After seven years of traveling basically non-stop and living life as a digital nomad, I decided last year (2019) to hang up my cape and quit the digital nomad lifestyle.
While it’s an incredible lifestyle to have for many reasons—seeing new places, meeting tons of awesome people, doing lots of cool things—there is a major downside to being a digital nomad. And that’s something that I’d like to talk about here in this vlog.
Obviously, I’m talking from my own personal experience, meaning, this might not be the same case with you.
However, apart from my personal observations, I have also talked with tons of other digital nomads about the fact that loneliness and feelings of emptiness are often attached to this lifestyle of continually moving around and being in places where other people do the same thing as well…
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If you struggle with one or more of the following: a lack of satisfaction with life; feelings of emptiness and sadness; feeling stuck in life; burdens you’ve been carrying around for some time that you can’t or dare not talk about with anyone; emotions that make life difficult for you, such as insecurity, fear, sadness, etc.—I can help you.
You can book a 35-minute consultation with me through this link, https://theipsproject.com/jellis-vaes, so I can assess what you are struggling with and what you want to work on to improve yourself or your life. If I can help you, we will continue by booking our first session; that is where the real work will start.
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37 thoughts on “VLOG 017 – The DARK Side of Being a DIGITAL NOMAD: Why I've Stopped Traveling Full-Time”
Understand that, obviously, I’m not saying that you can’t or shouldn’t adopt a digital nomad lifestyle. I am merely trying to put out some advice here on how to achieve a balance, and maintaining a solid group of friends that you can meet up with and see regularly is of extreme importance for our mental health and longevity (as enough studies have pointed out). Feel free to share your thoughts about what I said in the comment section below, or if you have any tips or advice about living the life of a digital nomad! 😊
ℹI am a licensed therapist who practices cognitive behavioral therapy, an evidence-based therapy. If you struggle with one or more of the following: a lack of satisfaction with life; feelings of emptiness and sadness; feeling stuck in life; burdens you've been carrying around for some time that you can't or dare not talk about with anyone; emotions that make life difficult for you, such as insecurity, fear, sadness, etc.—I can help you. You can book a 35-minute consultation with me through this link, https://theipsproject.com/jellis-vaes, so I can assess what you are struggling with and what you want to work on to improve yourself or your life. If I can help you, we will continue by booking our first session; that is where the real work will start. ℹ
Hi Jellis, thank you for that honest video. I've never traveled more than 3 months in a row and now my plan was to travel long-term. I'm in Rio right now for 6 months (still 3,5 months left). Even though I'm at the same place this whole time I can relate to that loneliness you were talking about. I'm creating youtube videos as well. And I wanted to do more travel videos. And I think I can. But the thing I'm noticing that I don't like so much is the loneliness sitting and editing days in a row. And while changing places, I guess this won't get better. I'm not sure. So I'm reconsidering if that is the right plan for me. Maybe a home base with some trips a year might be better. Just like you recommended in the video. It kind of confirms what I was already thinking about that lifestyle. Hope you are doing well in life! I'll hit you up in Instagram. Cheers!
This recent economy made traveling and being a digital nomad made things pretty hard at least for me.. and i hope it can change some day..
Lived in Cancun, Mexico 🇲🇽 for a year and came back to the Us 🇺🇸
I'm pissed and can't wait to travel again. I'm interested in Costa Rica 🇨🇷 Dominican Republic 🇩🇴 and Ecuador 🇪🇨
You sound like you need a traveling companion. The loneliness gets to you if you grow roots in one place. You just need to balance your needs better.
Love from BALI INDONESIA…🇮🇩🇮🇩🇮🇩🇮🇩🇮🇩
Really good points; I think we forget that we are made to be connected to others and having a sense of stability is important.
Or don't travel alone.. get a permanent travel partner
Having a home-base, or multiple home-bases is important, definitely!
4:01 the video finally starts
Hello fellow Belgian, I'm from Namur 🙂 Thanks for putting this video together. I agree with you on the lack of stability, definitely a big negative point of the digital nomad lifestyle. Cheers.
This is so true! I moved my whole life, I decided I need to settle back to my chilhood town but now after this I feel the loneliness so much that put me into depression, and try to forget this by making small trips (that obviously is not working) jup traveling is cool and meeting new people but every goodbye makes me more tired
Interesting perspective. Thank you for sharing 💕 Cute monkey. We haven't started our nomad journey yet, but we plan to do so. Then eventually we want to find a place to settle sometime.. who knows when.
Haha. Love the motorcycle ride edits.
Thanks for sharing.
I’m planning to travel around 4 months a year and be home here in Australia for 8. I think this will create a good balance. Humans generally want safety/security but also novelty in life so travelling for a while and then settling for a while should help me with that balance.
Also, I’ll work really hard for the 8 months I’m here so I don’t need to work as much when travelling and can really soak in the adventures.
Thank you for this informative video. I am not a digital nomad, but reading this, I can't help comparing how digital nomads feel to what flight attendants describe in their vlogs. The similarities are startling: Flight attendants say that constant travel makes them feel lonely (crews are put together by airlines for each flight and usually never see each other again after that one 16-hour flight, even if they had fun together the whole time). Indeed, I am sure that the best way to do it is to have a home base (not necessarily your country), and be gone 10 to 20 percent of the time. Good luck to you all.
Does working for Uber and living in my car makes me a digital nomad? Coz I did it for a hole year and I loved it. Now I’m studying developing online skills so I can fully dive in to being homeless.
Exactly what I felt after traveling around for 10 years
My idea is getting life savings and make a home base is some way cheaper country that in now…that this money worth much more…
Per example if you from Australia with 160k savings you can live over 30 years in Indonesia or Philipnies with this savings, (not Bali) cheaper place…and do nothing if you spend 4K 5k per year that’s mean if you can able to save this money at age of 40…you can move there and enjoy the life without worries
The main problem? Well family friends and kind of health issues /: nothing is perfect
This Reasons was very ok before pandemic stuff….need a update after 2 years…
I am from India, and I recently started talking to an American guy who is a digital nomad. One day he is in Frankfurt, next day in Singapore, a week later in Berlin, then some other city or country. The longest he stayed in one place was 15 months in Taiwan. I think this kind of a lifestyle requires a very different kind of mindset and maybe even fitness level. I still can't wrap my head around it. Lol. I'm amazed everytime he mentions his travel plans. I would love to take 2-3 short trips every year, but I prefer stability as well.
Come to Philippines 🙂
Fantastic video. Really important to highlight the other side of what is often viewed as an aspirational lifestyle. Especially, when you hit mid 30s, you realize a lot of things change in terms of priorities.
Thank you for sharing and posting this! It’s really helped me!
I always felt like Digital Nomadry is simply WANDERING AWAY from SELF, yet SELF follows you everywhere you go 🚶♂️
O my gosh I found your video while I’m having exact same life moment. I am just SO TIRED. Right now looking for place to stay for longer.
Y’all are unbelievably selfish an self centered.. it’s amazing how you have no clue of the damage you cause to the economy in little towns in 3rd world countries like mine (Panama) and how much you impact and affect the inequality index.. so much that at the end of the day the only thing that you care about and the reason why you quit nomad lifestyle is your loneliness? Wow… I mean there’s people starving to dead out there
You picked an unfortunate time to leave the nomad track.
Seeing this March 2022 and thank you for sharing this!! Super helpful for me at this point in my life!! 🙂
There needs to be a balance in every aspect of our lives and that is true in this case too.
You're right. Good message. I agree with you.
I'd agree with staying in one place most of the time. Traveling can get very lonely and depressing. I'd only want to be traveling for 2 months every year
That's a brilliant point about we often forget to build communities in our own base…I definitely fell into that. And I agree that a more sustainable way to nomad is perhaps not full-time nomading, but having a base to focus on work, but the flexibility to move around a few months of the year.
really liked this!
Love Belgium. Especially the beers 😀 have visited maybe 4 times now and will possibly go again.
Im born an raised where people shooting, car jacking, robberies, homicides etc.. I prefer to leave and never come back