Ever thought of quitting the 9 – 5 and taking your work on the road? For some a location independent lifestyle is not just a dream – it’s a reality. I interviewed digital nomad couple Johnny and Radhika from Full Time Nomad to find out how they achieved their work and travel lifestyle.
Digital Nomad Interviews: Johnny and Radhika from Full Time Nomad
Radhika and Johnny are digital nomads from the Gold Coast, Australia. In 2013, they quit their digital marketing jobs to give location independence a shot. Since then, they’ve set up an online marketing agency which allows them to work from anywhere in the world.
They are slow travellers and enjoy immersing themselves in foreign cultures by living in places for a few months at a time. Johnny and Radhika are currently based in Guadalajara, Mexico where they continue to work on their business, their blog Fulltime Nomad and their Spanish language skills. Say hola to them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
The lifestyle of a digital nomad is a dream for so many people. So can you explain briefly how you make money online?
Thanks, it really is a dream and we’re grateful to be living it. We have an online marketing agency where we work with businesses on their digital marketing strategies and efforts such as blogging, content marketing, advertising, email and social media marketing. All our work is completely online and our clients know we’re nomads, so we are able to take our work with us wherever we go.
And what made you decide to work remotely like this and how did you make it happen?
It happened gradually to be honest. First it was a desire to live and work overseas and experience another culture; then it evolved into a desire to just travel for a little while and after that we realised, we could work and travel at the same time!
Travel is our biggest motivator to keep working at this lifestyle so we looked at various ways of making this happen. Ultimately, our experience as digital marketers came in the handiest, and we were able to start our agency and start working with clients while on the road.
What do you like the best about life as a digital nomad ?
The freedom! We can work when, how and from anywhere we want. This gives us the freedom to travel without any restrictions on how much time we spend overseas. It has completely changed the way we travel now (very slowly) and has allowed us to have some incredible experiences.
But nothings perfect right? Are there any downsides?
Of course! The constant movement also means we are constantly leaving places and people behind; and that can be hard. You make great friends but before you know it, your time is up and it’s time to move on. While we love exploring new places, there are days you just want to hang out with people who know you so you don’t have to start from scratch each time. So on that note, we also miss our family and friends from back home a lot!
(But, it’s not enough of a downside to make us want to stop traveling 😉 )
Do you have one standout highlight or biggest achievement?
Johnny: I’ll give you a travel highlight. In 2007, when they announced that Brazil would be hosting the soccer World Cup in 2014 – I promised myself I would be there.
Last year, we spent 8 weeks traveling through Brazil during the World Cup! Brazil is an incredible country and completely soccer-mad. To be there during this massive event was an unforgettable experience for us.
And what has been the greatest challenge?
Radhika: Finding balance, I think. Sometimes we would go overboard with the traveling and not work enough. Then we went through a phase where we worked too much and didn’t spend enough time exploring our new “home”. It’s a constant battle between productivity and fun but I think we’ve gotten a lot better at finding the work/life balance that works for us.
What do you wish you had known before you started working remotely?
That there is such a big community of digital nomads/remote workers/freedom seekers out there! It’s very easy to feel isolated when you start out because you don’t identify with the backpackers you meet while you’re traveling and your friends from home don’t quite understand it either. Meeting others like us (sometimes only via online interactions) has helped us feel like a part of a community of like-minded people. When you have your bad days (and you *will* have bad days) it’s good to know you’re not the only “weirdo” choosing to live an unconventional life.
So, what are your plans and ambitions for the future?
We don’t think too far ahead to be honest. We have some other business ideas in the works but that’s about it. The general life plan is to just travel and experience the world. We don’t do bucket lists, but Johnny’s “next big thing” he wants to do is a Trans Siberian railway journey and for me it is to see the Northern lights.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, what tips would you give for people wanting to follow in your footsteps?
First, to believe that it IS possible. When we tell people what we do, we often get this reaction that “yeah sure, it’s possible for you but *I* could never do that“. We disagree. With all the opportunities the Internet makes available, this really is a realistic lifestyle that almost anyone can aspire towards.
And secondly, once you start to believe it’s possible – work for it. While our social media may show you the beaches, the beers and the beautiful sights we see – that is only part of the story. There is a lot of hard work that goes into creating a sustainable, location independent business but if you DO work at it, it’s completely worth it!
Thanks so much Johnny and Radikha for sharing your secrets to an amazing, location independant lifestyle. Happy travels and best of luck for the future!
Are you a digital nomad or are you living and working abroad? Contact me to be featured in an interview.