The Premium Nomad
A Premium Nomad is someone who is experienced in working internationally for an organization or as an independent.
The Premium Nomad lives and/or travels abroad for a longer period of time.
Typical Nomad Struggles:
• Developing a healthy Work-Life Balance
• Complicated sense of Identity & Belonging
• Undesirable Workload
• Feelings of Loneliness
• Lack Emotional Support
• Healthy Routines & Self Care
Interviewing Digital Nomad Ericka
What do you do for a living?
I like to say that I make people’s life easier for a living! I’m very versatile and don’t like to settle for one activity.
But there are common factors: building things and helping people thrive.
I am a professional writer, project manager and assistant: I cover many fields. www.diiwoglobal.com
I am also an assistant in a very specific area which is close to my heart: travel. I help people to prepare and undergo their own unique trip at WI’NOMAD: www.wi-nomad.com
I also write for myself and I hope to publish one day.
Working from anywhere
Who are you: how would you describe yourself?
I am an Explorer – physically and creatively
I’m a thirty-something woman of the world, free-spirited, multilingual, obsessively curious, I want to know everything and go everywhere. I am currently on the metaphorical highway to be an accomplished entrepreneur and a blooming writer.
What do you do when you’re not working?
Writing some more. Reading. Playing music. Exploring the country I am in and taking a lot of pictures. I also do a lot of research about personality, personal growth and social issues. And finally, I volunteer in NGOs (currently a member of JCI – Junior Chamber International, which aims to inspire young people to create a better world and empower them to this end).
Also… Netflix 😀
What does your family life look like?
Pretty calm and well-balanced. My husband works mostly non-nomadic. Sometimes he accompanies me during my trips, sometimes he doesn’t. I strongly believe that our bond not only strengthens when we do things together, but also when we miss each other and reunite after being apart for a while.
We allow one another to blossom in our own way and our different perspectives complete one another on life, business and travel.
Where do you find the emotional support you need? What do you find most difficult and how do you cope with it?
This is what is primarily lacking in my nomad life right now. I have difficulty building a meaningful network of like-minded professional nomads.
My extended family and closest friends live thousands of kilometers away and none of them have a lifestyle like mine. Therefore, as much as they all accept my way of living and would like to support me, the support I experience is very limited. I feel very disconnected from their lives and outlooks on life, and they feel quite uninterested in my day-to-day preoccupations.
Basically, I feel out-of-touch with everybody.
I am not sure how I cope. Facebook groups for Nomads help me realize I am not alone in this situation but they don’t give me the necessary space to talk with people about anything of real substance.
I also write down my challenges and try to self-examine. But right now, this situation is not ideal.
What do you love about your life?
Freedom! Isn’t it the purpose of a nomad life? I just pack and go!
How do you take care of your mental and physical self?
As an introspective woman, I think that I am mentally fine. Sometimes, when work is not what I want it to be, I can end up in a crisis of confidence. Self-confidence is hard to maintain when you are self-employed and on your own. I deal with it by writing and having my friends and online followers appreciate the sneak peaks I provide, haha. But I do miss the emotional support…
My physical well-being is another matter altogether. When I’m are at home, wherever I am at that moment, I just don’t bother with my appearance, haha. This is a vicious circle, because when I don’t feel appealing, of course my self-confidence doesn’t really rise back up. I have to make a lot of effort to get dressed appropriately, engage in physical exercise, eat well…
On the road, the hard part is to find the time to exercise and a way to eat healthy, especially in countries where the culinary culture is very different from what I am used to. When you are obsessed with finding new places, trying exciting things, starting challenging projects or meeting new people, you can easily lose your own sense of well-being. Burn-outs are a real deal for Digital Nomads too! And you can get tired with finding accommodation too and changing places to sleep so many times.
To compensate, I set up a morning routine: drink water, do yoga, eat a good breakfast. But I confess that I have skipped it many times during my travels. Don’t follow my example!
Stick to a routine, your body needs it.
Many Nomads & Expats struggle with maintaining a healthy work-life balance. How are you dealing with this and what works/doesn’t work for you?
When I started my business, I worked in the middle of the night, on Sundays, and of course, never took any real vacation. When I realized that I was isolating myself even more than I already was, I put a stop to it.
Nowadays, except when there is an urgent reason, I don’t work at night nor on Sundays. I think I have found a pretty good balance: the middle of the night is now for my own musing :D; Sundays are for engaging with outside world.
To stay focused, I have downloaded an app which controls all notifications exactly the way I want it.
Now, the big question always is: how to cope with this time management when I’m in a different time zone than where my clients live? It’s just really important to be honest with your clients and define a time slot together when they can contact you, etc. and make sure to plan for resting and relaxation.
Next year I will be at the other side of the world: noon for some, will be midnight for me. As of today, I don’t know how I’ll manage this – and I haven’t found anyone yet to talk about it and how to resolve it.
What does a balanced life look like for you?
Being able to create and share life with my closest ones, while running business. When I work, sometimes the load is overwhelming. Periods when I am super creative are the periods I am the most balanced. I just need to respect my resting and exploring windows!
If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be?
I wish I could see my parents and siblings more often. As a nomad, I have picked travel and expatriation over them – consciously and resolutely. But I still miss them tremendously.
What does ‘letting go’ mean to you?
Stop being a perfectionist and just do it. Stop wanting to control people’s mind and just listen.
What do you think is important for people who work and travel alone, to always remember?
Branches of a tree can extend over a great distance. But without roots, there’s no branches, no leaves, no tree. Find something, somewhere or someone, to be rooted in. It is important for your peace of mind, your mental growth and the wholeness of your heart.
What is your life motto?
Open-mindedness will take you to amazing places.
With DIIWO Global, she champions the French language and helps other implement successful projects in diverse disciplines. Her fascination for traveling leads her to create WI’NOMAD, a travel assistance service, and to cultivate within herself and others, openness, tolerance and the sense of adventure.