Nomadic workers are on the rise. Thanks to advancements in technology and the popularity of working from home throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are leading a remote lifestyle when it comes to their careers.
If you’re working remotely, run your own at-home business, or you’re a freelancer, that gives you the unique opportunity to make a living anywhere. If you love traveling, setting off to new locations while still being able to work can feel like a dream come true.
But, there are some potential challenges to being a nomadic worker. One of the biggest is struggling to make your destinations feel like home. Once the excitement of a new place wears off, it’s important to feel comfortable there, not only to stay productive with work but for your overall well-being.
So, what can you do to make unfamiliar cities feel more like home? How can you fit in as quickly as possible when staying in a new place?
Do Your Research
There’s something exciting and adventurous about jet-setting somewhere new with no real plan in place. But, that’s not very practical when you’re trying to make a living and establish yourself in an unfamiliar city.
Instead, do as much research and planning as possible before traveling somewhere new.
Your research should include some basic information about your destination, including:
- Common language(s)
- Cost of living
- Transportation options
- Available technology
It’s also important to research the safety of certain cities and neighborhoods. There’s no denying that some places are more secure than others. That doesn’t mean you should completely avoid certain locations, but knowing the scope of the neighborhood can help you decide if you should invest in home security cameras, smart tech, and other security measures and make it easier for you to prioritize your safety. Security cameras tend to be a deterrent for would-be thieves, and if anything does happen to your home, they can be useful for legal litigation and providing evidence.
Consider the things that are important to you when it comes to your living space. The more research you do, the more informed you’ll be about the things you will need to get used to. Moving anywhere new is an adjustment. Planning ahead will make that adjustment easier to handle, and you won’t be as surprised by any drastic differences.
Get to Know the People
One of the best ways to feel at home in a new place is to immerse yourself in the culture. Your house or apartment should be a safe haven and a sanctuary no matter where you live, but you can’t spend all of your time there.
After all, one of the best parts of being a nomadic worker is the ability to experience new places and cultures. And, a major part of any culture is the people.
Getting to know the locals will make you feel like you fit into a culture very quickly. Shop at local markets rather than big box stores. Talk to people and find out where they like to eat and what they like to do for fun. Remember, you’re not a tourist. If you’re going to live in a place for any length of time, acting like a local will be the best way to get more comfortable.
Once you have a few favorite locations, try to make some friends. Maybe you always see the same person at your new favorite coffee shop, or you share the same running trail and time as someone else. While it can feel a little intimidating to approach a stranger at first, you might be surprised by how easy it is to strike up a conversation – especially when you already share some common interests. Getting comfortable with uncomfortable situations can be part of your growth experience.
Developing friendships will make it easier to feel at home no matter where you are. You can even take things one step further by inviting people over for outdoor dinner parties, game nights, or drinks. Share aspects of your own culture with them, and it’ll be easy to feel like you’ve been there for years.
Maintain a Strong Support System
No matter where you decide to travel, home is home.
Maybe you sold your house and you’re truly leading a nomadic lifestyle, but there’s nothing quite like the foundational relationships you’ve built throughout your life. Wherever you are now, don’t forget those relationships. Those people are your support system, and it’s okay to lean on them when you’re in an unfamiliar location.
Nomadic careers are fun, but they can also be overwhelming at times. Being a trauma nurse, for example, is already an exhausting job. But, nursing in a different city or country can be even more challenging. If you’re nursing in a vacation city, for example, you’ll have to deal with things like:
- Possible language/communication barriers
- Large crowds
- Higher prices
- Tourist-focused businesses
While many vacation spots are beautiful and come with plenty of perks, it’s easy to feel lonely and a bit lost at times. It’s important for nurses, and any other nomadic profession, to lean on familiarities. Stay in contact with the people at home, and don’t be afraid to “vent” when things get hard. Your focus should be on moving forward, but that doesn’t mean you should forget where you came from. Reconnecting with the people you love can reduce your stress, clear your head, and put you in a state of mind that’s more accepting of your current location.
Whether you’re currently a nomadic worker or you’re thinking about adopting the lifestyle, use these ideas to help your next city feel more like home. Anywhere you hang your hat can end up being a place of comfort and familiarity if you’re willing to take a few extra steps to make it happen.