GIVE: Isaac Newton
Written by: Jake Muniak, GIVE Guide
You’ve been reading too many time-tested quotes from well-traveled people about the wide world they’ve seen through the eyes of traveling. You have no catching up to do. This path is your own and can only be walked by you. Our paths crossed for a minute back there and you seemed like the kind of person that would enjoy travel. You talked about how you’d love it, but I don’t know that I believe you. Don’t get me wrong, I think you’d love to travel, but I still can’t tell if you want to. Because when people really want something they take action toward getting it. When I want a slice of chocolate cheesecake, I make moves. I go get it! I’ve yet to be hit in the head with a cheesecake meteor for loudly proclaiming how delicious a piece would be with eyes closed and an open mouth toward the sky.
Don’t read others’ stories and daydream or wish. Use them as inspiration. Fuel.
Write your own. Make it happen. Actually do it. This entails, in no specific order and missing a large quantity of pertinent information which you will discover and heavily revise along the way. . .
Ask yourself, what makes you happy?
If you’ve never given this the honest thought it deserves, shut your computer, turn your phone off, walk away. And think. It’s what you shake the tired out of your eyes for in the morning. You feel “Alive” when you do it. It doesn’t have to be the only thing, but you should know one of the things that makes you happy. For real. If you’ve never thought about this stop reading here and think.
If you don’t and a cheesecake-sized meteor hits you in the head today you will never know what you were put on this planet to get excited for. Avoid this dull black and white existence at all costs.
Cool. That’s a really hard one.
Now, is there a city or state you find yourself daydreaming about? How about a country? Sometimes there’s this weird pull you feel that you can’t really put into words. You feel a gravitational attraction to it; your eyes rest on that place longest when you look at a map and at its mention you hear a voiceless whisper urgently telling you to go. If there is a place like that, can you do what makes you happy there? If you can’t, no worries. You’ll find something to do wherever you go. I just put that first one in because finding something that fills your heart up is invaluable in this life.
You have your spot? Word.
Now fire up the computer again, and hop on the Interweb. Pictures are great. But look into the history of the place that’s on your list. What is the government like and what events led to the current state of political affairs? Check out the foods. What are the driving forces behind the economy there? What’s the cost of living there? Look at what constitutes disrespect there and avoid it. What’s the national currency and how does it stack up to your home country’s currency (extremely important)? A country is far more than landmarks and scenery.
Now, as good as it is to be like, “I’m just going to go with the flow and see where it takes me”, you may find yourself in sticky situations where you’re without a safe place to stay or clean water. Draw up a rough outline of spots to see so that if you’re in the fortunate position of lacking any sort of direction bam! There’s your next spot. At least in the beginning. Again, you can figure the rest out as you go. It is not always ideal to be wandering through the woods like Gandalf.
Now do it.
This is the hardest part. If you’re going to visit a city, start planning it. Do it. Ask for time off work. Make a list of things to pack and start gathering them up. Time it so that there’s a cool band playing or street festival going on when you go. Is there a river to float? You’ll get excited. It’s hard to stop once you get the momentum going.
Baby steps lead to momentum like you wouldn’t believe.
If you’re booking a flight; click “Confirm Order”. It’s like jumping off the high dive. Every step up the ladder is “Why am I doing this?”, “This is too high”, “I can still go back.” Buying your ticket is like jumping. Once you’re falling there is a strange bliss to it. Whatever’s going to happen is going to happen. Forces bigger than you are now driving. It’s your job to make sure the car is gassed up, the brakes are working, and that you have a spare tire. You can reach over from the passenger seat and straighten “er” out every now and then, but you’ve given the wheel to Momentum.
You can do it. This phrase is overused, but contemplate the word “can” and what it means beyond the dictionary definition. It’s a very liberating feeling to know that you are an autonomous being in this world and that you can do what you want. What is it that you want though, hey? Don’t give anyone permission to convince you that you can’t do it. Because they will try. Hear them out, but nobody has keys to the fire in your heart unless you give them the spares. Throw the spares off the peak of the next mountain you climb next. On second thought, give a set to Momentum. To hell with the rest. Things worth doing aren’t easy. If they were, everyone would be doing them.