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What is it actually like to be a nomad?

The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance

Alan Watts

Being nomadic was not something I just woke up and chose out of a branding idea or a way to gain more followers on Instagram or even to follow a trend of cool digital nomads travelling the world taking cool pictures on Instagram. I have actually been a Nomad since I was around 7 years old. My family and I left our hometown and moved to the UK back in 2000 because of financial hardship. 

This was the beginning of my nomadic journey if you like. You see people believe nomadism or being a nomad is part of this new age culture of posting photos of yourself sipping wine at the top of the hill topless whilst bragging about how you work 9-5 from a rented Airbnb apartment. 

This is not what it is like to be a nomad. To be a nomad is a mindset – a philosophy if you like. It is the deep-rooted feeling that you do not belong in one city or country. Now I won’t go too deep into this but my family and I do not own a house, we rent, which in practical terms actually means we could end up moving houses every 2 to 3 years depending on the housing situation at the time. For me, this still isn’t nomadism.  (I am getting to it)

Let’s, first of all, define a Nomad

A member of a people that travels from place to place to find fresh pasture for its animals and has no permanent home.

Modern terms; people that move to ensure they have a livelihood and work to be able to sustain themselves. By definition yes we are nomads. We have no fixed home and we based our relocation based on my father’s job. 

Now does this make me a nomad? No. It makes me a byproduct of nomads, however, this was never their intention. I have to clarify this, we are not ‘nomads’ or travellers in that respect, we just happened to be in a circumstance that has some similarities with a nomadic lifestyle. 

Where does that leave me? 

Well, I will define what being a nomad means for me. 

Change. As Alan Watts puts it beautifully; “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it” 

For me that is my definition of nomadism, being adaptable to change, because of my upbringing and circumstances – I became very good at adapting if you like joining the dance we know as life. 

Life is not simple, and circumstances can either put people into negative or positive mindsets. For me being a nomad is about being 100% self-reliant on making a home no matter where you are. 

Being a nomad is a mindset, seeing the world as your home, not one city or country. Not a town or society but instead I see the world as my playground and my life as the game. Bricks do not define home for me, what does is the family that is around me or the people that I surround myself with.

Being a nomad is not easy, sometimes being a nomad, as I have explained, is not something you necessarily choose but something you have to learn to live with. 

For me being a nomad is a beautiful and inspiring way to connect with the world and people of the world, rather than just feel fixated on one place or society. 

Being a nomad is not posting selfies on Instagram showing everyone how many sales you made that month, and talking about how the Airbnb you are in has an infinite pool. This is what I call Fakeomadism. It is a new age Instagram ‘nomad lifestyle.’ Being a nomad is hard and tough and involves leaving your homeland to explore other unexplored territories even if that wasn’t the plan. 

Thanks for reading my blog, if you have any questions don’t hesitate to get in contact with me on Instagram at @nomad.josh

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