I woke up this morning to the spoils of last night’s Diwali festivities. The smoke in the air has left me feeling like I was hit by a bus. It is the time of year which makes me wonder if I’m really meant to live in a place like this. If I were away from such monstrous atrocities  I wouldn’t be feeling like this, on the morning of the First Day of the year according to the Hindu Calendar.

Checked my inbox and didn’t find an email from operations for the daily gig I was expecting to wake up to. This is when I realised that I had lost a day working on the skills I need for this particular ‘gig’. I skipped going home and didn’t even think of planning a holiday because I have been looking towards building my network and the skills required to be a freelancer.

When I decided to quit living my life based on a 9-5 Chartered Accountancy job, I really didn’t know what skills I had to make it in this world as a freelancer. But I definitely knew I wanted to write. I had the passion, the talent, minus the network to find projects as well as the necessary skills to fit the unique requirements of all the employers.

Writing has been the Mr Hyde to my Jekyll. It is something I wanted to be personal and anonymous. It comes to me around the ‘witching hour’, the time when the city around me sleeps, I’m overcome with the urge to write.

Digital Nomad, put in a nutshell, means someone who works remotely or as a freelancer with no permanent address, not even an IP address. It is purely a lifestyle choice. In the last decade, we have seen people who have struggled with finding homes or settling down at one place.  For many reasons, including the unpredictability of being able to retain a job, better opportunities elsewhere, not being able to get accommodation because of your bachelor/bachelorette-yes it is a thing in India- status in life, or for their love of exploring the world, are either moving in with their parents or packing up their bags and living a nomadic life. It has become possible for one to accommodate the Digital and Nomadic lifestyle, with major cities providing free Wifi and smaller, more remote destinations getting better internet connectivity and the explosion of digital platforms and business from booking flights, accommodation, busses, food, payment, banking, etc. 

Pursuing your passion is a thought that has been thrown around since the dawn of civilization, so much so that it is the most trending cliche over a great period of time in the history of mankind. Among the structures and confines of civilization, many have found the perfect spot to work with what they feel most passionate about.

The way civilisations work, is by placing a grand system. Under that “Top Scheme”, you will find many subcategories including everything essential to human beings and human life. Housing, Education, Creating, Selling, Health, Recreation, and anything else you can think of civilization accommodates and “accounts” for it. Also, the most important element to bring it all together,  Money. If you want all of the above you must live in a City- Civilizations master Lab. One always tries to crack the system in their own way, the easiest being getting a ‘Career’ and climbing the ladder. We no longer know how to live without money. That is civilization’s crowing glory, the dreams of exccess you have to pay for. It’s a freakshow and we can’t take our eyes off it and we cannot unlearn it. 

If you want to live in a more peaceful place, wake up to the sounds of nature instead of the chaos of the city it is definitely possible. But, unlike the easy arrangement made for you by civilisation, this is just the opposite. The Jekyll and Hyde of lifestyle preferences. Jeklly fits in society and Hyde does not. He finds a place in the darkness of alley ways but only surfaces when Jekyll is the most vulnerable. How can we make good art when we only find it in Hyde? 

Millennials are the ones who were hoping to merge the two. Pursue their passion, live remotely and have a place in the civilised world. It’s something that makes people truly happy, working but remotely, pursuing your passion but in broad daylight. 

Our world today is a grad Mashup of the ‘Online Network’ and the ‘Offline Community’. Where we see people struggling with their lifestyle choices and still pursuing their passion’. Which one wins, pursuing your passion over your choice of lifestyle, or lifestyle over passion, or both; Satisfaction and Peace over Sustenance and Survival; or both?

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