I have, without a doubt, had to make a lot of sacrifices in order to live the lifestyle that I do. Sacrifices that other people may not want to make, but sacrifices that I am quite OK with – if I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be doing it.
It is after all out of choice and I know that travel isn’t a necessity, but then again, it sometimes feels like it is for me. It’s necessary for my sanity and my happiness. Does that count?
Sacrifices I have made and continue to make in order to travel.
Not having children
No, I was not put on this Earth to give birth. It’s not my job to be a mother. It’s not my duty. Just because my body is capable of something, doesn’t necessarily mean that it should do it.
I do not want children now and I very much doubt that I will want to in the future. And yes, I’ve heard it all before: “But you’ll change your mind in the future,” “You never know what the future holds,” “You can’t deny yourself of the biggest gift in life,” “You just haven’t found the right man yet.” Oh shut up and pass me a bucket.
I know that having children doesn’t mean that you have to stop traveling. A lot of my travel blogger colleagues have children and they travel constantly, but they travel in a different way and I’m not interested in that way. Quite frankly, I think I’m too selfish to have children as well. Being forced to put someone else’s needs before my own for 18 years? No thanks. I have my nieces and nephews and that’s enough for me.
Not having long term relationships
Where other people have relationships that last for 5 years, I have relationships that last for 5 days. It’s just not possible for me to keep a relationship when I’m on the road. Yes, of course I sometimes miss having someone, but I don’t miss it enough to want to do something about it.
I’ve met men on the road, I’ve had fun and I’ve had moments where I have briefly considered to change my plans and my life’s direction in order to be with someone. But it has never been more than just a thought.
I think someone would need to leave a drastic impression on me in order for me to change my ways. Good luck, is all I can say.
Not having a stable job
Being a travel blogger and a freelancer is not a stable job and if someone tries to tell you differently, then they’re lying. I never know what my income will be from month to month. Sometimes I have a ton of work and other times it can be quiet.
But it’s OK, I don’t mind. I knew it when I started and I quite like this uncertainty for some reason. It makes me push myself harder and forces me to do better at all times. If anything it inspires me.
I’d rather continue this lifestyle than having a stable job and income where I need to drag myself out of bed every single morning at 6 AM to go and sit in an office for 8-10 hours.
The only reason why I set my alarm this morning, was because I needed to make sure that I’d check out of my hotel room at 10 AM.
Not being part of a pension scheme
Before you start calling me stupid and telling me that I live on the edge by not being in a pension scheme, stop yourself. My Dad and I already had this talk. Due to the nature of his job he was able to retire this year at the age of 62.
I know I won’t be able to do that and seeing as I’m not in a pension scheme I would need to live off of state pension when that time comes. And state pension is barely anything.
But strange as it is, my Dad actually managed to talk some sense into me, so I have started saving money for my pension now. It’s not a lot, but it’s better than nothing and I will increase the payments as and when I can. Yes, I would be better off if I was in a stable job with a pension scheme, but that’s not how it’s going to be for me.
Not having a stable home
Right now I live nowhere. Like, officially nowhere. All I need and have is in my backpack. Does it sound sad to you? Don’t worry, it’s really not. Actually, I don’t think I have ever felt this free before.
Sure, sometimes I can look in a magazine and see an amazing leather sofa that I would like to buy or garden furniture that I would love to have in a garden, but then I think of everything that comes with it and I’m like: “Naah, never mind, I’m good.”
However, I do want a permanent base at some point. That I already know. But I don’t want it to be right now, right this second. Maybe when I’m in my 30’s?
Not having a wardrobe full of clothes
People who are not full time travelers would be shocked if they knew how little clothes I own. I really, genuinely, don’t own a lot of clothes. I did have quite a lot of clothes in boxes at my Mum’s house, but when I went there to sort through it after having spent 10 months in Asia, I packed it all in three black bin bags and told my mum that it was either going to charity or to the dump. I actually felt ashamed to own so much unnecessary clothes.
If I want to buy new clothes now, I have to get rid of something old first. I want to be able to fit it all in my backpack without any problems. But don’t worry, you can still invite me to your wedding. I promise I won’t show up looking like a hobo!
Not having a friendship circle
Sometimes when I watch an episode of Friends, How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory or New Girl, I can’t help but think: I wish that was me and my friends.
Don’t feel sorry for me, because I do have friends. But friendships work differently when you’re a full time traveler. You don’t talk quite as often and see each other quite as much, but that’s a sacrifice that I have chosen to make.
The positive thing is that I have friends all over the world – not many people can say that.
These sacrifices that I have made have been out of choice. I can change the direction of my life anytime I want, but I’ve chosen this path for me right now. I’m happy with the way I live in this moment and I think that the benefits far outweigh the sacrifices.
What sacrifices have you made in order to travel? Let me know by leaving a comment.