Those who haven’t yet jumped into the world of location independence are often held back by a simple question – how? Don’t let that one little word stop you from living your digital nomad dream! Check out the list below to find out the only five things you need to remote work.
This might seem like a no brainer, but hear me out. You don’t need the ten latest gadgets or a fancy set up to be a digital nomad. Pick a laptop that you like and can comfortably work on all day. Make sure that it is fast enough not to drive you crazy, small enough to transport comfortably, and doesn’t give you a headache or hurt your eyes after a few hours. That’s it! I use my handy Macbook Pro 13” 2015, but my screen requirements are higher than most as I work with a lot of visual content. A Chromebook is also a great lightweight solution if you don’t need the high end screen for remote work!
Now some of us who remote work are lucky enough to not need to internet all the time. Anyone who does writing, editing, design, photography, etc can live without connectivity for a few hours! For everyone else, however, we need to bediligent about finding spots with internet. The farther off the grid you go, the harder it is to find good wifi. Nomad List has a nice search function that allows you to filter top digital nomad cities for fast internet, giving you 290 different options! If you are in a pinch and really need to get on wifi now, check out Wifi Mapper. This handy app helps you find free hotspots, like city wifi and cafes, all over the world.
Let’s get old school! Sometimes simple is best, and the simplest way to organize your ideas is on a piece of paper. Taking notes by hand actually uses different cognitive processes than typing and boosts your retention, this article in Scientific American goes into the details. You can use it for anything from making your daily to do lists or draft a difficult email. Digital nomads become location independent to get a new perspective, why wouldn’t we apply the same principle to our work?
Now obviously you need your pen to use your notebook. But the importance of having a pen goes beyond your remote work hours. When you are taking a break somewhere in the middle of nowhere without any of your technology (or it’s dead), how do you exchange information with a new acquaintance? Part of being location independent is being prepared wherever you are. Keep a pen with you always and you might just get the email of your next client or collaborator the next time you decide to go hiking in the Himalayas or surfing in Australia!
5. A way to track your time
Many digital nomads start their remote work journey with the dream of balancing their work days and travel adventures. Sadly, I’ve seen so many budding digital nomads, including myself, hole up in their hotel room or at their coworking desk and barely get the chance to explore their new location. Finding balance is so important to maintaining a healthy digital nomad lifestyle. The one tool every location independent professional needs? A way to track their time. Now you can use a watch or a phone timer, but these days there are a variety of awesome tools to help you clock out on time and go explore! PrimaERP automatically inputs all your tracked time into invoices, making life infinitely easier for freelancers. Toggl is another good option if you are looking for something more straightforward.
Remote working doesn’t have to be as complicated as you might think. Now it’s time for you to get out there and go for it!