“Digital Nomad story” is a weekly story series sharing experiences and tips from nomadic entrepreneurs all over the world on how the being of a digital nomad actually looks like & how they’re rolling in their nomadic lifestyle. Join the journey!
Hi, my name is Giulia
and I’m from Italy. Even before becoming a digital nomad I was moving a lot, always looking for a new job in a different city. This way, I lived in London, in Madrid, in Dublin, in Slovenia and in different places around Italy. The problem of that lifestyle was that every two/three years I needed to find a new job in order to move somewhere else, which also meant starting a career from scratch every time –not a wise move if you want to grow professionally! And so, at a certain point, it just became more logical to build a career on my own and bring it with me wherever I go, without the need of finding a specific job in a specific city/country every time. Now I work as a copywriter and content creator, I’m a regular contributor to several magazines and websites and I run my own blog (Blocal blog), which focuses on off-the-beaten-path travel and street art around the world.
What’s your normal daily routine as a DN?
I hate routines, so I don’t have one ☺ I don’t even eat or go to sleep at the same times (very healthy, I know…). Each day is different and the schedule depends on what deadlines I have during the week, and job / personal commitments such as exhibitions openings or dinners with friends.
What’s your favourite part about of being a DN? & What’s the opposite – least favorite?
My favourite part is working for my own business, and not for someone else’s. The least favourite is that Murphy’s law according to which I get dozens of jobs to be done by the same week, and then nothing to do on the week after that. It seems that my clients know when I’m busier and just want to jump on that crowded bus!
How do you stay healthy when you travel?
I drink a lot of local craft beers! ☺ Every country I go, it’s a whole new beer world to discover!
What are the hardest things to keep up with while being a digital nomad? What’s your suggestion for dealing with them?
Relationships, although I’m pretty good at keeping in touch. I’m single now, so I’m talking about friendships, which anyway are not less important than romantic relationships. After so much travelling, I have friends scattered all around the world, but luckily with Skype, WhatsApp and all those tools it is not difficult to keep in touch. I’ve made a point of catching up with their lives quite often, and regularly. Moreover, being frequently on the move, it’s not so difficult to have girls’ weekends around and meet in person. I’m a very social person but I’m also very shy, so each time I move to a new place the hardest part is stopping feeling lonely and getting out to meet new people. Luckily, I have my old friends to cheer me up on that.
Are there any online resources you find really useful and essential for your DN career? If so, please share some!
I just use the basic ones, such as Linkedin and Travel Massive, and the Italian network for digital nomads (www.nomadidigitali.it)
Many people are afraid of never being able to settle down after being nomads. They can’t live long in one place, they can’t find partner who’d love to travel as much, etc. What are your thoughts on this? Have you experienced these feelings? And what is your cure for them?
My thoughts are that if they don’t feel to settle down they don’t have to. If they do want to settle down, they can simply carry on with their digital nomad career from their new “home sweet home”. That’s the coolest part of being a digital nomad: no matter what choices you are making or if you drastically change your life plan, your career will follow you. From this point of view, a DN career is even more stable that a regular career: that will always be your job, whatever you decide to do with your life.
What are the main things you are looking for when deciding where to go next?
I usually prefer to live in cities, as I can get bored very easily. I would say I’m chasing the sun (winter one hemisphere, summer the opposite hemisphere), although I often end up in the UK, which is not known for being so sunny.
The “essentials”, that is the main things I’m looking for when considering to move somewhere, are street art, art galleries, museums, and everything “artsy”, plus underground culture, craft beers, offbeat spots, and everything “urban”. That’s the kind of vibe I like and, based on that, I’d say my next stops would be Cape Town, Buenos Aires and New Orleans (or Portland, or Austin). But that’s the dream… usually, reality happens and I end up to completely different places. For example, I’m going back to the UK in the summer 😉
What’s your vision of the future? How long are you planning to keep up with your digital nomad lifestyle? Do you have any long-term plans on your mind?
This is my long-term plan! Well, at least for now 😉
Gathering all your current experience – what would you now say to your old self, back when you just started?
To be patient (I actually still say this to myself, and quite often). At first, the enthusiasm was so overwhelming that I couldn’t properly focus on finding clients and working on my business plan. Now I still lack patience when I read amazing things about a city and I want immediately move there, or when I wish there were a shortcut to reach my career goals. But as we travellers know, happiness is a way of travel, not a destination. So I guess there is a reason why things seem to move so slowly… the important thing is that now I know I am on the right path.