Quarter 1: How to Get Started

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Another different New Year has come but have your plans changed? For many people, personal life is, more or less, the same old thing, but for those more open-minded, there are new possibilities galore!

You must have noticed a rapid change of trends, particularly in the sphere of remote work. With many economies now striving to attract new business people to quickly cover up the pandemic losses, opportunities are as abundant as it gets!

Remote work, freelancing, digital nomadism… these are only some of the new opportunities, but you can also choose a fine mixture of them all and rely on hybrid work if that suits you better.

No matter your plans, you should shape clear ideas as now is, so to speak, the perfect moment to embrace the change and start living life the way you want to.

Without any doubt, the greatest benefit of the rise of the gig economy is the fact that the once helpless workforce now can choose among an offer so huge that there is a prospect for everyone.

So, what are your plans for Q1?

Here are some ideas, from big leaps to small, forgotten necessities.

Put Your Health First

First things first. Health undoubtedly must come first. If you’re feeling unwell, a stellar salary won’t help you much in the long run, so think about the modern challenges of our hectic times.

Stress and anxiety have become common among people of all ages and so have unhealthy habits. If you’re relying on fast food and unhealthy snacks, start with changing your habits. Put a bowl with fresh fruit on your desk and swap your snack with a banana. Soon enough, you’ll be able to see the difference, both in your body and in your psyche.

Next on, make sure to allocate proper time to your physical and mental health. Take any injury recovery seriously.

If you’re a freelancer or a digital nomad, consider a health savings account for medical emergencies, just in case.

Lastly, sit less, walk more, stretch your muscles regularly, and don’t skip regular breaks! It’s really not that difficult — you only need to get started, and the rest will follow soon.

Make a Point to Be More Sustainable

Whether you’re trying to recycle more or are taking a hard look at your everyday choices, the beginning of the year is an excellent time to look at how your choices are affecting the environment. You’ve probably heard the saying that every little bit helps, and it most certainly does. However, also make some big decisions, when faced with the opportunity. For example, are you thinking about buying a new car? With the federal incentives for EVs, there’s never been a better time to “drive green!”

Decide Exactly How You Will Work: Remote? Hybrid? Freelancer? Digital Nomad?

Everyone seems to be having a difficult time getting started at the first of the year, whether that be needing motivation or knowing how to get organized. It is only understandable, given that the slew of opportunities can make one’s head spin. The key is in focusing on your goals, as it has always been.

First of all, if you’re looking for something new, you should learn how to get a remote job and then consider streamlined tax filing if you’re planning to go one step beyond and become a digital nomad.

Keep in mind, however, that though digital nomadism may be alluring, it is not suitable for people without some savings and a steady client base. Which is to say, start building your portfolio and searching for reliable, recurring clients.

Freelancing (or remote work, for that matter) is not for everyone. Different people have different affinities, which is only to be expected, but the good news is that there are really different multiple work models suitable for literally everyone.

Consider hybrid work models. They basically fall into six vague categories, as follows:

·        Almost entirely off premises – mostly remote work with no office space

·        Almost entirely on premises – limited remote work, large office space the majority of managers and workers

·        Partially remote work, large office space –  the majority of managers and workers spend most, but not all, of their time at the office

·        Partially remote work, multiple hubs – multiple offices with the workforce dispersed among them

·        Multiple microhubs – management and employees are dispersed across small microhubs located in different cities and countries

·        Partially remote work, with flexible office space – no permanent offices; rented flex space used for periodic collaboration (but not connectivity)

Among all these possibilities, surely you’ll find at least one suitable to your taste?

Experimenting is also fine. Try a bit of this and that, pick the best mixture, then build from there.

Learn More Than You Did the Previous Year

For people working in remote teams, it goes without saying that cross-cultural training is a must. With more and more people turning to remote work, it is only to be expected that, sooner or later, you’ll be working with people from different corners of the world, all of which have their own cultures, beliefs and circumstances. Learn to work smoothly with all of them!

In fact, establishing a learning and development routine is crucial. With the whole world being competitors, it is only natural to keep learning and better opportunities will keep appearing. Start with free online courses, as they cost no money and can be accessed at your convenience. So, it would be a pity not to grab the opportunity.

Focus on More Convenient Financial Management

Managing finances is always a rather burning question for reasons we believe don’t need to be elaborated further. Consider mobile accounts, especially if you’re a freelancer or a digital nomad.

Now, this topic can be rather bothersome as there are many opportunities available, but make sure to compare offers and stay on top of developments as your future finances will depend on it. Don’t fall for unreasonable fees – there are so many alternatives out there. Take your time comparing offers and pick the best one(s).

Get More Organized Than EVER Before

Last but not least, stay organized. Admittedly, it’s easier said than done for many, but here’s a hint: employ operational excellence. These ideas can apply to any career, whether you are starting an online course or moving up the ladder of a corporation. It’s about a lot more than productivity.

Operational excellence is “a philosophy of the workplace where problem-solving, teamwork, and leadership results in the continuous improvement in an organization. The process involves focusing on the customers’ needs, keeping the employees positive and empowered, and continually improving the current activities in the workplace,” according to Business Dictionary.

Finally, stick to your resolutions. Eat good food, take regular breaks, pick your gigs, and enjoy life. No amount of money will help you if you’re unhappy, so keep looking for the best work model! Opportunities are just around the corner! Grab them!

Becoming a Digital Nomad: 5 Things to Keep in Mind

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Let’s face it: digital nomadism is a new trend. With more and more people considering going nomad, the question is: what does it take to be successful?

First of all, if you’re considering remote work, now is the time. With the pandemic changing rules of the game, possibilities are abundant. To top it off, an increasing number of countries are offering or planning to start offering special digital nomad visas in an attempt to boost their pandemic-ridden economies.

Back to the first question: how to become a successful digital nomad?

The simple answer is: be prepared and resourceful. The rest is planning. Let’s see how to get started.

1. Gather the Necessary Documentation

Paperwork is that aspect of any change that bears the title “the most cumbersome.” No matter how troublesome, it is still necessary and should be the first step to undertake.

First of all, gather all the documentation you need for the visa. Next on, gather all documentation you may need as an expat. On top of that, it is also advisable to make copies and keep them with a friend or family member back home. You never know what may happen in the future, and getting the missing document once you’re abroad can be downright impossible.

Don’t forget to check your passport validity and renew the passport if it is less than one year.

Finally, obtain an International Driving License if you’re planning to use a car abroad.

2. Mind the Taxes

Taxes are that one troublesome detail many digital nomads have difficulties coping with, especially if they’re traveling all the time. As regards to the countries you’re traveling to, the general rule of thumb is that if you stay less than three months in a country, taxes may not apply to you. However, if you’re planning to become an expat, you’ll need to plan your tax calendar carefully, and know exactly which forms to file.

Don’t forget that U.S. citizens have to pay annual income tax returns in the U.S., in the following cases:

  • If you lived in the state for any duration during the tax year
  • If your immediate family lives in the state while you’re abroad
  • If you have a permanent place of residence in the state
  • If you keep your voting rights, ID card or driver’s license in the state

As regards the income state tax,  if you’re earning income in the state (including pension, retirement income and other government benefits, you’ll need to pay them as well. Only a handful of states don’t levy state income taxes, as follows: Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington State and Wyoming.

There are some ways to alleviate income taxes while working abroad, notably the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion, Foreign Housing Exclusion and Foreign Tax Credit.

And it can’t be avoided – there are expat taxes to keep in mind. Different countries have different taxation systems, but if you stay more than 3 – 6 months in the country in most cases, you’ll have to pay taxes. This is practiced in residential taxation countries such as Australia, China, Japan and Mexico. Other countries, such as Costa Rica, Hong Kong and Singapore impose tax only on income earned in their jurisdiction.

You’ll also need to think about property taxes back home. Whether you are a first-time homebuyer or have owned any other real estate, you’ll still be responsible for those taxes — no matter where in the world you currently reside.

3. Stay Tech-Savvy

Digital nomads simply have to stay on top of digital innovations at all times, as their jobs depend on it. The tools that digital nomads are certain to need include project management tools, workflow automation tools, and all of the best employee apps.

While trends change regularly, it is recommended to familiarize yourself with Asana, Slack, Trello, Zoom and Skype, which are currently the most frequently used tools worldwide.

4. Consider Getting a Health Insurance Policy

U.S. residents won’t have health coverage in the EU, unlike EU citizens. The same applies to the majority of other countries, as countries offering the same benefits to foreigners as to locals are rare.

It’s recommended, therefore, to look into health insurance policies before setting off. Many insurance companies are taking digital nomadism into account and coming up with flexible policies to meet the demand.

Finally, don’t forget to undergo any health treatments back at home. Injury recovery can be more difficult when you’re away from home and traveling.

5. Keep Learning

As mentioned above, digital nomads are lifelong learners. Given that these people have international competition, staying resourceful is a top priority.

Needless to say, with eLearning and mLearning breaking all physical boundaries, continual learning is nowadays available to everyone everywhere. Consider upgrading your knowledge to remain competitive. And while you’re on the go, you’ll see how adult learning can help you achieve your goals.

Additionally, many digital nomads reverse the roles and are also taking the opportunity to teach online. It is yet another job that can easily be done on the go!


Digital nomadism is as exciting as it gets, but you do need to plan ahead, gather all documentation (and make copies), think about health insurance and taxes, and learn how to get a remote job. For the majority of remote workers, these are all logical steps, and they are fully aware of the possibilities and the conditions.

Digital nomadism gives you the choice to live a life you’ll enjoy, so it’s definitely worth the effort. Set your OKRs, look to the future, and stay open to every possibility that comes your way!

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