It has been 4 years since we started our Round-the-world trip adventure, and so much has changed since we left with our massive backpacks and butterflies in our stomachs. So we began with our ever evolving gear list and set out.
Although we really weren’t ready, we loved every bit of our first trip and didn’t want it to end, so already 2 months in we were planning to start a business that would allow us to travel while making money.
We had an idea of starting a juice business from a van and drive around Europe, but didn’t have enough money to even begin. While the juice van business never happened, we had planted a seed to find a way of being able to travel full-time. And you know what happens when you really want something? Your dreams come true.
Full-Time Travel – Can We Handle It Anymore?
The Illusion of a Dream
Fast forward 2 years, and we had a blog that allowed us to make that dream a reality.
When we started traveling funded only by our blog back in 2010, I wanted to pull the middle finger to everyone who had ridiculed me, laughed at my face and told me it couldn’t be done.
Anything can be done, if you want it bad enough.
However, dreams aren’t always what they seem …
Running a business is possible when you travel full-time, but you never get that extra space to expand your business. We found ourselves always “catching up” on things and only had time for the most necessary, which will never take you any further than where you are, and certainly not get us any closer to becoming millionaires. Traveling the world has been the most amazing thing we have ever done and we are so grateful for all our experiences, but we’re exhausted from the way we have been doing it – we just can’t handle it anymore.
It is time for us to take a deep breath and slow down …
Nobody Does It
When attending TBU in Porto earlier this year, we were surprised to find just how few bloggers actually do travel full-time. Everyone kept asking us where our ‘base’ was, and I found myself starting to ask people the same thing. We had always thought that travel bloggers always traveled, but out of all of those we met, 95% of them had a base they went home to and lived between their trips, either with their parents or in a home of their own … making us feel like we were the odd ones out!
A New Way Of Life In Norway
We just signed a 6 month contract for an apartment in Norway, the longest commitment in years, which feels very uncertain.
It’s funny how when you have been traveling for a while, everything you used to think was uncertain – like traveling, is the most natural thing in the world for us. Meanwhile, things like having a place to live, or staying somewhere for longer than a month, feels so uncertain.
There is a luxury of being able to live every day as it comes, to go wherever you want – to live a life without commitment.
That freedom is addictive, and makes you fear anything too strict – just like we weren’t ready for our 1st round the world trip, we’re not sure if we’re ready to settle down and only travel every few months instead.
But then again, are you ever ready for anything new in life?
Is there a right time to stop traveling?
Glossy travel photos and inspirational videos make it seem that a life on the road is always fun and exciting, but the truth of it is that sometimes traveling can be exhausting.
If you travel long enough, you are bound to get ill, run into hassles with paperwork, have something stolen, or just burn out.
Sometimes the best antidote is to stop traveling for a period of time so you can regain your footing and find travel thrilling again.
Follow the Signs to Stop Traveling
If you find yourself burning out while on the road, realize that this is normal and almost all seasoned travelers go through this at some point.
So what can you do when you start feeling this way?
One idea is to try to stay longer in a place that you enjoy.
You can also take a vacation from your vacation with a trip to a beach or the countryside.
A home stay or volunteer experience can provide meaningful social interaction, and sometimes this is all that is needed to regain the traveling spirit.
However, if you find yourself tired of learning languages, scheduling reservations, making money transfers, and sleeping on airplanes, it may be time to stop traveling for a bit.
There are plenty of life circumstances that result in less time for traveling.
One common example is taking time to focus more on a job (and with luck, one that will compensate you enough to travel even more when you have time!)
Of course, another good reason to take time off from seeing the world is starting a family.
Some people are able to travel with children, but others opt to settle down.
Keeping the Traveling Spirit
When you are settled in a place with friends and family, it gives you time to reminisce about past trips and to write about your experiences.
Sharing advice with those just starting out is a great way to keep the spirit of traveling alive while at home, such as: how to use international payments, how to pack, how to survive a stay in a dodgy hotel room, etc.
There are plenty of aspiring travelers who could use your hard-earned advice.
You can also advise tourists in your own town and help them to have a great experience.
A Break isn’t the End
Remember that putting down roots doesn’t mean you’ll never travel again.
Retirement, for instance, is a great time to start traveling again on a large scale!
Even if you only travel locally, you’ll experience it with the eyes of a seasoned traveler and appreciate it more.
The most important thing to realize is that traveling is a state of mind.
The insight and wisdom you acquire from your travels will never leave you.