The decision has finally been made…I will travel. Not for 10 days, not for my normal three weeks, not indefinitely…but for 6 full months, I will travel.
With encouragement from the love of my life (and a healthy dose of inspiration from the meet plan go meet-up), I have realized that this is something I need to do…and much of it needs to be done alone. I know it sounds crazy, and it’s not a bucket list thing, or something I feel like I would never do if I don’t do it while I am young. It’s really just that time. I know how to sit in an office and work, I understand the responsibilities that I have thus far in life (though after announcing this decision, I’m sure some will think otherwise), I’m fairly settled in my routine…so why skip out for 6 months?
1. Because I can. Six months isn’t that long, in terms of life; and the costs to spend that much time traveling really are not that high, especially in terms of life experience. As far as my research shows, six months is doable on $10,000.00 (that’s less than I spend in six months at home). I can save that in a year. I can also figure out how to make money while traveling before I go.
2. I have a passion to do so. The more I travel, the more I crave travel. I’ve been thinking about doing something like this for a while, and had always assumed Damany would want to do it too. Recently, however, he brought up that it’s obvious I want to travel for an extended period; that he realistically can’t leave for months at a time; and that I shouldn’t be held back from my passion because he can’t join me (though he may be able to meet me here and there).
3. I could use the time for personal growth. My personality allows me to get stressed easily over petty things sometimes. I know this, and others notice it. It can make getting along with me difficult at times. I feel as though exploring the world on my own, figuring out whatever the road has to throw at me can help me overcome this frustrating personality trait, and be mentally stronger through any situation.
4. I believe it will help me to realize and effectively progress towards other goals. I don’t want to work for someone else for the rest of my life…and it’s really hard to motivate for yourself when you’re in another person’s office all day. I believe that I can monetize my blog before I leave, and upon return from my trip (with a new ethic of motivating myself on the road) focus more time on my own company, Rare Beautiful Things.
5. I want to stick it to the American Dream (inspired by the post “Is the American Dream Holding you Back?” on twenty-something travel). That’s right, you’ve been thinking it, but I went ahead and said it. What kind of dream says you have to work 9-5 all year long, with two weeks of vacation, 5 sick days, and a few Monday holidays off? Not mine…not even for that over-priced share of healthcare you say you’re “giving” me (if it’s offered at all). Maybe it’s horrible of me to think that way…and I’m not putting down the thousands of people who come here to make their lives better…but maybe, just maybe, Americans can also have a better life doing something else somewhere else.
There is still much to figure out, and I’m excited for that. First I’ll need a strategy for saving money, and really discipline myself to stick to the plan. Second, I’ll need to figure out the details of how I’ll be making money on the road. There’s the question of when exactly to depart (though I’m thinking next June) and, of course, where in the world do I go? I’ve already got butterflies!
This should be fun. Let the planning begin.