After my college graduation, I just couldn't stop moving. I never made it a whole year anywhere. I daydreamed about having no apartment at all and traveling. It wasn't that I disliked my location; I just disliked staying in one place. I didn't know what a digital nomad was at the time. But the moment I learned about the lifestyle, I knew it was for me.
Digital nomads are just what I described: people who come and go as they please while working remotely. They may couchsurf, sublet, or stay in hostels or Airbnbs. They have all different professions, from software developers to graphic designers to freelance writers (like yours truly). What they have in common is that when someone asks "where are you based?", they generally can't answer in one word.
Here's the story of how I became a nomad. The short version is, I put it off for months out of fear that I couldn't handle the stress of constant travel. Then, I went to Ibiza and fell in love with a German man. My desire to go to Germany was the motivation I needed to give up my apartment, give away my stuff, and explore the rest of the world while I was at it. I still spend about half my time there, so perhaps I'm not a pure nomad. But I also travel for work about once a month and often visit my friends throughout the U.S.
When I used to confess my desire to be a nomad to friends and family, I'd often encounter unfounded fears ("isn't that dangerous?" — as if there aren't enough safe places in the world to go) and confusion ("what would you do with your stuff?" — which I didn't really need anyway). I wish I'd had more encouraging, positive messages. So, that's what I'm providing here. Being nomadic has its risks, but it also has plenty of advantages. Here are some.