Digital Nomad


Maddie Mills-Craig, Editor-in-Chief

In the age of technology, new jobs have flourished, some jobs have died off and most jobs have adapted to the ongoing change. For the latter, many jobs have begun to rely heavily on technology for either storing data or utilizing it to become more efficient. Some jobs take this to the extreme by allowing workers to work from home. Instead of commuting to work, they are now commuting through their computer, also known as telecommuting. Some individuals take advantage of this new form freedom by moving around instead of residing in one location for a long period of time. This type individual, who is able to travel but is still tied to a job through technology, is known as a digital nomad. Due to technological advancements, the digital nomadic lifestyle will become the future because as more careers offer a greater freedom in mobility, individuals will become more inclined to travel and explore the world instead of remaining in one location. Not only is the nomadic way of life the natural way of living, but individuals will find that traveling is a way to make life a constant adventure of new experiences, to learn more about the world and to has the potential to transform your life for the better.

Before we were farmers, we were nomads. Before we relied on farming and livestock for food, we hunted and gathered. With the rise of agriculture, came the rise of disease and patriarchy. It was with the rise of livestock that birthed many diseases that, have and currently still do, afflict humans. Livestock and masses of people tightly packed together were what created the perfect feeding ground for epedics to roam free.The rise of patriarchy came to be when men began to do the farming and women were stuck tending to the house and gardens. Before, there was an equality between the two genders. With agriculture, the balance was shifted to the point where survival was heavily depended on the men. Now, in the modern world we are no longer tied to the land due to basic survival needs, such as food. Instead, we are tied due to economic needs. We have become so familiar with this unnatural way of living that if we were to be suddenly untied from the land, many of us would continue to roam the miniscule patch of dirt due to the lack of spirit and curiosity that used to drive the great homosapien species.

In addition to the fact that the nomadic way of living is in our blood, traveling the world provides an individual with different perspectives and new experiences which is vital to one’s growth in both mind, body and spirit. It allows a person to explore parts of the world and widen their scope of reality by experiencing different cultures. For me, traveling allows me to meet new people and learn new things through experience rather than in a classroom. I’m the kind of person that enjoys the familiar day-to-day life, but if given the chance, would jump to a new scenery. This is part of the reason why the nomadic life appeals to me so much and why it could appeal to others over the traditional type of lifestyle. Just because you’re a digital nomad, you don’t have to constantly move. If you want to settle down and grow some roots, you can. By living nomadically, a person can still enjoy the familiarity of a place but because their job is done digitally, they have the freedom to move when they need a change in scenery. For me, the reason I would want to move to a place in the first place is to get to know it’s ins and outs which means becoming a temporary local. In order to become a temporary local, I would have to stay their long enough to gain an understanding of the local environment and habits. Once I begin to feel that itch of needing to move and see more, I can travel to another destination and restart the cycle.

Although this way of living is understandably not for everyone with the many challenges it comes with, such as high costs to travel and the constant instability with not knowing the area or people when you first arrive, it comes with its own unique awards. One of such is gaining perspective on life. I have oftentimes found myself, as everyone else I’m sure, getting caught up with my day-to-day life and problems. These problems are oftentimes really small things, but in the moment, feel huge. It could be as simple as a heavy workload or something more emotionally tolling such as a breakup or loss of friendship. These problems, when looked back on from the far future, are so minuscule in the grand scheme of things. Whenever I travel, that length of time it takes me to realize the insignificance of certain problems goes from far future to immediate present. This is where the point of perspective comes in. By constantly moving around, you are forced to gain perspective. This newfound perspective allows you to identify big problems and small problems in your day-to-day life. This ability is amazing for lowering stress and can help you keep up your mood and spirit. In an 2012 Expedia survey, 89% of the individuals claim that traveling helped them relieve of stress and in a 2009 study conducted by University of Kansas, they found that traveling helps lower depression and improve psychological functioning.

One additional thing to consider, along with everything else I just mentioned, is that the life of a digital nomad can lead to a healthier lifestyle. When a person is traveling around a lot, they are constantly moving. This goes from the simple act of packing up everything and moving into a new location along with the hustle and bustle that comes with travel, such as navigating airports or other public transits systems. In addition, many places outside of the U.S. requires more walking than driving. If you are often flying, then you probably won’t have a car thus forced to get around by walking, biking, or relying on the public transit system. This itself, makes you much more active than a typical person, without having to make your way to the gym. By becoming a digital nomad, you are not only more active than your typical American, but also, have a healthier diet. Because you are traveling to new places, you are encountering local cuisines. When a place has its own unique type of food, a person is naturally more likely to eat that than at a McDonalds. By replacing their diet with local foods, they are cutting out unhealthy processed foods since most local cuisines are meals made from locally grown food sources. Additionally, if you are moving outside of the United States, then you are automatically eating healthier since food in America is notoriously unhealthy with the U.S. having the most obese population in the world.

Although being dropped into a new world can be scary, it can force an individual to adapt and enjoy new experiences. Discovering new places in the world provides an individual unique experiences that can be incredibly fulfilling while also providing them perspective on life which can ultimately help lower stress and improve psychological functioning. In addition, by integrating into new cultures, a person can adapt to a more healthier lifestyle by being more active in their day-to-day life and adopting a healthier diet. Oftentimes, it’s refreshing to change your daily routine and what better way to do that than by moving somewhere completely new.