I work in the online industry full time, and yes I have to commute just like everyone else. I have often dreamed of traveling and working while I travel, with NO OFFICE building in sight! The thing is, most of us get caught with
what I consider to be lifes “anchors”. These can range from car payments, House payments, long term leases on housing, wanting to be ” stable” and have ” roots”, and many other anchors to go with those. Fact is all one has to do is step up.
And say (drum roll in 3…2….1) ” Hmmmmmm what do I say again Here is a great story of a man that has done it, and feel free to take notes and dream, then make that dream come true!
I originally saw this story was first published on Mashable.com, however have heard of and know friends that live this lifestyle.
A few years ago, Greg Jorgensen started supplementing his pay as a full-time programmer with some freelance jobs. Over time, he built up a network of clients by getting referrals from programmers, web site design firms and recruiters. After he got a five-year contract from one web-based firm, Jorgensen realized he could work from anywhere, as long as he had a good Internet connection.
Jorgensen put most of his stuff in storage and fled his town of residence – Portland in the US state of Oregon – for parts unknown. He spent a hot summer in a Palm Springs, California, condo before heading south. He loved Belize, but couldn’t find a good Wi-Fi connection.
“I continued to work” says Jorgensen, a programmer. “So I started travelling around the West Coast.”
Jorgensen’s kids were grown, so there was nothing tying him to Portland, or the United States for that matter. After considering moving to Belize or Costa Rica, Jorgensen ran into a Thai bartender in Las Vegas who told him about the great scuba diving in Thailand. “I did a little research,” he says. “I had been working from a backpack anyway for the last six- to seven months.”
In January 2013, Jorgensen moved to Thailand, where he can scuba dive and hit the beach all he wants. He also has so much work that he has to turn much of it away. On a typical day, he’ll put in two- or three hours of work after he wakes up and then run some errands in the afternoon. “Then I usually work again at night — I’m usually up fairly late.”
Jorgensen is what’s known as a digital nomad. He can work anywhere, provided there’s a good Wi-Fi connection and he takes advantage of that mobility by travelling the world. In the past couple of years, Jorgensen has visited Malaysia, Laos and Macau, among other places in Southeast Asia.
Though there are downsides — loneliness, work visa hassles and middle-of-the-night meetings across time zones — Jorgensen says he’s living the dream. He’s not the only one. A global surge in broadband ubiquity and a buyer’s market for programming talent have colluded to make digital nomadism a viable option for adventurous self-starters. While no one tracks their number, some 2.6 per cent of US workers — about 3.3 million people — telecommuted at least half the time in 2013, according to Global Workplace Analytics.
Victoria Yershova, who runs Digital Nomad Hub, says there are at least 200 blogs by digital nomads. Since so many don’t blog, though, she says it’s impossible to know how many such workers actually exist. She believes there are three types of digital nomads — freelance professionals (programmers, writers), online entrepreneurs and remote employees who started out in the office but are now roaming the world.
So if your 9 to 5 beat the traffic and then get crammed into a cubical lifestyle has gotten you down, then open up your horizons and make a change. A change is only as far away as your desire, you hold the key. Get out there and TRAVEL!!
By Cheri Cola