One Major Life Lesson Learned Through Travel

365 days. 9 countries. Countless experiences. Our life over the past year has been a dream fulfilled for both of us.

We can hardly believe how fast time has flown! It seems like just yesterday we were finding ways to save money, packing up and selling off our things, and getting ready to leave! If you’ve been following you know that this past year has brought us some incredibly exciting moments.

We’ve also been pretty honest about the difficulties of the travel lifestyle. It hasn’t been twelve months of sunsets, smiles and beautiful beaches, although we love posting those to our social media channels! It’s been hard work, at times stressful and uncertain, and we’ve had to learn how to navigate a completely different culture every few months while learning the ins and outs of being a digital nomad.

But would we change one second of the last year? Absolutely not! We’ve followed our dreams and are living life to the fullest and we’ve learned a heck of a lot along the way.

1 Major Lesson We’ve Learned After 1 Year of Travel

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We’ve also done and seen so much in just one year. We’ve learned to Scuba Dive in Koh Tao, fulfilled a lifelong dream of seeing elephants in Thailand up close, climbed the Great Wall, tried a boatload of amazing food, watched amazing sunsets in Thailand, spent Chinese New Year with a family in Taiwan, visited one of the world’s newest “Smart Cities”, and so many more moments we haven’t written about, during each day of the past year of travel.

And throughout it all we’ve sure learned a lot. We’ve learned about ourselves, each other, and other cultures. But there’s one major life lesson learned through travel. Something that we hope everyone learns, no matter what their life goals are or what dreams they have. It is one simple, three-word concept…ready?

The Major Life Lesson Learned Through Travel

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IT. IS. POSSIBLE.

And we don’t just mean travel or what we do, though that is also possible: If we do it, so can you. What we mean is that however you envision your dream life, chances are there are choices and steps you can make to get closer to, and even achieve, that life.

For every person we talk to who says they wish they could do something different, who wish they had a different job or lifestyle, had more vacation time or time with family or who wish they had different opportunities, we’ve met at least one other person who has made changes or choices that have led them closer to fulfilling their dreams and living a life that makes them happy.

We’re not saying everyone has equal opportunities. They don’t. But the majority of time the people who are telling us we are lucky or that they wish they could do what we do or make changes in their own life, are people who have similar opportunities as us. They’ve had a similar upbringing, similar socio-economic status, similar choices to make and are in similar places in life as we were just a short year or so ago.

We’re not trying to preach here. Instead we’re trying to inspire and motivate others, especially those who continually tell us they wish they could do what we did and follow their dreams. It. Is. Possible.

The How of It All

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How?

This is also a simple three-word concept: Make. The. Choice.

It’s really very simple when you boil it all down to the fact that it is a choice. It’s a choice between continuing on the path you’re currently following and making the choice to step off of it. It’s not always easy, you often have to work hard for the other path and it often means sacrifice and change but if you really want what that alternate path has to offer, if you’re really not happy with the road you’re walking now and believe happiness lies down another trail… Make. The. Choice.

We sacrificed, and are still sacrificing. We made huge changes to who we were, how we lived and what we had. We work harder than we’ve ever worked before but oddly enough, we are also the happiest we’ve ever been. This is the life we dreamed of and it’s the life we’re still working hard to make for ourselves. All it took was for us to make the decision to just do it and to just do it now. We had to just Make. The. Choice.

A Motto To Live By

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Through all of the decision-making and life-changing, we found a motto to live our lives by and stuck to it. This time, it’s just a simple four-word concept:

Live. Life. Without. Limits.

To us this means not putting restrictions on the dreams we have, not limiting ourselves to what we feel we “should” be doing or what society dictates as the standard and norm for our age and demographic: a 9-to-5 job, a house and mortgage, 2 weeks vacation a year, a dog and kids. Perhaps this is your dream. If it is, that’s great! But for us, it’s not the future we look to build and so we’ve chosen to seek out our own path in order to follow our dreams. We’ve decided it is possible and made the choice and now we live our lives without limits.

 

Yep, it’s been one heck of a year and we can’t wait to see what the next one has in store for us: more lessons, more memories and more dreams fulfilled.

20 replies
  1. Heidi Wagoner
    Heidi Wagoner says:

    You bet it is possible! Way to go. We have 3+ yrs under our full-time travel belts and we are so happy to have you as part of our travel family. Congrats guys and cheers to many more years for us all.

    Reply
  2. Emily
    Emily says:

    Great post friends! I always think of it like, ‘If it’s a priority,you’ll find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.” I get the same thing all the time about how I’m ‘so lucky’, and yes, in many ways I am, but I also made traveling my top priority over everything else for 3 years before setting off, and it’s still my priority now. If you want the change to happen bad enough, you’ll work out how to make that possible :). Congrats on the 1+ year of living the dream!

    Reply
  3. Vasu
    Vasu says:

    Great Going! We love travelling. My wife and I have quit regular jobs and taken to travel. Unlike you, of course, we get back to our base in Mumba to deal with certain commitments. You guys rock!

    Reply
    • onemoderncouple
      onemoderncouple says:

      That sounds fantastic! We do find heading ‘home’ every so often is great – visiting people, taking care of responsibilities, grounding yourself again – and then heading back out! 🙂

      Reply
  4. Natasha Amar
    Natasha Amar says:

    I think ‘Make the Choice’ might just be the most important piece of advice that anyone could get. It doesn’t just apply to travel as you said, it stands true for everything. For everything you want to be or do, it all starts with a conscious decision- a choice. Great article!

    Reply
  5. Kathrin
    Kathrin says:

    Thanks a lot for sharing this! This is exactly want I’m trying to do; I try to not limit myself to what I “should” do. Because why not?! It’s my life and as long as I’m happy, I’m fine with it. Great inspiration you two! Good luck for 2016.

    Reply
    • onemoderncouple
      onemoderncouple says:

      Absolutely! It’s not an easy thing to do and it’s frankly scary, but you’ve often got to face fears and take risks in order to succeed and do what makes you happy! Scuba diving in Koh Tao was one of the highlights of our travels so far as well!

      Reply
    • onemoderncouple
      onemoderncouple says:

      Thank you! It’s difficult to make any big decision in life and fear holds so many people back. You need to take the fear and convert it to confidence and the only way to do it is to follow your dream and go for it!

      Reply
  6. Deborah Thompson
    Deborah Thompson says:

    Fabulous inspirational blog, guys! Travelling is the highlight of our lives as a couple too – we’ve been actively travelling (although not quite as much as you two!) for over twenty years together and I think it is one of the biggest reasons we are still together and still communicating, enjoying and loving each other! Travel keeps us alive and living, excited and planning, enjoying and solving problems, meeting new people and experiencing new cultures. Keep on travelling!

    Reply

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