Time flies… no pun intended. In just over a week I’ll be done with college (assuming I don’t oversleep for a final), which is a frightening prospect, at least in theory.
Over the past couple of years I’ve asked myself what I want to be when I “grow up.” Throughout college I was a bit unconventional in that I never even thought about getting an internship, which in the eyes of most is utterly stupid. It’s not that I didn’t think it would be a great learning experience, because I’m sure it would’ve been, but I stayed busy doing what I love most — traveling, writing about it, and helping other people travel.
Up until a couple of months ago I started looking for jobs. While as a self-funded mileage runner/traveler I loved the prospect of traveling on someone else’s dime, I couldn’t find a place that was a perfect fit. But then I realized the reason for that — I love what I do now.
I guess I’m pretty fortunate, because I actually have a “full time” job while still in college. Between blogging, other writing gigs, and my travel consulting business, I’m probably “working” 60 hours a week, and that doesn’t include school. But what I do isn’t “work” in any way; it’s a hobby that happens to pay the bills. Sure, some days I want to pull all my hair out, but even the best hobby will do that to you.
So what I’m getting at is that it finally dawned on me a couple of months ago that I don’t have to “grow up.” I’ve been told on this blog dozens of times (with good intentions, mostly) that I should enjoy my hobby while I can, because when I have a full time job I won’t have time for it.
Well, I’m happy to announce that my hobby will be my full time job, and therefore I’ll have time for it. I feel incredibly fortunate to be able to do what I love every day, and I have no plans to change that. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those motivational “self employed for life” bloggers (and nothing against them, I think they’re fantastic); that’s not my goal. But I’ve always believed, as the quote goes, that if you do something you love, you’ll never work another day in your life. Maybe sometime down the road an opportunity that’s truly compelling will present itself, but in the meantime I’m a happy camper.
I have so many friends that are having a hard time finding jobs given the economy, thinking there’s nothing out there. I keep asking them what they’re truly passionate about, and the response is almost always “I dunno.” When I pester them further about what they’re passionate about, they name their hobby, always adding “but you can’t make any money doing that.” Well, I firmly believe they’re wrong, as long as you don’t approach something with the sole goal of trying to get rich quick. God forbid there’s anyone younger than me reading this (you need a new hobby if you are;-)), but seriously, do what you’re passionate about and don’t second guess yourself.
Anyway, the real reason for this post is to give a huge thanks to all of you — those that read my blog, those that have used my travel consulting service, those that read my column on TravelSort, etc. As of a couple of weeks from now I’ll be able to dedicate all of my time to what I do, without any other distractions, and I can’t wait.
All of this also means I’ll be traveling more than ever before, so you can expect not just a lot of “tips” and “tricks,” but also a lot more “travel.”
In the meantime I better get started on my last cruel college assignment (with a fair dose of procrastination mixed in) — writing a 3,200 word research paper by 10AM tomorrow.