Posted by: faultlessfinish | August 22, 2011

All Those Who Wander…

…are not lost. I love this quotation! Over the past few years, I’ve seen so many friends and family members travel. And for a long time, it never really appealed to me. It was always in the back of my mind, but I needed the right inspiration, the right motivation. And in May it came. I spent one of the best months of my life in Costa Rica, and now I’ve officially been bitten by the travel bug, as everyone warned me about.

The freedom to be able to run my freelance editing business on the road is almost overwhelming. It’s now my eventual goal to write a book about travelling as a freelancer. Along these lines, I wanted to share the top five lessons travelling has taught me so far:

1. It’s a small world. Well, actually, it’s a huge world. The more you see, the more you want to see! But the people I met while travelling gave me a sense of how connected we all are to one another. I found that I was able to tell my life story to complete strangers, and vice versa. In the end, we all struggle with similar issues and are all just trying to make the best life possible for ourselves. Travelling helped me overcome prejudices I didn’t even know I had.

2. Confidence is essential. One of my biggest fears when I left Canada was that I wouldn’t meet anyone. Being a shy person by nature, the first few days were rather daunting. But as I watched the interactions of other travellers, I realized that everyone was in the same boat. So I started just walking up and introducing myself to people. And ninety percent of the time, people were open and receptive to meeting me and would immediately engage me in their conversations. Now back in Canada, I find it much easier to strike up random conversations with people, which has been great for business. We really do tend to walk around in our own bubbles for a good part of the day here in North America.

3. Work is fulfilling. I couldn’t believe how many people would sit next to me while I was editing a project and say, “I’m jealous that you have work to do. I don’t know what to do with myself anymore.” While I truly relished the time I spent on the beach without a care in the world, I loved having work with me that I enjoyed doing. We are meant to create, to feel fulfilled through challenges. The trick is to find that balance between work and play (as I’ve written about in past posts).

4. Passion is everything. You just never know who you might meet or what experience might be thrown at you. You have to roll with spontaneity. No holding back. As a traveller, your time is limited, so you just have to throw yourself into the fire. Now the people who inspire me most here at home are the ones who live with passion and purpose.

5. Life is short. Doing things that scare you rocks. Travelling in itself is a leap out of the comfort zone, and it’s amazing to realize what you’re capable of when forced into uncomfortable situations. Since being back home, I’ve been working towards translating my new confidence in regards to taking risks to my business. While zip lining over the rainforest and embarking on a new business endeavour are at opposite ends of the risk spectrum, the underlying mentality is the same: live this moment, despite the potential consequences.

Namaste 🙂


  1. Great post & great reminders to follow my passion (whether travel, writing or something else) because life IS short — thank you!

  2. Thanks for reading, Julia!

  3. Great points Rachel. I can’t tell you how many Californians now know major parts of my life story from random conversations on my last road trip haha. I also really like your second comment; I have always felt like you could tell early on in a conversation when someone has gotten out and experienced the world; they just have a little brightness in their eyes that people who stay in their bubble don’t often carry.

  4. Thanks Chris! Yeah, I didn’t realize how much I was in my own bubble until this past year – definitely an eye-opener! I would love to travel down the west coast of the States as well.

  5. Its a Very Overwhelming Idea that you are saying. I have been in the freelancing world for some time but this idea of traveling while doing my work never occured to me. You just gave me a very good thing to ponder about m, maybe in the near future would just crash into you in your Journeys.

  6. It definitely is a very overwhelming idea. I thought about it for a long time before actually going on a trip. I can’t say enough about how incredible the experience was though. Best of luck in your freelancing career!

  7. Rachel, thanks for opening our eyes to these lessons. I admire you for having taken the plunge at least once! I know I want to combine freelance work & leisure travel at some point in this life.

    Here’s someone who maintains a blog about travelling as a freelancer: I’m not keen on the encumbrance of an RV, but I embrace the notion of being on the ultimate road (/world) trip.

  8. Thanks so much, Rowena! I hope you get the chance to do so – it’s well worth it. And thanks for the link. What a life!!

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