Enjoy The Journey

Every year, spring makes me itch for adventure.  I don’t quite know what it is but something about the sunny days, blossoming flowers and chatty birds just makes me want to go.  Somewhere.  Anywhere.  I feel energized and also incredibly bored with my current surroundings and I just want to hop on a plane and travel far away.  Anybody feel me?

I want to see all the places.  And I don’t just want to – I feel like I need to.  There’s just so much out there and I want to experience all of it!  I crave new places, new sights, new smells, new foods, and new cultures.  I don’t know where my wanderlust comes from but I definitely have it in full force.  I can’t even live in one place too long without getting antsy.  Right now I’ve lived in northern California for just over a year and I am ready for a change!  Something new and exciting!  Like India maybe?  Or Guatemala.  Scotland, perhaps?

It seems like my generation (millennials) is very passionate about traveling…which is awesome except when you yourself can’t travel.  And then you look on social media and see one friend’s pictures from Cuba and someone else’s from Italy and you’re just like…”Why am I still at my house???  I need to be out there!”

I’ll admit it: I get extremely, ridiculously jealous of others my age who are out there seeing the world and Instagramming all about it.  I honestly feel like a failure at life because I’m stuck in one town with a stationery job and no extra money to fly around the world on the weekends.  (I know, I know – the vast majority of people don’t have the opportunity to do that either…but still!)

And then I always think about something my high school principal said once that has stuck with me since then:  “Enjoy the journey.”

He was talking about life’s journey – you know, the paths we take to get us to our goals.  Don’t be so focused on your goals that you don’t enjoy the time you spend achieving them!  And that’s something I majorly struggle with.  It’s hard for me to be content with where I am in life (physically and mentally) because I’ve convinced myself the next place, the next job, the next whatever, is what will make me truly happy.  But that’s just not the case!  We have to learn to be happy where we are in life.  (I’m speaking to myself, here!)

I focus on the things I haven’t accomplished yet.  The degrees I haven’t gotten, the jobs I don’t have, the places I haven’t visited or lived yet, and on and on!  But what I need to be focused on is the journey to those things.  That’s where life truly happens and that’s where I need to learn to be happy.

It’s spring and I am so ready to go somewhere.  I’m ready to hit the road!  I want new places and new adventures so badly.  But that’s just not possible right now for many reasons, and I need to be ok with that.  I need to enjoy where I am in life and find happiness in my current surroundings.  I mean it’s great to have goals, but I can’t be so focused on them I can’t be happy in the meantime, right?  I need to enjoy life the way it is right now.

Whenever I catch myself feeling wistful and itchy for new adventures, I have to remind myself to stop wishing for different circumstances and just enjoy the journey.  I need to learn to be happy where I am in life instead of yearning and hoping the next place, the next adventure, the next change, will be what makes me happy.

Life is the journey, so we should enjoy it!

A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.  -Lao Tzu

I cannot be still for long. There is a riot in me all the time. A needy, restless voice in my heart endlessly urging me onward. I ache for new experiences and my hunger for adventure is boundless. My entire life is a perpetual loop of longing for something else.  -Beau Taplin

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