The nomad lifestyle
I'm a nomad... A digital nomad... My business is online, and I only need a laptop and an internet connection to get stuff done.
I'm a part of an inspiring global community of people with online businesses. Many of my colleagues take advantage of this freedom to travel the world. Frequently I see updates from people on their way to Bali, some bounty island in Thailand, or having great experiences in Florida or the Grand Canyon while running successful businesses from their laptops.
This is all very exotic for a Scandinavian like me. But I have two school kids and my husband and I have been building a home for them that we all love. So as much as I love to travel, I have no desire to take the digital nomad lifestyle to the max at this point in my life.
Still, that doesn’t mean that my personal laptop lifestyle has to be boring and monotonous and I find a great amount of energy in the freedom and flexibility that I have.
This motivated me to write this list of inspirational tips for digital entrepreneurs, who want perform their everyday work life close to their home.
Depending on where you live, the garden is a great place to work. I live in Scandinavia - we have cold winters, but in the summertime, the garden is one of my favorite places to work. There is peace and quiet and I find it magical to surround myself with nature’s abundance of greenery and the chirping of birds. I have a mint plant in my garden, and I put the fresh leaves in a pitcher with water to keep hydrated and refreshed while working.
I have a mint plant in my garden, and I put the fresh leaves in a pitcher with water to keep hydrated and refreshed while working. During winter, I replace my garden with my kitchen. Since I work digitally, I don’t leave a mess of paperwork etc. and when my family comes home, I put the laptop away and get on with life.
The local coffee shop
This option depends on your ability to concentrate. For me, I love to do graphic design stuff and home pages design from a coffee shop, but I can’t concentrate on writing or reading. You would also want to try it out and consider what time is best for you (coffee shops have peak hours and quiet hours) and what tasks you can perform in an environment, where you can’t control the soundtrack.
An option is to wear headphones and listen to music that makes you more productive or earplugs, so you feel the atmosphere, but don’t get disturbed by people ordering coffee or having conversations.
The co-working space
The co-working space is great if you like to have colleagues. I like to have colleagues, but not every day, I have to admit. I love to wake up in the morning and follow the energy that I feel - is it introvert, extrovert, do I want a quiet day at home or a social day at the office?
I’ve tried out a couple of co-working spaces. The latest was specifically for tech startups, and the energy was buzzing. We even found some partners for our business and started a great project with a team of people that we met at the co-working space.
If you miss the conveniences like free coffee or the social events from your 9-5, a co-working space is the place to work. Remember to visit a few before you decide on one. My experience is that they offer many different things and they also vary in price.
If you don’t have a garden or if you feel like a change of scenery, you can go to the park. I sometimes go to the local park, which is small and cozy. Sometimes I pack a bag with my computer and some water and a blanket and take the train or bike to a larger park. My challenge at the park is to sit comfortably with my laptop. Please post a comment below if you found a hack for this :)
The benches are often too hard to sit on and I can’t really find a good way to sit on the ground for a longer period of time. So I never spend more than a couple of hours in the park, but still, I find it nice to get out of the house and smile to some people in the park and have some fresh air in my lungs.
The library is ideal for getting work done. Libraries are productive spaces, where you can both get the peace you need to concentrate and sometimes you’re lucky that the library has a small coffee shop, where you can have your breaks. Try inviting a friend to work with you at the library. At the coffee shop or the park you would maybe chat the day away, but at the library you will have the perfect mix of concentration and chatty breaks.
These were my tips for taking advantage of the freedom of the laptop lifestyle, while not being able to (or have the desire) to live like a global digital nomad. For me and my family our home is our base, and even though we love to travel, life on the road with two school children is not the lifestyle that we desire right now. In the future - who knows?
For me and my family our home is our base, and even though we love to travel, life on the road with two school children is not the lifestyle that we desire right now. In the future - who knows? Maybe I'll see you on one of those bounty islands...