Being a Digital Nomad sucks

We’re sold an idea of a better/alternative lifestyle. A new balanced lifestyle of working and traveling. Being a Digital Nomad.

It’s something I definitely bought into and thought it would be awesome. But, as I sit overlooking Weligama bay in south Sri Lanka, I feeling it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

I’m waiting for a meeting about a little app I’ve been building. It’s about 2pm back in the UK and 6pm here. Everyone is super excited about what the evening has in store. But, unfortunately, I’ve got to work. Get some feed back on the app, and add any changes.

It’s been back and forth like this for a few days. It’s difficult to concentrate during the day. New friends come over to chat, ask questions, talk about surfing, see if I’m going to join them. I try to as much as possible but it’s hard to find the rhythm.

I decided the only was I’m going to be able to finish off this work is if I find somewhere to stay away for a few days. So I can concentrate more. I book myself into Camp POE and crack on with some work. It’s super productive. The distractions are less, the people are friendly, and there are other working here too. I manage to finish within these two days.

The sense of relief is immense. I can finally enjoy the place I’ve come to visit.

For my experience you need to be about to focus and separate the two. Find a co-working space, and have regimented days to work and times to play and explore. If you surround yourself with who are working, It’s so much easier. But from my short time trying it. I’m not sure It’s for me.

Separating your holiday time from your work time is great. There is something nice about doing a day of work, finishing, and doing what ever you want in the evening. Leaving thoughts at the office and not bringing them home with you. I love being able to completely immerse myself in a holiday, the people, the culture, the time away. Not having to working about the normal day to day stuff.

It’s not a great idea bringing work away with you, it blurs the lines between pleasure and tedium. Even if you love your work, and I do, I still want to be able to do spontaneous things. Go on that random adventure, drink until morning, or sit on a beach doing nothing. Instead of worrying about missing an email or making morning stand-up.

When you’re away travelling your mind opens up. You meet new people from far away lands that have a common interest in travel. You’re all here together, exploring the country. The time away from work is some of the most important time you have. The time to reflect, process and idea. If you can embrace it and it pay it’s self back to you ten fold. Your creativity will increase, your passion and your outlook improves. We need this time. Every time I go away for a while, it makes me excited to go back to work, to work hard for that next longer trip.