By Madeleine Cull
And then there is the most dangerous risk of all — the risk of spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later.
-Randy Komisar (The Monk and The Riddle)
This notion sums up what I hope to communicate through ForMySomeday. People often hold tight to the idea that someday, when they’re retired or when they magically come into money, they’ll be given the time to do everything they have always wanted to do. Regrettably for most of us, life just doesn’t work out like this. And that is OK. We must learn to accept this and utilize our current funds and opportunities instead of wishing for more. Accepting and learning to work with what we have is our only hope to achieving appreciation for each moment. We can’t live our lives based on this hope that we will always be healthy and everything will work out. We must live our life for now.
But how? How can someone possibly afford to travel so often? I get asked this frequently. ForMySomeday will focus on the how through how-to’s and helpful tips for traveling on a (very small) budget. It is possible, and it is worth it; but it does not come without sacrifice.
Less Consumerism = More Freedom
From birth our society has imposed upon us this standard of what a “happy” and “successful” life consists of. We are taught to believe that our success is defined by how much money we have. That having more things equates to more happiness. We routinely buy things that we don’t need in order to keep up with the status of our friends. Subsequently, we end up having to make more money (which requires more time) in order to pay for the things that we didn’t actually need to begin with. This cycle is destructive and never ending, but it can be broken if you’re brave and bold enough to step outside societal standards. We must consciously make an effort to bring it back to the basics, striving only to make enough to cover the bills for our basic necessities like food and shelter. Only then are we afforded more time to enrich our lives through travel and experiences, rather than things.
I Was Dying.
First I was dying to finish high school and start college.
And then I was dying to finish college and start working.
And then I was dying to marry and have children.
And then I was dying for my children to grow old enough
for school so I could return to work.
And then I was dying to retire.
And now, I am dying … and suddenly I realize I forgot to live.
This poem reminds us to not get so caught up in what is next that we neglect what is now.
Life is fleeting and as cliche as that sentiment is, it should provoke us to consciously make an effort to cherish every moment. Travel enriches your soul. If I went to 5 countries a year, starting now at the age of 24, and I was lucky enough to live to just 75, I still wouldn’t be able to see everything I want to see. There is no time to wait. We have to eradicate the notion that we have to be constantly working in order to be successful. We must accept that rest, reflection and adventure are crucial to our path towards success and happiness. Happiness is the ultimate form of success and we cannot achieve happiness if we allow ourselves to be a slave to the system.
“To those who stay put, the world is but an imaginary place. But to the movers, the makers, and the shakers, the world is all around them, an endless invitation.”