First and foremost, make sure to think long and hard before considering a leap into this unknown territory. Make sure you are truly fine with leaving your current role with the assurance of a paycheck and stability to go into a new reality of spending more than you make, and leaving the routine you may have been blessed with for so long. However, once you’re done your gut check and due diligence, perhaps talked this over with the people who matter the most in life, and have come to terms with this next phase, now is the time to map out your plan. I mean you can save some space for spontaneity, but I think a good rule of thumb is to have a semi-made plan of action. Where will you travel, what are you seeking out of this trip and at each stop?
Next, think of ways to be proactive in your learning and engagements. Maybe you can start a blog to document what you’ve done and learned? Perhaps a travel Instagram account for your followers to see your explorations?
Now, what about this whole travel thing translating back into your real world day-to-day? This can be tricky, but also viable. Some employers will balk at the gap you’ve left in place on your resume, while yes, some will look at it as a positive in that you’ve become even more well rounded and cultured, but they still may want to know just how this impacted you personally. Be ready to communicate this passion during the interview.
A good way to clean up that gap though, is to let them know about your travels and list out ANYTHING you’ve learned that can translate back into the type of work you’ve been doing or wish to do. Think of transferable skills gained on your adventure. Languages you’ve learned can also be listed on your resume.
My final advice is to live beyond the norm while you can. Go have fun. Go get lost. But don’t lose yourself too much….carry a compass to make sure you can navigate back to your life. And I don’t mean a physical compass.
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