How to Decide Where to Move Next: Remote Work Tips from a Digital Data Nomad.

Remote work has become the norm for many white collar workers. We all learned that we can make a living working remotely whether in salaried positions or freelancing. 

This has been the most disruptive development of our time. 

And it’s clear that we’re comfy up in here. Business insider reported that 40% of people will quit their jobs if required to return to the office. And good for them. It’s about damn time Americans focus on work-life balance.  

There’s been a spike in companies seeking out remote roles. Expectations are high. This is the biggest workforce shift in history, and the trend continues to grow. By the end of 2021, 51% of all knowledge workers worldwide will be remote, according to research from Gartner.

I personally could not be happier. I expect this will further a trend I’ve empirically observed of people looking for meaningful work with companies who align to their personal values.

If you are one of the people considering uprooting to greener pastures. Take it from someone who moved from San Diego to Barcelona to Manila to Milan to Chicago to Denver… in 6 years.

It’s freaking hard to decide where to go.

Me in my data-driven Colorado kitchen.
Me in my data-driven Colorado kitchen.

Particularly, when you have a young family and you want things to be affordable but don’t want to live in an unsafe neighbourhood or drive everywhere.

Moving isn’t just about getting your location. It’s also about evolving as a person, finding new interests and opportunities, and finding new friends. Choosing the best city to live in can be difficult as there are so many factors to consider. 

When faced with these decisions, I did what my mama always taught me: Get out the spreadsheet.

This worksheet take into consideration all the features you want in your new place and creates a weighted scoring system across multiple cities. It allows you to make an educated decision about where to move and can get your ass out of analysis paralysis.

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Here are the steps to make your own:

  1. Fill out the cities in Columns B-Onward
  2. Fill out all the features your heart desires in the column A
  3. Score each city on a 1-10 scale (or smaller if you want to keep it simple. I used 3 points)
  4. Use State Income Tax for context
  5. Asses the total score and sum of features each city has in the teal rows below.

Ecco. You’re done.

Other families have used this spreadsheet and found it super helpful. Adventure is out there! Go for it.

ps. I will make it to Portugal one day. Promise.

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