I initially wrote this article in September of 2017, however, I am just getting around to editing and posting it. Look forward to many more articles around my experiences and the many coworking spaces that I was able to experience.
While sitting on the plane to Glasgow, Scotland, about to start the next phase of my digital nomad journey exploring coworking spaces with Cowork22, I find myself thinking back to the stresses of the past month.
By far my worse stresses involve moments of anxiety. I am constantly thinking through all of the tasks for the day and month along with the goals associated with them all. I don’t linger in this place but it does happen when I have things to get done that I feel are behind.
The past month or two have been incredibly busy, in good ways and bad. Business was picking up and we even had a hurricane (Irma) to deal with in Tampa. I decided to just leave and drive until it’s less windy. Basically, I went home to South Carolina.
Now that I am able to reflect a bit (Airports are almost as peaceful to me as beaches. I know that’s crazy.), I see that everything that I have been working toward had ultimately come together in wonderful ways.
The idea of this trip to Europe was started back in the Spring when I just booked a one way flight to Scotland. I have a “rule” at this point that a trip isn’t real until transportation is booked. I will probably not buy or look at a travel book, website, whatever, until I have made the financial choice to get there. How many of you have bought a book and it never happened or took years and years to go? I have seen so many people that delay experiences not because of financial difficulties but due to the idea that you must do the trip the “right” way? I did that with Italy a few years ago.
Up until about a month ago, all I had was a one way flight.
I ultimately did book the return flight last month. After this was booked, I reserved housing for my first week in Glasgow and found a coworking space to work out of. Once I had that set up, there wasn’t much I had to do beyond packing and continuing to do what I normally do with work.
What is incredibly different when traveling and working this way versus traveling for vacation is that it is not booked far out and only the essentials are focused on.
The only thing you need to operate as a digital nomad is:
Housing. Transportation. Food. Work Space.
That’s it. Everything else just falls into place.
In contrast, I used to plan vacations packed to the brim with going to as many places as I could fit in which tended to cause stress for everyone. My mindset at the time was that I was only going to go to these places once and had to see as much as possible.
What I have figured out while being a digital nomad is that you can go back.
Also, the best experiences and most life changing events happen when you slow down, focus less on checking things off a list, and spend time building a bond with someone, sitting and soaking in a new place, and even just having a cup of coffee with a new coworker in a coworking space.
I am not going to be jumping from one tourist location to another.
I will be working. I will be exploring coworking spaces. I will be meeting a tremendous number of people and seeing old friends. And of course I will be jaunting through these cities and countries. Who doesn’t like to explore!?
The greatest gift of being a digital nomad is the flexibility and freedom that it provides to live anywhere you want (as long as there is good WIFI of course).
Until stepping onto the plane, I didn’t have much time at all to really relax and think about where and what I was going to be doing this fall. It really has been an exhausting month.
Now I feel at peace. I am ready both business wise and personally.
Here is to the journey of being a digital nomad and countless experiences I possibly never would have had otherwise.
What do you want to know about me? What could I share that would help you along the way?
“Getting some #writing done. Always feel like I need a place like this to be my most #creative.” #digitalnomad #remotework #stpetebeach pic.twitter.com/XHpfEOeevL — Robert Kropp (@robertcowork22) July 15, 2017 My…
The other four items were things I used every single week of my journey.
Cell Phone Tripod – Do you ever want to take video for FB Live, Instagram Stories, or just video of a sunset without the shakiness?
Portable Hard Drive – I bought this 4 TB hard drive so that I never had to worry about losing anything or running out of space on my laptop.
Portable Speaker – Do you love music? I have used this speaker while hiking, relaxing at the beach, in a hostel, and in so many other places when you just needed to listen to something.
Fountain Pen – There is something nostalgic and awesome about walking to a place in a new city or in the countryside with just a notebook and fountain pen. This pen makes you feel like you are deliberately writing. Not chicken scratch. It forces you to think about the act of writing and not just what you are writing.
Have you used any other products or tools that have proven useful on your travels?