Pursuing Opportunities

 

Since I was very young, I’ve always had the dream of some day travelling the world. I held onto that dream despite it being the huge cliche dream of every college student. In fact I could probably attribute a large part of the insane “work-your-ass-off” attitude I’ve maintained since 2011 to the travel bug. I knew that I would be travelling exactly nowhere with $90,000 in debt so I did everything in my power to eradicate that ball and chain from my life. I’m thankful still that through the tough years of doing nothing but work for Sallie Mae I held onto that travelling dream. I kept up the hard work long past the final loan payment and I am in the position today to actually plan for a years worth of travelling. I am not only planning for myself as my girlfriend will be along for what we both hope will be a tour of a lifetime. It turns out that we both have a penchant to be free and to explore, and thankfully we both have the fortitude to binge work to get what we both want.

That’s not to say we are out of the woods yet. We are planning on working for one more year here in Boston. It’s the length of what’s looking like our final lease in our apartment and this will give us both time to save appropriately for the trip. While saving over 60% of my income for the past two years I have managed to build a small but sturdy enough little nest egg to feel confident in taking a sabbatical and having something to come back to. This is something that has happened in just two years since being in the red. I only mention this to show how powerful your income can be if you can control your finances.

In anticipation of our travels I started working lunch shifts in a second restaurant and have put the “saving and investing” into overdrive so as to compensate for the lack of earnings I will be facing soon. Once we start 2018 I will stop all of that and start pilling up cash for the trip. My goal is to save around $4,500 per month for 8 months (January to August) for a budget of $36,000 in travel money. Holding down the two jobs should allow me to reach this number as I have been consistently putting roughly that amount aside this year. I have to say that working 60-70 hours a week for the last 8 months has been very exhausting and projecting that forward for another year sounds excruciatingly daunting. However, I feel that the closer we get to our date of departure the easier it is to grind it out one more day so that is what I will hopefully accomplish.

I am so thankful to be in the position that I am in today. To actually even think about making this happen seems surreal, especially considering where I was just 5 years ago. The more time goes by and the closer our departure comes the more fearful I get. The planning is hard to wrap our heads around. Even if we don’t want to plan too much, just thinking about moving and not working for such a long time is scary. We don’t even really know where we will come back to. But thanks to the rigorous saving I’ve already done I always have a bit of confidence to counter the fearful voice in my head. I know that I have what it takes to work hard and save for the things I want to do and that knowledge helps fight the fear and the doubting of taking such a big step. I know that I have the right attitude that will allow me to make it anywhere we come back to and so, most of the time I am able to push the fears aside and keep planning and dreaming about this trip.

 

I hope to give updates more often now that I have settled into my schedule more comfortably. All this working has made me lazy when it comes to writing here but I will try to stay on top of things moving forward!

 

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