We are a generation of energetic adventurers. More adventurous than any previous generation in recorded history. We have the ability to travel easily, affordably and quickly across the entire world. We strive for new experiences, new thoughts, new understandings and new relationships. We bask in the fact that traveling has also become more encouraged, accessible and socially acceptable. This is the perfect time period in existence for the traveler to be alive.
A few years ago, I watched a TED X talk (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GgBpyNsS-jU) on minimalism and it altered the direction of my life. It helped me understand that life wasn’t about the amount of things I owned. What did I do? I took an inventory of everything and discarded what I didn’t use.
Enter 2015 when I was nearing the end of my twenties. This was the year when it all became clear for me. I was unable to allow my life’s path to amount to the hours I sat at my desk and worked. This is the year that I decided I would sell my house, buy an RV camper van and visit all 59 U.S. national parks. I’m 5 months into this mission and I’m loving every waking minute.
Seeing the sights I’ve seen along the way has given me a sense of clarity. A clarity about my priorities and direction in life. Since starting this new travel lifestyle, I’ve seen some of the most incredible things life has to offer. The most incredible, however, has been how my outlook has changed. Discovering new people, new environments, new roads, and new experiences has helped me become a more balanced and level-headed individual. I’ve become more empathetic and more interested in the stories of others. I desire to share my story with as many as I can so that in some small way, I might inspire another who feels they are drifting down a dead end road.
As I lay here, in my 95 square foot home on wheels in a random supermarket parking lot, I reflect on the fact that my outlook on life has aged like a wine over the last 30 years. It has taken years of vapid career goals for me to see it clearly. I’ve discovered that life isn’t about money. It’s not about prestige. It’s not about glory and it’s not about vanity. It’s about self-growth. It’s about empathy and compassion toward others. It’s about serving others. It’s about inspiration and being inspired. It’s about seeing the vibrance in things that others might be seeing in black and white. I hope these words might find their way to even just one person who feels as if they need to do SOMETHING even if they don’t know what that thing is. You don’t need to sell your house or buy a van or travel the world. Just find that ‘thing’ that you see with true clarity and pursue it. You won’t regret it, I promise.
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