When your friends introduce you to someone new, the first thing they probably say is, “This is so-and-so, she’s a digital nomad and travels all over the world!” You’re then forced to talk about your travels and answer questions about how you can afford to travel for so many months out of the year. While it’s satisfying to tell people how you’ve achieved the lifestyle you want, it can be bothersome that this is the only way people identify you.
Being constantly identified as a digital nomad and nothing else can take away from other aspects of what makes you who you are!
People will often assume all you do is visit exotic locations and sip cocktails by the beach. People may look at you with envy or even suspicion as to how you can afford this lifestyle.
Luckily, there are a few ways to show you are more than someone who just lives on vacation all the time.
Diversify Your Social Media Content
In this digital, visual age, it’s all about Instagram. People regularly show off their travels on social media. While you might want to do a bit of that, make sure your feed also includes some non-travel-related content. This gives your followers a more normalized outlook on your life.
Use your captions to talk about what your days are really like beyond the filtered pictures. Most importantly, be realistic with your followers and make sure you don’t come across as gloating or boastful.
Show Off Your Work
It’s no easy feat to live as a digital nomad. It takes courage, determination, and strategy to set up a way to make money while traveling. Don’t be shy when it comes to getting real about what the nomadic life is actually like.
Talk about your amazing excursion to Macchu Picchu, but also share work updates about your clients, the state of your business, and the projects you are working on at the moment.
Show your social media followers, friends, and family that this apparently privileged life isn’t a gift, but that you actually work hard to live the lifestyle you’ve chosen.
Find Other Ways to Define Yourself
Just like any job shouldn’t define who you are, being a digital nomad doesn’t define you at your core.
Project your image as a well-rounded person, who simply happens to be working online from various places around the world.
Make sure, wherever you are, you find new hobbies or continue developing old ones. You like dancing and you are working in Argentina for the next three months? Find some tango lessons!
Another great way to diversify your life is by volunteering in the local communities. This is also a wonderful way of giving back to the places and people that have welcomed you and made you feel at home, however briefly.
Lastly, is there something you are passionate about; be it women empowerment, free education for all children, access to safe water? Find a reputable charity that works in your field of interest and either donate some of your profits or advocate for them on your social media.
Talk About More Than Just Traveling
Remember that being a digital nomad isn’t a competition to see who has traveled most. You don’t want to be that person who is constantly reminding others of their time in Chile hiking the Andes, or in India visiting a Hindu temple, or in Tanzania spotting lions on safari!
The fact you are away from home often doesn’t mean you should forget about your friends and family either. Make sure you stay up to date with their lives and be down to earth enough that your loved ones don’t feel alienated. Make them feel like you are still a part of their life by showing interest in their stories and updates.
The One Place You Can Embrace a Digital Nomad Identity
While it’s important to break away from a digital nomad identity if it bothers you, you can feel free to be your true nomad self amongst other nomads.
Join Nomads Embassy to connect with fellow nomads all over the world and share travel stories, business advice, and more!
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When I’m not writing and teaching people how to achieve a location-independent lifestyle, you can find me globetrotting, experiencing new cultures, and working on my amateur photography skills.