Since leaving home in January 2016, we’ve already stayed in four different countries and worked out of six different cities so it’s rather hard to write ‘a day in the life of…’. Depending on the location, our lifestyle can be dramatically different, but each day I try to keep the work-side of things to a very clear routine.
WAKING UP AND STAYING UP
I set my alarm to wake me at 8am every day. I’m a very deep sleeper and although I like to rise as early as possible, it’s a real struggle for me to stay awake even after 8 hours of solid sleep. Once that alarm goes off, I try everything to keep my eyes open.
This usually means grabbing my phone to check emails and notifications. It takes me about half an hour to feel fully awake at which point I’ll bring out my laptop to look for new opportunities on UpWork or other freelance sites.
Recently in Chiang Mai, I started going to the gym each morning. The Strong Gym in Kad Suan Kaew was only a few minutes walk from our place on Siri Mangkalajarn Road and after sending off a few proposals in the morning, I’d head over to get in just as they opened at 10am.
HEADING TO THE OFFICE
Despite being a digital nomad, I try to keep a pretty normal schedule when it comes to work. Unlike many who’ve embarked on digital nomadism to ‘escape the cubicle’, make their own hours and work from home or a cafe, I actually prefer the office environment.
I’m currently arriving at my favourite coworking space at around 9am. At KoHub, where I’m writing this article, I’ll have breakfast, work until lunch and then finish up somewhere between 4pm and 7pm.
When it comes to work, I don’t split my day into different segments (yet). Most of my time is spent working on my blog and YouTube channel, Chris the Freelancer, while I work on gaining stable client work. Every now and then, a job will come in and it will take my focus for the entire day however, right now I keep to a daily todo list on Evernote that I write the night before.
COLLABORATION & DEVELOPING GLOBAL COMMUNITIES
One of the reasons why I enjoy this lifestyle is about being part of a global community. I love meeting like-minded people and will go to as many digital nomad meetups as possible. In Bali, I’d go to events run by Hubud or Dojo and most recently in Chiang Mai, I’d go to the Nomad Coffee Meetup each Friday. Now that I’m in Koh Lanta, I attend the occasional dinner or communal lunch organised by KoHub.
I also have meetings with others who are highly involved in the location independent movement. I’m always looking to collaborate, bring awareness to the movement and inspire others to live a location independent lifestyle. This is my mission when it comes to my brand, Chris the Freelancer.
LIFESTYLE SHARING ON YOUTUBE: CREATING AN ONLINE BRAND
I’ve always been passionate about making films. So when I became location independent, the decision to record and share my new and alternative lifestyle was an easy one. Many of the topics I discuss on YouTube are brand new to the platform and I find it exciting to be on the cutting edge of this whole movement.
My YouTube channel, Chris the Freelancer, is mainly a passion project; but I’ve started leveraging it to gain clients and had my most recent vlog funded by a sponsor. Taking footage is something I do throughout the week but for the occasional interview or coworking guide, I’ll make some time in the morning or afternoon to film.
RINSE AND REPEAT
Most nights, my girlfriend Denise and I will head out to dinner together, maybe check out a few shops at the mall or go to a social event. I try to get to bed before midnight and will only generally have a beer or two when out with friends.
Before going to bed, I review my general to-do list on the app ‘Things’ as well as my Trello boards and put together a list of tasks for the following day. I’ll set my alarm, tuck myself in and get ready to do it all again the next day.