Thursday, September 20, 2012

To Be (Structured) or Not To Be?

As my life-changing trip to Australia draws nearer and nearer, I keep going back and forth between what I should do for work while I'm there. A couple different opportunities have been thrown my way and I'm not sure which direction to choose. Regardless of what I end up doing, I know it will be beneficial to my personal (and professional) growth.

So do I commit to a structured job where I have a certain amount of hours each week and accommodations figured out ahead of time for me? Or do I pick up odds and ends touring jobs in various cities across the continent?

For my entire life, I've always planned EVERYTHING. I plan to the point where there's a plan B, C, and D in place as well. It's great knowing various ways I can make things work, but to be's exhausting! For one day, I would love to know what it feels like to NOT have a plan. To just be. This alone leads me to one of my goals on this trip: to learn how to be worry-free in a no worries society. In America, I sometimes get caught up in the Rat Race and forget about the important things in life like family, friends, and mental calmness. In Australia, I want to embrace the laidback attitudes of Aussies. I want to talk to as many people as I can and learn something from each person I have a conversation with, whether it be good or bad. I want to become my best self and in turn help others to become their best selves.

Life is good. I'm thankful to be embarking on this journey.

Monday, September 17, 2012

"A Tour Guide to People's Souls"

For a couple years, I've contemplated taking a journey somewhere far away for an extended period of time. I spent four months in London during my undergraduate studies, but I've always wanted to visit and travel around Australia. 

After years of back and forth between deciding to go and not go, I finally decided to take the plunge. I got over doing things I "should do" and started thinking about things I want to do, things I am passionate about. "Feel the fear and do it anyway!" was a common theme in my good friend frequently told me this and my life coach echoed these words. I finally decided to take the plunge after I realized that I was miserable at work, unfulfilled with my life in Chicago, and eager to learn more about myself and others through the exploration of another culture.

I lined up as much as I could for this adventure and with a 12-month visa in hand, I'm headed to Australia in October 2012. I have yet to finalize exactly what I will do for work, but the best part is that I have options. Whether it be structured or unstructured, I know I'll be fine. I'm a problem solver and genuinely optimistic about life, so good things will come my way. 

I just got off the phone with my life coach and friend, and she said something that resonated with me. She said, "You're a tour guide to people's souls." I've spent part of my life leading student and adult tours all over the U.S. and Canada. My favorite part of this job was seeing people grow through internal and external exploration and adventure. 

At the end of the day, I am going on this trip to further my own personal growth so that I can one day help others explore theirs. Sometimes you just need to take a leap of faith, even when the fear of the unknown takes over. 

I'm excited to take you all along on this journey with me! From now until the day I leave until the day I return, I'll try and write as much as I can about what I experience and what I learn, so that maybe each of you can take away something, too.