Do you want to become a digital nomad so you can work online while you travel domestically or internationally? If so, there are many things to consider and a lot to prepare.
Out of all the things you need to consider, a top priority is how you’ll support yourself while you’re on the road. Of course, the amount of money you’ll need is dependent on your digital nomad lifestyle (how often you plan to travel, the types of apartments you will live in, etc.). But regardless of the specifics, you’ll need income.
The very concept of digital nomadism centers around someone working on their laptop (thus the word ‘digital’). If this lifestyle is appealing to you, I’m sharing the number one thing you must focus on first, especially if you have no experience.
You must focus on learning and developing marketable skills.
Step 1 Understand What Marketable Skills Are
As with anything, self-awareness is your first step. You need to be ultra-aware of what skills you already have, what you need to develop, and how to market them.
So, what is a marketable skill?
Simply put, marketable skills are skills that are in demand in the job market. And as an aspiring digital nomad, your marketable skills are the key to employment or freelancing or building an online business.
Often, people ask me which is better: a remote job vs freelancing vs online business. But that’s not the correct question to ask. The correct question is: ‘which marketable skill can you learn if you have no experience?’ First, figure out what you can learn and what you want to learn. That’s your priority if you want to hit the road quickly.
If you’re not in a hurry and want the optimum solution for you, then you can consider your preferred style of working (job vs freelance vs business). But first, focus on learning and developing marketable skills.
In particular, focus on skills that are in demand for remote work (either as a job or freelance).
Examples of in-demand remote skills:
*Social Media Management
*Online Community Management
You can find a list of in-demand jobs according to LinkedIn, here.
Make sure the skills you choose to learn are aligned with remote work.
They’ll be skills that are needed for top digital nomad jobs.
STEP 2 Create a Learning Plan
Once you’ve decided which skills to learn, create a plan.
I recorded a Tik Tok video on learning writing skills. you can use the same info to learning other skills.
Here’s a link to the video (still haven’t had the time to figure out how to embed the video right here on my site).
If you’re starting from scratch, here’s how to create a learning plan to make serious headway sooner than later:
If you want to learn a new skill, you’ll have to dedicate time, ideally daily, to learn. Make room in your life for your new pursuit. This will mean sacrificing time for something else. There’s no way around this.
It’s better if you decide ahead of time how much time you’ll spend daily/weekly learning. You may find it helps to add these learning tasks to your calendar. And definitely add them to your to-do list.
If you can, find someone (this can even be online) who is being paid for the skill you want to learn and try to reverse engineer how they got to where they are.
For example, you want to be a social media manager. You search and find an influential social media manager who posts a lot on social media and their blog about their journey. Look for things like where they started, how they learned their skills, lessons learned along the way, courses/certifications, and resources they love.
*Find a mentor.
Mentorship can be one of the best ways to learn about a skill and a career path. Admittedly, it’s not as easy nowadays to find a formal mentor, but it’s not impossible.
*Read every day.
Find material on the skill you’re learning and read.
Always remember you never know everything. Even if/when you feel you’ve mastered the skill, there’ll always be lots to learn.
What do you need to further develop? You want to be stellar at whatever it is you do. The remote job market in particular is high competition. Use your time wisely to up your game.
STEP 3 Marketing Yourself
Create a plan for marketing yourself.
How will you get jobs? Gigs? Clients?
I won’t dive deep into this here because I have a ton of resources to help you in the blog post: Massive List of Resources.
I hope it helps!
This post centered around the ‘digital’ aspect of digital nomadism. If you have no/limited travel experience, I have a series of posts coming up about getting your feet wet traveling and building your travel confidence. Stay tuned! If you have questions, feel free to join my newsletter HERE and hit reply to the welcome email.