Do you want to be able to live life on your own terms? To have the freedom and flexibility to work whenever and wherever you want? Would you like to have the option to work from the beach in Bali one month, from the mountains in Colombia the other, and from your hometown to visit family and friends the next? Many people will think this sounds crazy and that you’re living in lala-land, but I’m here to tell you that this is actually possible. This can be real life! And the key to getting there is working remote. All you have to do is decide whether you’re going to let this be a far-away dream – or a deliberate choice
So, what is remote work?
Remote workers, also referred to as “digital nomads”, “telecommuters”, or the “New Rich”, are people who have opted for a location independent lifestyle where you can work from anywhere – your own home, your favorite cafe, or even on a white sandy beach in Asia. The beauty of this technology age is that you’re literally able to travel the world while you work: all you need is a laptop, stable internet connection, and a strong desire to explore the world.
As a result of this movement, many digital nomad hubs have developed in recent years. Places like Chiang Mai in Thailand, Bali in Indonesia, or Medellín in Colombia are all well-known for having remote workers flock together to enjoy each other’s company, brainstorm about business ideas, and enjoy the relatively low costs of living. So even if you’re working remote behind your laptop, if you’re part of such a community, you’re never alone!
That sounds like a dream to me, how can I put it into action?!
Living in a society where we still consider the traditional 9-to-5 or corporate job as “normal” makes it challenging to transition into a remote lifestyle. Most of your family members and friends will find it “unrealistic” or a “risk”, so you’ll need to find the right support system to chase your dreams. I believe this transition takes three steps:
1. Change of mindset
The first thing you need to know is this: the traditional 9-to-5 lifestyle or the 100-hour work week is old-fashioned. Trust me, it is. Being present in an office doesn’t mean that you’re getting results, and working 12 hours a day doesn’t mean you’re more productive. So in order to move into the remote lifestyle, a change of mindset needs to happen – starting with yourself. Working a corporate job, or climbing a career ladder isn’t the only way anymore. Once you’re actively looking for online information on the subject of remote work, you’ll find that this lifestyle is lived by many people, and that it’s not so “risky” and “unrealistic” at all – it’s a choice. Check out the resources below that have helped change my mindset, and might help yours too:
– The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferris, the holy bible for every digital nomad. This book has changed more lives into the remote work movement than any other book out there.
– The Remote Lifestyle: This blogger offers a step-by-step guide on how to quit your job, become a remote worker or freelancer, and travel the world.
– Engage with the remote workers community: take advantage of the power of the internet. Find someone who was once in your shoes and who’s now living the life you want. Reach out via social media to chat with them. You’ll find that they would love to help and support you on your journey. Besides, it’s comforting to hear their success story and to know that the jump into remote work is not as big as you think.
2. Explore remote work opportunities
Once you changed your mindset and start to realize this lifestyle is not a dream, but rather a choice – it’s time to actively explore remote work opportunities. You’ll find there are numerous job opportunities, such as: blogging, customer service, translation jobs, sales, and of course web design & development. Here are some websites to help you explore remote work opportunities:
Do you lack any skills to fulfill any of the job openings you’d like to apply for? Start learning them! For example, there’s no need for a four-year IT degree anymore for any of the tech positions – all courses can be found online to teach you the skills you need (trust me: I went from zero programming experience to creating the www.theremotetrip.com website in just one-and-a-half months – if I can, you can too!).
3. Take action
Last but not least: action. Did you know that achieving your goals depends 80% on your mindset, and only 20% on your actions? So once you changed your mindset, explored remote work opportunities, and realized this lifestyle is simply a choice you make: it’s just a matter of taking action. However, this step is the most important! The world is filled with people who say they’re going to do stuff, but never do. So quit that unfulfilling job, sign-up for an online course, surround yourself with a community of people who have been through it, and book that ticket! Just remember:
“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” – Zig Ziglar
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Creator of The Remote Trip