Living the life of a digital nomad is amazing, right?
Escaping from the energy-draining office culture, to travel the world, armed with your laptop, working from the most serene beach or the top of a mountain (if there is free Wi-Fi of course), eating Spanish Tapas or Italian Pasta or Balinese Bakso Ayam at night.
But behind all the stunning “office-of-the-day” Instagram Posts often lies another truth. The one marked by loneliness and isolation.
The freedom to move wherever whenever you want is great, but it makes it also harder to connect with people – something we really need as human beings! Everybody who has been travelling alone knows how hard the feeling of solitude can kick, especially when you are in an unfamiliar environment.
So here are our self-approved top tips to avoid loneliness:
- Stay connected with loved ones.
While physical distance may separate you from family and friends, make a conscious effort to maintain and nurture those relationships. Videocall them and share your experiences and feelings – they know you the best and can probably also come up with good advises. Plus: seeing familiar faces and being in your comfort-zone will make you feel immediately better!
- Join a community of digital nomads.
Sometimes your people at home might try but not be able to understand, what you are feeling. So, it is important to connect with fellow nomads who understand the challenges and joys of your lifestyle. Attend online forums, meetups, or networking events to build relationships and find support. Usually in popular areas for digital nomads you can find plenty of them. And don’t be afraid to show up alone – it is the same for everybody.
- Engage in local activities.
Book a surf lesson, go into the skatepark, learn Spanish with a class, or attend cultural events – there are a lot of different activities where you can participate and get to know other people in an easy and fun way! Bonus point: a good work-life balance!
- Stay in a hostel.
Another easy way to avoid isolation is staying in a hostel! Especially when you just started travelling it is nice, to be surrounded by other people. Sharing a room or at least a kitchen enables you to have daily small conversations, which can lead into friendships or just stay a nice chat. Just make sure to find a hostel, where you can still find some silence and appropriate working spaces.
- Work in a Coworking space.
If you prefer to have your own space (where you don’t need to worry about somebody stealing your last pudding), like an Airbnb, you should consider going to a Coworking space during the day. Just being surrounded by other people while doing your stuff will make you feel less lonely and usually small talks and connections happen easily. Also “going to work” can establish a routine and add stability to your nomadic life.
- Embrace solitude.
It sounds weird, but sometimes we just have to learn being okay alone. Embracing it as an opportunity for self-discovery and personal growth will shift your mindset. Practicing yoga, reading a book, or doing solo activities like hiking will give you time to understand your needs and desires. (Btw: watching a movie in the theaters without somebody talking or stealing your popcorn is great, try it!)
- Be brave!
In the end, there are always multiple ways to deal with loneliness as a digital nomad. But overall, the most important thing is: Be brave! Just talk to people! In the end, we are all humans and you will see that nothing bad will happen if you try. You already did the biggest step: committing to this exciting (and sometimes intimidating) life. So, you are also strong and brave enough, to deal with this. We believe in you and you are not alone!