One thing that's been on my mind for the longest time was how to have great experiences. Basically, there are two ways to have great experiences. Either you plan what you want to experience, and ways of achieving that experience, or you say yes to opportunities for experiences that come your way.
One thing that's been on my mind for the longest time was how to have great experiences. There are two ways to have great experiences. Either you plan what you want to experience, and ways of achieving that experience, or you say yes to opportunities for experiences that come your way.
My problem was I thought of these two methods as separate. I thought you either do one or the other. Take for example travel. If I completely plan my trip: where i will stay, what i will see/do; I may miss out on great opportunities to explore. Yet, if I leave my schedule too open for opportunities, opportunities may never come your way, and I just might end up with no place to sleep. More importantly, this problem arises when thinking about my career. If I completely plan my career path lets say marketing consultant, then I may miss out on opportunities to be a manager, designer, sales representative, accountant, engineer, firefighter...you get the idea. But if I don't plan my life, I probably won't even make it being a marketing intern, I might just pick a job that seems comfortable work there for life.
I've concluded that these two methods however, don't have to be separate. In Life Nomadic, Tynan writes that planning is essential for your trip, but you should be ready to ditch those plans at any moment. This is the same in life, planning should be meticulously done, but always ready to be thrown away and re-planned.
These two methods however, don't have to be separate.
In Life Nomadic, Tynan writes that planning is essential for your trip,
but you should be ready to ditch those plans at any moment. This is the
same in life, planning should be meticulously done, but always ready to
be thrown away and re-planned.
For my career I went with the 'Create but allow' approach. I already had a plan set out for what I wanted to do and went through with it. During this process an opportunity opened up which ran counter to my plans but was a good opportunity regardless so I took it.
Life Nomadic is far from over, but today I'm in the US, back in Austin. We've been away from Austin for seven months and have circled the globe entirely. We're already planning more trips, but armed with experience, we don't plan on being on the road for such long stretches in the future.
For me the trip was an epic journey, one that I will remember in great detail for the rest of my life. We could have very easily stayed in Austin and had very little change in my life, but we didn't.
Instead we walked on the canal in Panama. We sat with friends under the cherry blossom trees in Tokyo. We looked out from the tallest building in the world in Taipei. We drove ATVs through the dunes of Qatar. In France we walked through rooms of bones in an unauthorized jaunt through the Paris Catacombs. We ran with the bulls in Spain and lived to tell the story.
Between parkour, facilitating for Startup Weekend, and a general desire to explore, I've had a lot of opportunities to travel the world. I’ve traveled solo and with friends, for business and for fun. I’ve traveled with people far more experienced than me, and people who have never left the country.
During my most March-April 2014 trip (Texas, Palestine, Israel, China), I started reflecting on my best travel experiences, my worst travel experiences, and why they turned out that way. The biggest realization I had is that I enjoy traveling with people a lot more than traveling alone. That led me to decided to start organizing a lot more trips with my friends.
One trick to traveling with friends, especially friends you haven’t traveled with before, is to establish expectations. That got me thinking about how what I would want to tell someone before we traveled together.
So, here it is. Zachary Cohn's Top 14 Rules for Traveling Adventures.