After nine successful years with my amazing company, I’ve resigned to travel the world for 2+ years. I am referring to this as my Mid-Career-Vagabond-Travel-the-World Gap Period.
Travel is a passion of mine and long-term travel has been a deep desire for a while. At some point there becomes a grey area between ‘wait til retirement’ or ‘do this now’. My incredible best friend, travel-companion wife and I are at the ‘do this now’ point of our lives so we have decided to make it happen! The excitement is overwhelming!
I have heard a wide variety of feedback over the past few weeks from “I think it’s a big mistake” to “this is the greatest thing I have ever heard”. “Is this for a mission?” No. “How long are going?” 2-3 years. “Wait?!?!What?!?!?” Then it’s “Where are you going?” followed by “Where will you stay?”
We have the high-level plan in mind to keep the budget down but we will be flexible and spontaneous. I know the places that I want to go but there are many more out there I am clueless about. Those are the places that I am most excited to visit!
I am a firm believer in a Growth Mindset as described by Carol Dweck author of Mindset: The Psychology of Success “More and more research is suggesting that, far from being simply encoded in the genes, much of personality is a flexible and dynamic thing that changes over the lifespan and is shaped by experience.”
In one of my favorite books, Ego is the Enemy, Ryan Holiday writes “Your potential, the absolute best you’re capable of — that’s the metric to measure yourself against…Winning is not enough. People can get lucky and win. People can be assholes and win. Anyone can win. But not everyone is the best possible version of themselves.”
I am working to become what Holiday is describing. I want to be the best version of myself! I believe this decision to travel for the next two years will help me get closer.
In an attempt to become a better version of myself, I have goals of speaking at universities, local business gatherings, or just small impromptu meetups to discuss local business, sales cultural, technology, life balance strategy, or whatever the conversation brings. That will stretch me.
I am not a talented public speaker but I will become one. Volunteering in unique settings will push me to open up my mind to understand how I can truly help. I am hoping to collaborate with the people I encounter and learn from their stories. Most importantly, learning to become a digital nomad and finding ways to earn income from my laptop is extremely compelling and liberating. Forcing myself to do this is a challenge that I am excited to take on.
I have a passion for constant education, which includes books, podcasts, and videos, to gain insight on the unknown, get inspired, and stay focused. So it might not be a coincidence, as we journey off like the young shepherd in The Alchemist (one of the great travel books of all time) with our hearts full of love and adventure, that we begin in Santiago (the boy’s name), Chile. Perhaps it was an omen as we researched where to start.
The author Paulo Coelho wrote, “People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.” I, too, believe those words.
And as I listened to the inspirational words of Les Brown speaking to me last spring, I knew it was time for action. He was talking about maximizing our potential and chasing our dreams when he said ‘maybe that’s why Henry David Thoreau wrote the words, “Oh God, to reach the point of death, only to realize that you’ve never lived.” Only to realize that you’ve never scraped the surface of your potential. Let us say again….Live full. Die empty”.
It’s our time to Live full! We hope to see you on the road!