You get one life to live, right? As far as I know, yes.
Making the most of life means overcoming the fear of a big change and doing what you know will make you happy, even if it will require lots of planning and saving money.
For me, traveling and living in another culture is extremely fulfilling and exciting and is a big adventure to me. I was going to go teach abroad but couldn’t get my act together this year while in school to plan all the logistics. I was also presented with a really great job opportunity as well and wanted to take that opportunity. Thus, the desire to live and travel abroad extensively has gone unfulfilled. It has crept back into my mind and I have decided to work for a year or two to save money and then embark on my great adventure!
An elementary idea of what I want to do:
Europe: teach English in Prague (I have missed Prague ever since I spent the weekend there almost two years ago). Visit places I missed the first time around.
Africa: spend a couple weeks volunteering and another week climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania (19,336 feet). Visit South Africa. Safari.
Back to Europe: teach somewhere in France or Italy. Both are cultures and languages I want to immerse myself in.
India: spend some time at an ashram. Perhaps at the foothills of the Himalayas. Learn basic Hindi. Maybe WWOOF it (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) a bit.
Southeast Asia: teach for a couple months in Thailand. Maybe spend some time working with elephants.
South America: Teach in Brazil and Peru. Go to Patagonia before it melts. See Machu Picchu and Chichen Itza.
This is all coming to me and being confirmed by my mantra practice. The mantra I am using right now is “Shante Prashante Sarva Bhayá Upasha Mani Swaha,” which is an offering of fear to the formless, greater universe, the divine. When things like fear or anger arise in us, it is because they have accumulated in our being and must be dispersed and given back to their source. As I have done this for other fears, the mantra has simultaneously allowed me to let go of these fears and confirm things that I must do that feel scary but will ultimately provide me with further growth and expansion.
When we plug into the source, as mantras allow us to do, we can become more in tune with our true nature and subsequently make the best decisions for ourselves.
What places have you traveled to that have fulfilled you in a certain way? What things make you feel alive?
You can see my travel journal with photos from when I studied abroad here
photos courtesy of archer10 and some web site about Brazil.