In this episode B and Jack talk about what to consider when choosing a hobby as a digital nomad. More specifically how to choose hobbies that present characteristics that are compatible with a traveling lifestyle.
Table of Contents
1.1. The relation between hobbies and the digital nomad lifestyle [5:04]
- After you get the basics down related to your digital nomad lifestyle most people are interested in hobbies.
- What we are talking about here is a hobby you take more seriously. Things that you want to practice on a consistent basis. Things that you want to progressively get better at. Things you truly enjoy and want to make a core part of your life.
- As with anything else related to a digital nomad lifestyle choosing a hobby will require some forethought and adaptation.
- In other words, there are simply certain hobbies that are more “compatible” with the digital nomad lifestyle and others. You should prefer those that are compatible.
- We are not saying that digital nomads should choose a hobby based on this compatibility issue. Rather, we are suggesting that digital nomads should look at the things that they already enjoy doing as their hobbies, and, among those things, prioritize the ones that are also compatible with the digital nomad lifestyle.
1.2. The features of hobbies compatible with digital nomadism [12:19]
- How available are the facilities and/or environment for you to practice your hobby on a global scale?
- Is this hobby something you can do in most cities around the world?
- A hobby that is widely available is of course the desirable one.
- How adaptable is the practice of your hobby for different types of circumstances?
- Is this hobby the kind of thing you can transfer and adapt to slightly different contexts?
- A hobby that is very adaptable is of course the desirable one.
- How much equipment do you need to practice your hobby?
- Does it require no equipment, a small amount of equipment that is easy to pack, or a big amount of equipment that will take a considerable amount of space in your luggage?
- The fewest amount of equipment is of course the desirable thing.
- Last but not least, let us think about the cost of practicing your hobby on the road.
- To practicing your hobby in different places around the world, will you spend 10 dollars or 100 dollars per month on average?
- Lower cost is of course the desirable thing.
1.3. What if you still want to do your hobby and it doesn’t exhibit these features [23:20]
- Broadening your hobby
- This means that rather than picking up a single hobby, you take up a general “kind” of thing as your hobby.
- For example, rather than having “Karate” as your hobby, you should pick “martial arts” as your hobby.
- Narrow Your Base Choices
- The next possible solution is narrowing the destinations based on your hobby.
- You will only select a city as your base if it offers the necessary things for you to keep doing your hobby
- Another more extreme solution is to “bite-the-bullet” regarding the lack of compatibility of your hobbies and your nomadic lifestyle.
- Simply put, you need to accept that continuing your hobby while being a nomad, will inevitably give you some headaches.
Mr. B: Hey hello welcome to the nomad tactics podcast you provide life optimizing tips and systems for digital nomads. I'm your host B. and I'm join with the co host Jack the topic today is about hobbies and the digital nomad lifestyle.
Mr. B: I would start with a quick summary of the episode.
Mr. B: First me and Jack going to talk about the relation between hobbies and the digital nomad lifestyle.
Mr. B: After that we gonna talk about the main features that makes a hobby compatible with such lifestyle.
Mr. B: Finally we will talk about some workaround solutions if you have a hobby that doesn't fit the digital nomad lifestyle well.
Mr. B: I hope you enjoyed the episode.
Jack: So hello Mister B. hello hello.
Mr. B: How are you Jack?
Jack: Very good how about you yeah pretty good.
Mr. B: Cold day here in Taiwan.
Jack: Yeah it is.
Mr. B: Lantern festival.
Jack: May yeah it is wooden's Lester day.
Mr. B: Couldn't sleep that much the temple next to my house and a firecracker
Jack: We realize that crackers yeah it's one of the costumes in Taiwan yeah.
Jack: So since our episode today's talking about traveling and hobby.
Jack: What's your hobby before you start travel.
Mr. B: So I would say my hobbies.
Mr. B: Stayed pretty much the same before I start traveling and after it, there are some hobbies that were considering doing but I didn't go through and we're going to partially explain why that's the case here in this episode. Something like learning the to play the guitar I thought for a while but in the end because of the digital nomad lifestyle that I live I decided not to to follow on but going back to two distinct that I do as a hobby.
Mr. B: I would say the I have three main hobbies.
Mr. B: So as you know very well Jack I'm quite into humanities as an academic subject right?
Mr. B: So yeah I really enjoy reading humanities in general psychology sociology philosophy stuff like that I study quite extensively.
Mr. B: So yup that's number one I am also quite into fitness so more specifically weight lifting I have been doing this for a while and I like photography something that I'm not doing that much these days. I really enjoyed the process of thinking about photos beforehand and think about composition editing all all the proces is quite enjoyable for me.
Mr. B: What about your Jack.
Jack: Yup personal and I enjoy cooking quite a lot I like to study some course like Masterclass they have some really good course yet and I would sort of copy the technique and the recipe on there.
Jack: You know and it's it's fun for me to do so.
Mr. B: Yeah whenever we travel together I find you spend way more time in the kitchen and I do I just do oats.
Jack: Yeah cooking is fun for me.
Mr. B: Yeah.
Jack: So yeah Mister B. today we're gonna talk about hobbies and how it relates to this normal lifestyle.
Mr. B: Yes.
Jack: And it think we'll be good to put this this topic into the system we create digital nomad life system and this of course is this digital nomad life system and is a system a six up system that helps you design a optimized version of my life.
Jack: Yes so where would you put this hobby into this system.
Mr. B: Yeah Mister Jack as you said it's a six-step system and in my opinion, the topic today falls under the fifth step of the system or what is called nomadic living. So to give a brief overview of this step nomadic living basically can be understood all advice that would be relevant for digital nomad when he's living in the base and the base simply means the city his living for a while. Since the hobbies something you're going to practice why you're living in a base it makes sense to think about this topic in this specific step.
Jack: Yeah Mister B since to put this into the step five of the system nomadic living
Mr. B: Yep.
Jack: I assume that you think hobbies something you do after you settled down as a digital nomad.
Mr. B: Yeah I guess many people would do so
Jack: Okay so what do you think this is an important topic to bring up in here.
Mr. B: I feel like hobbies.
Mr. B: It's the kind of scene that once you go through and you get sorted out with the basics like let's say you figure out how to make a living working online and you figure out how to plan your trips and perhaps you learn how to create a social circle as a nomad then live a healthy lifestyle I think.
Mr. B: The natural progression there the thing that people will naturally want to do is to develop their hobbies. I don't know if you would agree with that do you think hobbies or something as essential as I'm portraying.
Jack: Well I wouldn't put the most in social things in terms of living but I think people would do after they figure out the money.
Mr. B: Yeah yeah.
Jack: That's something they would do afterwards.
Mr. B: Yeah so that's pretty much my point is perhaps not the first thing that comes to mind.
Mr. B: Or the first thing in the order of the importance.
Mr. B: But I think it's naturally something that people think about.
Mr. B: After they have the basic needs covered.
Mr. B: And I don't know I feel like more and more people nowadays are taking their nonworking life's seriously. You know back in the day it seems like when I talk to my grandpa he used to be solely focused on work and have not been many interests outside it perhaps it was just him but.
Mr. B: It seems like life was more focused around work so like even if you made the if you ask him or someone from his generation.
Mr. B: What do you do the only answered they would give would be work-related but I think more and more people nowadays.
Mr. B: Would give a broader response to that question.
Jack: Well the thing that's also relates to our generation has very different view was their generation.
Mr. B: Yeah.
Jack: Although sure their generation thinks a lot of thing we've as hobby lights a working now going to the gym they think it's play.
Jack: They they think it's something you you you play with the the only kids do that instead of adults.
Mr. B: Could be.
Mr. B: They think the pursue of certain things that we think are worthwhile.
Mr. B: In their mind.
Mr. B: It's not that were filed specially perhaps if they have a very pragmatic outlook in life right?
Jack: Yeah but I do think having a hobby you can make sure let's say life more well rounded and experienced more into life.
Jack: So yeah Mister B. I'm here on the show notes you wrote some quiet.
Jack: Strict definition of hobby.
Jack: Things like a hobby something you take seriously you want to make it the as a quarter of your life.
Mr. B: I'm here yeah I don't know if I would say a very strict definition for hobbies it seems to me we used to word hobbies to mean to slightly different things and we kind of bundle those together. And so their activities that we do outside of our work that we take more serious and things that we do more casually so for example let's say you enjoy drinking beers some people might say drinking is my hobby.
Mr. B: And it might very well be the case because of something you do outside of work and you enjoy doing but that's not the sense of the word hobby that we are talking about today. We are talking about this things that you do more seriously things that you want to practice or to do on a consistent basis things that you want to progressively understand or get better at. And I mean these are of course things you enjoy but they are also core parts of your life is not something you do casually. So you said cooking and I think cooking for you fits the criteria is something you're getting better at you would enjoy it's a big part of your life you do quite constantly and you're serious about it same thing for weight lifting or studying humanities for me. So that's the sense of hobbies that I'm trying to to address here today.
Jack: Yeah I agree with you they just some people do take hobby quite seriously almost like a craft besides their work.
Mr. B: Yeah.
Jack: When I say work is something I make money with.
Jack: It does make sense talked a hobby in the day to day life.
Jack: But the thing is the target we're talking about here is about the normal lifestyle.
Jack: And why do you think hobby is an interesting issue to them.
Mr. B: I'm in as anything else right this is a point we already made a couple of times in our website and in our podcasts when you started this digital nomad lifestyle.
Mr. B: You gotta go through some sort of adaptations regarding the things you do and I think hobbies are no different you might have certain hobbies when you had the the stable normal life and when you decide to embark in this digital nomad lifestyle you might be required for you to do some sort of adaptation and forethought.
Jack: I see so you you think when the digital nomad on his travel journey.
Jack: And sometimes the hobby is not fitting with his journey.
Mr. B: I mean this doesn't apply only to hobbies as I said it's it's a more general idea but there are certain things there are more compatible with this digital nomad lifestyle than others and we can think about this compatibility also in terms of hobbies certain hobbies better fit the digital nomad lifestyle than other hobbies you know what I know what i mean?
Jack: Yeah I can think of some some hobbies they for example my cooking if the the place I rented doesn't have a kitchen.
Jack: Or if the kitchen doesn't some equipment yet some issue can not be done.
Mr. B: Yeah you're spot on with this remark about cooking you just made and I think that's the perfectly leeway for us to go to the main topic of this podcast. Which is about which features hobby should present in order to be compatible with a digital nomad lifestyle so just to get the obvious out of the way the let's say basic thing you need for a hobby is of course the enjoyment for the activity or for the thing right? So when you're talking about picking a hobby and seeing if it's compatible with the digital nomad lifestyle we are ready assuming it's something you like. But let's move on to talk about specific features that make a hobby compatible with the digital nomad lifestyle.
Jack: So yeah of course you should enjoy your hobby obviously that's the first trait that you should have a hobby.
Mr. B: Yes.
Jack: So therefore it features real here for whether hobby is compatible with this traveling with you.
Mr. B: Digital lifestyle
Jack: So the first item you have here is availability.
Mr. B: Yep.
Jack: Then the the definition gave here is how available are the facilities or the environment for you to practice your hobby on a global scale. Why is this important?
Mr. B: So I think that's extremely important because as a digital nomad you gonna be in different countries therefore if you don't have the facilities or the environment necessary to practice your hobby you are in big trouble of course what you're looking for here.
Mr. B: Are hobbies that you can do in most cities around the world I was thinking about certain examples to make the whole concept less abstract okay so let's think about ice hockey as a hobby or running as a hobby let's think about ice hockey players what do you.
Mr. B: To practice ice hockey you need a hockey rink the question is how available you think are these facilities around the world. I mean as far as I know it's quite hard to still find ice hockey stadiums around the world specially if you go to like warmer countries.
Jack: Yeah it's kinda hard to imagine Thailand to provide the hockey plays for who people likes to play ice hockey.
Mr. B: So yeah so the general point here is ice hockey is not some being widely available worldwide. On the other hand if we take something like running you can run pretty much in any gym around or even if you stay in a hotel most likely they're going to have a treadmill let's say that for one reason or another you can't find a gym you not stay in a hotel go outside you just run in the park. So the facility is necessary to run a pretty much available everywhere so at least in this specific feature of the availability if we wore to consider this two things running would be a better fit for digital moment.
Jack: The next item here is adaptability and I guess this is the items that you.
Jack: See how adept the bow is the hobby to the circumstances that you are in.
Mr. B: So this second item of adept ability is kind of related to the first one to do with availability but the same time different so the basic idea here is that.
Mr. B: When you are practicing your hobby you need to see if you can transfer and adapt to 5h3 slightly different context that you will surely encounter around the world in different countries.
Mr. B: Again it sounds a little bit abstract that I hope
Mr. B: That with an example I can make things slightly more clear so let's get to new possible hobbies let's think weightlifting and karate so when your weight lifting basically you are going to the gym. And the gym going to have different sorts of facilities.
Mr. B: You might have a gym with a lot of free weights or you might have a gym full of machines in the end of the day no matter if you're doing a machine based work out or a free weight based workouts you are doing weightlifting right? so you can adapt weightlifting to this two different contexts now thinking about another hobby let's say you you have karate the martial arts as your hobby so if you go around the ward I'm sure you can find martial arts centers that offer different martial arts but karate won't be that easy to find you might find in some places you won't find in many others.
Mr. B: But the point here is that you can say oh I fight karate and today I'm going to fight ju jitsu or taikuondo because that's the only thing available in this martial arts center because you can't adapt to karate in that way so it's like you have different fighting principles and you can adapt those to this new style of martial arts.
Jack: I see so different hobbies specially martial art something is more specific they there they can't really substance or each other.
Mr. B: Something like that you can't adapt to slightly different circumstances that well.
Jack: I see this.
Mr. B: So I'm in thinking back.
Mr. B: To your hobby cookie it's something that you can pretty much adapt and adaptation gonna be done around the kitchen let's the Airbnb that you have available to you might have a kitchen with a microwave but no oven in you might have a kitchen with a stove but no microwave and you gonna still be able to do cooking you just going to need to see what is there and adapt considering it.
Jack: Yeah you're you're right with cookie that then that's how people cook around the world.
Jack: Yeah so the next feature you have in here is the equipment I think this is quite straightforward.
Mr. B: Yes.
Jack: What do you need for when practice your hobby and is easy to carry around.
Mr. B: Yes yep yeah it's quite straightforward as you said. So how much equipment do you need basically is that no equipment at all is that a small amount of equipment or is that the big load and I mean and I'm sure most digital nomads would agree that every inch of space that you have in your luggage is quite valuable so we don't want to put stuff there that is not really relevant.
Jack: Yeah I think the really good example here would be a musician if you want to carry his guitar.
Mr. B: Yeah that's actually in the beginning of this podcast I almost forgot that I mentioned that before becoming a digital nomad I was considering learning guitar but I very quickly realized that these would very likely implied that I would need to carry around a guitar.
Jack: Yeah or else you can like some digital nomad would do is if they buy a guitar on the base and then sell when leaving.
Mr. B: Yes that could be a possible workaround solution though that would involve a little bit of time and perhaps extra money every time. But so yeah I think we both agree guitar would be the kind of thing you perhaps should avoid as a digital nomad the things that would be more compatible in terms of equipment to this digital nomad lifestyle.
Mr. B: Quite naturally would be things that require very little equipment so
Mr. B: Let's think about an example let's say you are into drawing I don't draw myself.
Mr. B: But I would assume you need what the pencil case full of stuff
Jack: I mean if you're doing a sketch.
Mr. B: Yep yep so a pencil case is much more workable than a guitar so in that case we were to compare let's say drawing and guitar playing the guitar. Drawing would clearly win here.
Jack: I see because you can carry the pencil around makes sense makes sense the next item we have here is obviously the costs it's like you don't want of course you don't spend too much money for practicing your hobby.
Mr. B: As everything else cost of living including the cost of things related to your hobby gonna drastically vary around the word so you would agree Jack that there is a big difference if you just need to spend twenty dollars a month vs a hundred dollars a month on things related to your hobby so what what would you say is the expensive hobby.
Jack: I think some exotic hobby that are not universally recognized those say maybe like making a quorum will be expensive but things are common when would it be too expensive.
Mr. B: Yeah I I'm in I would surely agree usually weird things or unusual things tend to be more expensive but I'm not sure if I agree that common things cannot be expensive so if we think for example golf or swimming these are things that are quite common but.
Jack: Yeah you're right with the with golfing I guess but the how come streaming how come swimming that's expensive sports.
Mr. B: I'm in as everything we're talking about just kind of relative and you're comparing with other hobbies so swimming in some parts of the words to have access to swimming pool probably will need to pay a hundred dollars per month or even more if you go back to the big capitals so if you compare it to the great majority of other hobbies I think a hundred dollars is quite a lot to pay per month.
Jack: Yeah I guess paying a hundred dollars a month for swimming is something quite expensive to do you say you're paying a hundred dollars a month is kind of expensive but what if I still want to swim but I can't because too expensive what do I do about it?
Mr. B: Sure yeah I think that's a really important point that you raise and we kind of a related topic and we're talking a little bit about before. So you you told me to look Mister B. you make all these points about hobbies but I feel like people just choose the hobbies and they'd not gonna try to adjust your taste based on their.
Mr. B: Travel lifestyle in my counter argument to that was that yes that's true but I feel like people have a lot of things they are interested in and the point of the episode today's that with this knowledge with this items in mind they can go through the things that they enjoy and pick the things that better fit. That are more compatible with the digital nomad lifestyle and progress on those and perhaps ditch or do less frequently the things that are not compatible with the a digital nomad lifestyle but none the less as you just said now some people might be really really interested on certain thing on the certain hobby.
Mr. B: So the natural question is what should you do that and is there any possible solution or workaround.
Mr. B: And in my opinion there are some.
Mr. B: And the first one it has to do with broadening your hobby so what do I mean here is rather than picking a single specific thing as your hobby you could try to see your hobby in broader terms.
Mr. B: To illustrate once again let's think a little bit about karate and martial arts as we talked about before.
Mr. B: Karate has the problem of not being very adaptable that's a problem for a digital nomad but perhaps if you changes the focus and you start seeing yourself as being someone interested in martial arts rather than specifically karate you wouldn't have a much easier time because whenever you go to a new city you gonna most likely be able to find the martial arts center and if you start as I said seeing yourself as someone that is interested in martial arts more generally you're gonna be able to to train whatever is available there.
Jack: I see so if you're practicing karate and you can always expand to something bigger.
Mr. B: Yes.
Jack: Let's say any kind of the martial art yes but I'm just kind of curious how about that say the example we just meant swimming or golfing how can you expand that?
Mr. B: So I don't think that's a solution that going to work across the board so there are certain things that.
Mr. B: Are just a way they are and there's not much you can do about it you can't really broad did the scope of the hobby.
Mr. B: The other things such as martial arts perhaps boards it's another thing you could broaden so rather than surfing or snowboard or skate elect board sports and you try to developed on all of those things.
Jack: I see so's like school of hobby
Jack: Or as you just said you can't really broaden it but you can always choose the second option here is you pick the destination based on the hobby you have let's say the swimming or golfin you can always choose a beach city where is famous for golfing.
Mr. B: Yeah that's the second solution to narrow your destinations so instead of thinking oh I wanna go to Tokyo because I wanna see Japan you gonna think the stock you'll fit the hobbies that I have and as you just mentioned swimming maybe swimming is very expensive in Tokyo if you're really into swimming.
Mr. B: Maybe reconsidered Tokyo go to a smaller city Japan that have affordable swimming pools are perhaps don't even go to Japan in the first place I mean this kind of a more radical solution but if you're really into the hobby perhaps that's something you're willing to do.
Jack: Yeah I guess that's true if you love the hobby you're doing.
Mr. B: Yeah.
Jack: If you view the as a part of your life you can always use this narrow destination option.
Mr. B: Yes.
Jack: So the last one we got here is its more radical than we just talk about this to bite the bullet, is to go in in a sense you don't care about it whether practicing this hobby could give you some consequences.
Mr. B: Yes so yeah the idea here is that.
Mr. B: As you said you gonna.
Mr. B: Kind of accept that your life won't be that easy you're a digital nomad but you like a hobby that is not very much compatible with his lifestyle but you are willing to pay the costs of that like go all the way and maybe the only available swimming pool is one hour away you're gonna take the bus and that's it.
Mr. B: Maybe the only available yoga studio costs a lot of money by you really into yoga and you're willing to pay for that basically biting the bullet is accepting this lack of compatibility and going along with it.
Jack: I see sound like you should want to practice a hobby it no matter what you can that is really costing a lot from you.
Mr. B: Yeah and you still really want to keep the digital nomad lifestyle and you really want the hobby yet that's pretty much.
Jack: Yes some say some of the hobby it's just not compatible with the lifestyle.
Mr. B: Yep.
Jack: Yeah Missy so Mr B. is there anything you wanna add to this episode?
Mr. B: The the only point to to finish up here has to do with perhaps your hobby will not perfectly have all these features but you should just see what you like see the interest that you already have in pick the ones that present most of these features because this will be the most compatible with the digital nomad lifestyle but again it's very hard to find one that is perfect.
Jack: I see so in the end this still depends on the individual digital nomad yes.
Mr. B: No doubt.
Jack: I see I see so if you enjoyed this episode please make sure to leave a rating or a comment on the platform to listening on.
Jack: And if you want followers you can follow us on Twitter Instagram and Facebook we have a detailed show notes on our website which is Nomad tactics dot com thank you very much.
Mr. B: Thank you.
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