’s increasingly recognized as having dire physical, mental and emotional consequences.
Digital nomad as a flight attendant?
But at some level I feel like I haven’t actually been “living” anywhere and instead have just been on an extended workcation.
If you could pick one place or city in the world where you’d live and work (software dev) for the next 10 years. Where would it be? And why would you pick that place?
Growing or shrinking? Changing the way we work? Experts weigh in on how freelance, gigging, and contract work will change this year.
How to learn new things better?
Before I go out and buy myself a nice suitcase, are there any reasons why I might want to stick to a backpack?
The principle is simple: Don’t just plant a tree, plant an orchard.
Revenue from global roaming services is expected to reach $90 billion a year by 2018, according to a recent estimate by Juniper Research, a research and analytical services company based in Britain.
Finland will soon hand out cash to 2,000 jobless people, free of bureaucracy or limits on side earnings. The idea, universal basic income, is gaining traction worldwide.
Do you feel/fear that you’re more disposable as a remote employee?
Just wondering what nomad couples in this sub do to make their Bucks :)
All of our efforts to be more productive backfire – and only make us feel even busier and more stressed.
Like finding a long term rental (1 month+) and sharing. It would definitely be a great way to split the costs and be a part of a social group. Yes, there are coliving spaces but I can’t find them everywhere. They are extremely limited and somewhat expensive as well. Something similar to colive.co (It is down now and usually not that active).
Losing your native tongue unmoors you not only from your own early life but from the entire culture that shaped you.
Proof that life is getting better for humanity, in 5 charts.
The end of a year is the perfect time to review one’s life, goals, plans, and projects, as well as plan for the upcoming year. I’ve been fine-tuning my own review process for several years and thought others might be interested to know what I do and how.
Professional vehicle dwellers share their tips for making the most out of life on the road.
To be a digital minimalist, in other words, means you accept the idea that new communication technologies have the potential to massively improve your life, but also recognize that realizing this potential is hard work.
Estonia plans to store its citizen’s data in ‘data embassies’ on foreign soil to protect itself from cyberattacks – and this is only the beginning.
At night, early risers demonstrate a quicker reaction time when solving unusual attention-related tasks than night owls, but these early risers make more mistakes along the way.
For everyone fearing to become a digital nomad.
If you are looking at your employees through the lens of “I can’t give these people freedom and autonomy to do work in the best way they see fit:” You should consider finding different people for your organization instead of pursuing an authoritarian regime.
Struggling with motivation? Then stop being so selfish.
About two years back, I was active on this forum and there were tons of “How do you do it?” questions. I wasn’t secure enough in my career to share the not-so-honest way I’d gotten started then - but am now, and have a pretty ballsy shortcut that worked like a charm for me.
The good life is the simple life. Among philosophical ideas about how we should live, this one is a hardy perennial; from Socrates to Thoreau, from the Buddha to Wendell Berry, thinkers have been peddling it for more than two millennia.
Here are my best, most surprising new ideas about how to travel while protecting your money, property, health and life.
The concept of “ownership” as we know it is quickly changing. Traditionally, we’ve been tied to the idea of possession, paying for products and services outright or taking years (or decades) to pay off a home mortgage or car loan. Nowadays, everything seems to be available for rent or subscription.
Any side projects, Game, OSS, Hacks.
I’m looking for somewhere in the world to live to work on a web project for an extended time. Fast/reliable internet + cheap living + cold climate preferably :)
The American work environment is rapidly changing. For better or worse, the days of the conventional full-time job may be numbered.
My question is how do you guys go about approaching potential clients on these sites? How long did it take you to get your first client on these sites? How much time did you put into finding work right out of the gate?
Hours are never the differentiator — it’s never about working more hours than someone else. It’s about the decisions you make. How you spend your time, what you do and don’t do. Especially what you don’t do.
Hear what American workers have to say about their jobs.
4 skills needed when you work in solitude.
I’ve got no friends basically, so I’m considering to start living as DN and travel around the world, already got a list of cities I would love to visit.
I’m sure a lot of us have had days like this, but it’s been especially frequent for me recently.
Should you drink more coffee? Should you take melatonin? Can you train yourself to need less sleep? A physician’s guide to sleep in a stressful age.
Estonian e-Residency is great for digital nomads who need a location-independent business, but also want the credibility and benefits that come with having a limited company set up inside the European Union. It works because Estonia has an advanced digital infrastructure so everything needed to run a company there can be easily accessed online.
Remote work is forcing us to question the way our classic government institutions function. Who do we owe our taxes to? How do all parties ensure that appropriate tax codes and laws are being followed when workers may be employed by different countries or work in more than one region throughout the year? How can remote workers–whether they are self-employed or full-time–make sure they fulfill their tax obligations when working abroad or for companies in other countries?
Though it sometimes may seem like our things are threatening to take over our world, we can focus our energy and determination on choosing what makes us happy, and ultimately change our lives.
We have a crisis of work. The secure, well-paid jobs of the past — many of them in manufacturing — are disappearing. What is replacing them is insecurity and uncertainty. Low-paid, part-time, temporary and seasonal work.
I am considering a future as digital nomad. We all know the benefits, but what are the worst sides to it I should be aware of?
I know this a stupid question but how do you manage to travel if you can’t see? Do you always have someone with you? Like, what are the mechanics of it?
We all need fuel. Without the assistance, advice, and inspiration of others, the gears of our mind grind to a halt, and we’re stuck with nowhere to go. I have been blessed to find mentors and idols at every step of my life, and I’ve been lucky to meet many of them.
Anyone else in a similar situation? How do/did you deal with it?
Vacations have a much bigger impact on your daily life than you may realize, says the Travel Channel star.
In every essence it appears that online freelancing is indeed the future of work. But where do Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies stand in all this? It turns out they are a solution to a problem online freelancing is facing.
Sitting at my desk all day is getting the best of me. I’d like to receive some information, ideas, or exercises I can do for 5-10 minutes at my desk to stay mobile and flexible. Seems that my posture and mobility is starting to decline quickly!
My son is now 1 year and 3 months old and since he was fit to fly at 6 months; myself, my wife and our son have been traveling while I grow my startup non-stop.
Economists believe in full employment. Americans think that work builds character. But what if jobs aren’t working anymore?
Curious to hear if there are any current or former digital nomads here who have had to deal with getting frequent prescriptions filled overseas.
Living at home with your parents isn’t just for little kids anymore. Young adults are now more likely to live with their parents than in any other living arrangement, according to a recent report by the Pew Research Center.
Increasingly, both companies and workers prefer and choose the gig economy’s more flexible and independent work arrangements and, in the process, are transforming how, where, and when we work.
Eight months ago my girlfriend (now fiance) quit her corporate job, created a profile on a freelancing website and ran off to travel the world with me. Now she has more offers for contracts than she can handle, is able to work from anywhere in the world and earns over double her old per hour salary.
What are your favorite long term (1 month +) destinations?
I see a lot of posts about people traveling the world, particularly Asia. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading those, but I’d love to hear some stories about nomads touring their own countries.
A December Gallup poll found that 61 percent of working Americans said they did not have enough time to do the things they wanted to do. Some of us feel this more acutely than others: A 2015 Pew Research Center survey found that 9 in 10 working mothers said they felt rushed all or some of the time. In an attempt to understand this frenzy, I spent the past 12 months studying my own time during what might turn out to be the busiest year of my life.
English is pretty simple. Learning to speak Ubykh or !Xóõ presents more of a challenge.
If you really are committed to moving to a new city you simply won’t find the best or right job without feet on the street — no matter what anybody else may have told you. At a minimum you need to put yourself in that city for weeks in a row and appear to be local to maximize the quality of the job you get or the probability of getting one in the first place.
Remote Year program sends participants around the world as they continue to work.
I work as a freelance web developer and I’m good to go. My girlfriend on the other hand has no experience with working online.
This guide offers you the best advice on how to change your lifestyle and become a digital nomad.
What was your first remot job? (in what field, programming, writing etc) How was it? Was it a good first job or do you wish you had done something differently?
In my head I’ve had this goal of being location independent for a long time, but now I want to explore the dating world as well as the real one. It seems like I’ve worked myself into a scenario where I cannot truly be happy.
The answer lies in how aeroplanes are designed.
I’m looking to upgrade by JanSport backpack. I am going to be doing a lot of traveling that will require something that is heavy duty and can withstand the elements.
What do you think about taking a sabbatical? What holds you back from taking one if you haven’t / won’t?
I think it’s time to look at this in a different way: Robots in the workforce present an opportunity to stimulate job growth and create new types of work. Robots will not merely take jobs, they’ll also create them.
Many of the jobs that young people are training for could vanish completely in 10 to 15 years.
As the US economy has improved—with six years of unbroken job growth and even an uptick in wages—a greater share of those gig participants are finding better jobs. So they’ve stopped or cut down on their Uber and related gig work.
This is a special article and the first collaborative one. 11 of our awesome members have put together their best tips to become a better remote worker.
I am a professional flight hacker, here to answer any questions and help you find cheap fares wherever you want to travel. I specialise on flight routes departing from UK and Ireland only, but I’ll do my best to assist all!
For those of you with income generating side projects, have you incorporated? Do you pay quarterly taxes? Do you list it as other, unreported income on your returns?
New research recently found that starting at age 25, we lose more friends than we make each year.
We misinterpret material renunciation, austere aesthetics and blank, emptied spaces as symbols of capitalist absolution, when these trends really just provide us with further ways to serve our impulse to consume more, not less.
“For me, I want to be free,” said Eric. “That’s what I’m working for.”
Comedian Jim Jefferies gives a hilarious breakdown of the etiquette protocol for air travel from his stand up comedy special Fully Functional.
Our devices are so deeply enmeshed in our lives that we anticipate them being there at all times with access to the full range of the internet’s offerings.
Being “needed” does not entail selfish pride or unhealthy attachment to the worldly esteem of others. Rather, it consists of a natural human hunger to serve our fellow men and women. As the 13th-century Buddhist sages taught, “If one lights a fire for others, it will also brighten one’s own way.”
It’s easy to compare yourself against other people especially as they flood our screens with images. But when you compete against other people, you judge yourself based on their values and metrics. The problem with this is even if you win, you only do something that’s important to them, not you.
“The idea that people might be lazy or just lay around at home, that’s a relic of the industrial revolution,” Kanumury said. “For us it has increased productivity tremendously.”
We may need to pay people just to live in an automated world, says space biz baron.
Starting something in the hopes of making an extra $1,000 a month is every bit as worthy as trying to colonize Mars. Start small and give your ambitions room to grow.
Most people don’t have the luxury of working from home, but if you can get a job or start a business that allows you to work remotely 100% of the time, the impact on your savings and FI date can be huge.
It feels like nearly every digital nomad job is about programming or something of the sorts…what else is there for those of us that aren’t techies?
If you actually are trying to become great at something, it’s probably on your mind all the time. It’s very hard to love something and not be working on it or talking about it.
Young man here, should I learn one thing really good (like back-end programming) or go all out and learn as many things(front-end, 3d, photoshop, back-end etc..) as possible and be okay in all of them.
How much rest do we think we need, who is getting the most, and what are the most restful activities? The results of the world’s largest survey on rest indicate that to feel truly rested, a lot of us want to be alone.
From one freelancer to another — don’t use Upwork. Don’t hire people through Upwork.
Two new books assess the quality of our digital lives: How do we shake off the village when we carry the world in our pocket?
Is anyone here using his Estonian e-Residency for anything?
I lived out of a backpack for the past 7 years. This is my story.
Chasing clients can be a pain, no matter if you’re a small agency or a solo consultant. Since I went on my own 10 years ago, this has been the most frequently asked question: How do you find clients & contract gigs? The trick is I mostly do not search for clients. Instead, I “plant little seeds” online.
What do you regret in life?
Automation and globalisation are combining to generate a world with a surfeit of labour and too little work.
A large-scale survey of the freelance economy shows that the number of freelance workers is growing quickly, with the number of U.S. freelancers hitting 55 million this year, up from 53 million in 2014 and 53.7 million last year.
This got me thinking about what I should pay attention to if I wanted to have a successful career working remotely. What kind of companies are more open to allow this form of work? How about freelancing? Are there any forums or groups online where I can find more information about working remotely? I have little idea about this as I have always been physically present at my place of work during the past 9 years of my professional life.
More than 6,000 US-based freelancers responded to a new in-depth survey. I dug through the data and pulled out the most interesting insights, which paint a picture of optimistic professionals who have taken control of their own destiny.
A series of studies carried out by psychologists at the UC Berkeley showed that paradoxically, the more intensely people value and pursue happiness as a distinct goal, the more likely they are to display symptoms of unhappiness, anxiety, loneliness and even depression.
Honestly, I can’t think of a more expensive – and more problematic – place to be a “digital nomad” than the USA.
Sounds, particularly those made by other humans, rank as the No. 1 distraction in the workplace. According to workplace design expert Alan Hedge at Cornell, 74 percent of workers say they face “many” instances of disturbances and distractions from noise.
I’m overwhelmed by all the options out there. Duolingo, pimsluer, classes, books, etc. What did you do to become fluent in another language? How long did it take you?
As the jobs-based economy gives way to the gig economy, winners and losers are determined by the type of worker you are — or can become.
I do affiliate marketing. Just looking for few other options and would love to hear your experience/story of creating passive income sources!
I never wanted to write something like this, or expose the people involved. However, I feel that’s it necessary for something to get done for my own ends, and also for those thinking of foraying into the world of freelancing and in particular, using Upwork’s platform, to seriously reconsider.
Over the years, it has become clearer to me that there is no more challenging and worthwhile task than good time management. This is what productivity boils down to. For many of us in creative disciplines, we can start by reigning in the chaos of our work calendars.
I’m 22 and am debating whether or not I should be buckling down and saving for more college/life savings or if I should use my extra money for travel. Advice from those of you older and wiser is appreciated
Once considered career suicide, sabbaticals are now not only accepted – but encouraged – by some employers. Here’s how to take one and still get ahead.
I’m working remotely since last year. There’s a major productivity issue, some days I don’t feel like working. Acquiring new skills are hard, with so many distractions around how do you guys manage to work from home/remote?
For the traveler whose time is spent making snap-judgment impressions all day, every day, an expensive watch can be a shortcut to a kind of acceptance, however cheap it might be.
Let’s start treating our careers as a lifelong experiment instead of a preordained slog. Find experiences that allow you to quickly test assumptions about your career interests. Every job, every experience, every place you travel, is a chance to learn something new about yourself, what interests you (and just as importantly what doesn’t), what you’re good at, what types of people you want to surround yourself with, and what type of impact you want to have on the world.
I would learn to code, and network with other aspiring Digital Nomads. Everything else I tried had very marginal results.
I decide to do something over the weekend may be a small project or learn something new or prepare for interview, but Saturday and Sunday goes by and I do nothing but to browse internet, facebook, youtube and going through links. At the end of Sunday, I feel like, I wasted my weekend and get little bit depressed. If anyone has gone through process, can you please share how to got out of this loop on every week end?
Anyone who’s lost an evening researching flight deals knows that airfare pricing can seem pretty random – high one week, low the next and long-distance often cheaper than short-haul. There’s a method behind the madness, though.
Could working on the move make us more creative? Tiffanie Wen took her laptop on her travels to find out.
A list of jobs that no longer exist.
While a truly great journey will leave you feeling three years younger, and two years wiser, a difficult border crossing will reveal your true character.
Unplugged tourism is like rehab for the traveler whose thumb flicks upward at the first sign of boredom. And digital breaks can have actual health benefits. Studies show that heavy users of technology suffer more mental illness and have trouble sleeping.
We’ve done a “what do you do first thing in the morning” thread, so what about when you arrive in a new location? Alternately, which things can’t you personally live without or too far from?
Much like how when a superhero makes their appearance, villains inevitably follow… being part of a small team that works remotely is a superpower draws in super-villainy.
Our manifesto for the future of work is to use technology to build a way of working together that is superior in productivity, yet better matches our instincts; to free humanity from the mental shackles of wage slavery.
Hi, my name is Thomas Andersen. On the 2nd of October 2010 I left Denmark by bicycle. Six years and six days later I returned after more than 36000 miles (or 58000 km) through 58 countries on 6 continents.
Getting out of your comfort zone sounds awesome but the odds are that while this will expose you to new experiences, you’re unlikely to be above average at anything you try at first.
Or maybe there’s another term for it? My wife and I both work from home and we’re about to move to a 21 acre farm in the mountains. There are a few small towns within 30 minutes so it’s not totally isolated, but it’s far from any large cities. We’re hoping that if we get a good internet connection we’ll be able to continue to feel connected (and make decent money) even in a quiet area. So we’re not nomads, but we are still “remote”, so I was just wondering if anyone here is in a similar situation.
Guest contributor Ansley Sawyer shares what she’s learned about productivity while on the road as a nomadic film producer.
Feeling guilty about being untidy? Don’t. A cluttered space can help you be more organised.
“In order to control myself I must first accept myself by going with and not against my nature.”
For those who are DN’s at heart but can’t fully live the lifestyle currently for whatever reason, how do you integrate the DN concepts into your life? Whether it’s the independence, excitement, exploration, …., etc.
Google Flights will now tell you when fares will increase, help you find cheaper tickets.
In the future, as workers increasingly choose independence over employment, and more people look to start new projects of their own, distributed organisations will become increasingly prevalent.
I love when people don’t let their limitations hold them back. I love it when people say “I can” instead of “I can’t.” Cory embodies the ongoing theme on this blog that where there is a will, there is a way. Cory is a guy who wouldn’t let a disability define or confine him. His is an inspirational story and I was hooked on his blog, so I invited Cory to share his story and advice for others who might be in a similar situation and wondering how to make travel happen.
In the age of heavily restricted migration, passport control seems a natural prerogative of the state. The idea of abolishing passports is almost unthinkable. But in the 20th century, governments considered their “total abolition” as an important goal, and even discussed the issue at several international conferences.
Job destruction caused by technology is not a futuristic concern. It is something we have been living with for two generations. A simple linear trend suggests that by mid-century about a quarter of men between 25 and 54 will not be working at any moment.
I’ve seen a number of posts about people’s experiences as participants of Remote Year, but I’m wondering if anyone can share their experience in any other remote coworking program. Terminal 3 and The Remote Experience both seem more attractive to me than Remote Year based on price, flexibility, and accommodations, but I haven’t been able to find any detailed personal accounts. Perhaps that’s just because these other programs are younger.
What kinds of non-technical jobs can your average person without a college degree get in the US to still make it into the middle class?
Everybody loves a good deal, and air travel is expensive, which is why there are plenty of travel websites designed to help you do just that: finding the cheapest flights available.
A new study from McKinsey finds voluntary independent workers are happier than those in traditional jobs.
But I realized that one are that technology was having an unhealthy impact on my life and that was in the bedroom. Like many of you I dragged my mobile phone into my bedroom at night and would occasionally check email or Twitter or Facebook before bed. I used my iPhone as my alarm clock and I often did 20 minutes of email in bed in the morning before starting my day.
The call for basic income in order to soften the effects of automation is hence not a call for greater economic justice. Our economy stays as it is; we simply extend the circle of those who are entitled to receive public benefits. If we want economic justice, then our starting point needs to be more radical: We need to reconsider our deeply ingrained belief that wages and proceeds today are (usually) deserved.
In this post, I’m going to give you my hacks for finding remote work. These are strategies I’ve used for almost a dozen years to make a full-time living in digital marketing.
I have tried silicone ear plugs and in-ear headphones with good plugs but can’t find anything that completely stops human voices. I have read that the noise-canceling headphones are good for some type of frequencies, human voices not being one of them. What methods do you use to cope with it? If ear plugs or headphones, can you specify?
Fuck “entrepreneurs” nowadays, seriously- Everybody is a fucking entrepreneur now. Especially all those straight-out-of-college-entrepreneurs. Just so you know- it’s called “unemployed”. Fuck your bootstrapping, too. Fuck working out of garages and fuck your 2.5 square meters “workspace” at WeWork. “But hey! At least I can bring my dog to work!”. Fuck you, seriously.
I don’t know what to charge, how to invoice, or what kind of contract I need to write up. There is lots of info about this around the Internet, but it seems to be aimed at more established developers doing larger projects in higher cost of living areas. If I walk in with a 10 page contract asking for $300/hour they’ll probably politely decline. That in mind, does anyone have any advice on how to proceed?
We cannot predict with accuracy who will become élite in a given field, but we know that genes and environment matter and that we all have different natural peaks that we can reach through application and training. Saying that training is everything may be tempting, but it’s wrong.
To all the FI’ers out there that are making 6 figure incomes and higher, how’d you do it?
Did you invest years in school?
What was your debt load when you started your career?
Did you see a massive pay hike, and when?
What do you make now, and will you make more in years coming?
Did you marry wealthy?
Tell us your story.
The idea of mixing work and travel isn’t a bad one. But co-working with fellow “digital nomads” on a grown-up version of summer camp sounds like a nightmare.
By identifying the activities that give you joy and the ones that drain your spirit, you can take charge of your own happiness and set yourself on the path to a well-balanced life.
Everyone always says they go traveling or on a trip to “find themselves,” yet most people I know (myself included) have found that you never find anything of the sort on a trip, and come back home with the same questions. What elements do you guys think are necessary to “find yourself” on a solo trip?
The craze for bullet journaling shows that sometimes pen and paper is best—as long as the results can be Instagrammed.
By 2020 more than a third of the core skillset of most occupations will be made up of skills that are not considered crucial to the job today, according to the Future of Jobs report.
Three early retirees tell their story of living on 4 percent or less.
Under the initiative all EU citizens or legally residing individuals would receive a pass as soon as they turned 18, which they can use to travel the vast railway network connecting most major cities throughout the continent.
I just want to share my most recent experience with UpWork, in which I was I was hired by a client to do a $5,000, two-month project. I’m hoping that sharing my process will help others understand how to use the platform more effectively and get the most value from it.
Idleness, as we know, has a bad rap in Western culture, but it can be a philosophical experience in its own right.
We are all fragile when we don’t know what our purpose is, when we haven’t thrown ourselves with abandon into a social role, when we haven’t committed ourselves to certain people, when we feel like a swimmer in an ocean with no edge.
When we talk about the economy, we spend a lot of time talking about jobs — how to create more of them and how to replace the ones being lost. But what if we’re entering an automated future where there won’t be enough jobs for the people who need them? If this happens, how will people pay for food and shelter?
Robots will eventually do all our jobs, but we need to start planning to avert social collapse.
If you’ve been thinking about becoming a digital nomad, it’s time to get real. This isn’t a decision to make lightly or quickly – and the choice will last with you for a lifetime. I’ve tackled 15 of the most common questions I’ve heard.
So how did I go from enjoying exploring the world to finding a job that let me live my nomadic lifestyle? I’ve narrowed it down to three key things I did to get here and would love to share them with you.
Babies born today have a good chance of surviving to be 105. If they are to exploit the great opportunities raised by longevity we must abandon outdated notions of a traditional life.
Try not to get caught up with studying digital nomads and where we go and what the countries are like and where the cheapest place is to go scuba diving if you lack the skillset to be a digital nomad to begin with.
Communal living is hardly a departure from tradition—it’s a return to how humans have been making their homes for thousands of years.
Being a DN is about freedom of lifestyle, NOT travel! Most DN’s I meet or follow don’t hop around very much. Heck, most people I know don’t really enjoy traveling that much.
Being able to travel, see the world, mix with technologists in different countries, expand my understanding of humanity — these are things I don’t want to wait to experience. I just felt like it was the right time where working from anywhere could be done easily, without destroying my productivity.
A new global industry has been booming in recent years, as countries offer people the chance to acquire citizenship or residency.
I’m looking for a new role, but would like to work with recruiters to reduce time consuming job searches and applications. Where can you go to basically announce to recruiters that it’s worth their time to find a good job match for you, rather than just spam by keywords?
If you think everyone around you is terrible, the joke may be on you.
An endless bombardment of news and gossip and images has rendered us manic information addicts. It broke me. It might break you, too.
The rich were meant to have the most leisure time. The working poor were meant to have the least. The opposite is happening. Why?
The US is now the fifth country I’ll feel comfortable calling home — after the UK, Germany, China and Japan, each time the process of relocating has become a little easier. Whilst each of the moves was under very different circumstances, life stages the following tips picked up on the way should help smooth your next relocation.
For starters, you need to stop thinking about what you enjoy, and instead - start thinking about your strengths and the opportunities around you.
Three short essays from the anthology Airplane reading.
In recruiting and seeking remote jobs, we are often preoccupied by the jobs themselves, and fail to pay attention to the teams behind the jobs. Such disproportionate attention can not only lead to misinformed career decisions, but also degrade potential benefits of remote working.
It’s become a status symbol to be busy, which is absurd when you consider its effects on well-being.
What mode of communication (LinkedIn InMail, Facebook Messages, email, phone or something else) do you use when trying to build your network? What general advice do you have for someone who is starting to grow their professional network?
Cottage game industries are swiftly popping up in locations like Israel, Shanghai, and Argentina, but a small subset of creators have begun to take up their own unique residences, free from borders and any sense of restraint.
What are you thinking, eating sushi at an airport? What are you thinking, eating a caprese salad at an airport? You’re about to fly for several hours in a dirty sky bus, but you need a crepe first?
What was once a dream is now a very tangible reality — and these groundbreaking startups are making it easier than ever to climb the career ladder while trotting the globe.
Instead of having a linear succession of jobs, many people now have a portfolio of activities.
I’ve always wondered growing up - what makes adults so busy? Sure, you’re working a 40 hour a week job but the rest should just be fun and games, right?
Is STEM our future?
Americans travel to Machu Picchu, Petra, Troy, and Angkor Wat. So why do so few visit America’s own ruins?
There are still a few kinks to work out, but it makes sense to create a way to rent excess luggage space, particularly when it has become such a valuable commodity.
The idea of giving people free money is so radical, even some recipients think it’s too good to be true.
I love to travel, but I also value my relationships at home. I try to come home every year or so and keep in contact with email and skype. Lately, though, I’ve been noticing that a lot of my friends and family seem to want less and less to do with me. I understand that life moves on when I’m away, but many people seem to mention being jealous as they fade out of my life.
I’m not saying that you should never buy a house. Just don’t make it your life ambition, much less try to fit your entire life inside it.
The Federal Aviation Administration, citing fire hazards, has warned against using Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphones on aircraft. Three Australian airlines and the German carrier Lufthansa have outright banned their use onboard. But the threat of airliner fires is not limited to Samsung devices, which the company has offered to replace. And the hazard is far more than theoretical.
Life as a digital nomad is much more complicated than those beautiful Instagram tableaus might imply.
We asked 16 people how the future is changing their work. Here’s what they said.
Just was having a thought on what people tend to find important enough for their digital work to put in their backpack, what kind of laptops people are using, How important a laptop stand is and all those other things. What is so important to you on a day to day basis that you just can’t leave out that bag?
I’m looking for advice here. I’ve been applying for tons of positions on weworkremotely that I’m more than qualified for (have remote experience as well) and I’m hearing back on exceedingly few of them.
In this living document, I will maintain a compendium of ideas, techniques, actions, and data which will hopefully ease the trials of a new, or experienced freelancer/nomad. I aim to create a discussion with and help build the global community of freelance and remote workers.
Don’t worry about finding your ‘passion.’ Think like a designer: Try out quick prototypes of multiple ideas to learn what actually makes you happy.
We took a look at some of the best online transfer services and got recommendations and insights from the experts.
Although Stats Canada reports that self-employed workers consistently earn more than “standard” workers, freelancing is widely dismissed as being one step away from unemployment and destitution.
To-do lists get a lot of flack, but the simple act of planning has some psychological and productivity benefits all by itself.
Today I’m going to let you know about what went right, and what didn’t, so that anyone else embarking on this journey has better luck than I did. I know articles like this are plentiful, but I’m guessing that maybe I could provide a better insight on the process of learning since 2 years is quite a lot of more time to have found things I could have improved in my learning process.
If you look at all the data, it’s clear there’s never been a better time to be alive.
Reshaping the gig economy cannot only come from on high – there has to be some innovativion from within business and broader society. There are some welcome stirrings, but without a reshaped system, along with more energy and leadership to capitalise on the change of mood, expect little to change.
Q&A with digital nomad, Pieter Levels.
Today’s workplace design asks us to be permanently on call—and demands that we vanish at a moment’s notice.
Companies with cultures that value remote workers the same as in-office employees are hard to find, but they soon realize benefits that in-office cultures don’t have, or work much harder at attaining. Remote work should not only exist as an opportunity at startups, but it should change the future of how we define startup culture.
The traditional 9–5 workday is poorly structured for high productivity. Perhaps when most work was physical labor, but not in the knowledge working world we now live in.
How did you escape your 9 to 5 job to start your own business? I am curious about how you effectively spent your time while having a full time job and a side business and at what time did you decide to take the full plunge.
What’s an item on your bucket list that’s off the wall unique, but still realistically achievable?
Should I give up my dreams about a remote work with flexible hours? Is there any better way to find an offer than using the mostly known sites like weworkremotely (with no more than 2 new positions per day) etc.?
You Can Save on Airfare (If You Know the Tricks).
Business cases can be made on both sides of the issue about how working remotely affects employee retention and engagement and the bottom line. But what do the people who actually do the working from home think?
The aim of this study is to explore the drivers and effects of becoming a digital nomad focusing on: contingency structure, lifestyle preference and social and psychological attitude.
The best ways to keep your bag from being destroyed are surprisingly simple.
How can you keep fit while being “nomadic” and traveling?
What was your “why didn’t I start doing this sooner” moment?
I’m wondering if this feeling will go away once I’ve actually moved, but every few days I suddenly feel extremely anxious, asking myself questions like, “Is freelancing really a long-term solution? What if I can’t hit my monthly income goals while I’m abroad? Should I switch gears and try to find a full-time remote job instead? Will everything fall apart?”
Technology was meant to herald a new way of working anytime, anywhere – but that’s not the case, writes Georgina Kenyon.
Did some of you try the digital nomad lifestyle and not like it?
The biggest contributor to the difference in cost of living between San Francisco and pretty much any other city is housing. By adjusting salaries based on cost of living you are essentially telling people that they should be punished for finding a cheaper place to live, and rewarded for spending more.
The airline world has its own shoptalk and jargon, and listening passengers can discover an entirely new language. We’ll let you in on some of the obscure terminology heard before and during a flight.
The developments and innovations produced by passion, and aided by technology, have stretched the imagination. From the realization of many concepts formerly considered science fiction, to the creation of new forms of art, we already stand in awe of what passion and innovation can achieve. Just imagine a world where that output is expanded exponentially.
“Loneliness is a warning system,” says Louise Hawkley, a psychologist at the University of Chicago. It is our body telling us we’re breaking from the social bonds that nourished us as a species.
In the novel Catch-22, the author Joseph Heller famously wrote: “Some men are born mediocre, some men achieve mediocrity, and some men have mediocrity thrust upon them.”
Some companies seem to highly adjust for location, for example, Buffer is paying $93k for a developer in Hong Kong, $77k in Buenos Aires, and $144k in San Francisco, for the same job. This raises questions about determining ‘fair’ salary outside the major cities, where the cost of living is well known and understood, and sources such as Numbeo and similar sometimes miss essential issues. So, dear reader, what’s your job, where are you based, on what’s your salary?
This post is a framework to quickly get you into the top 5–10 percent of your field so you can begin the real quest of becoming the best at what you do.
What did you learn too late in life?
Hiring managers - what constitutes too much job hopping for you to pass on a resume?
Everyone else - do you have a lower or an upper limit on how long you tend to stay with companies?
I’m wondering what it will be like for an over 40 woman like myself doing slow travel and working… So, anyone start this lifestyle after 40? Tell me about your experience, please!
Thoughts on building a remote culture, from a remote CEO.
Young people should be a boon to the economy. Instead, many of the young people today can’t find work—and don’t have much hope of doing so.
I know this is a niche question, but have you reached a point where you have enough passive income to not to have to work for a living? If so how did you accomplish it?
When and how did you decide to be a digital nomad? How did you start your journey?
Modern culture is in the throes of a real love affair with travel. It’s become a central element of our zeitgeist, a main tenet in living a fulfilled, non-pedestrian life. Everywhere you turn, and no matter the dilemma, travel is offered as the cure… But is our faith in travel justified? Or have we forced it to bear the weight of far heavier expectations than it should be made to carry?
If you work in a remote team, one of the aspects you quickly notice is the importance of communication. Finding the best ways to communicate with your team is imperative when you’re not working face-to-face, because you’re missing most—if not all—of the context of each person’s situation.
We’ve put together a Q&A of everything to do with frequent flyer miles – how to collect them, why to collect them, and what to do with them.
I lived with a group of 70 digital nomads for one year. Here’s what it looked like.
This is a story of how I managed to sell my simple project to a guy from the internet and earned an amount of cash equivalent to my yearly supply of beer, and trust me, I REALLY like beer. All I did was put together a trivial web app to scratch my own itch, and it keeps scratching it, while I drink my free beer.
If your thoughts while uncluttering often include the phrase, “I might need it some day,” it might be time to defeat this nefarious excuse, and finally let go of things you don’t need.
I’m fascinated with DM and it’s just a matter of time before I do it myself! I wanted to know when was the moment you decided you had to do it yourself?
With the right strategies and commitment, you can reduce your hours and still get your work done — without the stress.
What’s your average cost of living (per month)?
‘Karoshi’ – either from a fatal heart attack or stroke, or a suicide triggered by overwork – is now a recognised cause of death.
These are some of the things we’ve learned while working remotely:
- Schedule and time management
- Decision making
- Leadership and group dynamics
- Health, family and the real world
One of the best perks of remote work is the ability to travel and work at the same time. However, this freedom is sometimes curbed by the need for visas to travel. Here are a few basics and visa tips for other remote workers who love to travel (but don’t necessarily have the best passport to do so).
How many of us currently run a single-person company? By company, I mean something that generates (or is intending to generate) revenues. Side projects count.
Today, I want to share one of the biggest secrets I’ve discovered. It’s the secret to some of the most productive people I know and it’s non-intuitive. SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE DON’T MAKE TO-DO LISTS.
I’ve seen a myriad of get rich quick schemes and online money making scams. Obviously this is not how you are all making money. So how are you making money? How much money are you making? And what strategy creates the most amount of cashflow?
How do you find friends after moving to a new city?
Rachel, Content and Social Media Manager at Hubstaff, followed her dream to work with freedom straight out of college. Her advice for aspiring remote workers is simple, yet powerful - sometimes all you have to do is to just reach out and ask.
I am having a lot of free time during this period but I don’t seem to get any good ideas into my head like it used to be when I was busy. What do you guys do when you don’t have any good idea? How do you look for inspiration? Have you guys faced similar situations?
Here’s the thing though: your career, like your life, moves forward whether you think about it or not. If you don’t think about it, then you’re putting faith in the winds. Maybe you’ll end up somewhere you’ve always wanted to go. Maybe not. Why take that chance when you can captain your own sails?
To celebrate five years since I stumbled my way out of the U.K., I’ve compiled an enormous list of my biggest and best travel tips. These are all things that I wish someone had told me before I started traveling, so I hope you’ll find them useful/inspiring/educational.
No matter how exciting remote work can seem, there can still be challenges in balancing the individual’s needs and values. The often recurring issues are somewhat paradoxical to the whole idea of remote work. For many, the lifestyle can be isolating, and for those who often move, there can be a distant sense of belonging to any place or community.
So here’s my guide to negotiation. It’s going to be split into two parts: this first part will be about conceptualizing the negotiating process, about how to begin the process and set yourself up for maximal success. The second part will be advice on the actual back-and-forth portion of negotiating and how to ask for what you want.
If you don’t have a residence, where do you pay taxes as a European citizen?
Working location-independent is pretty awesome, but let’s face it, wrangling timezones is a giant pain in the ass. From years of being on the road and working with teammates and clients from around the world, I’ve (through many mistakes) mastered timezones both personally and within a remote working team.
My curent backpack weight is around 10.5 pounds, and as you probably know, this is everything I take with me to 20+ countries per year.
I still highly doubt I’ll ever work a traditional job but I’m beginning to see that schedules aren’t taking away my freedom, but instead they are giving me a very reasonable way to manage my time.
Excessively long working hours can cause fatigue and physical and/or psychological stress, which potentially damage cognitive functioning.
The bottom line: Resist the soul-crushing job’s promise of extra money and savor the more satisfying conditions you’ll find in one that pays a little less.
What was your “why didn’t I start doing this sooner” moment?
But what people aren’t talking about, and what’s getting my attention, is a forthcoming rapid demonetization of the cost of living.
Several startups are offering off-hours restaurant spaces as an affordable alternative to traditional coworking offices.
I do things, I try things, I build things, I want to make progress, I want to make things better for me, my company, my family, my neighborhood, etc. But I’ve never set a goal. It’s just not how I approach things.
A math model developed by a group of researchers at the University of Maryland explains why it takes you days to establish a new sleep-wake cycle when you travel east, but you may barely feel anything when going west.
From performance to engagement, all studies point out remote workers are indeed more productive than their office counterparts. Let us take you through the top data that proves your employees are truly on top of their game.
Living and working overseas come with their own sets of challenges. Below we’ve got a few experts to help you navigate the international job market, particularly by acclimating to remote work.
You have the drive and motivation to get to your destination but once you are there – you’re left wondering – “what else could I have done? What else is there to life? Because if this is all there is then I’m not happy.” And, truth be told, I am not happy. I’d like to be something – more than just an office person. More than just someone who works that 8-5 shift.
I’ve lived out of a carry on bag for 4 or 5 years out of the last 8 years.
Psychology Professor Thomas Gilovich from Cornell University has made four studies on the subject over decades and came to the conclusion that happiness is derived from experiences, not things.
The counterintuitive insight from all of this research is that the best way to change your entire life is by not changing your entire life. Instead, it is best to focus on one specific habit, work on it until you master it, and make it an automatic part of your daily life. Then, repeat the process for the next habit.
A new study examines earnings data to link declining job mobility to lower overall demand for workers.
What should I be doing with my life? That’s when I (finally) started to recognize the pattern. If I always asked myself the question assuming I had to make a life altering career choice that very day, I would always be stumped, scared and frustrated.
What often goes unnoticed, though, is that anxieties about exhaustion are not peculiar to our age. Those who imagine that life in the past was simpler, slower and better are wrong.
They call it the travel bug, but really it’s the effort to return to a place where you are surrounded by people who speak the same language as you. Not English or Spanish or Mandarin or Portuguese, but that language where others know what it’s like to leave, change, grow, experience, learn, then go home again and feel more lost in your hometown then you did in the most foreign place you visited.
What skills did you build and what other things did you do in order to be able to live this lifestyle? Were any of you able to do this right out of college?
Here’s a primer on the tax and financial aspects of the digital nomad lifestyle. Note, this is mainly for US folks.
For me the concept of work/life balance is bullshit. The fact that we call it work/life balance automatically implies that one of the two is negative and we need to balance it with the other.
A team of researchers explore why “flash teams” of professionals coming together for projects can have profound implications for the way organizations work.
Sure, the coworking movement may be a fad, but these researchers say it has a surprisingly strong psychological basis.
Here are the 10 best low-cost airlines in the world, according to the results of the Skytrax survey.
I’m really interested in the digital nomad lifestyle but am worried about finding a job that makes it possible in my field - ie not a dev or graphics person. Anyone have any experience doing this while staying in middle management or higher?
Successful people know it’s not about how much you make, it’s about how you spend it.
A multi-stage life will have profound changes not just in how you manage your career, but also in your approach to life. An increasingly important skill will be your ability to deal with change and even welcome it. A three-stage life has few transitions, while a multi-stage life has many. That is why being self-aware, investing in broader networks of friends, and being open to new ideas will become even more crucial skills.
Thought it’d be fun to see how far some of us have gone for that sweet sweet wifi.
In the last five weeks I’ve travelled 7,000km overland through Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan’s GBAO region and China’s western provinces. After a year of working flat out the journey was part vacation, a desire to fill in few gaps of my knowledge of the region and a Studio D assignment.
How much do you really need to say to put a sentence together?
There are a lot of articles out there with top 5/10/100 reasons to become a DN, but none or almost none of them say anything about the downsides. Please tell me: What are your top 10 problems related to your DN lifestyle?
There are two types of travelers in the world, which one are you?
So for all the remote workers who want to take a trip, but don’t want to have to worry about ergonomic chairs, high-speed WiFi, a designated work space, fun activities, and traveling companions, I’ve put together a list of great coliving spaces and remote work retreats. All you need to do is show up, and they’ll take care of the rest.
Working on side projects is awesome, and it’s totally doable even if you have a full time job and a family. Read on for how I did it.
We decided to take a deep look at co-living: the past, present, and future of this industry we are proud to be a part of.
These are dry notes I took in the process of setting up a burner iPhone SE as a secure travel device. They are roughly in setup order.
Most digital nomad videos I’ve been watching are based in Thailand. Is Thailand the cheapest out of all other destinations in south east Asia?
I’m curious to hear what you people do to create productive habits? Any apps or other methods you suggest for habit creation?
For the first time in your career, you have options. And where you land and the work you do next will have a huge impact on your career trajectory. Jump on the right train by using this checklist to help make your next move.
Well, I would say, reading is some kind of essential prerequisite to everything you do. Whether you are a scientist or a filmmaker, or just a normal human being working in a more “normal” profession. I cannot argue much about it. Read, read, read, read, read. The other side, traveling on foot, nobody does it and what I said will disappear into thin air any moment from now. Traveling on foot has actually given me insight into the world itself. The world reveals itself to one who travel on foot. I can give you one example, you start to understand the heart of men. I was, for a film, at the Johnson Space Center and had to take to five astronauts who had done a space mission in a space shuttle. I wanted to persuade them to be extras in the film in a very strange way. They were sitting in a semi circle when I was taken in and my heart sank that I didn’t know “what should I say? what should I do?” I looked around and looked into their faces and all of a sudden I had the feeling, I understand these people. I understand the heart of these men and these women. I said “since I was a child, when I learned how to milk a cow with my own hands, I can tell that since I’ve traveled on foot and in the meadow first you milk a cow to have something to drink. I know by looking at faces, who is able to milk a cow.” I looked at the pilot and said “you sir!” and he burst out in smiles and says “yes, I can milk a cow.” Somehow when you make films, you understand the heart of men. In a way you cannot learn it, the world has to teach you. The world does it in it’s most intense and deepest way when you when you encounter it by traveling on foot.
I’d like to add that when I travel by foot, I don’t do it as a backpacker where you take all your household items with you, your tent, your sleeping bag, your cooking utensils. I travel without any luggage and I do not travel, let’s say, the specific trail 2000 miles which is marked. I do traveling for very intense quests in my life. I do that on foot.
While the traditional benefits of vigorous exercise — like prevention and treatment of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension, and osteoporosis — are well known and often reported, the most powerful benefit might be the lesson that my coach imparted to me: In a world where comfort is king, arduous physical activity provides a rare opportunity to practice suffering.
I’m wondering if those that have made this switch back to being an employee of a larger organization after a period of self-employment have any advice. I’m finding it difficult to even compare self employment to an employee role when it comes to basics like salary requirements considering most jobs include a benefits package that don’t always have direct corollaries in a self-employment scenario. What’s your best advice for how to approach this transition and evaluate whether it might be the right time to change?
When I hear the realism that comes from founders with setback it elicits an understanding of what it takes to be successful at a startup that frankly can’t exist unless you’ve walked in those shoes before.
No one dares to mention that travel is essentially a consumable good under capitalism and, as such, simply isn’t available to many of us.
I’m interested to hear how people manage their personal finances, and any advice on that score. Do you do it through your bank, do you have a personal broker, online services? I am especially interested in hearing from people outside the US, more so if they have assets in the US that they manage as well.
Our workweek is getting longer, and it’s likely because we are doing more from home.
I’d love to share the full list of productivity tips with you, hoping this list sparks some thoughts and ideas for next time you’re looking to get productive working remotely.
I believe in the side hustle 100%. It’s unrealistic to think that you could ever reach a moment where you can just cut off all financial security and start the career of your dreams. Unless you have years of savings or planning a couchsurfing trip.
Indeed, the compulsive urge to immediately, electronically exhibit one’s self is a phenomenon made uniquely possible by our digital age. Yes, there are benefits to being able to share more images with a greater audience. But the impulse to incessantly document and post has taken precedent over simple focus and direct human connection.
Hey, I’m Jess McGlothlin, and this is my packing list.
Happiness is not the same as a sense of meaning. How do we go about finding a meaningful life, not just a happy one?
Fears of civilization-wide idleness are based too much on the downsides of being unemployed in a society premised on the concept of employment.
I’ve read some suggestions about Hong Kong here, due to no taxes, reputable banking system, but seem that it can be difficult to arrange and can take months to get a bank account even after going there. Where did you set up your company and bank account with paypal, credit cards and all? Looking for recommendations on companies that help with the setup also!
But what if you just stopped wanting things? You might find yourself living a life that’s much richer in experiences and closer to happiness. How to get there? Try minimalism.
The idea of “grit” speaks to our deepest wishes: we all want to believe in our own limitless potential, and that of our children.
Have you ever just said F@#%k it? ..Wiped the slate clean? Just dropped the mic…and walked away into a whole new uncharted life? Career-wise that is. Would love to hear your story/musings/wisdom.
For many who wish to get away from the daily commute, working online offers them a chance to fulfil their dream, and safe, cheap and friendly Asia is the perfect place to do it.
There are four simple steps to the Feynman Technique, which I’ll explain below:
- Choose a Concept
- Teach it to a Toddler
- Identify Gaps and Go Back to The Source Material
- Review and Simplify
Have you ever wondered how remote businesses develop? Today, we’ve got Tyler Tringas, founder of Storemapper and SolarList, to tell us about his experiences building a remote business and traveling.
Packing is one of the scariest things about relocating. The idea of moving all of your belongings from point A to point B might tempt you to set everything on fire and start from scratch rather than dealing with having to pack everything up.
The seashore used to be a scary place, then it became a place of respite and vacation. What happened?
Do you make “a lot”? Do you work “very long” hours? Are these two basically connected most of the time regardless of career path?
I’ll be here for a couple hours to answer your questions about U.S. immigration.
Curious to have a discussion surrounding whether people have successfully maintained a four hour work week. Also included can be those that have completely automated businesses too. On a personal note, I find freedom in being able to not work the 9-5 job. If I were to work 9=5 this would be certainly side income with the hope to then quit the 9-5.
The side hustle offers something worth much more than money: A hedge against feeling stuck and dull and cheated by life. This psychological benefit is the real reason for the Millennial obsession, I’d argue, and why you might want to consider finding your own side hustle, no matter how old you are.
I’d be interested to know what you guys think. I’d love to be a digital nomad but it also seems like a slightly stressful lifestyle.
Essentially, we are forced to choose. Would you rather live a life that is unbalanced, but high-performing in a certain area? Or would you rather live a life that is balanced, but never maximizes your potential in a given quadrant?
For many of us, working simply feels good. But just because it feeds your ego or makes you feel important, that doesn’t mean it’s actually good for you. How do you break the cycle of working long hours at the office and constantly checking email at home?
American society increasingly mistakes intelligence for human worth.
A 21st-century education should prepare people not only for joining the workforce, but also (and more importantly) for life.
Do you organise a month/week ahead? Do you wait till you’re at your destination then find a place?
To beat procrastination, a simple trick is to imagine starting the task as opposed to finishing it, and actually performing a tiny fraction of it, this over time rewires your limbic system.
Are there any resources for figuring out if it’s legal to work remotely for a company based out of X country in Y other country?
If you read the above post, please read the following post as well.
Team Teleport lives and breathes remote work. With employees in different locations around the world, we know the challenges this arrangement can involve. Luckily, it can be made a lot easier with the right tools.
Learning to programming is NOT easy but it’s totally possible. You can do it.
In today’s workplace environment, does it matter what you know or how you know it? It turns out how we value workers is changing, and the emphasis now is on learning and adapting instead of coming into a job with the skills required to do everything.
It’s one thing to read all of the anecdotal evidence and science-backed facts about the benefits of a work-life balance. It’s another thing entirely to actually unlearn our deeply ingrained, workaholic habits and give ourselves permission to take a real break.
We all want to find a dream job that’s enjoyable and meaningful, but what does that actually mean? Often we imagine we can work out what we’re passionate about in a flash of insight, while others think of their dream job as easy and highly paid. We reviewed two decades of research into the causes of a satisfying life and career, drawing on over 60 studies, and we didn’t find much evidence for these views. Instead, we found six key ingredients of a dream job.
Do you have a profitable side project? How long did it take to achieve?
Like me, you might be a liberal who loves Uber and Airbnb. But the darker side of the new economy isn’t something we can simply ignore.
If something that seems like work to other people doesn’t seem like work to you, that’s something you’re well suited for.
Hey everyone, life took an interesting turn of events and I found myself in a situation where I will have approximately 7 full months to create my dream of being a digital nomad. 7 full months of free-time, food, shelter, internet, etc.
There are two ways to take your cellphone abroad and get data — the frugal way and the pay-full-price way. The inexpensive method involves some tinkering and planning ahead, while the full-price way is easy but requires paying even more money to your carrier.
A new study shows that people with more money tend to be less lonely. We shouldn’t be surprised – the link between happiness and wealth is clear.
Here, we’ve created a takeoff-to-landing guide to spoiling yourself with the smartest, scientifically-proven, packable, multi-tasking, globally-sourced products you’ll need to land feeling, smelling, and looking fresh—or at least, not like you’ve been drinking red wine at altitude. Get ready to spritz your face while wearing compression socks and a padded turban from the future.
Most of us lose time to negative thoughts; reframe your thinking and feel more positive.
These stats tell the story of the freelance market.
Can some of you that live or have lived in a country where you don’t speak the language tell me about your experiences. I mean essentially you have to figure out some way to communicate. How do you communicate with people who are providing you accommodations. Or how do you figure out what you want and communicate that to a waiter at a restaurant. Just really curious how you make it day to day.
Hardly anybody goes to Sri Lanka’s Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (HRI) because they have a flight. No, the air transport hub is currently a daily flight or two away from being completely defunct, and the people who do go there tend to be tourists making a side trip from the nearby wildlife parks to see the stunning, fully modern airport in the middle of the jungle for themselves.
This is controversial, but here goes: I think if you’re remarkable, amazing or just plain spectacular, you probably shouldn’t have a resume at all.
We traveled more than 3,000 miles from the Arctic Circle to the Atlantic Ocean in nine days, visiting six countries. We saw nine museums, sang on a live television show, went on three walking tours and lingered over glasses of red wine while hurtling past grassy hills in the moonlight.
Early on, one thing became clear: Companies are wasting a ton of money by not using the cheapest services to pay their team (we estimate we save over $32,400 a year by not using Upwork to pay our team and that was even before Upwork upped their pricing), primarily because the services make it very difficult to figure out exactly what you are being charged.
The Japanese don’t sleep. They don’t nap. They do ‘inemuri’. Dr Brigitte Steger explains.
Many people cheat on taxes—no mystery there. But many people don’t, even if they wouldn’t be caught—now, that’s weird. Or is it? Psychologists are deeply perplexed by human moral behavior, because it often doesn’t seem to make any logical sense. You might think that we should just be grateful for it. But if we could understand these seemingly irrational acts, perhaps we could encourage more of them.
It’s possible to switch hats, to have side projects, to have two ‘jobs’. But we can’t wear both hats at the same time, can’t freelance our way to entrepreneurial success.
The key idea is that getting a job is about convincing someone that you have something valuable to offer. Ultimately, it’s a sales process. So you should focus on doing whatever employers will find most convincing. That means instead of sending out lots of CVs, focus on getting recommendations and proving you can do the work.
Next time people say, “just be yourself,” stop them in their tracks. No one wants to hear everything that’s in your head. They just want you to live up to what comes out of your mouth.
Swiss voters have overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to introduce a guaranteed basic income for all. Final results from Sunday’s referendum showed that nearly 77% opposed the plan, with only 23% backing it.
Where are you living? What’s it like for a family there? How old is/are your child/ren? What are the pros and cons?
Science-informed suggestions to help you have greater health, growth, and happiness.
Are remote workers more satisfied with their situations, or more isolated and discontented? Do they feel more valued — or less? Are they more productive — or not?
Should I give up on this idea of digital nomad life until I can deep dive into one skillset (e.g. Android dev)? I feel entrepreneurial but unless I build a startup myself I don’t think there are ‘entrepreneur’ jobs out there.
We don’t often question the typical world map that hangs on the walls of classrooms — a patchwork of yellow, pink and green that separates the world into more than 200 nations. But Parag Khanna, a global strategist, says that this map is, essentially, obsolete.
Moving beyond the obvious idea that more practise is better, it is likely that practise is most effective when combined with sufficient deep sleep.
I’m posting mostly to say, it’s possible to be a DN even if you have a disability. It’s harder, but it’s possible. (At least for many/most people with disability; I don’t claim to speak for everyone.)
Trying to find your passion is a recipe for disaster – or at best, a recipe for horrible disappointment (note: the recipe includes pickles). What if you can’t find it? What if you find it and then a few days later you realize that wasn’t it at all?
On paper, my life seemed great. I had a dream job, a swanky apartment, and a loving girlfriend. But something was off. I couldn’t bear being chained to my desk in a stuffy office any longer. So I decided to quit and travel the world, bringing only my passport, a small backpack, and my enormous trust fund.
What’s the biggest risk you took in your career that paid off?
Our minds want to run from whatever discomfort, pain, difficulty we’re facing… and this is a good strategy for temporarily not having to deal with difficulty and pain. So in the present moment, we might feel some temporary relief. But what it does is relegate us to a life of running.
Quitting your job to pursue your passion is bullshit. This messaging is only beneficial for privileged people and very dangerous for working class people.
In places like Detroit and Cleveland a grassroots coworking movement is welcoming minority and low-income entrepreneurs and artists.
There tons of articles about remote working and digital nomads but are most about American or Canadian developer working for an American or Canadian company, living and traveling in 3rd world countries, and they all talk about how great traveling is and how cheap is the cost of living is compared to their home country. So I want to know if Is there any 3rd world digital Nomads, If you do exist, please tell me how you do it?
Fundamentally, the problem isn’t about politics. It’s economics.
A laptop and an internet connection are all that’s required for some jobs these days – and many globetrotters are making the most of it, living and working in cities across the world.
As you point your phone at everything from Notre Dame to a slice of chocolate cake, remember these images will take on significance only after you have gone.
What do you guys do for a living?
“’Lean In’ might be a good philosophy for getting you good things in your career,” she added, “but it might not be the best strategy for getting good things in your life.”
If you’re a footloose creative soul searching for a more affordable and friendly space than a typical rented or home office, coworking could work for you.
A cross-country road trip is a quintessentially American experience. From Jack Kerouac to the Griswold family, millions have loaded up the car and hit the open road. It’s always an adventure, but in modern times it’s a relatively tame one: The roads are paved, signs point the way, and Siri always has your back.
A US ruling says that that companies aren’t allowed to pressure staff to be relentlessly positive. That’s good news, because haters can help.
For the first time since the 1880s, more young Americans are living with their parents than with a romantic partner.
Wouldn’t it be great to ditch the micro-managing boss, take on exciting new projects whenever you want, and work the hours that suit you? Well, thanks to the rise of on-demand talent marketplaces, the so-called “gig economy” is fast becoming a reality.
Remember, working remotely isn’t a get out of jail free card. It means that you need to be more vigilant and proactive. Just like in your long distance relationship, sometimes a simple message will make you a much better team.
Instead of sharing quotes like “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”, why don’t we start celebrating those who are doing the best they can, with what they currently have?
What’s the procedure for getting a new job without going through external recruiters?
Expect workers and regulators to demand continued improvements in workplace safety. Expect more comfortable workspaces, more flexibility about hours and teleworking, more generous family leave, more and better snacks. Expect higher standards in the equipment we use — and a continued blurring of the line between office collaboration and mere socializing.
A specific set of neurons deep in the brain may motivate us to seek company, holding social species together.
This ability to earn an income through a variety of sources and arrangements has become a popular option over the past decade or so. But given that freelancing has been around in one form or another since the beginning of time, why has it become so prevalent in recent years? Let’s take a look.
Working from 9 to 5 — what a way to make a livin’. The song is awesome, but the actual practice is pretty outdated. Yet, these hours are still firmly enforced by a lot of workplaces. Let’s talk about why it might be better for you to abandon that ship (if you can).
Two years ago I graduated college. One year ago I left for a backpacking trip. I came back and started working to build a business. I tried a bunch of things, but it ended up being a small side project that turned into my full time gig. Today I’m living in Southeast Asia (currently in Vietnam) and we’re on track to 10X the cheap flights business this year.
The overlap between co-living and co-working is no coincidence. Co-living startups are hoping that they can do to residential accommodation what co-working did to office space: attract young people to shared spaces, subverting the economics of real estate by offering access over ownership.
With technology no longer a limiting factor and companies increasingly considering the idea of hiring remote workers, it’s likely that today’s job seekers are wondering whether this new way of working makes sense for them. To answer that question, we’re sharing the top advantages and disadvantages of working remotely.
Thanks to globalization, it’s very likely that at some point you’ve found yourself faced with a line of text written in a language you couldn’t quite identify. Maybe in the international section of a grocery store, or on Facebook, for example. “What the heck is this language?” you ask yourself.
Here’s why programming — unlike plumbing — is an important skill that everyone should learn: programming is how humans talk to machines.
Quitting your 9 to 5 job, being your own boss and rolling out of the bed to work in your PJ’s is the dream for many people, but it doesn’t come easy. A lot of sites out there talk about how to become a Freelancer, so I figured I’d share what my Life as a Freelancer looks like.
I often have career discussions with entrepreneurs — both young and more mature — whether they should join company “X” or not. I usually pull the old trick of answering a question with a question. My reply is usually, “is it time for you to earn or to learn?”
If you could restart your career from day 1, what would you do differently (or the same)? Please also leave years experience/current position.
What this may mean is that the growth of the gig economy, at least the growth measured by Katz and Krueger, is being driven not so much by struggling millennials lining up gigs online as by 60-year-olds working as independent contractors.
Thousands applied for the inaugural class of travel start-up Remote Year. Here’s what happened to the 68 people who went.
The problem I have is with the recurring narrative that quitting your job to travel the world is inherently a noble act, when sometimes it just means that you are very, very fortunate. Fortunate to have a strong support system of people who will let you crash with them. Fortunate enough to have a substantial amount of savings to draw from, or parents who will let you use their home as your forwarding address, or fortunate enough to be able to leave for months at a time without worrying about treating chronic illness or paying down your debt.
So this Tuesday around 12:30 pm, my friend Andrew and I decided to ask everyone at the Deus Ex Machina coffee shop what they were doing at that exact moment.
Any huge blunders you’d like to do over?
But in today’s world, networking is a necessity. A mountain of research shows that professional networks lead to more job and business opportunities, broader and deeper knowledge, improved capacity to innovate, faster advancement, and greater status and authority.
Distributed teams are getting more and more common, but too many businesses still cling to outdated assumptions.
Basically, I can’t make me to focus on my work until it’s really close to the deadline of my task or even later. I keep procrastinating or code other things, but the one task that I know is my highest priority and the one that should be done, always gets ignored until last minute… Anyone else had this?
What would you say if I told you that reading one book can be more valuable than reading fifty? That re-reading something familiar is more valuable than reading something new? What would you say if I told you that you could learn more by reading less?
What can those who want to create more innovative and collaborative workplaces today — whether that’s a better office in a traditional organization, a coworking space, a startup incubator, or a fab lab — learn from the workshops of the Renaissance? The bottegas’ three major selling points were turning ideas into action, fostering dialogue, and facilitating the convergence of art and science.
What is something someone said that forever changed your way of thinking?
How exactly does procrastination work, and how do you stop it? Psychological research, comics and “The Simpsons” will explain.
So for those of you that work as nomads and have anxiety…how do you do it? How do you deal with working outside the office? Does being on the phone invoke similar anxiety as being in the office for you? Do you find it’s incredibly hard to make friends since now there may be a language barrier?
It’s a paradox: Shouldn’t the most accomplished be well equipped to make choices that maximize life satisfaction?
This article is only touching on the complexities, challenges and perks of remote work, but hopefully it sparks positive change in you or your organisation.
Independent contractors and temp-agency workers see things very differently.
Security lines at airports are getting longer — much longer — and wait times could reach epidemic levels when air travel peaks this summer, according to airlines, airports and federal officials.
They say you stay up too late and got nothing in your brain? It’s normal to care what important people in your life think of you. But if caring too much makes you stressed or you live your life by others’ expectations, it may be time to push back. Savvy Psychologist Dr. Ellen Hendriksen offers nine ways to stop caring what other people think.
Most of what I try fails, but these failures are often invisible, while the successes are visible. I have noticed that this sometimes gives others the impression that most things work out for me. As a result, they are more likely to attribute their own failures to themselves, rather than the fact that the world is stochastic, applications are crapshoots, and selection committees and referees have bad days. This CV of Failures is an attempt to balance the record and provide some perspective.
View your life as a business. A business has many product lines and shifts many times during the course of its life.
Awareness of celiac disease is on the rise, but many places have never heard of it, so patience is required – both in explaining the issue and handling mistakes.
Most people don’t know what to do with their lives. And that’s okay.
To me, the biggest shock of coming home wasn’t cultural — it was simply the shock of being home. After my first trip, I found it hard to adjust to driving everywhere, the cost of things, the quick pace of life, and not having people to interact with 24⁄7.
We discovered that Bangladesh is easily the country where you are least likely to be surrounded by fellow travelers, with over 1,000 people in the population per every tourist visit. In contrast, for many of the island nations in the Caribbean and small European countries, more tourists visit annually than those countries have people.
Becoming a DN is nothing like “winning the lottery”. For most people, it’s finding work that you can do using a laptop. Unlike becoming president or winning a Nobel prize… “Work using laptop” is a realistic, highly-achievable goal for most people.
I don’t mean to piss all over anyone’s plans – by all means follow your dreams and live the life you want. And don’t take my word for how to do it. But please be realistic about it. Don’t imagine that selling your car, buying an $800 backpack, and heading to a magic co-working place in Bali is going to solve your problems and make your dreams come true.
And while the presence of digital nomads in a city tends to correlate with a reasonable local startup scene, any wealth generated often fails to trickle down to the people who need it the most.
My goal is to be a programmer that works remotely. Can anyone, who does this for a living, please give me a step by step guide regarding how I can realize this ambition.
To give you guidance, we have bypassed the thicket of greenwashing prevalent in travel marketing, and instead asked experts at leading environmental groups how they approach travel. Based on their advice, we’ve put together a guide to traveling while keeping your footprint light.
We asked three economists for their answer to the question: why do we work so hard?
The lifestyle has had a dramatic influence on the way I live and work. To celebrate these past two years, I wanted to share how digital nomadism has impacted my life, and to offer some lessons that I’ve learned along the way.
Moving from naive to purposeful practice can dramatically increase performance.
And indeed, as we race from the office to the gym to a dinner, proudly showing off our jam-packed schedules, it’s worth remembering Kierkegaard’s warnings about busyness from centuries ago. He wrote:
Of all ridiculous things the most ridiculous seems to me, to be busy—to be a man who is brisk about his food and his work… What, I wonder, do these busy folks get done?
When people see themselves as self-made, they tend to be less generous and public-spirited.
Kids are still unplugging and trying out The Hobo Life—but what happens when you add Wi-Fi and Indiegogo campaigns and iPhone apps to the experience?
The transformation of our work environments is only just beginning, but it could have a major impact on architects, developers, corporations, and society at large in the years to come. Far from making offices obsolete, as the digital pioneers of the 1990s confidently predicted, technology will transform and revitalize workspaces.
There are lots of free courses online but some offer the option of paying and receiving a certificate on completion. Does anyone here have one of those certs? Do they hold any value? Is it worth paying for the cert when you can still do the full course for free?
Rising office rents make co-working spaces an attractive, and practical, alternative. Could they also foster a ‘magic spark’ among entrepreneurs?
It was in March 2016 when I thought it would be a good idea to see how working remotely in Nepal would be for a founder of a tech startup.
So what, then, is success? Because it is not money. That I know. And it is not some physical achievement. That I know. It is not a book written or a reward received or a job completed or a promotion anointed. Here are the stages of success that I think exist. I can easily be wrong. This is what works for me now.
Breaking all your tasks into quadrants can help you become more strategic about how you work.
New pricing rules from American, Delta and United make multicity itineraries more complicated.
We analyzed hundreds of online resources and spoke to a wide swath of experts so we could gather everything there is to know about freelancing.
Here are the bite-sized nuggets of wisdom our LIVE Chat guests—from singers to pro basketball players to venture capitalists—want to share with the world.
Surviving is succeeding, no doubt about it. Doing the work is better than not doing the work. Waiting for perfect is never as smart as making progress. But, and it’s a huge but, you define yourself by the work you do, and perhaps you need to redefine what you’re willing to take and where you’re looking for it.
Fear is what causes us to buy things we don’t really need. Fear keeps us holding onto stuff we don’t need.
Some qualities, no matter how much you work at changing them, will lessen but they won’t go away. And in the spirit of disclosure and admission, here are the limitations of long-term travel, the things that many months of wandering didn’t fix.
The gist: a lot of full-time jobs in the modern economy simply don’t pay a living wage. And even those jobs may be obliterated by new technologies. What’s to be done so that financially vulnerable people aren’t just crushed? It may finally be time for an idea that economists have promoted for decades: a guaranteed basic income.
Eating, praying and loving may be a stated goal of travel. In reality, we seem more obsessed with nabbing the perfect photo.
I’ve been at this digital nomad thing for close to a year now, and have not reached any form of substantial success where I can achieve the freedom and location independence I was hoping for. Its just one of those days where the prospects of freedom seem to be fading and the frustrations are definitely taking its toll. I’ve tried all kinds of strategies but still have not had any definitive success as of yet. I just wanna know, to those successful digital nomads out there, how’d you do it?
Next time you’re feeling apprehensive about your work, because others in your field seem more talented or confident, remember this: they only seem that way because you can’t see what they’re thinking.
Looking for a few general parameters here, feel free to answer any or all:
- Music (Y/N? if so, what? links?)
- Hours (standard 9a-5p? or 10p-5a vampire hours?)
A lot of people get minimalism confused. It’s not necessarily a good way to live. Or a free way to live for many people. It’s just the way I like to live. I like to be a wanderer. Without knowing where I am going to end up. To explore with no goal. To love without expectation.
In conclusion: it’s not really dangerous to forget to put your phone into airplane mode and you’re not going to get fined by the FAA as long as you don’t argue about it. But it can be quite annoying to the pilots and it’s going to drain your batteries. So please turn your airplane mode on, sit back, relax, and enjoy your flight.
There’s an endless glut of people writing about how solo travel is amazing and inspiring and will be the best experience of your life. Solo travel, like anything else, can go both ways. I’m not going to say much on that. Couples travel also has its own set of problems. I’m writing this post because I want to share with you the solutions that we have found to make our travels satisfying and meaningful and although they may not apply to you, they might give you some ideas on getting creative with your own situation!
The tendency amongst smart, ambitious people is to anticipate every contingency, especially when it comes to career planning. The challenge is that the best opportunities confront you serendipitously. Life makes your long-term roadmap 90% worthless.
These days, every element of flying feels like a financial calculation. Is shelling out $80 for an extra six inches of legroom in premium economy good value? Is it worth paying $50 to check a bag into the hold? How about $12 for a mediocre sandwich? Or $4 for a bottle of water? Many frugal travellers would answer “no” to all of the above. But there is one perk that might be worth paying a considerable sum for: wiping out jet lag.
A growing number of young professionals are exchanging cubicles for “exotic” locales. But the cheap living comes with uncomfortable questions about privilege.
Busy, distracted, inattentive? Everybody has been since at least 1710 and here are the philosophers to prove it.
Burning out early helps no one. WHY are we running? What are we running towards? Are you trying to get promoted, a better title, more money for your family, an early retirement, good healthcare? Ask yourself these questions so you at least know and you’re conscious about your motivations. Sometimes we forget WHY we work.
Which airlines should you travel with – and which should you avoid? We sift through the data so you don’t have to.
Being rich isn’t about money. It’s about abundance. Here’s why.
An office in the Adriatic, a hut in the Tanzanian bush and the back of a minivan on the beach – we asked you to share photos of where in the world you work.
Working remotely (location independence) allows you to work on your own terms and your own schedule — from anywhere in the world. Here’s how to get there.
I don’t know if we maybe overemphasize the loneliness factor for a nomadic/traveling lifestyle as though it doesn’t exist in the “normal” stay-in-one-place lifestyle. As though it’s an either/or situation. Personally, I could see how loneliness might create a vicious loop of people who experience loneliness at home, seek to travel to combat their loneliness, experience loneliness on the road and return, only to become lonely again.
I am a Canadian freelance writer and travel blogger. I carry almost everything I own with me in my backpack. My English boyfriend of almost 7 years and I have travelled extensively through Europe, North America, South America and Asia.
On the surface, it’s easy to sketch what a “good job” means: having a job in the first place, along with good pay and access to benefits like health insurance. But that quick description is far from adequate, for several interrelated reasons. When most of us think about a “good job,” we have more than the paycheck in mind.
The following is a short list of principles, that if applied, will empower you to make the most of every moment of your life. To be sure, developing these habits is not easy in our heavily distracted and externally-driven world.
There are so many options. Any companies specialising on digital nomads?
I think this message is one of the most harmful in all of business. Sustained exhaustion is not a rite of passage. It’s a mark of stupidity.
My no.1 conclusion? This thing is not easy, at least not for me. However, it’s also incredibly rewarding, and, in the long run, I think that those rewards make it worth the effort. So, here are 8 good, bad, and ugly things that I have learned along the way.
What field are you in? How much experience did you have before you made the transition? How would you advise others looking to do the same as yourself? Etc.
Unfortunately, many have already learned the hard way that even the best coding chops have their limits. More and more, “learn to code” is looking like bad advice.
I am currently working in a position that felt like a great startup to work at during my interview. However, a few months into the job I realized my boss was a complete and utter asshole. Given this is my first job out of college, I’ve stuck with it and I am looking for a new role. How can I detect during the interview / research phase to avoid such situations?
Ever wonder why your seats have to be in the “upright and locked position”? Why your windows have to be open during take-off and landing? What the flight attendants real job is?
But anyone who cares about the future of work in the United States shouldn’t focus too narrowly on the novelty of people making extra money using their mobile phones. There’s a bigger shift underway. That’s a key implication of new research that indicates the proportion of American workers who don’t have traditional jobs — who instead work as independent contractors, through temporary services or on-call — has soared in the last decade.
A midlife career shift can be good for cognition, well-being, and even longevity.
As technology continues to shrink the effective distance between every human on the planet, it’s melting away geographic barriers between co-workers and ushering in a new type of globally distributed workforce. For startups and larger companies alike, embracing and innovating around this new model of work will be critical to competing in a dynamic global market.
Telling young people to discover their true selves causes confusion and anxiety. Better to follow Confucius, who knew that our identities are in constant flux.
So what is indeed the healthiest way? And what can you change about your style today to get the biggest benefit?
A couple of weeks ago, I reported on the science of chronobiology, which finds we all have an internal clock that keeps us on a consistent sleep and wake cycle. But the key finding is that everyone’s clock is not the same. Most people fall in the middle, preferring to sleep around 11 pm to 7 am. But many — perhaps 40 percent of the population — don’t naturally fit in this schedule.
I’m a nomad. I have been for more than two years now. I’ve hiked atop a glacier in New Zealand, enjoyed an opera beneath the Acropolis, spoken with teenage zinc miners in Bolivia, played with tiger cubs in Thailand, and done some very shady currency deals in Argentina. And I’m not living the dream.
One of the reasons flying can be so terrible is that airlines are cramming passengers into ever smaller spaces to wring the most profit out of each flight. And given the airlines’ current research into unorthodox seating arrangements, the trend is likely to continue.
If you’re interested in becoming a digital nomad, here are some jobs outside of the technology world that might fit your skills, passions, or desire to live a flexible lifestyle.
As unicorn startups send customer service gigs to the hinterland, is Silicon Valley exporting its prosperity, or just dead-end jobs?
How we approach hiring, benefits, and growth.
Having done a lot of different jobs while travelling I would like to share some things I’ve learned with the rest of you. While there are already a couple of good discussions here and there, I will try to introduce some less known tips for easy socializing abroad in this short guide (both offline and online).
When we travel, we think we don’t want to get sick, but maybe, less consciously, we’re not so sure. If nothing of note happens on a journey, was it one?
Passion is great, it is motivating force, a driver to learn and practice and hopefully eventually to excel at something. But at the same time it is an Achilles heel. It allows the unscrupulous to take advantage of you, it means you will work for compensation well below its actual value and it means that you will do so to your own detriment, up to and including your health.
Here’s what I did to get my freelancing business going again. Instead of sending cold emails, which are effective in bulk but have a terrible response rate, I snail-mailed handwritten letters to all of the companies I wanted to work with. The letters were mailed to design and digital marketing agencies throughout the U.S.
Fellow Hackers, I am bored and want to learn something new. Have you watched any interesting/useful online courses recently on Coursera/Udemy/edX/OpenUniversity/others? It can be free/paid and I am open to any discipline.
I am an indie iPhone developer, and I’ve been working for 3 hours everyday for almost 2 years now. It may not work for everybody, but I started this habit in early 2014, and I have continued to do it since have I found that this is the most productive way to work for me.
For the future economy to work, we need to get rid of our unhealthy fixation on what work and jobs mean to our self-worth.
How to spend your miles is a hard question. I’ve gone back and forth on whether to spend as quickly as possible or save them. But I’ve settled that the best strategy is to use my miles strategically so I get the best, most comfortable mile for the buck: I pay out of pocket when I fly domestic, and I use miles to pay for expensive overseas flights in business class, and for upgrades.
New research suggests being in charge is appealing because it offers freedom—not because it allows people to control others.
When traveling to unfamiliar areas, whether it be a new city within the United States or traveling abroad, it’s important to travel smart in order to not present yourself as an easy target. The main topic to keep in mind when traveling: Blend in.
Can short coffee breaks spell the difference between loving and hating work? In Sweden, where workers are among the least stressed worldwide, the secret to happiness is a four letter word: fika.
I want you to join me. But before I make that pitch, first let me clarify what living nomadically is really all about.
A star political blogger for Grist.org, David Roberts spent so much time posting and Tweeting and staring at screens that he almost went nuts. So he pulled the plug for a year, restarting his relationship with technology and actively seeking health, balance, and adventure in the real world. What he learned just might save you from meltdown.
The attacks in Brussels, Ankara, Istanbul, Paris, and other places in the last year were horrific. Each of these attacks and the many more that barely make the North American media are tragedies. My heart goes out to those who are affected by the blast and their families. But I do not think that we ought to stop traveling because of them.
It’s a cliche that “you can’t buy happiness”, but at the same time, financial security is among most people’s top career priorities. Moreover, when people are asked what would most improve the quality of their lives, the most common answer is more money. What’s going on here? Who is right?
But the reason you’re not productive isn’t because you don’t know what to do with all of your extra time, it’s because the hours of your day have been wasted. If you’ve already spent 8 hours doing something unrelated to what you should be doing, no tip or trick will help you gain back that time. It’s gone.
Working from home, being what’s called a remote worker, is a really fascinating frontier of Work. It’s fascinating both because as a paradigm, it creates new challenges, and it also makes visible ways in which more traditional work spaces overcome old challenges.
To get us humans moving forward again into what Winston Churchill called “the broad sunlit uplands” of a bright and upright future, I’ve spent the last few months researching the benefits and mechanics of good posture, and how to achieve it in an age of schlumpliness. Today I’m going to share everything I learned.
Our jobs have become prisons from which we don’t want to escape.
Travelers who have been scammed abroad, what’s the worst story of yours?
I’ve been itching to get a standing desk. After all, America’s sitting itself into an early grave. Sitting is the new smoking. Clearly, a standing desk would stop me from sitting, and standing is just so much better for you than sitting, right? Contrary to popular belief, science does not say so.
Many people fantasize about traveling the world and working on their book, starting a business, or doing freelance work… but there’s no good way to figure out how financially feasible it is. Well, there wasn’t. Until I built one.
What kind of digital nomad are you?
We’ve all been there: bored in class, bored at work, bored in stand still traffic. But why do we find boredom so unbearable? And, if we hate boredom so much, why do we still take boring jobs? This week on Hidden Brain, we try to answer these questions and more – hopefully, without boring you.
The last 5 weeks I stayed at roam.co in Bali, a new and aspiring coliving startup from New York. I was so blown away by the experience and fascinated by the whole concept that I decided to write a quick post about my time there to share the experience with everybody. My stay there also brought up many thoughts about the future of living.
One common belief by travellers is that an Airbnb rental is usually cheaper than staying at a hotel… In 26 of the 88 cities I analysed hotels were cheaper, compared to 60 cities where Airbnb’s were cheaper. 2 cities had no price difference, Riga and Warsaw.
Studies have shown that tipping is not an effective incentive for performance in servers. It also creates an environment in which people of color, young people, old people, women, and foreigners tend to get worse service than white males. In a tip-based system, nonwhite servers make less than their white peers for equal work. Consider also the power imbalance between tippers, who are typically male, and servers, 70 percent of whom are female, and consider that the restaurant industry generates five times the average number of sexual harassment claims per worker. And that in many instances employers have allegedly misused tip credits, which let owners pay servers less than minimum wage if tipping makes up the difference.
Has anyone moved out of SF/SV to work in a different tech city? If so, where?
Anyone who wants to master a skill must run through the cycle of practice, critical feedback, modification, and incremental improvement again, again, and again. Some people seem able to concentrate on practicing an activity like this for years and take pleasure in their gradual improvement. Yet others find this kind of focused, time-intensive work to be frustrating or boring. Why?
What was your thought process that made you want to live a nomadic lifestyle?
It can be a SaaS app, a mobile app, or any side project that is netting you recurring revenue.
Let me tell you about the largest business opportunity the world has ever seen. It’s larger than the entire world economy today and it is about to happen right now.
What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to choosing what “expertise” you should build your online business around? What frustrates you the most? What have you tried in the past?
A step-by-step guide to paying freelancers with respect instead of money.
The pros and cons of carrying your home on your back and creating a living out of travel.
I’m very curious how US citizens who are traveling inside the US for extended periods of time (say, 6+ mo) handle things like taxes, health insurance, vehicle registration, voter registration, banking, etc. Many of our legal and business systems seem to require that you have an official residence in a particular state.
Because tipping rules vary by country, region, and place of business, it’s important to research your destination’s customs prior to any trip. Start by consulting this guide, which outlines tipping customs in 20 countries around the world, for restaurants, hotels, and beyond!
This is not the moment where I spam you and offer an e-book on lifestyle design and entrepreneurship, but rather just a collection of sites and services you may find intriguing and useful.
In the utopian (dystopian?) future projected by technological visionaries, few people would have to work. Wealth would be generated by millions upon millions of sophisticated machines. But how would people earn a living?
I traveled around the country telling strangers how to balance their workloads and better their lives—until I learned the hard way that the people offering to solve your problems are often the ones who need help the most.
Frequent fliers sometimes go to great lengths to keep their airline élite status, and those efforts are often completely out of proportion to the perks.
Now we live in a new world. A world where you don’t have to get a job. Where there are opportunities with their hands out, waiting to be touched and loved, if you just reach out as far as you can and touch them back. Here are ten reasons you shouldn’t have a job. Included in these ten reasons are reasons to be hopeful.
Psychology experiments show why even the financially savvy have a hard time following sensible strategies.
Telling kids that they can do anything—whether fueled by imagination or hard work—obscures the critical role of chance in success. Not every child who wants to be a surgeon or sports star can become one, even if they work hard at it. At the same time, in every success story there is the grace of good fortune. As Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman puts it: “Success = Talent + Luck. Great success = A little more talent + A Lot of Luck.”
Which is to say: remember, you do not need an MBA. Only do it if you want to. Food and water are needs; an MBA is an expensive want. Like a Rolex. And that didn’t impress my mother either.
Like many of you, I have a flexible, work-from-home job, so I can work anywhere there’s an Internet connection. I’d like to see more of the U.S. and maybe live somewhere for 2-4 weeks and experience it in more depth than a regular vacation, and actually work while I’m there. Does anyone have any experience with this? Tips for low-cost cities? Ways to stay in some place for approximately the cost of rent?
Co-working has been a popular option for many start-ups over the last few years. The new trend on the scene, however, is co-living, but will it take off in the same way?
Most people have “okay” jobs. We go to work, do what we have to do from 9 to 5, come back home, maybe hang out with friends, and do it all over again the next day. There’s nothing wrong with this. But some people perform at a totally different level.
Relationships are hard work. That’s the honest truth. Two people come together based on mutual interests and admiration, and they forge a partnership that can carry on for a lifetime. When you choose to build your relationship on the road in a constantly changing and uncertain environment, each day comes with an added layer of volatility. One moment you’re experiencing euphoric happiness, and the next could be stinging frustration.
The factors that most affect our life chances are revealed as the first group of British babies followed in a remarkable cradle-to-grave study turns 70.
Even a cursory look at the social, environmental, and economic impacts of working from home indicates that even more people could and should be.
Those Millennial-filled compounds aren’t all that different from 19th-century boarding houses.
About three months ago, my company made the switch from a cozy office in the heart of Silicon Valley to going completely distributed. Now I usually work from home, as do my colleagues. I’m excited to share some of the benefits of distributed companies, a few of the tools we’re using, and some of the initial lessons learned.
New research reveals surprising truths about why some work groups thrive and others falter.
So you are at a cafe, working hard, and suddenly you need to go to the toilet. What you do with your stuff?
But working from home has its downsides as well, from the potential whiff of body odour to the whiff of madness that comes from spending too much time on your own. Sure, you can shower regularly, go for walks, or meet up with friends to satisfy your social needs. But working as a solo show leaves out one vital aspect that isn’t remedied by nipping out for a coffee — and that’s a sense of community.
The notion that there is a “normal” height or a “normal” salary is a relatively new one, and it’s had a profound effect on how people think about each other and themselves.
With Stripe Atlas, entrepreneurs can easily incorporate a U.S. company, set up a U.S. bank account, and start accepting payments with Stripe. Starting today, it’s available to developers and entrepreneurs globally. The promise of the internet is that location matters less. However, geographic barriers and associated complexity make it difficult to start a global business in many parts of the world. Developers around the world should have equal access to the tools and services that are available to those in Berlin and Boston.
Today, we’re taking a look at a research project on digital nomads launched by Harvard professor Beth Altringer and Harvard undergraduate Daria Evdokimova. I learned about the study from Daria some months ago and have been curious ever since to know more about the reasons this study was launched and why digital nomadism as a phenomenon could be a topic of interest in the academic world.
About once a month, someone asks for my mailing address because they want to send me something. They liked something I wrote, and want to send me a gift in return. I’m very thankful, but have to say no. Here’s why.
I worked remotely doing software and traveled across Europe for most of the year, then Asia for a good chunk, and finally South America for a month in 2015. I think this sub focuses quite a lot on the work + logistics aspects of digital nomadism, but I don’t see nearly as much focus on knowing how much time you should spend in a place, or some of the social aspects. Once you’re remote, the decisions you make next shape your experience. There’s definitely good ways and bad ways to be a nomad depending on your needs and circumstances. Just wanted to share my experiences.
When people repeatedly move from place to place, they may be more willing to let go of relationships.
It’s clear that co-working is far more than a passing trend, it’s now a huge global industry providing essential services to communities of start-ups, entrepreneurs and freelancers in cities around the world. In fact, these spaces are becoming so popular, some experts believe they could be the predominant way in which we work in the future, taking over from more traditional office environments.
What are your biggest career regrets?
We’re conditioned early on, especially as women, to value security above all else and cling on to it at all costs and it takes an exceptional sort of fearlessness to tune out the expectations of the people in your life and risk your own security, in pursuit of genuine happiness.
Looking over this chaotic landscape, it’s reasonable to ask: Are time zones inherently flawed? That’s what Steve Hanke and Dick Henry think.
The media critic on the malfunctioning tech economy, digital detoxes and why Facebook is unhygenic.
The other day someone sent me an IM and thanked me for my open source contributions. They then said something about wishing they had my gem/code creation talents. I didn’t miss a beat and informed them that I have no talent.
In this quick post, I’m going to explore four things you can do to make a connection with customers and get them to trust you, even if you can’t show them social proof. I’ll also show you real examples of each one that I’ve helped clients implement.
Kristin Addis from Be My Travel Muse writes a guest column featuring tips and advice on solo female travel.
If anyone has advice on this it would be fantastic because it is something I have struggled with a lot. Everything about the DN lifestyle appeals to me, yet I can’t seem to give myself permission to live it.
Some countries let you sleep. Others wake you up.
Unfortunately, the less time we invest in people, the easier it is to make do without them, until one day it becomes too awkward to reconnect. “Since we haven’t spoken for so long,” we think, “where would we even begin? If we were still close friends wouldn’t we have spoken more by now?” This is how friendships die — they starve to death.
I want to see how much nomads are comfortable making a year before I begin my journey!
A conversation between freelancers Eva Holland, Josh Dean, Jason Fagone, and May Jeong about pitching stories, negotiating contracts, and breaking into a tough industry.
“I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself.”
It’s a bit of a cliche to suggest that all travellers are running from something, and that’s not what I want to get at. But after some honest reflection, I did begin to see the darker side of my travel motivations. Or at least, I lost the innocent sense of being some sort of modern freedom fighter and began to see myself as indulging in what is often just another form of conspicuous consumption.
If you really want to be at a company you can do so much better than a resume.
We’re often told to walk 10,000 steps per day, but what is the science behind that? Why not 20,000? 5,000? Why step count, and not the type of exercise, intensity, or total minutes?
Universal Basic Income (UBI) proposals are gaining in popularity across the political spectrum. The measures would see governments hand a set monthly income to every single citizen within a country, either in addition to existing benefits or in place of them (depending on the details of the particular UBI proposal).
We act as if we can read enough articles and enough little Pinterest quotes and suddenly the little switch in our brain will put us into action. But, honestly, here’s the thing that nobody really talks about when it comes to success and motivation and willpower and goals and productivity and all those little buzzwords that have come into popularity: you are as you are until you’re not. You change when you want to change. You put your ideas into action in the timing that is best. That’s just how it happens.
Technology has upended where we work. The line between work and play has been blurred, and the difference between the office and home has all but disappeared. As a result, there’s a new class of white-collar workers (or no collar, to be precise) who roam the earth looking for places to get their jobs done.
I wanted to provide a resource page for those who want to know what’s out there. Not just for travel bloggers or food writers, but for anyone seeking to build a flexible life in their own way. This includes not just digital nomads — the term du jour – but also work and travel visas, volunteer work, and much more.
Common wisdom suggests that having holidays is important for restoring well-being and re-engagement in your work. After all, you’re spending time with your friends or family, doing the things that you enjoy. Best of all, you’re not at work. However, research has shown that the benefits of a holiday tend to last only two to four weeks. After that, you’re left just as burned out as you were before your holiday. So instead of having large breaks every few months or once a year, it’s better to incorporate simple recovery practices into your everyday routine.
Realistically, I don’t want to learn how to code. I want the social cachet of being able to build stuff using computers, and I want the high salary a programmer can command in today’s labor market. But there are much easier ways to garner social cachet, ways that exploit my comparative advantage. Maybe I won’t make as much money as the wizards who design APIs and put together apps, but that’s just a function of supply and demand. In other words, it’s a reflection of my skills’ economic value, not a reflection of my value as a human being.
Recruiters increasingly ask about pay history early in the hiring process, putting high earners in a quandary.
I’m in UK at the moment. I just want to quit and go somewhere to nature, seeing mountains and stuff, and work on a few projects. What are the best places? Thinking Switzerland, but it’s really expensive, any other options?
Most organizations say they are more open-minded than ever about virtual teams, and yet they still have old-school systems in place for hiring people across the country or around the world. From where I sit, the overlapping barriers come down to structure, culture, and mindset.
In English, for example, the word “happy” can refer to different things. It might mean a fleeting mood you feel when someone surprises you with a gift or you think of friends and family. Or it could refer to a deeper and less malleable state of satisfaction with your life. But not all languages refer to happiness the same way.
Freelancing Nomads, which category do you fall into?
- I Build Stuff
- I Design Stuff
- I Blog About Stuff
- I Consult about Stuff
- Other (let me know!)
Not enough freelancers know that projects are a two-way street. Meaning: you’ve got just as much say in what you do or don’t get hired to do as the people and businesses that offer you projects.
I work long hours, in a chair, writing code (and of course this article applies to anyone who sits a lot). The sole reason I am writing this is to warn you of the danger you might be in if you are anything like me.
Getting stuff done in the morning is important because it makes our brains sing. When we accomplish something big in the morning—a good workout, writing, decent progress on a project—we set ourselves up for success throughout the rest of the day. That’s why having a morning routine is so crucial.
According to the US Treasury, a record 4,279 individuals renounced their US citizenship or long-term residency in 2015 - an increase of 20% on the previous year, which was itself a record-breaking year. In 2010, just 1,006 gave up being US citizens, but since then the numbers have risen every year.
I want to share with you the biggest mistake I think I made starting out as a freelance designer. I didn’t correctly position myself in the market. Based on the inquiries that I get every week, I’m going to bet that you too are making the same mistake. It’s okay, there are mistakes freelancers make. I’m excited to help. Here’s my story.
Here’s a great loadout from Thomas Martinek that he used for 2 weeks in Vietnam.
Idea Debt is when you spend too much time picturing what a project is going to be like, too much time thinking about how awesome it will be to have this thing done and in the world, too much time imagining how cool you will look, how in demand you’ll be, how much money you’ll make. And way too little time actually making the thing.
More than any other single innovation, the shipping container—there are millions out there, all just like the ones stacked on the Hong Kong Express but for a coat of paint and a serial number—epitomizes the enormity, sophistication, and importance of our modern transportation system. Invisible to most people, they’re fundamental to how practically everything in our consumer-driven lives works.
“But what do you actually do?” people ask. I’ve written comprehensively about what I don’t do. This article is my best answer to what I do do. At 8,000 words, it’s a tenth of an average novel, and the longest blog post I’ve ever published. I’ll describe how, over the years during and since my big bike trip, I’ve honed a purposeful location independent lifestyle with room for both deep creative work and open-hearted adventure. I’ll do so in enough detail that someone sufficiently interested could borrow or adapt elements of it for themselves.
Happiness and meaning are strongly correlated with each other, and often feed off each other. The more meaning we find in life, the more happy we typically feel, and the more happy we feel, the more we often feel encouraged to pursue even greater meaning and purpose. But not always.
Please share suggestions of whats worked for you and what hasn’t.
Humanity has conquered the world. It’s hard to appreciate what that means, but the video above, by WorldPopulationHistory.org, shows just how incredible the growth and expansion of humanity has been over the past 2,000 years.
More families than ever are taking ‘edventures’ – long-term trips where children learn on the road. We talk to nomadic parents about the pros and cons of dropping out to travel the world.
Many people believe themselves to be multitasking masters, but could it all be in their heads?
Most companies invest in building the skills of their employees. Few of them systematically invest in building people’s capacity to perform at their best.
How many posts about booking cheap flights have you seen? If you’ve been wandering around the web in the past few years, chances are you stumbled into quite a few. You know what the problem is? If you read one, you read them all. Most of the posts out there are basically copy/pasted, paraphrased versions of the same basic, non-practical stuff. That’s why I finally decided enough is enough, and decided to compile a real, comprehensive & practical go-to-guide for booking the cheapest flights out there. Instead of desperately searching for ways to get cheap flights, all you’ll ever need is this guide right here.
That company or project you started isn’t working out. You were excited, early customers were excited, but once you launched nothing really happened. Even worse, it’s not a total failure. You made some money. Not enough to grow, but at least a few people paid for it. When do you pull the plug and move on?
Nobody ever shows up at your door and says “Welcome to the Illuminati. You can now charge $20,000 a week. Here’s a list of clients.” Assuming you have some valuable skill, like being able to program, turning it into a successful consultancy just requires exercising a bit of business accumen. Let’s peek behind the curtain at some things which have worked for my business and those of my friends.
I want to quit the job I hate so much. I have been way too long on the same job (more than 10 years). I have savings enough for 1+ year. But I am fucking afraid. What is the best strategy? Just jump out of the ship?
Maybe you’ve had a soul-sucking commute for years. Or maybe you just log way too many long days away from your family and faithful hound. So no wonder you’d love to find a comparable job with benefits that lets you work from home. The good news: That’s now a real possibility at many companies, large and small.
Having worked location independently for more than 18 months Stuart Gardner doesn’t come across as your typical nomad. In his role as Operations Director at Magento ecommerce agency GPMD his hands are on day-to-day operations from dealing with clients to finances and hiring but you could only rarely find him present in the office. During his travels Stuart stayed a couple of days in Surf Office and we couldn’t miss the chance to ask him for some advice to help you follow his route.
How using the Five Minute journal method made Tim Ferriss and thousands of others 100% happier.
Nowhere will the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution be felt more than in the world of work. It was a hot topic for discussion at this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos. Here’s our line-up of what the experts are saying about it.
Think about it: You can call, email, and even watch your counterparty on FaceTime, Skype, or GoToMeeting. So why do companies fork out more than $1.2 trillion a year – a full 1.5% of the world’s GDP – for international business travel?
Not everyone is Mark Zuckerberg or Larry Page. Not everyone is going to drop out of college and create an iphone or a time machine or a toilet that resizes itself automatically depending on who is sitting on it (although that would be pretty cool). Some people would simply like to quit their jobs and make a good living. Some people would simply like to quit their jobs and make a million dollars.
Many marketers work overtime to confuse us about money. They take advantage of our misunderstanding of the time value of money, of our aversion to reading the fine print, of our childish need for instant gratification and most of all, our conflicted emotional connection to money. Confusing customers about money can be quite profitable if that’s the sort of work you’re willing to do. A few things to keep in mind.
If you’re fortunate to have the freedom to work remotely, great! Rejoice in your freedom to get things done when, where, and how you work best! Jump up and down because you don’t have to get in a car for your twice-daily dose of soul-sucking traffic! Inhale deeply safe from the “hero” in the next cubicle who’s sick but came to the office anyway! Enjoy lunch with your spouse instead of in the break room with Connie from accounts payable! These are all tremendous benefits that make you healthier, happier and a better worker.
It turns out being a digital nomad isn’t that easy. Have you ever returned from a holiday feeling more tired than when you left home, due to the constant movement, the endless newness and a bout of gastro thrown into the mix? Well, on top of that, add professional pressures.
While a lot of articles on remote work tend to focus on the negatives of not being in an office, I want to focus on the positives—and how damn lucky most of us are that we have the opportunity to do so.
My name’s Jan Chipchase, I’m the founder of Studio D, a research, design and strategy consultancy based out of San Francisco and also of SDR Traveller, an ultra-light luggage company. The following packing list is from a month on the road/skies/trails on a trip that spanned Asia, North America and Africa.
The utopian workplace is here, complete with roof gardens, therapists and time to nap. Can the employee ever escape?
What is the secret to find balance between work and personal freedom? We put the call out to our network of digital nomad, location independent, remote working gurus and asked them a simple question: What is your personal mantra?
spend a lot of time “cold-emailing” local businesses and messaging other companies who are actually looking for applicants. The result is always the same: “we are not looking for freelancers/contractors right now”. I have also used freelance sites before (unsuccessfully) like ODesk and Elance, and I have really hated how they work… So ultimately, my question for HN is how do YOU find or establish new freelance/sub-contracting/contracting gigs?
Amid an accelerating war for tech talent, big companies and startups alike are paying top dollar—as much as $1,000 a hour, according to a person who gets coders gigs—for freelancers with the right combination of skills. While companies still recruit many of the best minds, they’re turning to independent software developers to get a stalled project moving or to gain a competitive edge. In some cases, the right person can be the difference between a failed and successful product.
I used to get paid for looking out the window at my old job. For at least forty minutes a day at every former job I ever held, I got paid for merely existing on the clock. Add in walking down hallways and zoning out in meetings, and that’s four hours a day of getting paid for nothing. There is no clock now, only production. Not only do I work from home, but I am also self-employed.
What sites do you use to find contract work.
I’m 27 and female. Since I was 21, I’ve been away at least once a year, for anything from 3 nights to 9 months, alone. I also go on trips with friends, but I make a point of regularly going solo.
If you’re a little anxious about your first year of freelancing, don’t be. Aside from the obvious advice of ensuring you have plenty of savings before you take the plunge, follow my tips and you should be well on your way to establishing yourself as a successful business owner…
At the start of 2015 I stumbled across the concept of a digital nomad, the idea being that if you have an internet connection you can work from anywhere. The mixing of travel and work made a lot of sense to me, as it allowed me to keep doing what I love (developing web apps) with a dash of adventure.
In an age when the line between childhood and adulthood is blurrier than ever, what is it that makes people grown up?
Just spent a few months in Chiang Mai. Loved it! Now going to be in Europe for a few months. What city is the equivalent in Europe, Balkans, Baltics, etc.
The expression “coliving” may bring up memories of bad roommates, cramped quarters, and college dorms. In reality, coliving is still focused on coworking—it just allows those using the space to sleep, eat, and play.
But fuck all these end of year bullshit get-your-life-together-with-these-five-steps articles. Medium and Twitter and fucking Facebook have been completely saturated with them for two weeks now. The only life hack you need is the one about cleaning your oven overnight with, like, a box of baking soda or some shit.
A shorter working week could improve our mental and physical health and even mitigate climate change, research shows.
Who better to answer questions about the purpose of life than someone who has been living theirs for a long time?
After 14 months of living as a digital nomad, running my business completely remotely, and traveling the world, I’m moving to my hometown of Oklahoma City indefinitely. If I wanted to, I could live in Hong Kong, Bali, New York City, or Jamaica. So why am I choosing Oklahoma City? Allow me to explain.
I was a freelance developer for 7 years before taking my first full-time position with a company and never once had a dry pipeline. Here are a few bits of wisdom I collected over that time I thought I’d pass on to whomever it might help.
After making enormous mistakes myself, and learning from other people’s mistakes, I’ve learned 4 lessons that might help you next time you screw up.
If “gig” suggests the independence you get when you’re not tied down to a steady lifetime job, then just think of the freedom we’ll all enjoy when the traditional job is consigned to the scrap heap of history, and the economy is just gigs all the way down. But the idea of a gig is only alluring if you know you can hit the road when it gets joyless. Otherwise it’s just an old word for a job you need that you can’t count on having tomorrow.
Similar to how we share our salaries openly, we’re now happy to share the financial setup of a 6 Buffer teammates around the world, including how they’re set up as remote workers, how much they pay in taxes and where that money goes.
The economist John Maynard Keynes predicted a society so prosperous that people would hardly have to work. But that isn’t exactly how things have played out.
I’m an independent freelance consultant who often works remotely. A friend asked for some tips, I wrote the below based on a few years of growing my biz and keeping clients happy. Since many folks here, especially the freelancer crowd, are likely working remotely, I thought I’d share.
Americans work some of the longest hours in the Western world, and many struggle to achieve a healthy balance between work and life. As a result, there is an understandable tendency to assume that the problem we face is one of quantity: We simply do not have enough free time. “If I could just get a few more hours off work each week,” you might think, “I would be happier.” This may be true. But the situation, I believe, is more complicated than that.
Randy Pausch, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University, expected his students to pay attention to his lectures. But he would never expect that the rest of the world would listen to it too. As of today, more than 17 million people have tuned in Randy Pausch’s last lecture.
Whether the frequent flyer miles game seems to be historically rewarding, or in dire straits, depends on your perspective and time horizon. The game is different than it was 2 years ago, very different than it was 5 years ago, and orders of magnitude different than it was fifteen years ago.
It has been over half a year now since I went remote, and with the new year I feel it’s time for a little retrospective.
Increasingly, companies are demanding cult-like devotion. Do whatever it takes; sacrifice whatever you’ve got. It’s no longer enough to punch in, put in a solid day’s work, and go home. Now, you’re expected to be on Slack 24⁄7, use your social network to promote the company, recruit friends to the team, go to events in the evening, and use your personal equipment.
All of this would be fine if employees benefited from their sacrifice in the same way their bosses do. But they don’t.
And even though it’s just a simple (almost banal) three step technique, it has been critical in helping me to go from amateur to professional web developer in 5 months. So I’ve decided to write a little bit about it, in case other people will find it useful.
I was wondering how you guys deal with time zones when working remotely, specially software developers? Do you work 8-4 no matter where you are in the world or do you adjust to your employer’s time?
Human beings have been procrastinating for centuries. Even prolific artists like Victor Hugo are not immune to the distractions of daily life. The problem is so timeless, in fact, that ancient Greek philosophers like Socrates and Aristotle developed a word to describe this type of behavior: Akrasia.
Managing your money should be pretty straightforward, but that doesn’t make the task all that easy.
Living as a digital nomad has equipped Jon - aka the Van Man - with a host of useful skills and experience, not least of which is impressive packing skills. So we asked him to share his packing list for life on the road…
Yet instead of empowering them to thrive, this drive for success is eroding children’s health and undermining their potential. Modern education is actually making them sick.
I read a lot about remote work - either sourcing from Hacker News and other media. However, what I see in practice, at least in Benelux Area, is that companies are far more interest in on-site positions than remote positions. Why is it so? If the advantages of remote working are so clear - why companies still hire only on-site positions?
Choosing a slightly different route, such as becoming a location independent entrepreneur or digital nomad, will lead to far greater exposure to uncertainty as opposed to let’s say… that comfortable office job you just left.
I know in my life, going from being overwhelmed with clutter to minimalism was a slow but rewarding journey, and now I feel happy every time I look around and see the lovely space around me. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, I’m here to testify that it’s not impossible, and it just takes some small steps that add up over time. Here are the rules I suggest — though I don’t suggest adopting them all, and especially not all at once. Try a few out, see how they work for you, then try a few others.
Just as effective as adding something to our lives, if not more so, is subtracting the things that might be holding us back. In truth, oftentimes the path to becoming a better man is found in following the via negativa — the negative way.
What do you want from your career? Do you want to learn, grow, and advance? Do you want to make a huge impact to your company? After working for over 20 years in Silicon Valley, in everything from entry level to vice president roles, I learned a key to success is the concept of Work Yourself Out of Your Job.
In many ways we are a culture exceptionally filled with stress, distraction, anxiety, struggle and despair. But we don’t have to let the scale and severity of the challenges dictate how we live and feel about our lives. Because we all have a superpower.
How come more people are retiring in their early 20s? Why are middle-age men becoming stay-at-home dads? What’s keeping women out of the workforce other than illness, kids or school?
Practices such as working from home could do more harm than good, research finds, as many employees never ‘switch off’.
Doing what you love is going to be hard. That’s the bad news. Here’s the good news. There’s always a break, just around the corner. It always gets better. No matter how badly you’ve started to hate what you do, you can recover your passion for it. Sometimes it takes a sabbatical, or a lifestyle change or just a weekend off. Sometimes you have to really ask yourself what aspects of your project or career or business are contributing negatively to your life and find a way to shut ‘em down.
For all the changes that we observed over the past decade, much has also stayed the same. Twentysomethings are spending similar amounts of time on exercise, household maintenance, and education. And even in areas like sleep, where there has been a change, it’s not an amount that fundamentally changed this group’s life. For the areas that have seen large movement in time use, like travel, shopping and playing games, it seems like the main catalyst for that change has been the Internet.
Poor workplace design takes a physical toll: Sitting is making us miserable. Canadians, on average, spend 37 hours a week at work, and the more one sits, the higher his or her risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and death. Sitting has been branded the new smoking, but the average workplace facilitates sedentariness with long hours in front of a screen, and provides few reasons to get up and stretch one’s legs. The beige, grey or, worse, beige-grey boxed-in desks don’t do much to inspire. On top of this, working under fluorescent light lowers cortisol levels, which leads to increased stress and tiredness.
As children, we have vivid imaginations. We stay up late waiting for Santa Claus, dream of becoming President, and have ideas that defy physics. Then something happens. As we grow older, we start editing our imagination.
In choosing remote, you commit to a culture of autonomy and independence. You commit to a culture of problem solving and problem solvers. If you’re a high-growth company that needs to scale, my experience has been that this culture of problem solving can be quite an advantage.
There’s nothing wrong with loving what you do, of course — I just don’t think it’s a prerequisite for starting a business or building a fulfilling career, let alone doing great work. In fact, I think it’s disingenuous for really successful people to put so much of the focus on love, just as it’s disingenuous for really rich people to say money doesn’t matter.
When it comes to landing a good job, many people focus on the role. Although finding the right title, position and salary is important, there’s another consideration that matters just as much: culture. The culture of a workplace — an organization’s values, norms and practices — has a huge impact on our happiness and success.
I am trying to learn web development starting with a simple framework to become full stack developer. My intent is also to finish a side project and start a side income. However, every single idea I am coming up is already tried by someone else.
We’re now operating in a participation economy, where people are measured and paid for what they produce. Yet, when it comes to time off, we’re still clinging to the vestiges of the industrial economy, where people were paid for the time they spent on the job. This is a huge demotivator.
When I left my previous company in 2014, I started out as an independent developer building mobile and web sites and apps. I needed to find work. UpWork (formerly oDesk) was one of my first places to look.
If I ask you, “What do you want out of life?” and you say something like, “I want to be happy and have a great family and a job I like,” it’s so ubiquitous that it doesn’t even mean anything. A more interesting question, a question that perhaps you’ve never considered before, is what pain do you want in your life? What are you willing to struggle for? Because that seems to be a greater determinant of how our lives turn out.
I’ll admit that working in a cube farm can feel a little soul-crushing at times. The daily commute eats into my free time and the break room keeps running out of hot chocolate packets. But every time I have to work remotely for one reason or another, it’s not long before I get the itch to go back to the office. Why would I prefer my cubicle over the carefree, location-independent lifestyle, you ask? Let’s look at three common gripes about cubicle work and see how they compare to the supposed advantages of working from home.
When it comes to gaining control over bad habits, like eating food we know isn’t good for us, I shared with her the only thing that has worked for me. I call it “progressive extremism,” and it works particularly well in situations in which substituting one habit for another just won’t do.
Chose your travel wardrobe wisely, with versatile pieces and footwear based on weather and activities.
Kavi Guppta is a 27-year-old “nomadic journalist.” He writes for Forbes and other publications while traveling around the globe with his 27-year-old partner and fellow writer, Kristen Marano. Kavi and Kristen have been on the road for about nine months.
If you want an average successful life, it doesn’t take much planning. Just stay out of trouble, go to school, and apply for jobs you might like. But if you want something extraordinary, you have two paths:
- Become the best at one specific thing.
- Become very good (top 25%) at two or more things.
Or consider the ups and downs of everyday life. I said something inappropriate at a party last week, and I’m still a bit mortified. Yesterday, I gave a great talk; today is a real bad hair day. This year I worked hard on my introductory psychology class; last year, I phoned it in. Because such contrasts are so salient in our minds, we think others are sensitive to them as well; we think they notice. But research finds that they don’t, at least not to the extent we think they do.
I’ll risk it, though, and tell you again that there really aren’t shortcuts to health. Here’s what you need to do:
- Get enough sleep.
- Move your body throughout the day.
- Eat well — a healthy assortment of foods. Mostly plants, and not too much.
- Interact socially. Isolation is not good for the body, soul or mind.
- Take some time to reflect on what you are grateful for.
On the surface, Freelancer.com and Upwork look like they’re great places for quality contractors to make money. They also seem like they’re great places for businesses to save money and get the services that they need. Yet there are a lot of horror stories out there about these sites. In many cases, each party is having to accept “good enough” because of business necessity. While there are quality contractors on Freelancer and Upwork, a lot of that is attributed to the fact that they are the biggest players in the freelance market. While comparisons of Upwork vs Elance vs Freelancer vs Guru continue to grow as the online job market has skyrocketed, we’ll delve into a couple of problems of the current freelance model and potential solutions.
I’ve been working home for more than a year and a half now, and with this time I was able to learn and find ways to be as much productive as possible and avoid distractions.
During this time I went through different phases: from being excited about starting up my own business, to learning how to deal with clients, how to charge the right price, how to find new projects, etc. I also went through different levels of happiness. Generally I stayed on the happy side—but it wasn’t before many years of doing this that I realized about the perils of freelance web development/consulting, and that this job slowly made me more frustrated than happy, and most importantly that it had little by little been eating away my passion…
I said in my last post, “You will never figure out what’s right until you fix what you already know is inherently wrong.” So I’ve been doing that and simplifying the hell out of my life. That includes everything from relationships that weren’t good for me to bad habits like biting my nails. Recently I’ve even removed things like alcohol and sugar to help me keep this focus while I figure out what’s “right”. The key has just been to S L O W it all down. It’s so hard at first, but it’s gotten easier every day.
Not only are we going back to our roots as freelancers and entrepreneurs, but we are now a global race rather than merely local. Further, we are in an age of exponential change where innovation is exploding.
I’m interested as to how other nomads/perpetual travellers manage their financial lives on the road. How do you keep on top of your financial assets/situation whilst travelling and using multiple currencies? How frequently do you change your primary currency and how do you cope with that mentally (on the fly conversion etc)? Do you budget, or just roll with the punches?
“Everyone’s job becomes obsolete. Nothing lasts forever. You always have to learn new skills.”
In early 2015, we began asking nomads (confidentially) whether they were earning and saving enough compared with responsible financial planning norms back home. I wanted to figure out if this was a viable career lifestyle, a subsidized holiday, or a relatively high-risk financial and career gamble. The study attracted hundreds of responses, and it provides a rare glimpse at different types of nomads and their respective income levels.
In 2007, Steve Martin was on the Charlie Rose show to talk about his memoir Born Standing Up. He talked about his rise in comedy, and Rose asked him for his advice to aspiring performers. His response? “Nobody ever takes note of [my advice], because it’s not the answer they wanted to hear. What they want to hear is ‘Here’s how you get an agent, here’s how you write a script,’… but I always say, ‘Be so good they can’t ignore you.’
Let’s face it, hiring is tough. When you ask startup founders what their biggest challenge is, hiring is one of the most common answers you’ll hear. It’s hard enough when you have an office and can interview an applicant in-person. Automattic is 100% distributed. We hire people from all around the world. We can’t meet people in-person to interview them. You may be wondering… how do you consistently hire great people at a distributed company?
Only if you believed (in) it, it can become a lie (that affects you). If you don’t mind and let things pass (like you do with a lot of things in life because you can’t save everything and everyone from the sickness of this world) then the discussion / trend / hype of being a Digital Nomad will only be a side-topic or not a topic at all (like bad commercials).
Freelancing is becoming the accepted norm of the startup world. As more startups are starting to use the millions of freelancers, it’s driving more and more people to join the freelancer generation. Regardless if you’re a startup or enterprise, it’s in your best interest to pay attention to the freelance movement if you want to succeed in this new economy.
People underestimate timelines all the time. Studies have shown that students deliberately and systematically underestimate how long it will take them to complete assignments and academic projects, and that people regularly mail in their tax forms a week later than they expect to.
The daily habits and thought processes of your idols are certainly a contributing factor to the quality of their lives, but only because they have realised that those things work for them. Those things add something of value to their lives on an individual level. Those things are deeply personal, and they’re not something that can be copy-pasted into your own life with any guarantee of impact or effectiveness.
I am planning to go explore the earth after a finish my business school, and wanted to know what are some skills that i can learn that can help me support this life style? i was thinking about learning wordpress design and css3 to freelance on the go.
There’s a meme that’s been going around for a while now: you should join a startup because the money is better and the work is more technically interesting.
How you and the world have changed since you were born.
With just a laptop, a phone, and maybe a tablet, we work together to build a real culture, a thriving community, and, of course, great software.
The 2008 financial crisis taught me about the illusion of control, and how to give it up.
And all of this stuff you’re reading online on how awesome it is to be a digital nomad is basically a lie. It’s a lie to sell you a product. Or a lifestyle. Or a service. Or a coaching session. Or whatever. People are trying to sell you the dream. Or the lifestyle package. Or the freedom package. Or the whatever package. For just $99 a month.
The theory claims the secret to a creatively fulfilling career lies in understanding the operations of Helsinki’s main bus station.
It’s really easy to get off-course in life. Like airplanes, we constantly need to make course-corrections. But we can ensure we get where we want in life by organizing ourselves, planning for our future, tracking our progress, heightening our mindset, and hustling.
A year has now passed since I learned to code.
My goal was never to transition into a developer, but to acquire a skill-set that would enable me to understand code and actualise my ideas. It has been as much a process of demystifying technology — “How does that work? Is it difficult to build something like this? What technology do I need to do that?” — as learning how to learn.
Lately I’ve been getting a bunch of e-mails from people, asking about how to write and self-publish a best-selling book. I’ve now published several books over the last 10 months, all of which have reached #1 spot during their launches, and so I wanted to share what I’ve learnt as a result.
Years ago a guy decided he had some talent making cakes and wanted to start a business. But he had no clue how to start. So he went to his dad who is already a successful entrepreneur and PhD in Economics and asked him how to get started. His Dad’s reply? “If you want to have a cake business, you need to sell cake.”
Recently, I wrote an email to our team that posed a simple challenge in time management. The response was unexpected, and I was urged to share it with more people, so here we are.
I’ve been reading a lot of posts here but a topic I can’t seem to find a lot of information on is maintaining a home base in your country of origin. For example: rent an apartment, rent it out while you’re away to a fellow nomad/student/Airbnb/… so you always have a place to go back to when you feel weary of travelling. What’s your take on this? Do you have such a place or not? Is it emotionally or practically necessary? Isn’t it too much of a hassle and financial burden?
Years ago, my colleagues and I conducted a fairly large-scale research project. We interviewed a bunch of high-income professionals who provided professional services. This group included doctors, dentists and lawyers, and like most of us, they earned money only when they were working. In essence, they traded their time for dollars.
Our finding was this: Homes and retirements accounts aside, the most valuable asset they owned was the person staring back at them in the mirror each morning. Chances are, the most valuable investment you own is the investment called you.
Everyone’s been rejected - these are our stories.
There is no point in waiting for the perfect moment. There is no such thing as a perfect moment.
“The greatest obstacle to living is expectancy, which hangs upon tomorrow and loses today… The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.”
The data show that independent contractors won’t become a major share of workers anytime soon. And while the number of contractors may have increased in recent years, sharing economy companies aren’t the likely cause. If we want to understand this trend, perhaps we should change the focus of our investigations.
The sheer willingness to hand over so much of a 24 hour day, almost all the waking hours of your life, to your profession, and to pour your existence down the compassionless siphon of professional development, is a remarkable thing.
My mother taught me never to give unsolicited advice, nor try to help anyone unless they ask you for it. I always thought that maybe she was just cold. As I get older, I have started to realize that she was right. My mother is one of the kindest people in my life.
Meanwhile, for workers of all generations, working is now more than ever considered an “experience,” rather than merely the source of a paycheck.
Readers frequently ask what strolling across continents is really like — as if they’re secretly hoping to hear that plodding from horizon to horizon (I’ve clocked about 5,000 miles so far) is mind-numbingly dull. As if commuting by car or subway to a desk job wasn’t boring. As if gorging on the ersatz stimuli gushing from our hand-held devices wasn’t ultimately, at the end of each digitally bloated day, somehow tedious. From the global walking trail, my answer is an astonished, “No.”
Nearly 100 years after our modern idea of home was invented, we started a company that aims to create something better. Because seemingly exotic lifestyle choices available to a few should be accessible to many. It should be easy for you to live a life that’s more communal. Global. And interesting. While we’ll address reliable housing for nomads first, the bigger story is outlined below.
For champions of this lifestyle, near-constant traveling is a way to stay fresh in an industry that often requires workers to spend 12 hours a day parked in front of a laptop.
Setting aside my secret hope that technological advances will let me live to 700, I see three takeaways here:
Living in the same place as the people you love matters. I probably have 10X the time left with the people who live in my city as I do with the people who live somewhere else.
Priorities matter. Your remaining face time with any person depends largely on where that person falls on your list of life priorities. Make sure this list is set by you—not by unconscious inertia.
Quality time matters. If you’re in your last 10% of time with someone you love, keep that fact in the front of your mind when you’re with them and treat that time as what it actually is: precious.
This reminds me that one of the under-rated skills in life is the ability to know one’s skill.
I traded a typical night-owl schedule—up ’til midnight or later, staring at a screen, writing, doing design work, coding—for an uncommon routine where I go to sleep early, wake up early, and get a lot of work done in those quiet morning hours. Here are the lessons I’d share with anyone who wants to wake up early.
Housing can be a lot more difficult than just choosing a place and moving in. Sometimes, when the situation calls for it, creativity and innovation come in handy. Here are five stories of people that have disregarded the “traditional” way of living and found their place on their own terms.
A new breed of cash-rich, entrepreneurial mavericks is taking the dream and traveling with it. But they also pay a price
Imagine travelling the world while keeping your salary – that’s the premise behind the Remote Year project.
“We live in a society which sees high self-esteem as a proof of well-being, but we do not want to be intimate with this admirable and desirable person.”
The truth about freelancing is that getting hired as a freelancer has exactly nothing to do with your abilities as a freelancer.
“Don’t commit to one idea of the future but instead, commit to a problem that you want to solve. Then you can stay committed to the problem and continually try to find the ongoing and ever-changing answer to that problem.”
When people think of work-from-home jobs, they often think back to the countless sketchy get-rich-quick (no real effort necessary!) scams out there on the internet. While there are still plenty of questionable job listings floating around, full-time remote work has become a legitimate, very real option.
Next time you encounter something truly breath-taking, stop yourself from grabbing the closest image-capturing-machine. Instead go through all of your senses — one by one.
If you are not there yet (at a beach, that is), this article is for you. It explains how you can also achieve the luxury of working while traveling the world in four easy steps, as a freelancer or as a part of a team, maintaining the same level of communication and productivity.
With the proliferation of digital job platforms, the social safety net for workers in the US – threadbare to begin with – is at risk of unraveling for a growing share of the workforce. This is because most individuals who find work through digital job platforms operate as independent contractors, leaving them without the benefits and protections provided in standard employment contracts for full-time and part-time workers.
A vision of remote work from before the personal computer.
But what I am questioning—for all remote employees—is what comes beyond the physical act of remote working. In other words, understanding and grappling with why we’re remote working in the first place, and how employees will remain satisfied in the long run.
On a two-week assignment to the up-and-coming Vietnamese town of Da Nang, amid sunshine, sand, waves, and the Vietnamese people, I’ll be working from my laptop alongside a ragtag group of roaming geeks that calls itself Hacker Paradise. They’re hopping around Southeast Asia, changing the way remote workers live, and Toptal wants a man on the ground to see what they’re up to.
For 5000 years or longer, humanity has driven forward with story-telling. Too many people forget that but the only way to really communicate effectively is through story… Too often we apply for grants. Or we apply to a company. Or we apply to the government. And then we wait. And we wait. And we want that one special person to choose us.
The problem is that I wasn’t surrounded by the right sort of people. To be able to keep my location independent lifestyle – without going nuts – I have to find like-minded individuals. I need people to work with while I’m in a new city, that understand my lifestyle and can help me evolve in my career; with the added bonus of grabbing a drink after work hours.
The most common* job in each state 1978-2014.
Stories are one of the most powerful forces of persuasion available to us, especially stories that fit in with our view of what the world should be like. Facts can be contested. Stories are far trickier. I can dismiss someone’s logic, but dismissing how I feel is harder.
Too many companies bet on having a cut-throat, high-pressure, take-no-prisoners culture to drive their financial success. But a large and growing body of research on positive organizational psychology demonstrates that not only is a cut-throat environment harmful to productivity over time, but that a positive environment will lead to dramatic benefits for employers, employees, and the bottom line.
I ask this at 37 years old, because I wish I would have asked myself this when I was in my 20’s. I can see now that I didn’t have any real plan and it has led me to a pretty bad place.
Digital nomadness — life as a cartoonist at sea.
Whether he’s climbing in the Himalayas or blogging in LA, Chris Brinlee Jr. is an adventurer and storyteller who can’t stay put for more than a few weeks at a time.
I entered the industry in the way many do: with a sense of complete personal abandon and lack of direction. No one enters out of high school, because they can’t, so everyone goes in because something else didn’t work out. Layoffs, breakups, and prison stints are popular notes of inspiration. I graduated journalism school tens of thousands in debt, and I needed fast cash with minimum expenditures. Craigslist, I noticed, was overrun with trucking companies making desperate pleas. So I spent three grand, earned a commercial driver’s license at a community college, and applied to nine trucking jobs.
I’ve been living in Chiang Mai a while now, so thought I would use this post to log my experiences, what I’ve learned about the area and reflect on the decisions that I’ve made whilst living here. I hope it is useful to you and many others when planning your trip or making a decision about coming to Chiang Mai.
A new study of hundreds of thousands of women finds no difference in mortality between the happy and the unhappy.
Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.
Yesterday, as a kind of cybersecurity practicum, and in a perhaps-shocking failure of digital patriotism, I applied to become an Estonian e-Resident. I plan to blog the process as a way of exploring the values and pitfalls of Estonia’s program.
From rock art in the outback to the perfect beach in Portugal.
Like a blank page, the sight of an empty suitcase can fill a person with dread. No matter how many times we face the task of packing for a trip, it can still be angst-producing, time-consuming, and inefficient. But done correctly, it makes all the difference.
So, digital nomads, where are you living at the moment?
Our increasing reliance on digital solutions has reduced much need for human interaction. We say (or write) stuff like, “we don’t need to meet, just email me,” “just click here to submit this form,” etc. We do this so much, that we can go through a whole work day without really interacting with anyone. This can be great if we’re pursuing heightened focus and productivity. But over time, we begin to feel lonely, we long to connect with people.
For me my time at McDonalds was invaluable. Yeah, I never want to scoop fries or make burgers again, but I learnt something more important. I started to chip away at my arrogance. I challenged the ways I dehumanized people for their job. I stopped equating dislike for big shitty companies with dislike for their foot soldiers. I developed more empathy.
Amy works as Quality Engineer for GitHub (you may have heard of them!). This year she’s worked remotely from San Francisco, Thailand, Hawaii, The Netherlands, UAE, and Morocco as well as taking in quick stops at Ecuador, Taiwan & Denmark. She has a tonne of great advice and I really love her honesty and openness.
Robert Young Pelton has journeyed to more dangerous places than any man on the planet. A former marketing exec, turned adventurer, inventor, journalist and author of the New York Times best selling books, The World’s Most Dangerous Places; Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War on Terror and Come Back Alive, he’s covered 14 wars and visited 130 countries, by last count. An intrepid traveler and gnarly human being by anyone’s measure, RYP’s wealth of experience in life, travel and survival is unmatched. So, we asked the great man to be our next subject in this month’s Specialist Carry…
In the ‘gig’ or ‘sharing’ economy, say the experts, we will do lots of different jobs as technology releases us from the nine to five. But it may also bring anxiety, insecurity and low wages.
A cool thing about moving to another country is that your life gets longer. Last year I calculated, that I should move to Colombia, and since then I’ve lived about two months more than I would have otherwise. I know you think I’m bullshitting you, but hear me out!
Never mind the headlines. We’ve never lived in such peaceful times.
To have a long-lasting freelance career that you’re happy with, you’ve got to pay attention – not just to the work you’re doing, but also to how you’re doing business.
After plenty of field testing and 40 countries later, I’ve managed to refine and squeeze my gear to a point where I don’t even need a backpack anymore. I call this No Bags Travel. If I do carry a laptop for work, I only use a tiny bag. But regardless, I am always as mobile as a bird.
We’ve gathered the most powerful productivity methods and frameworks all in one convenient place. This post will give you a brief overview of the most popular and useful productivity methods, how each works, and what kind of person will find each useful. It’s designed to help you get set up with your ideal workflow as quickly as possible so you can start reaping the productivity benefits right away.
What do you do during your commute by public transport to keep yourself busy or the commute pleasant? Do you use any specific mobile phone apps? Preparing reading material for later reading?
For anyone looking to take a job at a startup, or anyone working on salaries at a startup, we hope this new formula and calculator might cut down the time you spend on thinking about salaries by many hours.
Remote jobs can be good for you, but depending on your character, they can also have some unpleasant side-effects. This is what I intend to discuss today: stress, burnout, anxiety, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and more: the dark side of remote working.
I asked some of my digital nomad friends to share their packing tips below. Dig into these great insights on packing light and hopefully it’ll take some of the stress out of your next trip.
Here’s an alternative: instead of thinking about your day as one long to-do list or trying on different time-management exercises for size, take a closer look at the science of how your brain functions throughout the day and try to match the right tasks to the right mindset to help maximize productivity.
This is what he told me.
I am a developer and I have a 40 hr/week job. It is a very good job and I put a lot of effort in it. But I have also my own ideas that I would love to develop, but I am struggling to organize time and material to develop something for me. I read a lot and have a lot of ideas, about little porjects to test new technologies or new patterns, but never find the time. I would love to learn the experience and techniques used by someone who have been able do to something like this.
Know your rights and you can actually make money from holiday travel chaos.
This is a really powerful thread, I hope more people contribute. Number one is lonliness/permanent love/long-distance relationships. Would be lovely to have somebody to travel/live/love with. Getting into the ‘zone’. I need a place where I can binge-hack, rather than doing 1-hr stints at random coffeeshops with shitty wifi. Fitness. This is probably easy if you’re a runner, harder if you want to do weight training. Contact lenses. Creeping alcoholism.
Exasperated Americans have dedicated entire blogs to a whole array of airport gripes, cataloguing everything from crowded terminals and immigration halls to inefficient transport links and endless security checks.
Freelancing full-time can be a scary concept to think about. It’s a risk to leave your stable job with benefits to become responsible for your own time, invoices, deadlines and paychecks. We get it, just the sheer thought can be overwhelming.
We depart cubicle nation to become our own boss… but what we don’t realize is that we’re now our own employee, too. And wow, does our boss suck sometimes.
Research suggests saying thanks regularly can benefit your health.
We all see “success stories” featured on internet blogs (basically every website with the “tech” prefix) and some trends tend to distort how we perceive how people arrived at where they are. I want to know — How did you get your current job or startup? Did you go to college? Dropout? If your did go to college, have you ever failed a course? Did you have to move to a different country? How did you manage that and what was (in general) the biggest obstacle/low-point of your journey so far?
Imagine a life where we could enjoy simple, free pleasures like going for a walk in nature, meditating, reading a book, writing. By buying less we’d have less debt, less clutter, less to take care of. We’d need smaller houses, less storage. Perhaps we could even work less to support all this buying, unless the work were something we loved to do.
You’re almost always getting the better end of the deal when you pay $25 for baggage on a domestic flight. When it comes to international flights, your free checked bag is an absolute steal. We’ll take you through their economics in this post.
Working from home can be an amazingly fulfilling career experience. Likewise, a trip to your local Chinese food buffet can be a culinary delight. But both can also be abjectly horrible. Here is my breakdown on how to succeed at working remotely without the debilitating pains of post-dumpling bloat.
So this may sound obvious but what I’ve learned is that what I was considering concrete wasn’t really anything. “We’ll check on our end”, “We’ll get back to you”, “I believe we can make this work” are all just manners. Concrete is knowing what are the following steps on the other end before we can consider this deal closed.
What is your job? Do you like it? What was your favorite job?
Tomorrow morning, I’ll board a flight from LAX to JFK with a wardrobe woefully ill-equipped, in both style and thermal insulation, for New York City, and this will mark the end of 2 years working with, and later leading, a startup engineering team from the comfort of my home. I want to share my thoughts on this experience. As always, your mileage may vary.
It costs $300 to move a 40-foot container from Rotterdam to Shanghai, which is barely enough to cover the cost of fuel, handling, and Suez Canal fees. Here’s some more context. Let’s say that you want to travel for a year; it’s cheaper to put your personal belongings in a shipping container as it sails around the world than to keep it at a local mini-storage facility.
Safety Concerns, Visas, and Getting Connected in the Land of Aztecs, Coca-Cola, and Mezcal.
Traveling long-term for the last three years has changed me in many ways. When I take a minute and reflect on who I was before I started traveling, I can only see faint glimmers of that person. As I have wandered the world, experienced other cultures, and tested my limits I have become an independent, free, and well-rounded person.
Here’s a look at some of these innovative structures, and how they solve some of the biggest problems home-based businesses face.
Being a digital nomad is exciting, and in my case it all started with the itch of wanderlust. Unlike so many 20-somethings (see: Quarterlife crisis), I had not hit the panic-induced state where I question everything I’m doing. However, I was worried that if I ever did I wouldn’t be able to escape it.
Always have savings. It really, really sucks to run out of money… A smile goes a loooooooong way, friend.
Once you’ve taken care of the basics, there’s very little in this world for which your life is worth deferring. You’ve likely already found or at least seen the very best things (whether you know it or not). Make them count.
Like a carefully placed billboard aimed at covering the slums behind it, my online presence had become a shiny advertisement for a life that looked like a dream, but in reality was speckled with stress and anxiety.
Our vision is to make moving so easy and information about life quality so transparent that we would end up with a world where countries and cities compete for each citizen (not vice versa).
When it comes to packing light and efficiently, flight attendants know best—here are 11 of their best tips and tricks.
If you can work 40 hours per week at home and still go to bars, movies, and go out on day trips on weekends, then you can do the same in another country.
Work-life balance doesn’t exist in a world where sippy cups, Algebra lessons, Swedish massage class, yoga, conference calls, editorial deadlines and living in a third language all co-habitate in the same mental space. It just doesn’t. And, it’s asinine to pretend that it does.
Nikolas Langes thought he knew every trick in the book for saving money on airline tickets. After all, he’s the founder of an online start-up called Tripdelta, which specializes in finding inexpensive fares. Turns out he didn’t. One day, he noticed a discrepancy between fares based on the currency used to pay. And then another.
In many ways, remote work is an ongoing experiment in business, as it has only been fully embraced by some companies in the past decade or so, showing healthy growth with an 80% increase in “telecommunicating” employees from 2005 to 2012. But what does it take to manage a successful remote team?
This was posted in Slack a few days ago: “Any of the remote folks here have any resources on [building an ideal desk/office // stepping up the communication & collaboration game // building life structure] around remote work?” I’m coming up on 2 years at Chargify (and therefore 2 years of full-time remote work), which puts me in a good position to share my experiences as they relate to the above questions.
Tomorrow’s most successful companies will emerge from co-working spaces like Moorgate’s WeWork, where people can collaborate, brainstorm and scale quickly, says Monty Munford.
The problem in the world today is that we only see the final product - the amazing movie, the super-efficient vacuum cleaner, the vogue theory. What we don’t see is the deeper story of how these innovations emerge. The tales we tell about creativity overlook this, too. We think of Archimedes shouting “eureka” or Newton being hit on the head by the apple and instantaneously inventing the theory of gravity. But these stories are pure fiction. They get the direction of creativity the wrong way around.
Most of the world’s goods travel around the world on the same routes traced by ships for centuries. Harvard historian Maya Jasanoff is making this journey aboard the 1,100-foot cargo ship “Christophe Colomb.” Follow her trip in photos and dispatches as she sails from Hong Kong to Southampton, England.
I have a friend who is unhappy with his life — being in debt, lonely, with a job he doesn’t like, in a town he doesn’t like.
To find out what people actually consider rude, we ran a SurveyMonkey Audience poll Aug. 29 and 30, and asked air passengers what’s cool and what isn’t. We had 1,040 respondents, 874 of whom had flown.
There are obvious reasons for feeling isolated as a remote: missing out on hallway conversations, not being able to get lunch with your co-workers or go for a walk with a trusted confidante to talk out a hard problem, not being able to grab a whiteboard to brainstorm an idea, not eating the delicious pastries in the kitchen, and on and on. But I wonder if part of the isolation, too, comes from the sense of being isolated not only from your co-workers but from the world at large.
Tip: The Hacker News thread on this article has a good discussion on working remotely.
There are two things in this world that take no skill: 1. Spending other people’s money and 2. Dismissing an idea. Dismissing an idea is so easy because it doesn’t involve any work. You can scoff at it. You can ignore it. You can puff some smoke at it. That’s easy. The hard thing to do is protect it, think about it, let it marinate, explore it, riff on it, and try it. The right idea could start out life as the wrong idea.
So I always ask the question: What would you like to do if money were no object? How would you really enjoy spending your life? Well it’s so amazing as the result of our kind of educational system, crowds of students say ‘Well, we’d like to be painters, we’d like to be poets, we’d like to be writers’ But as everybody knows you can’t earn any money that way! Another person says ‘Well I’d like to live an out-of-door’s life and ride horses.’ I said ‘You wanna teach in a riding school?’
Prior to the integration of in-flight Wi-Fi, most airline passengers passed their time at 30,000 feet completely disconnected from the world below them — but these days, that’s a highly uncommon occurrence. For instance, while writing this article on a short-haul United flight with broken Wi-Fi, I realized that I couldn’t remember the last time I’d been rendered email-less for even a couple of hours. Since this service has become so important in our lives — everywhere we go — I’d like to offer a closer look at in-flight Wi-Fi and how it actually works.
Picture this: Working full-time with benefits from your home or local park or favorite mountaintop. Sounds like nirvana to anyone who slogs through grinding daily commutes, finds getting work done at the office difficult, or just needs more flexibility to take care of family needs. So-called remote working, however, has become a reality for many people.
My partner and I sold almost everything we owned and left the UK in March 2010 to travel permanently. We fund our travels through web design, iOS app development and our travel blog Never Ending Voyage. So far we’ve travelled to South and North America, Asia, Europe and we’re currently in Mexico. We have no plans to stop. We’ll be around for the next hour to answer any questions you might have about our travels or being a digital nomad.
What do you all do to prevent loneliness if you are a digital nomad on your own? Do you go to meet-ups and such? I would really like to hear what others do.
I’ve been on a handful of long trips this year and in recent years, and on all those trips, I lived out of a small bag. I loved living so lightly, but every time I came home, it felt weird: all of a sudden I had about 10x more stuff. It didn’t feel in alignment with the light, minimal lifestyle. So after a 25-day trip to Asia last month, I came home with a mission: to live only out of the same bag I traveled with.
How did the greatest entrepreneurs start out? What were their biggest successes? What failures did they have to overcome along the way? We’ve charted the careers of 33 inspirational company founders, from the man behind Heinz beans to the woman behind Ultimo bras, to show that there’s more than one path to success.
People complain about checking their inboxes when they’re out of the office, but some of them kind of enjoy it too.
I wrote the above list because I genuinely wanted to see if the experiences I’ve been through have been sufficiently fulfilling, if the decisions I’ve made over the years have been worth it overall. Travel itself does not equal automatic happiness. It’s what those experiences mean to each of us, how they match with what we hoped to gain from life.
Do the work first. Create the following and the audience first. Prove your value first. Demonstrate your understanding of an industry first. Do all that then and only then maybe will a company have the confidence in you to provide the freedom and creative latitude for you to do what you want that will ultimately benefit them and their bottom line. It took me 14 years to understand this.
If you feel like more people these days work for themselves than ever than you are right. More and more people are becoming freelancers or going down the bootstrapped startup founder route, but what are their options for a space to work from? Many people are either working from home, heading to their nearest laptop friendly cafe or going to coworking spaces. The seemingly endless options are looking good for those going it alone.
For those who follow this sub [Digital Nomads], but haven’t actually made the leap yet, I’m curious – what is the obstacle stopping you from becoming a digital nomad?
You see, I turned 40 this week and am determined to create location independent income streams and time freedom, rather than living a half asleep existence in a bubble of false security… I’m not running away, I’m running towards what I want. It’s not escapism, it’s deliberate actions towards a set of predefined goals with a solid plan.
When you live in your home country, you have traditional health insurance. When you travel abroad for a few weeks or a few months, you get travel insurance. If you move to another country, you get health insurance in that country. But what if you’re a digital nomad, and you can’t commit to being in any one country for very long at all?
Post-materialism is described by philosophers, socialists and others as a “the transformation of individual values from materialist, physical and economic to new individual values of autonomy and self-expression.” (Wikipedia). This is very much in line with digital nomads, who define their own living and skip the normal way of having a career and living, focusing on experiences instead of old school materialism.
Constantly traveling the world for conferences and in the last 6 months especially have started gaining way too much weight. If you travel a lot - say 1 new city every week or two - how are you staying in shape? Assume no kitchen in these hotel rooms.
Successful remote work is based on three core principles: communication, coordination, and culture. Broadly speaking, communication is the ability to exchange information, coordination is the ability to work toward a common goal, and culture is a shared set of customs that foster trust and engagement. In order for remote work to be successful, companies (and teams within them) must create clear processes that support each of these principles.
By shrinking the world, the tyranny of the web has stifled our capacity for independent discovery, catering to an appetite for foreknowledge that inevitably demystifies foreign places. Instead of taking time to absorb and consider, many people seem more inclined to travel quickly, tick off the ‘don’t miss’ highlights and form broad-brush assumptions based on the bare minimum of immersion. Yet the axiom that all ‘travel’ (as opposed to tourism) is by definition enriching and transformative persists. Except it’s not. Not always.
There’s plenty of information available on why distributed teams and working-from-home, is better for the mental and physical health of the individual humans. Even on why reduced commuting is good for the environment. By contrast, there is relatively little about why distributed teams are also better for the organization. Thankfully, this is changing.
This on-demand economy has major implications for workers, who now bear full responsibility for things once handled by an employer: income tax withholding, health insurance, vacation/sick leave and retirement. In addition, the independent status of workers raises the question of liability — a topic that is currently playing out on central stage with ride-sharing drivers.
This article is personal, since it relates to specific rules I follow while living my digital nomad life. In a way, those rules are the pillars of my own nomadic “religion” and allow me to put some order in what at first glance seems like an uncertain and unbalanced lifestyle. Most of the rules here will not be relevant to you, since sadly or fortunately, you and I are different. This is simply a digital nomad case study based on the years I spent on the road.
We’re kind of in the surly teenager phase of remote work right now. A lot of companies are using tools like Slack, Hangouts, and GitLab, so our technical chops are heading in the right direction… but our processes and workflows still have a long way towards maturity. Just because you happen to use chat rooms doesn’t mean you’ve suddenly become a glorious haven for remote workers, dammit.
This is a talk about what happens when a culture is driven by the need for money to make more money.
Daydreaming has a bad reputation, but neuroscientists are beginning to realise that a wandering mind is not only typical – it might be beneficial.
Is a nation’s prosperity defined solely by its GDP? Prosperity is more than just the accumulation of material wealth, it is also the joy of everyday life and the prospect of an even better life in the future. This is true for individuals as well as nations. The Prosperity Index is the only global measurement of prosperity based on both income and wellbeing. It is the most comprehensive tool of its kind and is the definitive measure of global progress.
It wasn’t overly surprising, really, to learn from two recent psychology studies that being “on call” is stressful, exhausting and dampens your mood. The tribulations of sleep-deprived junior doctors are legendary, while zero-hours contracts and unpredictable work schedules are subjects of controversy on both sides of the Atlantic. But there are plenty of things wrong with those kinds of jobs: the sleep disruption of shift work; the family disruption of irregular hours; low pay.
The workplace of the future is quickly changing and those that are the most successful will not only find new creative ways to work but also meaningful work in environments that allow easy collaboration with like-minded people. Working from a coworking space as a freelancer or entrepreneur is not for everyone and requires a certain kind of personality, comfort with uncertainly and a healthy growth-mindset.
A team of social scientists recently set out to review the research on telecommuting, in hopes of finding out once and for all whether it’s a net positive for workers and their employers. The resulting study, published last week in the journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest, boldly declares: It depends.
Free movement is a central notion of the European community, and the Internet provides the capability for individuals to live a locationless existence, running their businesses and providing services from wherever they happen to be. However, whilst cyberspace may be without borders, the laws of physical countries still apply; and, for digital nomads, determining which laws apply, and which courts have jurisdiction, is no easy task.
The benefits of remote work are obvious—and, to many employers, growing: time saved on commutes, flexibility for employees, larger applicant pools for hiring, etc. It appears to be a no-brainer. But appearances can be deceiving, and in many cases, the widespread acceptance of remote work has actually caused more harm than good.
In the last decade, most of the big U.S. airlines have shifted major maintenance work to places like El Salvador, Mexico, and China, where few mechanics are F.A.A. certified and inspections have no teeth.
I will be in Thailand this February. This is my first “long-term” travel (three months)… Here’s a super simple breakdown of my budget.
The paradox of the American Dream: The best cities to get ahead are often the most expensive places to live, and the most affordable places to live can be the worst cities to get ahead.
I always have this problem of feeling inadequate. I’m a junior CS student at a decent but not great school. Some of my friends go to Stanford or UT Austin and have already interned with multiple top companies, while I haven’t accomplished anything of significance… I’m really impatient to achieve big things. It’s like I need to in order to justify my existence. How do I transition to a healthier state of mind and stop feeling worthless?
In a new model of living, residents will have their own “microunits” built around a shared living space for cooking, eating and hanging out.
Part of the problem seems to be that nobody these days is content to merely put their dent in the universe. No, they have to fucking own the universe. It’s not enough to be in the market, they have to dominate it. It’s not enough to serve customers, they have to capture them.
I haven’t been much of anywhere in my lifetime and don’t have much experience with travel. I’m looking for something short and sweet for my first destination, around three months. Although I can’t decide where to go, I have a few places in mind but I’d love to hear more suggestions.
Why do you go to work? Chances are it’s got something to do with money. But as most of us know, it’s more complicated than that. “There is a spectrum of reasons why people do their jobs,” write Neel Doshi and Lindsay McGregor in Primed to Perform: How to Build the Highest Performing Cultures Through the Science of Total Motivation. “Understanding that spectrum is the key to creating the highest levels of performance.”
This makes no sense. I came thisclose to booking my ticket to S. America, but fear got the best of me. I cannot explain it… Perhaps it’s the idea of going there as a DN as opposed to a tourist or backpacker. Maybe I don’t like the idea of taking my laptop and other equipment to S. America. Maybe I’ve read too many horror stories in travel forums about people getting mugged or having their possessions stolen. At least those are the stories you always seem to remember even though they’re just a tiny fraction. Anyone else go through moments like this?
The first thing you give up as a Digital Nomad is your big comfy chair, second monitor and many of the other comforts you’re used to. But that doesn’t mean your mobile work environment has to be inferior. Here’s my list of hardware and software – built up over the last three years – to stay productive on the road.
In travel photography, as in writing, there’s no shortcut to finding your own voice.
The data are the latest to show that while family structure seems to have permanently changed, public policy, workplace structure and mores have not seemed to adjust to a norm in which both parents work.
During that time I’ve lived in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. I’ve been robbed, stranded, and, worst of all, disconnected from Internet connectivity and reliable electricity. While living this lifestyle, I’ve learned a lot about being a digital nomad—mostly the hard way—and gained insights useful for anyone who can work with mobile technology or who travels abroad for any length of time. So I thought I would share my hard-won knowledge with you.
Seven years ago today I boarded a flight that forever changed the direction of my life. The flight would take me from Los Angeles, my home for the previous two years, to Sydney, Australia. Sydney was my first stop on a largely unplanned year of traveling back home from Australia by way of Asia and Europe. I was scared.
What I want to focus on here is the “very nice home” aspect of living like a foreign ambassador — and how you can do that too, even if you have a modest income. The secret to making this happen is found in one word: geoarbitrage. And it’s far more interesting than it sounds…
So this isn’t an article telling you why you should go remote, why remote is the most awesome thing since avocado on toast, or even to convince you to quit your job right now. Instead, this is a manifest of my own, confessing the highlights and the struggles I’ve had to deal with while working remotely and how I overcame some of them.
If the thought of remote work conjures up images of pajama-clad parents with piles of pizza boxes in the background, it’s time to think again. Studies continue to show that the typical telecommuter is highly experienced and exceptionally engaged—and often more productive than the average in-office employee.
When freelancers talk to prospective clients, they’re sometimes so eager to land the assignment that they skip a crucial step: making sure the client is actually someone they want to work with.
How many of you have passive income? I guess in the truest sense of the definition, passive income is 100% passive, requiring no work once established. I’m curious to hear about such cases as well semi-passive cases in which only a few hours of updating or maintenance is required each month.
A new study by researchers at Harvard and Stanford has quantified just how much a stressful workplace may be shaving off of Americans’ life spans. It suggests that the amount of life lost to stress varies significantly for people of different races, educational levels and genders, and ranges up to nearly three years of life lost for some groups.
June 12, 2015, was my last day as a programmer for a Bay Area tech company. I gave them four years of my life, making their website faster and making fellow developers’ jobs easier. I left knowing I don’t want to get another job in tech. I don’t want another job at all.
The term “storytelling” might be trendy these days, and there are many medium posts on the topic to prove it. But the present relevance of storytelling as a buzzword does not change the fact that it remains one of the most compelling ways to reach people and hook them. We are deeply programmed to explain ourselves through narrative, from the cave drawings of the past, to oral histories, to today’s movies, television programmes, books, and blogs.
Washington and Oregon challenged me in many ways, but never in my gear choices, so now as I’m planning for the next adventure it’s time to share with y’all what I brought and how it did.
Working longer hours leads to poorer productivity. If you’re trying to impress people and move up the ranks, the solution isn’t to work longer, but to work smarter. Learn to manage your time, to limit the endless spiral of emails and meetings, and to improve your efficiency.
Has anyone ever transitioned from the enterprise world into contracting successfully? Is it possible to do it over a period of time? (keep current job and moonlight freelance gigs). What did you do to get your initial clients?
The later Nobel laureate James Buchanan used to advise his graduate students: “keep your ass in the chair”. Woody Allen claimed that “80% of success is showing up.” And Gary Player used to say: “The harder you work, the luckier you get.” Some recent experiments show they are right.
Remote work culture is changing the way people live, work and travel the world. Today I am talking with some experts on remote work, traveling and digital nomad lifestyle.
If an American lives in one country (e.g. Spain) while working for an American startup and being paid in US dollars, should he pay taxes in the US or Spain, or both? In Europe the national health care systems are tied to paying taxes in a country. How are nomads dealing with health insurance? I’d really love to be completely above board w/r/t taxes and have health insurance, but all the advice I find online either sounds made-up or is “consult with your accountant”. If I had an accountant I wouldn’t be searching for this info!
In April of 1958, Hunter S. Thompson was 22 years old when he wrote this letter to his friend Hume Logan in response to a request for life advice. Thompson’s letter, found in Letters of Note, offers some of the most thoughtful and profound advice I’ve ever come across.
A previously secret document titled “Simple Sabotage Field Manual: Strategic Services” details the various ways that spies should work to bring down companies that they are placed in. But the sabotage techniques sound very similar to those encountered in many offices today.
We still haven’t realized of something extraordinary that is happening. A few months ago, I freed myself from society, I’ve released myself from attachments I had and fear that locked me to the system. And since then, I started seeing the world from a different perspective. The perspective that everything is changing and most of us have not even realized that. Why is the world changing? In this post I’ll list the reasons that take me to believe this.
“Welcome to the chaos.” Those are the opening words of the Field Guide that greets employees new to life at Automattic. To the outsider, it would appear like a fitting statement. The 10 year old company behind WordPress.com, Akismet, Jetpack and VaultPress, has a 100% distributed workforce of almost 400 people scattered across 37 countries, where all communication happens online, across different platforms, rapidly, often in acronyms, and entirely in public. There’s no email, no office, no set work hours, no vacation policy, and seemingly little in the way of structure.
I managed to work and travel around the world for 3+ years with these 22 basic but essential things in my backpack. I hope the list will help you once you make the bold decision to set off on the road and make the world your office.
Almost every day I receive job offers on my 5 star odesk (upwork) profile. I do not search anything manually, clients contacting me directly. But most of these job offers are really garbage.
Good discussion about the article on Hacker News.
I’m unsure about a lot of things. I am unsure if I am a full time traveler. Or a nomad. Or an expat. I abhor labels. But words are labels and we have to use words to communicate (I haven’t quite mastered the telepathy thing yet). I do know that I’ve learned a lot. And many of these lessons are applicable to life in general (not just travel).
“Beyond Remote” focuses on moving past the tools and processes that make things like communication and collaboration possible for remote teams and instead tries to look at the deeper underlying issues and motivations that have implications for those surface level topics. Why do I work? Who is the person I want to become? What makes me do good work and have clear communications? The questions that Beyond Remote asks are guided by an understanding of what should happen when you work remotely.
I share the major changes I made to my client communication and project management that made my epic travels possible. I then dive into the mechanics of actually going away and keeping your freelance business or agency running…
The ability to turn in your work from the comfort of your couch might sound like a dream — and increasingly so, this dream is becoming a reality for professionals all over the United States. According to a new infographic from Highfive, there was a 79.7% increase in the number of remote workers between 2005 and 2012.
Co-working is big in Africa, primarily due to cost of private office space and the low budgets of startups, entrepreneurs and freelancers. But setting up shop in a co-working space has additional benefits you would not find in traditional offices.
If you’re looking to fly in style, it doesn’t get much better than a first-class suite aboard the iconic Emirates airline. Travel blogger Sam Huang recently cashed in his Alaska Airlines frequent-flyer miles for a $60,000 trip around the world, and luckily he took plenty of pictures documenting what it was like.
In January, I’m going to wander from college to college begging the soon-to-graduate to apply for jobs at Big Nerd Ranch. Several of the most promising will tell me something like, “I’m starting a company with a friend. It is like Instagram for pet owners.” This post is about why starting a company is just dumb. And I know: I started a successful company.
My team and I conducted interviews with leading remote companies to find out how they thrive when their teams are working from different cities and time-zones and what are they doing that traditionally-structured companies with offices aren’t.
Every project is unique in the sense that it has it’s own unique requirements, assets and course corrections. So let’s talk about a few approaches to cost estimation and some tips on how to approach a new project/contract.
Is there a formula—some mix of love, work, and psychological adaptation—for a good life? For 72 years, researchers at Harvard have been examining this question, following 268 men who entered college in the late 1930s through war, career, marriage and divorce, parenthood and grandparenthood, and old age. Here, for the first time, a journalist gains access to the archive of one of the most comprehensive longitudinal studies in history. Its contents, as much literature as science, offer profound insight into the human condition—and into the brilliant, complex mind of the study’s longtime director, George Vaillant.
These days, screen-addicted Americans are more stressed out and distracted than ever. And nope, there’s no app for that. But there is a radically simple remedy: get outside. Florence Williams travels to the deep woods of Japan, where researchers are backing up the surprising theory that nature can lower your blood pressure, fight off depression, beat back stress.
When most people think about working in a home environment, they think they will be able to wake up late, work in their pajamas, not worry about traffic jams and so on; basically, do whatever they want. And, while that may be partially true, working remotely can have an effect on your physical health. That’s why it is important for remote developers to stay active and healthy, and that’s what we’re dicussing today.
At GitLab we love to work remotely, but that means we need to communicate as effectively as possible. The following are GitLab’s eight principles for modern teams working remotely.
I’ve been a 100% remote worker at Microsoft for just about 5 years now. My last two jobs were both 7 year long gigs, so this isn’t the longest I’ve worked somewhere, but clocking in at a half-decade, it’s the longest I’ve worked remotely. Given that I haven’t yet been fired, it’s fair to say that I’m a pretty good remote worker… Being remote is wonderful and it sucks.
The vagabond ecosystem is changing thanks to cellphones, Wi-Fi, Craigslist and Google Maps.
I had this epiphany at the beginning of September: This thing that I’m doing? This series of choices I make every day? It isn’t working. I don’t like the way I feel, I don’t like the way I look, I don’t like the things I’m doing. Things need to change. So I took a long, hard, serious look at myself, and concluded that some things needed to change.
Brian is an equity trader who trades remotely and travels with his family of three. We’ve asked him some questions on how he began trading as a digital nomad and how he makes it work remotely!
If you can prove to them that you can solve their problem, you instantly decommoditize yourself, and none of those things on paper matter as much. This is exactly how I’ve gotten interviews and job offers for positions that require masters degrees, MBAs, degrees in subjects I’ve never studied, and more years of experience than I have. So how do you prove to them that you can solve their problem? Do the job before you get the job.
Most people won’t. But every once in a while someone puts themselves out there. Makes the leap. Faces rejection or failure or worse. And comes out the other side. Better. Changed. Bolder. Most people won’t. Which means those that do change everything.
I met an 8-year old who said that going offline for weeks was more extreme than the sailing adventure itself; it made me think a little more about disconnecting.
Hopes&Fears gathered information on the paid leave, whether for vacation, state holidays, illness or parental leave, legally guaranteed to workers in cities around the world.
The bottom line? According to multiple, peer-reviewed studies, simply being in an open network instead of a closed one is the best predictor of career success.
“I’ve never been as productive as I have been living in Bali. There’s an opportunity here to access yoga, healthy food and fresh air that’s more difficult to come by in a city. It’s a place people come to get perspective on their lives… a unique opportunity to get perspective and focus.”
According to a new survey from career website Glassdoor, while work-life balance has continued to decrease over the past six years, there are still areas where employees are happy with the amount of time they spend on the clock.
Joseph Heller, the author of Catch-22, once was at a party in the Hamptons. A guy came over to him and pointed at a young, 25 year old standing in the party who worked for a big hedge fund. Heller’s “friend” said to him, “see that guy over there? He made more money last year then you will ever make with all of your books combined.” Joseph Heller said, “Maybe so. But I have one thing that man will never have.” His friend was skeptical. “Oh yeah, what?” Heller said, “Enough.”
Even the most diligent of us has loose ends we can tie up: unnecessary costs, insurance, emergency preparedness, and so on. I’m no different. I’m pretty responsible, but I’m not perfect. So I built a list of things I can do in an afternoon to get my shit together. This isn’t about eliminating risk from our lives. It’s about spending just a little time to build healthy buffer and reduce the risk of problems disrupting our lives down the road.
We had so many backup plans—teaching English in Taiwan, crewing on yachts in the Caribbean, getting a working holiday visa in Australia—as when we set out in March 2010 with a one way ticket to Rio, a 10 day old travel blog, and Simon’s first and only freelance project, it all seemed so unlikely that we’d be able to create a business that would fund our travels. We had savings for a year so that was our deadline to make it work before we’d have to try something new. Despite our lack of business plan, reluctance to do marketing, and refusal to follow much of the online business advice, we somehow made it work. 2000 days later we are still going. It’s an epic milestone and we feel blessed that we’re able to live this life.
More and more firms are giving attorneys more flexibility by letting them work from home, but workplace culture might be taking a hit.
We hope more products offer similar abilities to shut themselves off when work is over. “You can get ahold of me about work whenever” will eventually lead to “I don’t want to work here anymore”. Here’s to early mornings, evenings, and weekends being free from work. Work Can Wait.
From jeans to dating partners and TV subscriptions to schools, we think the more choices we have the better. But too many options create anxiety and leave us less satisfied. Could one answer lie in a return to the state monopolies of old?
Here’s my take: I’m not especially good at learning languages. What I am good at is being passionate about languages, talking to people, and being diligent, which are just some of the skills required to effectively learn a language. In any case, after giving the same advice over and over, I finally decided to write a short guide that explains how I go about learning a new language.
Maybe I am naive, but it’s been nearly three months since I received my last paycheck. I’m living cheaply in Southeast Asia now and running an import/export company that’s less than two years old. Yes, I’m living my dream. That’s not to say the entrepreneur lifestyle is all peaches and roses. Our business is very much coupled with highs and lows; triple profits one day, followed by no profits the next; 60 hours worth of work one week, then less than a dozen the next; thousands of dollars worth of inventory one month, then low or no inventory the next. It’s a high-low lifestyle with bad, good and great days mixed in a row. There are pros and cons to running your own business – these are just a few of my entrepreneur highs and lows.
I recently joined an iOS Slack Chat and introduced myself as a Digital Nomad. A couple of people were really interested about the Digital Nomad part and asked if they could have a chat to talk about getting started and life in general. Rather than chat separately we arranged an Slack style online chat. The players were me, Jacky – an iOS developer with a couple of years experience based in Taipei – and Eugene (@EugeneBelinski) – a Computer Science Student from Minnesota. They’re both really cool guys. Hopefully this is as useful to you as it was for them.
Reflections on the rewards of seeking out what magnifies your spirit.
Commuting, for those of us who must do it every day, is generally not an experience to be relished. The hours lost in a useless limbo travelling to the workplace and back, day in, day out, are not generally ones that are well-spent or enjoyable.
I bet so many reading this are not happy because they aren’t getting what they want in life; they are expecting it too quickly and want all their dreams to come true today. But they fail to comprehend what actually goes into achieving that. Most of the time, their goals are coming at the expense of Netflix or video games. Not money. Actual time. You need to put in the time and actual work.
If you want to start your own company, run a business or lead a team — traveling solo can teach you a lot! Here are 7 reasons why you should venture out on your own and come back a much stronger and capable female leader.
This time we interviewed Sara Sutton Fell – the CEO and founder of FlexJobs, a website for telecommuting, flexible, freelance and part-time job listings, and founder of Remote.co and the 1 Million for Work Flexibility initiative.
This might sound familiar to a lot of people. We just accept this as a fact of life. Your work eats into the rest of your life, you have to structure everything else around it. Everything else goes into the ‘gaps’; weekends or what you have left of your evening during the week. But sometimes work even eats into that… But it doesn’t need to be this way. I love my work, and my life outside of work: why should the one detract from the other?
We’re more stressed at work than ever before. Leigh Stringer, author of the forthcoming book, The Healthy Workplace, explains how you can create more time and space for mindfulness meditation in your workplace.
Many people dream of living a lifestyle that allows them to create their own schedule and work from anywhere in the world. Yet, most entrepreneurs who achieve this dream don’t seem to reap the potential benefits.
The main reason most employers aren’t in favour of home-working is because they don’t trust their workforce, according to Cary Cooper, professor of organisational psychology and health at Lancaster University Management School. “They’ll never say that, but that’s what it’s about. Managers want people in the office because they want to see their little empires there in front of them,” he says.
What happened when I packed my life into a backpack and left home with a one-way ticket? Since then, I’ve lived in 3 continents, been to 14 countries, flew all around the globe, met hundreds of fascinating and inspiring people, burned thousands of calories lifting weights in gyms, ate amazing foods on the streets, cafes, restaurants and hotels, I’ve snorkelled, rode a boat, drove hundreds of kilometres on a scooter, chilled out on a paradise island, been in a relationship, seen dozens of temples, slept in a bungalow in a jungle, done numerous of interviews, grew my business but most important, I started to love the world and life more than ever before.
I used to work a lot — 60, 80, or even 100 hours a week. I let my work be a big part of how I defined myself. I wore those insane hours like a badge of honor … I loved telling people how “busy” I was … and how much I “had to do”. Sound familiar?
Travel helps us unravel that complexity by giving fresh perspective to ideas, as well as helping us experience issues that affect the world on a global scale - or even those tiny details which we might miss out on while sitting in a regular office. A delayed flight or how your cocoa is sprinkled on your coffee in that new city reveals a lot about great user experience and how to design emotion. Travel helps the understanding of whole ecosystems, and gives a comprehensive overview of how these often overlooked touches can completely change a mood, create a smile, and build a brand.
As airports become more competitive, vying for tourists and business travelers, they are getting into the hotel business.
Have you ever wondered how you could earn a living that would allow you to live and work anywhere in the world? Many people already living that dream shared the details of how they make a living in the recent Location Independent and Digital Nomad Survey.
You realize that it’s not about hitting a goal weight, or lifting a weight. It’s about being able to wait. Waiting, being patient, and trusting that life will slowly inch along and things will eventually get better. After all, change takes time. But time is all it takes.
Having everyone in the same room is a rare luxury for Team Teleport. Here are some of our main behaviours, guidelines and rules for making sure communication stays effective inside our distributed team.
I’ve been at zero a few times, come back a few times, and done it over and over. I’ve started entire new careers. People who knew me then, don’t me now. And so on. I’ve had to change careers 15 times. Sometimes because my interests changed. Sometimes because all bridges have been burnt beyond recognition, sometimes because I desperately needed money. And sometimes just because I hated everyone in my old career or they hated me. Sometimes because I fell in love. Love is a map that changes. There’s other ways to reinvent yourself. Take what I say with a grain of salt. This is what worked for me.
In December 2013, all full time employees at Customer.io were in the same office in New York City. Late last year we tried a 2 month experiment with remote working and had great results. This gave us the confidence to decide at the end of 2013 to make it ok for people to be distributed. We made that decision public in our Annual Report and many people have been curious about how our experiment has been going.
In the latest installment of Hopes&Fears’ anonymous interview series, we spoke with two writers for content farms. These freelancers generate large amounts of text content that exist solely to promote products or brands and incorporates popular search terms and topics to get their posts at the top of your search results.
Airliners need to spend a lot of time in the air to pay their way. So how do airlines make sure they aren’t swimming with germs?
“Those who moved into optimal jobs showed significant improvement in mental health compared to those who remained unemployed. Those respondents who moved into poor-quality jobs showed a significant worsening in their mental health compared to those who remained unemployed.”
What I do want to do here, however, is help my country’s tourism industry by demonstrating that, in Venezuela, because of these strange and confusing economic controls, you can live like a king for an entire month with just one €100 bank note (about £75 for anyone currently planning a trip to the Post Office’s currency exchange window). If you’re a local earning local money, life is tough; very basic supplies like toilet paper are in extraordinarily short supply and you’ll have to queue for hours just to get your hands on them. If you’re a tourist bringing over foreign currency, the country is your oyster.
Too often makers get criticized for building things that don’t solve “real” problems. It’s OK to build “dumb” things. Making doesn’t always have to be serious and like the guitarist practicing their craft, building an app is an expression of creativity and opportunity to learn.
As the last summer-like days of 2015 are passing here in Lisbon, PT, I’ve suddenly felt inspired to share the story of our first escapade to Bali that took place 2 years ago. As more nomadic practices happen every day, the discussion around the concept becomes hotter. “Does it fit me?”, “Am I autonomous and disciplined enough to stay productive while those palms and beaches keep calling me every minute?”, etc. I don’t know whether the universal answer to these questions exists. What I can do is to lay down my own story of our first escapade at Kwamecorp.
Making money takes practice, just like playing the piano takes practice. No one expects anyone to be any good at the piano unless they’ve put in lots practice. Same with making money. The better you practice the better you get. Eventually making money is as easy for you as piano is for someone who’s been playing for 10 years.
“If the office is going to become a collection of employees not working together, it essentially becomes no different than a coffee shop.”
At least not of the traditional, compulsory, watch-the-clock-until-the-bell-rings kind. As a growing movement of unschoolers believe, a steady diet of standardized testing and indoor inactivity is choking the creativity right out of our kids. The alternative: set ‘em free.
This blog post is a presentation I’ve been giving in a couple of different places, with some of my notes. The main purpose of this presentation is to hopefully get more young people thinking outside the norm a little bit - that there’s an alternative life to going to work in an office every day, that it’s possible to earn your own way independent of an employer, and that you can eventually build this up into something substantial, something that will far surpass a corporate salary.
Last year, my boyfriend Laurence and I gave up our jobs to go in search of an alternative way to live. I’m from London but had been living in Stockholm for four years, teaching textiles. I had a permanent job, my place was comfortable and warm, and I lived by the sea. But something about my life was unfulfilling. I felt that working full-time took up too much of my mental energy, and I was eager to discover if I could feel happier with less structure and more freedom.
The next time you’re thinking of throwing away a used boarding pass with a barcode on it, consider tossing the boarding pass into a document shredder instead. Two-dimensional barcodes and QR codes can hold a great deal of information, and the codes printed on airline boarding passes may allow someone to discover more about you, your future travel plans, and your frequent flyer account.
Roman Urbanovski, a senior core team member at the completely distributed tech company Toptal, expounds on his relationship with working while traveling during our Skype interview, and I’m slowly learning that Roman is talking about more than a schedule, a mentality, or the lifestyle of the “digital nomad.” What Roman is articulating is a philosophy of life.
We took a look at the ten companies that are leading the way in remote work and what we can learn from them to become better, more productive and happy remote workers.
When you’re alone in a cabin in the Alaskan wilderness, the simplest question becomes the most complicated: How do you fill a day?
My recent experience is that many companies insist on having engineers on site. When they hear “remote” or “not in the office” many people have a very negative perception. They either believe it’s cheap labor or they believe they require people to come into the office each day in order to get good results. While I do understand the bad experience many companies have, this is not always the case. Many are highly successful with distributed remote engineers, or even a remote team.
Loneliness. Its hard to find a life partner if you move around every couple of months.
CBRE is more than 20 offices into a companywide initiative, called Workplace 360, through which it’s converting every branch into “address-free” locations without assigned desks or cubicles, and with fewer workstations altogether.
When you travel, do you want to be as light as possible? A light bag, and a light itinerary? Many of us have had the nightmare experience of lugging around too much luggage, waiting in the baggage claims area, trying to cram too many activities into each day, and generally being so stressed that we need a vacation when we get home. Instead, simplify your travel.
With this post, I hope to enumerate some of the best practices that I’ve picked up for working in a variety of situations. The remote and work from home guide here ranges from specific recommendations for software and hardware, to tips for hitting your team’s deadlines.
A radical experiment at Zappos to end the office workplace as we know it.
Do you guys have any tips for how to manage myself well? Are there any good tools you’ve found success with? Anything you wish someone would have told you earlier?
There is plenty of feel-good encouraging blog posts out there of how great it’s to work with a laptop on a beach living in Chiang Mai like a king for $5 a day. As we all know, there is only so much to the truth about the awesomeness of nomad lifestyle and it comes with its cons which are rarely talked about.
My name is Sean, and I’m a 32 year old software developer. Most of my career has been in web development, but ever since I was a young lad slinging code in upstate New York, I’ve dreamed of making games. In order to realize this dream – and, honestly, just to have some fun too – I’ve decided to sell all my shit, buy a van, build it out, and travel around the United States.
I have now worked remotely for Vertigo for over 3 years and I’d like to share a list of Pros/Cons that I’ve gathered through my experience working from home full time.
You don’t have to work every waking hour, sunrise to sunset.
In this extensive article I go into detail for why you might or might not want an Estonian e-residency, how it can make it really convenient to bank and run a business in Estonia, some basic tax implications, and lastly explaining the process of obtaining an e-residency.
I’m a digital nomad. It sounds exotic and romantic: Have laptop, will travel. But mostly, it sucks. I wish I was back in San Francisco. It’s not an option because I’ve been exiled by a flourishing economy.
This was going to be either a genius move or a miserable failure. Either way, I figured I’d at least end up with a good story. Back in June, Avis had a promotion offering 5000 EuroBonus miles per rental. What made this offer so special was that the terms and conditions clearly specified that it was valid for rentals of any length. Too good to be true? I tested it out during a layover in Copenhagen, renting a €49 car, circling the airport a bit, and returning it. Sure enough, I was rewarded with 5000 EuroBonus miles. The challenge was on!
We receive countless emails, Facebook comments and article comments about how we currently make money on the road, how we’re able to live in paradise and how we saved enough money to go on our first trips abroad… which ultimately lead to our wandering way of life. Here it goes!
Exercise has potential to be an effective burnout intervention. Different types of exercise may assist employees in different ways. Organisations wishing to proactively reduce burnout can do so by encouraging their employees to access regular exercise programs.
As work bleeds into leisure time, employees should embrace the once-square schedule and its clear-cut boundaries.
I traveled to every country on earth. In some cases, the adventure started before I could get there.
In this piece, I’ll codify some of the lessons I’ve learned. If you’re already a remote developer, you may pick up some new tricks and a more rigorous way of thinking about how you work. If you are planning to go remote, oh boy, you should clear your calendar because I have so many things to tell you. Effective remote work comes down to maintaining those things which are necessary no matter where you work—organization, communication and motivation.
Collaboration among remote employees is always tricky, but it’s especially tough when a company is growing fast in places that are far apart. “You almost have to over-communicate,” says Humphrey. “One of the problems is that, when people don’t see other people working, they start to make negative assumptions. They start thinking, ‘What is that other team doing? Probably not much.’”
What had happened? We never used to fight. In trying to understand what was making us so unhappy, we found ourselves reminiscing about a trip we’d taken when we were still living in Atlanta to a sleepy surf town in Costa Rica. We’d met people who traveled from place to place, staying for weeks or months at a time, moving on a whim, whenever fancy would strike. The idea seemed irresistibly appealing: a life driven by experience and adventure, not by a desire for more things.
Money is an attempt to buy time, but it rarely is able to buy any of the above. When we don’t have time we use money to try to get us to the secret door on time, or we use it avoid needing to know the real prices, or we use money to have someone explain to us what is really going on. Money can get us close, but not all the way.
Photos of Harry Devert almost inevitably show him standing somewhere breathtaking — a frozen cave in Iceland, a mountaintop in the Himalayas, a waterfall in Brazil — with his arms out wide and his face tilted up towards the sky. It was as if he were drinking in the world, one gulp of adventure at a time.
Embracing wholeness is a big part of our culture at Buffer, and that includes family in all its forms. Here are few examples of what family means to the team members here at Buffer, and how working at Buffer has changed or enhanced that part of life.
I was wondering how a lot of you guys got started doing this. For someone who has no experience in software, programming or anything really with computers other than using them, how would I even be able to do something like this? Did most of you start with college degrees? Did anyone teach themselves over time? Any books you can recommend to start?
Digital nomadism has provided a new way to free us from a physical workspace. According to Upwork, this trend is rising and roughly 67% of those who make the switch become freelancers while the rest create a virtual business or team. Digital nomad Jacob Laukaitis, a member of Talent Garden, shares his story with us about turning his work-life balance upside down and running a fast-growing online business while traveling to more than a dozen countries a year.
Nowadays, a lot of freelancers are taking the “digital nomad” plunge and working remotely from just about any location they want. From Bali to the Santa Cruz Mountains, it seems like the ideal lifestyle, but what thought, if any, went into YOU deciding to live that kind of lifestyle? What was hard about it? Easy? What do you regret? How do you meet new people? All the questions…
Since 1989, when I first started doing online media, people have been transfixed by scale, by numbers, by rankings. “How many eyeballs, how big is the audience, what’s the passalong, how many likes, friends, followers, how many hits?” You cannot win this game and I want to persuade you (and Dean Baquet at the Times) to stop trying.
I was the envy of my 30-something friends in Palo Alto, Calif. I had my own law office right on California Avenue. People charged with crimes handed me cash, in advance, over a big oak desk. Occasionally, I’d make a couple of grand in an afternoon. But soon, my body started giving out one part at a time. First a shoulder, then my lower back, knee cartilage, neck vertebrae… After 10 years as a law student and lawyer, working in a profession I didn’t like was taking its toll.
Meaning comes from the pursuit of more complex things than happiness.
In sum, the story of overwork is literally a story of diminishing returns: keep overworking, and you’ll progressively work more stupidly on tasks that are increasingly meaningless.
Eight years. That’s 416 weeks, or almost 3,000 days. This is the amount of time that I have not had a fixed home; moving to a new country, culture and language every few months and taking absolutely everything I own with me. It has been a significant percentage of my life, and it’s still long from over.
“Why did it take this long for me to realize that I could be doing this from Thailand or anywhere? It all seems so obvious in retrospect,” he says. “If you think it’s too difficult to work remotely, then you’re probably overthinking it.”
Recently, I’ve been trying (again) to write every day. (I’m not shooting for 1k words this time, but perhaps I should…) Once again, I found myself holding a few ideas close, reluctant to write them because of my perceived lack of skill. It really struck me the other day how ludicrous that reluctance was.
There seems to be something special about coworking spaces. As researchers who have, for years, studied how employees thrive, we were surprised to discover that people who belong to them report levels of thriving that approach an average of 6 on a 7-point scale. This is at least a point higher than the average for employees who do their jobs in regular offices, and something so unheard of that we had to look at the data again.
Some of the most interesting digital nomads on the planet are very active on Instagram. This is a great thing because it allows those of us who are interested in this lifestyle to learn more about it first hand. Here are 22 amazing accounts that give us an interesting and often beautiful look at life from the perspective of a location independent professional.
For almost two decades, Bruno Caumette has made his home in a Toyota Land Cruiser. He’s been around the world once and is currently working on his second voyage. His stories are touching—and his photos are incredible.
As Americans enjoy an extra day away from the office over the long Labor Day weekend, many will reflect on the end of a summer when, once again, they took far fewer days of vacation than workers in other countries.
After being gone exactly 6 months, I feel it necessary we share the uglier side of our trip. Browsing through our blog posts and Instagram feed, it seems like we’re having the time of our lives. And don’t get me wrong – we are. It’s bloody amazing. But it’s not all ice-creams in the sun and pretty landscapes. Noooooo. So far, I think we’ve tallied 135 toilets scrubbed, 250 kilos of cow dung spread, 2 tons of rocks shovelled, 60 metres of pathway laid, 57 beds made, and I cannot even remember how many wine glasses we’ve polished.
THE way we’re working isn’t working. Even if you’re lucky enough to have a job, you’re probably not very excited to get to the office in the morning, you don’t feel much appreciated while you’re there, you find it difficult to get your most important work accomplished, amid all the distractions, and you don’t believe that what you’re doing makes much of a difference anyway. By the time you get home, you’re pretty much running on empty, and yet still answering emails until you fall asleep.
Working from home, whether it’s once in a while or every day, doesn’t make you immune to the social weirdness that comes with other people. In fact, being physically removed from your coworkers can make communicating that much stranger. Here’s what you need to know to avoid awkward silences in chat rooms, flat jokes on conference calls, or just feeling isolated from the rest of your colleagues.
Time management goes only so far; the emotional reasons for delay must also be addressed.
Contrary to a very common misconception – digital nomadism is not about a fancy way to escape normal life. It is the creation of normal life where one has access to more options, flexibility and freedom to choose where you live and work, because there’s really no reason to be tied to a single location for most of your life.
As a nomad and an entrepreneur, I find myself working in a large variety of places throughout the year. I have a nice setup in my RV, but I’ll also work from friend’s offices, airplanes, airports, friend or family’s houses, trains, Regus offices or any other number of places. However, my absolute favorite place to work is from a cruise ship, in particular long transatlantic cruises like the one I’m currently on.
A lot of times people confuse being known with being successful. In reality though, one doesn’t necessarily lead to the other. There are lots of people who are killing it with what they do and nobody’s the wiser, except the clients they serve. They have full rosters, top billing and no industry recognition. These are the makers and not the megaphones.
As the names implies, situational awareness is simply knowing what’s going on around you. It sounds easy in principle, but in reality requires much practice. And while it is taught to soldiers, law enforcement officers, and yes, government-trained assassins, it’s an important skill for civilians to learn as well. In a dangerous situation, being aware of a threat even seconds before everyone else can keep you and your loved ones safe.
Advocates say that a guaranteed basic income can lead to more creative, fulfilling work. The question is how to fund it.
Ten years ago this month, coworking was born in San Francisco when Brad Neuberg set up some card tables and invited people to work alongside him. There are now over 3,000 coworking spaces worldwide. Countless people have helped coworking become a global movement. Shareable reached out to some of these visionaries to find out what they’ve learned in the past 10 years, what the future of coworking will bring, and what challenges the movement faces.
As awesome as it may be to choose a different beautiful office every day, what many nomads are willfully ignoring is the fact that it’s physically impossible to have good posture if all you have is a laptop.
Choose to be good with your life without comparing it to anyone else’s — which is hard, but necessary. It’s never apples to apples. Since you’re never seeing their whole story, it’s more like apples to elephants.
The way to have good ideas is to get close to killing yourself. It’s like weightlifting. When you lift slightly more than you can handle, you get stronger. In life, when the gun is to your head, you either figure it out, or you die. When you cut yourself open, you bleed ideas. If you’re broke and close to death, you have to start coming up with ideas. If you destroy your life, you need to come up with ideas to rebuild it.
Although science is closer to understanding the basic biological mechanisms that make many travelers feel so miserable when crossing time zones, research has revealed that, at least for now, there is no one-size fits-all recommendation for preventing or dealing with the angst of jet lag.
Walking through life, I see myself juggling between the love and passion for the open road and the craving for deep human connections. It’s been over 16 years that I left home and haven’t really settle nowhere. I have to admit: I might not be able to live a nomadic lifestyle forever. My promiscuous commitment to the open road and to find fulfilling human connections has been a languished bi-polar search for something that can’t fit together, just like water and oil will never mix.
Being untethered to time is the guiding principle behind free range running. Going watchless frees your mind up by not having to look down at your wrist. Without any digital temptation or distraction, your thoughts can easily drift off to interesting, dream-like states of consciousness. This mental, contemplative wandering is best experienced running on trails. You begin to feel one with the wilderness. The emotion or sensation is liberating. Free range running allows for free association.
Among our most toxic symbol-as-reality tricks springs from the concept, use, and pursuit of money: “But this ingrained and archaic confusion of money with wealth is now the main reason we are not going ahead full tilt with the development of our technological genius for the production of more than adequate food, clothing, housing, and utilities for every person on earth.”
If you are a digital nomad or living location independently in one way or another; it can be especially difficult keep up with your workout routine… So how do you stay in shape on the road, or in a foreign country, when you are finding so many excuses not too?
I’ve lived and worked remotely in approximately 29 countries since I finished school three years ago. I’ve been running Toptal, a venture funded company growing hundreds of percent year over year—all from my laptop, phone, and tablet… I was repeatedly asked if I had some sort of guide or checklist for traveling/working the way I do. Especially for first-timers, the idea of adventuring while working can be daunting. There are a lot of details to consider, and I’ve learned a lot from my own trial-and-error.
A lot of travel can be about pretending to like monuments and sights that you don’t really enjoy, but my father, the reluctant traveller, has shown me that what matters is only doing the things you are genuinely interested in.
Peter Wall, the founder of Hubud, answers our questions about the concept and success behind Bali’s famous coworking space and shares his thoughts about the future of work in Asia’s growing entrepreneurial scene.
Wow- there’s like a gazillion different “to-do” list apps out there. Yet despite being as haphazard and scatterbrained as the next person, I don’t use any of them… But what I do keep is a “What I Do” list of sorts, and I don’t think many people in our space — founders or investors — approach time management in those preliminary terms: “What-I-do” as a foundation or prerequisite for contemplating the “to-do.”
How satisfied are we with our jobs? Gallup regularly polls workers around the world to find out. Its survey last year found that almost 90 percent of workers were either “not engaged” with or “actively disengaged” from their jobs. Think about that: Nine out of 10 workers spend half their waking lives doing things they don’t really want to do in places they don’t particularly want to be.
Ben Horowitz is the cofounder of a16z, one of the most successful VCs in the USA. In May 2015 he gave an inspiring commencement speech at Columbia University. The speech had three powerful conclusions: 1. Think for yourself; 2. Do not follow your passion; 3. You live in the age of opportunities.
Everything we do to manage a business consisting mainly of remote employees is something anyone else could do too. There’s so much untapped tech talent that does not live near your office, but would work for you if you allowed them to. So stop whining, spend a day to get up to speed on remote working practices, and hire outside of your commuter zone.
Your salary negotiation — which routinely takes less than 5 minutes to conclude — has an outsized influence on what your compensation is. Compensation can include money or things which are more-or-less fungible replacements for money, but it can also include interesting things which you value from “more time with your family” to “opportunities to do tasks which you find fulfilling” to “perks which make a meaningful difference in your day-to-day quality of life.
I seem to read so many comments on discussion threads in which individuals encourage others to “Quit your job! Travel the world!”, which often comes across as shallow and even flippant to me, given that the advice is so easy to extend but the action itself can quite be difficult for one to do, whether due to concrete reasons or any personal reservations. So, my question: those who have traveled for an extended period of time, either instead of working or by finding a new way to work, what was the experience like?
Our introduction to freighter travel was a relatively short 5-day sailing between Australia and New Zealand. We joined the French ship CMA-CGM Utrillo in the busy port of Melbourne, where our mounds of luggage including two bicycles and 11 bags were quickly hauled on board and into a spacious cabin by a host of cheery Filipino deckhands.
It’s been a little over three years since I joined Etsy as a remote employee, so I thought I’d write a little about my experiences of remote working, both the good and bad, by way of throwing a dash of real-life experience into the mixing pot of the “remote or not” discussion.
This is one of the most commonly asked questions by freelancers (both newbies and veterans alike.) Well-meaning responses posted on message boards often include a link to one of several online calculators. The inputs include questions like “how much is your monthly Internet bill?” and “How many vacation days do you take each year?” The final question on the of most popular of these calculators is “How much profit do you want?
It’s no coincidence that so many successful tech companies were (and will be) born in the Bay Area. But for Phileas & Fogg, we’re packing up and spending October through December in Costa Rica. Here’s why.
The focus of this article is on describing in detail how melatonin, bright light and sleep schedules can be used in conjunction with currently available flight times to reduce or eliminate jet lag. Our aim is to educate circadian rhythm researchers and sleep clinicians about the principles involved, so that they can make similar jet travel schedules customized for individuals traveling in any direction across multiple time zones.
However, things always got completely screwed up whenever I traveled (which was a lot) – hotel gyms were always crappy, I was always “too busy” to exercise, I could never find a good set of weights, and I allowed myself to eat whatever I wanted “because I was traveling.” Not surprisingly, my fitness progress would either stall completely or backpedal during these trips, and I’d have to spend two weeks after coming home trying to get back into a rhythm.
David Heinemeier Hansson (DHH on the internet) and Jason Fried have a new book: Remote: Office Not Required. This post is a hybrid: it’s a book review, but it’s also personal. I’m going to describe how working remotely (this past year) has affected me personally.
I encourage anyone interested in this lifestyle to give it a go, but you need to realize that it’s a lifestyle not a vacation. Being a DN is a long term commitment that will require years of prep for most people. If you’re willing the make that commitment then it has it’s rewards, but if you just want a way to fund your travels then there are better ways than sitting in Chiang Mai watching your savings slowly dwindle away.
What I’m trying to say is, freelancing is awesome. It’s a double rainbow. It is love. Except, y’know, when it’s not.
Most US airlines follow the same procedure for allowing non-first-class passengers to board a plane. They let people who are sitting in the back board first, then people in the next few rows, gradually working their way toward the front. This procedure makes absolutely no sense.
Gary Arndt is the man behind Everything Everywhere, one of the most popular travel blogs in the world, and one of Time Magazine’s “Top 25 Best Blogs of 2010.” Since March 2007, Gary has been traveling around the globe, having visited more than 70 countries and territories, and gaining worldly wisdom in the process. Today, I’ve asked him to share some of that wisdom.
Before he was famous, before he painted the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper, before he invented the helicopter, before he drew the most famous image of man, before he was all of these things, Leonardo da Vinci was an armorer, a weapons guy, a maker of things that go “boom.” And, like you, he had to put together a resume to get his next gig. So in 1482, at the age of 30, he wrote out a letter and a list of his capabilities and sent it off to Ludovico il Moro, Duke of Milan.
Keep moving, keep breathing, keep the inertia on your side. Rest days should be a welcome anomaly, not a way of life. And avoid lineups with lots of morbidly obese people in them, it’s a sign of what the future looks like if you spend too much time in the same places… Airports, American chain restaurants and conveyer belts all move us closer to the drain hole. Keep the good momentum up.
Do you have any recommendation on where in the world to register a company when being a traveling digital nomad and EU citizen in Asia?
Working remotely is still a relatively new style, but according to reports almost 50% of tech companies will have more than 30% of their workforce operating remotely by 2020, which sounds crazy and awesome all at once. Both employees and companies will gain some huge benefits from this trend.
In general, startups get distracted by fake work. Fake work is both easier and more fun than real work for many founders. Two particularly bad cases are raising money and getting personal press; we’ve seen many promising founders fall in love with one or (usually) both of these, which nearly always ends badly. But the list of fake work is long.
As an industry, we are falling short of our potential. We could be accomplishing more, and we could be providing a better life for all of the people who work in technology. If you’re going to devote the best years of your life to work, do so intentionally. You can do great things AND live your life well. You can have it all, and science says you should.
If one person is wrong, they’re wrong. If a lot of people, some of whom got extremely rich off of their wrong ideas, are wrong, there’s a good possibility I’m the wrong one. At a minimum, it’s useful for me to understand where I’m differing from others. Open offices are one such puzzle. To me, they are obviously one step short of Azkaban. And yet everyone, including some exceptionally profitable companies, use them.
My life sucked when I was fired from a job and lost my home and got a divorce and my mom stopped talking to me. It sucked when I broke up with another woman I really liked because I was afraid she wouldn’t like me if I went broke… It’s always going to suck. But occasionally it’s punctuated by moments of un-suckness. It’s my fault when things go bad. Blaming is draining.
Even though I really enjoy working from home when it’s possible, I’ve always considered coworking spaces being full of opportunities when done right. I had the chance to visit SPACE, the new promising coworking center in Uppsala. Meeting with the founding team and seeing their enthusiasm brought back some good memories and led me to write this article.
While on vacation in distant locales, people often find that time moves quite differently than in the places they’re used to. In the tropics, we settle into the grooves of “island time” and relax thanks to a more leisurely rhythm. A trip to a big city can leave us exhilarated but also drained by the energetic whir of life there.
Yet another post on summing up the first year of working remote. But I hope it can inspire someone out there, or give someone some clue to what it’s like and where the great parts are and possible hidden pitfalls. I’m not saying it’s for everyone since I know plenty of people who like the idea of having a clear distinction between work and home. But for me it works and I probably never want to go back.
Open plans have been surprisingly hard to kill, despite research showing that they’re unpopular, decrease employee satisfaction, and hurt productivity… The result is that today Stack Exchange is decidedly lonely if not quite alone in offering private offices to our developers (at least the half who work in the office; the other half work remotely). Suddenly we’re the ones who look a bit old-fashioned: isn’t that the old-school Microsoft approach?
I came to the conclusion that wonderful people are made, not born — that the people I admired had achieved an unfakeable inner virtue, built slowly from specific moral and spiritual accomplishments. If we wanted to be gimmicky, we could say these accomplishments amounted to a moral bucket list, the experiences one should have on the way toward the richest possible inner life. Here, quickly, are some of them.
I guess what I’m getting at is I don’t feel “fulfilled” at the moment. Does anyone else feel this way? The preparation and work that went into building this lifestyle was so intense and, in retrospect, it seems working toward this goal was, in itself, a beautiful journey.
Doing a startup is cool and hip these days (especially in the Valley), but there are too many people who start a company not because they care deeply about a problem, but because they want to ‘do a startup’. There is no wrong time to start a company. It doesn’t matter if the economy is good or bad. The best time to start a company is when you are so passionate about solving a problem that you can’t think of, or bear to be doing anything else.
Whenever you make a decision on what step to take next in your career, I think it is worth considering the following factors. Depending on your stage of life or career, different factors become more or less important.
When François Guenot vanished last summer on a wild and remote Alaskan coastline, many in the state dismissed him as yet another unprepared greenhorn. But a revelatory road trip with François’s father and brother revealed he was something special: a tough, soulful wanderer whose story resonates with the grand traditions of the American outdoors.
For centuries, experts have predicted that machines would make workers obsolete. That moment may finally be arriving. Could that be a good thing?
Mobile Jazz is an engineering and design agency. But unlike our peers, when it comes to working at Mobile Jazz we are becoming known for sometimes taking a rather different approach to the work/life balance.
It’s been said in many places and by many luminaries: Do what you love. But what does this phrase actually mean?
There are many reasons why independent work is on the rise, from shifting economic conditions to corporate downsizing and employee dissatisfaction. But two things have slowly fueled the trend in a much bigger way, lowering the barriers that once made independent contracting much more challenging.
Two startups, RemoteYear and Hacker Paradise, are taking engineers, designers, and other professionals on a worldwide journey across multiple continents, all the while helping them remain productive on their own work and side projects.
Most freelancers start out their business like this: 1. They get great at what they do. 2. They build a website that talks about their expertise 3. They set up their social media profiles and start promoting at people. 4. They wait for clients to come to them. When it’s laid out like that, you can see the obvious flaws… There’s a better way.
“With the advent of online project management tools and access to a huge talent pool, we could assemble a team with all the skills you could possibly need to build a company. We have staff literally spread across six continents. They are an incredible team that brings us a level of skills and cost-efficiency we could never get in the past,” says Shapiro.
In the past 2.5 years I have been to 47 cities across 3 continents. Some of these tricks apply specifically to women, but a lot are just helpful for anyone who likes to travel. Here’s a massive brain-dump, so let’s do this!
In 1978 Murakami was in the bleachers of Jingu Stadium watching a baseball game between the Yakult Swallows and the Hiroshima Carp when Dave Hilton, an American, came to bat. According to an oft-repeated story, in the instant that he hit a double, Murakami suddenly realized that he could write a novel. He went home and began writing that night.
The optimism of the co-working open office is false. Stripping work to its bare essence strips away some of the humanity of coming into an office and speaking to people you’ve known for at least a couple of months. Reduced to a lone wolf, moving in and out of a room so big and shiny that it feels uncomfortable to cough too loudly, as an employee you start to feel less like a member of any sort of team, and more like what you actually are: a cog in a machine.
Quite a few times I’ve heard backpackers complain about weight limits or maximum bag allowances on airlines. They haul 40-pound monstrosities that limit how comfortable they are, how fast they can run to catch the train, and how often they have to take a taxi because their bag is too heavy. They end up going a little slower, seeing a little less, and paying a little more. When they look at mine, they ask me where my “real” bag is.
Here are a few of the most integral tools and suggestions remote workers from all walks of life may find useful.
I’d like to share a couple of stories from freelancers, startup teams and business owners who chose to defy conventional ways of doing business, stepped out of their comfort zones and took their ventures on the road.
Twitter has log cabins and Facebook has graffiti — what do the offices of tech giants tell us about the future of work?
CNN’s coolest globe-trotter on punctuality, omelets, and how vanity got him clean.
These days, the idea of meaningful work is thrown around lightly at industry conferences and in management manuals, mostly as a way to motivate employees. It’s also widely mocked by low-level workers in cubicles whose jobs often feel exactly the opposite of meaningful. And yet, it’s hard to escape the idea that the thing we spend 40, or 50, or more hours at every week really ought to matter. I wanted to see what really meaningful work looks like.
A decade before Kickstarter, he offers idealistic yet practical advice to aspiring filmmakers, which applies with equal poignancy and precision to just about any field of creative endeavor.
The anarchist author, coiner of the phrase ‘We are the 99%’, talks to Stuart Jeffries about ‘bullshit jobs’, our rule-bound lives and the importance of play.
Hotels and resorts have long catered to travelers who cannot disengage from their jobs. But increasingly there is a new option for those who need to work, but who also want the benefits of a vacation.
In recent years, psychologists and neuroscientists have begun examining more closely what many people have already learned anecdotally: that spending time abroad may have the potential to affect mental change. In general, creativity is related to neuroplasticity, or how the brain is wired. Neural pathways are influenced by environment and habit, meaning they’re also sensitive to change: New sounds, smells, language, tastes, sensations, and sights spark different synapses in the brain and may have the potential to revitalize the mind.
After 5 years a slave in the consulting world, I booked a oneway ticket to Iceland, and negotiated a 7 month sabbatical. Yes, in that order. It’s common to wonder: What did you learn? How did you change? What impacted you the most? These are a few of the things that traveling taught me — about the universe, about the world, and about myself.
Where and how often do people search online for ‘Coworking’? Do they write it with or without a hyphen? Has the new style of work affected the popularity of ‘home offices’? Google and Wikipedia offer daily data about their search volumes and requests. Deskmag worked its way through this data and extracted some answers about these and other questions.
This digitally enabled nomadic lifestyle is one more and more people are attempting, but it hasn’t been possible for very long – arguably only since the early ’80s. Prior to this, nomads had very little (if any) reliance on anything that’s digital.
The rise of digital nomads are seeing a number of entrepreneurial hubs spring up across the world – but where are they and what do they tell us about modern business?
This week, I got in touch with Thibaut Barrère, a fine fella from France who perfected the freelancer lifestyle. Here’s how this early DNSimple customer opted out of the rat race and into the good life.
But for all the rah-rah-rah, there are serious, under-discussed challenges with an idiosyncratic, comparison-destroying life.