Life Changing

What if travel becomes addictive?

There are many addictions. There are many habits we tend to rely on. And we want those habits to make part of our daily lives, otherwise we feel threatened, we feel someone is taking our great mind’s comfort away. We experience it at many different levels and with several things. Food, caffeine, cigarettes and alcohol, sports, music, relationships, religion, ideology and the list continues. I’ve just realized how easily we can be addicted to travel too. Travelling is a beautiful addiction but it can also be… challenging.

We like the beginning of a new chapter and we enjoy the freshness of a different perspective which is what travel is all about. We reach different places every day, we meet people randomly on the street and we come across unknown situations all the time. It diminishes our ego and increases our levels of adrenaline and that’s why we end up being addicted.

If someone tells us that we are escaping from something, we are probably react to that and feel touched by that assumption. But if we think clearly, and give it some time to digest, we are actually doing everything but not escaping. How can we be escaping from our life and ourselves if we are deeply immersed and turned inwards? How can we be escaping from ourselves if we chose us to be our full-time company? And how can we be running away if we are actually in the need of taking serious and spontaneous decisions that really depends upon our clear state of consciousness and our inner-speech and self-reflection? Travelling is, instead, a very intentional meeting with ourselves. Think about it.

We are all sensation seekers. At different levels, of course. We can aim to tick off a list of monuments and historical must sees; we can be hankering after laid-back days at the beach while drinking cocktails and eating local food; we can be into volunteering, animals rescue and farming work; we can be looking for stunning and intense experiences so that we get to document and photograph what we see; we can be on a spiritual journey choosing to learn more about meditation and yoga; we can be willing to spend time with ourselves and give it the opportunity to have creative ideas that will be useful for our future mission; we can be looking for a place where to spend a year, alone; or we can be willing to hop from place to place, in a very quick and detached way.

Aren’t we all sensation seekers, anyways? And isn’t it becoming something we don’t want to stop because it feels good and enriches us so much? To take the most out of our lives, there is this very precious thing called ‘balance’. But how can we balance a life of stability and travel, of routine and randomness, of control and spontaneity? Here are my tips, which I hope can serve us all in this beautiful attempt of taking the best out of life:

  1. Find a profession where you can work remotely

  2. (If 1 doesn’t work) Find a job where you are able to work seasonally

  3. (If 1 and 2 don’t work) Find a boss that comprehends your needs and is easy-going with dates

  4. Make an annual plan, save money and spend your holidays travelling

  5. Integrate your travels on your personal and professional CV

  6. Travel throughout your own country and act like a traveller in your own town

  7. Make a monthly list with the positive effects of travelling on yourself 

  8. Fill a piggy bank with the money of beer and clothes and book a flight

  9. Always think twice before putting life-changing opportunities under status

  10. Once in a while, book last minute flights on the weekends and go somewhere

  11. Be surrounded by people who remind you how good it is to be an explorer

By Margarida Pimenta

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