Posted by Stephanie K. on -
"There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars."
I know now more than ever what my definition of home is. It's not a place. Or a person. Or a thing. You can "feel at home". You can "be home". But that's not it. That was never it for me.
And so, what is my definition of home?
Never in my entire 24 years of living have I felt more liberated than I did whenever I am traveling. When I am wandering on the road I call home. I feel the most alive and liberated when I'm out there. Living like a vagabond with nothing but my possessions in a huge backpack. Moving as my only constant. Anything is possible as I am given a brand new day in a place I have never been, with no set plans. I find comfort in not knowing what the day will bring and surrendering to the currents of the universe.
But, what happens when the trip is over?
You're back "home". You're not feeling as inspired as you did when you were traveling. You end up being stuck in some sort of routine again and you loathe it. And you feel like you've lost your adventurous spirit.
You haven't, darling. It's still in you. Don't suffocate it, let it breathe, keep it alive. Here's how:
1. Cultivate your dreams
Anais Nin once said, "Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country."
Whatever your dream may be, hold on to it, and work towards it every single day. When you go back home you will most likely have to get a day job that will pay the bills and help you save for your future travels. But don't get too comfortable, let it be temporary, and don't let that stop you from continuing to do what you love. Let it be your training wheels until you find a way to make a living out of your passion. Then, take it off.
As you work at your day job, you need to work even harder towards whatever dreams you want to manifest. Try your best to make a living out of your passion, and if your other true passion is traveling, find a way to incorporate it together. By doing what makes you happy, working hard everyday, believing in yourself & your dreams, keeping yourself optimistic, and doing the best that you can to make it your reality, it will happen.
You will live your dreams.
2. Connect with like-minded peers
Stay connected with the amazing friends you've made during your travels. Skype, Facebook, Viber, mail each other small gifts, etc. Connect with like-minded people, even if you meet them through the internet. Surprisingly, I have met people that have created the most impact in my life through online connections. I somehow come across their website/blog/story, email to thank them for the inspiration they have given me and somehow we meet, connect in person, and become great friends.
From personal experience, the more connected I was to the outside world, the more disconnected I became from some of my peers back home. Especially ones that don't understand my lifestyle or have lost touch with me when I was away. It will happen, people change, people grow apart, but life won't stop for anyone. Consider it a test, if they are your true friends they will make an effort to stay in your life despite the distance. Not only that, you will meet more people who share your same interests, who support your dreams as much as you support theirs, who will bring positivity into your life, and who you can grow with to meet your highest potential.
Through this I have found true friends who will stick around and continue to maintain and build the friendship despite all circumstances.
3. Plan your next trip
By knowing that you have another adventure coming, may it be in the next couple months, or the next year, it will fuel you. This will keep the wanderlust alive and will give you an incentive to work harder at your job or work towards your dreams. I already planned my next trip when I was on the flight going back to California. But I knew I needed a year to focus on working towards my photography business, to be location-independent with my travel blog, and to save up for my next trip. I told myself that I cannot go on this trip until I've met my goals for this year. It's a win-win situation because you will work harder, then you will meet your goals, and you'll be able to go on your next adventure.
4. Re-discover your country
Just because you're back in the country you technically live in, doesn't mean that the adventures will stop. You basically have two choices: mope around about being back home and constantly complain about monotony and routine. Or you can break it and see your own country through new eyes. Better yet, look at it through the eyes of an ecstatic tourist. I left my homeland, the Philippines, at the age of 14 and moved to California. I have always dreamt of going to those places in the Philippines that I studied about. And those are just the famous places, my homeland has 7,107 islands. Let me reiterate, SEVEN THOUSAND AND ONE HUNDRED SEVEN BEAUTIFUL AND MAJESTIC ISLANDS.
There is so much unfathomable, undiscovered beauty in each place I've been to. In my opinion, the Philippines is literally one of the most beautiful and underrated countries in the world. I share stories of my travels with older people and they have told me that I have been to more places in the Philippines in five months than they have been in their lives. We tend to take advantage of what we have, especially if it's right in front of us everyday. But we should look at this as an opportunity rather than a hindrance.
Being back in California, I will take this opportunity to get to know the country I've lived in for a decade. In this state alone, there is so much to see. So I will take trains to wherever my feet wants to go, go on road trips, camping trips, and whatever adventures my heart tells me to embark upon. I trust I'll find a whole lot to treasure along the way.
And I trust that you will too, wherever you are.
5. Apply the lessons you've learned from traveling, into your current life
It’s important to hold on to whatever lessons we learn on our journeys. To keep the travel spirit alive. To let the adventure permeate through every cell of our being and to keep it breathing. We have to let traveling and coming back teach us and we have to learn over and over again. We must grow with every experience, good or bad. We have to make it through each triumph and defeat of our journeys and let it sustain us.
So here’s to never-ending journeys. May it continue to bring us to the most breathtaking places we will ever lay our eyes on, lead us to meet beautiful souls, and the most blissful experiences we will ever have in our lives. May we continue to fall in love everyday eager to see the world we know so little about, to feed this insatiable wanderlust, and the curiosity to explore.
And so where do we go from here?
Sole Sister Stephanie
Photos by Stephanie
Stephanie is a nomadic photographer, wanderer, adventurer, dreamer. She lives for capturing moments of bliss, wanderlust, inspiring hearts, reigniting spirits, and infinite moments of Satori. Follow her journey at Infinite Satori and get updates from her facebook page.
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