On my 15 hour flight to Taipei and 4 hour flight Kuala Lumpur I had a lot of time to think in between the naps and endless food and snacks. I thought, “I can’t believe I am doing this.” Already missing relationships back home but also excited to experience so many new things. I think the best way to grow is to step outside that comfort zone.
There are always reasons not to do something as drastic as joining Remote Year. Things such as a relationship, feeling like you will fall into the background work or having an overwhelming amount of stuff to deal with (shots, visas, apartments, cars, moving). There are so many more reasons to take that leap.
If it is a healthy and positive relationship it will survive the distance and you will become closer. If your boss allows you to take this opportunity you are probably a great employee so embrace the experience and come back with even more ideas and zest for your job. You can always get everything done and hey, it may teach you to be more minimalistic in the future. I know I have thrown out a lot of stuff.
Stepping out of your comfort zone can be scary whether it’s traveling alone, public speaking or just learning a new skill. I try to do a few things every year that I am not comfortable with because I know I will grow from the experience. Being prepared, hard working, setting expectations and believing in myself are some of the ways I succeed in stepping out there.
Be Prepared but Flexible
As an event planner I am overly organized and prepared. I had all my shots and visas organized a month before, apartment packed and had all the Amazon suggested not essential items delivered. Although I plan everything, when I travel I am very open minded and flexible. Missing a flight, getting locked out of an AirBNB, staying out until 5am and then learning you have VIP access to the pope the next morning are just a few things that have come up. The crazy things that happen are usually the best stories so I try to just go with the flow.
Work Hard, Play Hard
I know this is silly but this is truly my motto in life. My dad taught me at a young age that you have to work for everything you get. I was out chopping wood on the farm to make money to buy new clothes or the car I wanted. This in turn has made me extremely hard working. I work hard so I can afford to travel or have a nice meal. Learning a new skill or stepping out of your comfort zone requires you to work hard whether it’s physical or mental.
I typically set realistic expectations for new experiences so that I can appreciate the amazing experiences even more. When the change you are making affects other people you need to have a conversation with them to know what they expect of you and vise verse to make sure your on the same page. This could be a significant other, colleague, friend or client.
Believe in Yourself
The most important part is to believe in yourself. When I try to do something completely crazy or out of my skill set (scuba diving), I always know that with practice I will learn how to do it. It’s all about confidence in yourself and not being afraid to ask for help.