There will never be a perfect time to quit your job and travel. Don’t let these 5 common excuses stop you from doing so. I was living a comfortable life in San Francisco, with a high paying job, great friends and a beautiful apartment when I decided to take the plunge. I was frustrated at myself for becoming so complacent with my routine and not taking more risks.
I used to think it didn’t make sense to quit my good job and stable life before I had a concrete plan on what to do next. As I turned thirty, a single woman with no kids, I knew I had to do make a change. I decided to be true to myself and devote at least a year to explore different parts of the world, discover new lifestyles, volunteer, kitesurf, go on epic adventures, and worry about what’s next later!
If today were the last day of your life, would you want to do what you are about to do today?
This quote from Steve Jobs has always made an impression on me. I often felt disapointment in myself because sadly I knew the answer was no for most of my days spent working in an office. But let’s be clear, I wasn’t to complain at all. My colleagues were smart, creative and collaborative people. I was working on interesting projects impacting millions of users.
However, no day at work could ever compete with my most exhilarating experiences while traveling: climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, sleeping in a cave, having deep conversations strangers from very different backgrounds. I could never feel the same level of excitement at work, even though I was lucky enough to be working at Google, one of the best companies in the world to work for.
I wanted to get out there and explore. Did it really have to be limited to my few weeks of holidays per year? It took me some time to challenge this conventional belief but eventually I came to realize that it didn’t have to. If you ever felt the same way and are craving for more meaning and adventure, I hope this post will help you take the leap. Here are the 6 main reasons why you should quit your job and travel.
1. Have no regrets
Time is our only real resource. Once you’re too old or too sick to go explore the world, you will look back on your life. Will you be that person who did what the society expected them to do – got a good degree, had a stable job, got married, raised kids but never took risks? Or will you be that person who lived life on their own terms, took a chance on themselves and have the most incredible memories and stories to tell?
Live your life to the fullest. You only have one. If today is your last day on earth, be at peace with yourself because you’ve had your best live. Time is ruthless. It won’t come back. Don’t spend years thinking about going to your dream destination. Just quit your job and travel there now.
2. Become a better version of yourself
Traveling will give you lots of opportunities to learn about yourself and grow. You will get some breathe space to reflect and discover what you want out of life. Being away from home will also give you the opportunity to break past bad habits and replace them with good ones. Quit smoking and start meditating. Stop spending week-ends on netflix and start walking 10,000 steps a day. Stop ignoring your neighboors and start smiling and talking to strangers.
Travel is the ideal place to get in touch with yourself. Being exposed to different cultures, you will start seeing things through other people’s perspectives. Travel will teach you empathy and tolerance. It will make you a more well-rounded person.
3. Have breakthrough experiences
Humans crave new adventures and travel lets us tap into that craving. It is the perfect opportunity to try something new and exciting. The thrill starts the minute you land in a new place. Biking down the world’s most dangerous road. Kitesurfing in the inland lagoons of the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park. Voluntering in a Bolivian healthcare clinic. Scuba diving with whale sharks in Madagascar. Teaching English to kids in South Africa. Conversing with Buddhist monks in Nepal.
Your imagination is the only limit. You will revel in the rush you get from your exploits. You will return home with long lasting memories of your incredible adventures that you would have never experienced otherwise.
4. Build more self-confidence
Even if you plan your trip to the letter, surprises will arise. As you deal with unexpected situations, you will to come up with way arounds to every single problem. Just relying on yourself, without the help of your partner, parents, friends, or anyone else. Facing fears and insecurities you did not even know you had, you will build up your own strenght. Everytime you’re exposed to a new challenge, you will discover how resourceful you are. Maybe it’s finding your hostel without a GPS. Or buying a bus ticket when you don’t speak the language.
Overcoming those challenges will bring you joy and energy for future ones. By pushing yourself to your limits and continually stretching your own comfort zone, you’ll realize how capable you are and this will give you a big boost to self-confidence.
5. Feel more relaxed
As you quit your corporate job and slow travel, you will learn to take your time and appreciate the present moment. You will enjoy simple things like a walk in the morning, a beautiful flower, a nice smell. Not knowing what tomorrow will be made of will feel comfortable. You will enjoy sitting at a restaurant by yourself, for hours, being mindful and joyful.
When things don’t go as expected, you will learn how to control your emotions. You will stop being stressed out and worrying because you will know things will eventually work out.
6. Become an happier person
Travel will expand your perspectives and open your mind. You will stop complaining about little things and start focusing on what’s important. Your kindness, gratitude and compassion will develop. Soon you will realize that there’s no one way to live life and find purpose. As you travel to poorest countries than where you used to live, you will be amazed by how cheerful, smiling, and friendly people are. Those positive vibes will lift you mood and you will soon be the one to spread joy all around you.