Welcome to the 25th and 1st 2017 edition of “How to Make Money While You Travel” which features successful nomadic teams and interviews with travel entrepreneurs.
This month I interviewed Milena Dawidzionek, the founder of GoMilena.com; a travel blog with a focus on how to become location independent and work from anywhere. Milena also works as a translator and copywriter to fund her travels!
“Become a Successful Digital Nomad”
Q1: So, how do you make money while you travel?
I work as a copywriter and translator. I have my own business, and I can work from anywhere. I write and translate blog posts, product descriptions, website content, newsletters – basically every type of content on the web. All my work happens online, even communicating with and invoicing clients.
I am also developing my blog on how to enjoy life as a digital nomad and how to become location independent. I hope to receive more passive income from it in the future.
Q2: What are your reasons for becoming location independent?
I graduated from a university in 2012 with a focus on Russian and English studies and immediately moved to the country of Georgia (Caucasus) where I was working for a local NGO. While at school I was working with internally displaced children from Abkhasia. At the same time, I was already taking action towards being location independent by completing simple copywriting or translation tasks online.
First of all, my reasons for becoming location independent is flexibility. I can work from anywhere I want, anytime I want, and on anything I want. Second, I have control. I get to decide what career path to take and what skills to develop.
I can’t imagine myself sitting in an office and working from 9-to-5 for 5 days in a row. I really appreciate my current situation when I can leave suddenly and travel. Today I am in Poland, but tomorrow I might send you greetings from Mexico or Thailand.
Q3: What challenges do you face in your career while you work and travel?
Being able to work from anywhere is not all a bed of roses. I need to be in touch with my clients any time they contact me. It means I rarely travel without my laptop or at least my phone with a proper Internet connection.
Another thing is scheduling work. While I have some long-term projects, there always happens to be something in between. Clients can contact me anytime, and I need to arrange my schedule to meet deadlines. While there are some days that I have completely no work, there are also days when I need to work from an airplane, airport, train, a hostel, or any other place just to manage to do everything on time.
Q4: How do you find work while you travel?
I have regular clients, and I get others from references. But it took me 3 years to create my brand. Before I was using Upwork as my primary source of projects, and I really enjoyed it – it’s a big platform with any type of online job you can imagine. Most people can easily find jobs for themselves there.
A few tips to find work online and be able to travel at the same time:
- Know what you are good at.
- Present yourself in the most professional way.
- Build a strong portfolio (even though it may require some less-paid work at the beginning).
- Apply for as many jobs you can enjoy as possible.
- Be persistent!
- Nothing comes easily.
Q5: What’s a typical day for you? Do you have a set schedule?
Each day is much different from another, and this is something that I really like about being location independent.
I wake up any time I want. Usually, I work for 3 hours in the morning and 3-4 hours in the evening. It means I have the whole afternoon for myself. I use this time to explore the area, go swimming, hike, meet friends, etc. Of course, there are days where I need to work more and some less, so everything depends on my schedule. I am flexible and can easily adjust my time to what works that day.
Q6: What would your advice be to someone who wants to quit their desk job to become location independent?
Make sure you really want it. We often hear how cool it is to work and travel at the same time. But nobody tells you how much work and effort you need to put into it to have a comfortable life.
Be persistent in what you do. The more you work, the faster you get where you want to be on your professional path. Don’t be afraid to take on a new challenging job, but make sure you really enjoy what you do. As a result, you will treat it as a fun way to spend your time rather than a duty you just need to fulfill.