By Michelle Wanjiku
Everyone wants to work in big cities as opposed to the rural areas, this could be because of the thrill and the glamorous life that everyone assumes comes with living in a big city for example Nairobi. But are there benefits of working in rural areas or other towns as opposed to the big cities?
Here are 5 Benefits of working in the rural areas as opposed to the big cities
1. Cheaper cost of living
The cost of housing in the rural towns is obviously cheaper than the housing costs in Nairobi. For example you can get a one bedroom house in Eldoret for 7K in a middle class neighborhood.
The transport cost in the rural towns is way cheaper than the transport cost in Nairobi. Where you can spend up to 300 bob daily on transport in Nairobi, you may only spend like 50 bob in the rural areas. Not to mention you could walk and save the money.
Food is also cheaper in the smaller towns because for agricultural areas that is where it is grown and it is also fresher than the food stuffs we get in the cities.
2. Better work life balance
Unlike in big cities such as Nairobi where you have to wake up at 5 am sometimes 4 am to beat the traffic so as to be at work by 8 and get home at 9 pm, working in rural areas enables you to have more time to spend with your family as you do not spend hours in traffic.
The working hours are also not as hectic in small towns as they are in Nairobi. Most people have to work for up to 10 hours in Nairobi whereas in small towns majority work for a maximum of 8 hours. This helps one recover from the stress at work because you get enough time to relax after work.
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3. There are fewer distractions
Life in the rural areas is not so busy; there are fewer distractions in terms of the noise that is experienced in the big cities. Studies conducted showed that there are benefits of being in a quiet place surrounded by nature.
For example one study shows that crowded streets like the ones in Nairobi affect memory retention. Your brain is forced to focus on so many things like the cars, people, hawkers, music playing etc. which means that it cannot retain a lot of information since it needs to create space for more.
But in smaller towns and rural areas you get to focus on fewer things or even one thing which enables you to be more productive. This in turn leads to success in whatever you are doing.
4. Supplementary earnings
This is more or less connected to the work life balance. Working in smaller towns enables you to have more free time which can be used to generate income to supplement your salary. With more time you will be able to start and run a business with minimal stress and you will also be able to take up part time jobs. This can be in form of online jobs or working at the local supermarket or restaurant.
Taking on part time jobs like data entry and online writing or starting your own business will provide you with more income which you can save because of the low cost of living and in the end improving your financial status.
5. It is assumed that there is Security in the rural areas as opposed to the big cities
Generally the crime rate in smaller town and rural areas should be less than the crime rate in big cities such as Nairobi. You cannot walk the streets of Nairobi without fear of being mugged. Whereas, in smaller towns it is relatively safer. This is not to say that people aren’t mugged in smaller towns, it just doesn’t happen as often as it does in Nairobi.
Ultimately the decision on whether to work outside Nairobi is yours. Do the benefits of working in rural areas outweigh the benefits of being in a big city?