It’s a New Year! The calendar has turned again and somehow it feels different, I guess. They say we should feel motivated to set some new goals for the new year. That all of a sudden, now, we tackle life in some new way, after we countdown and magically at midnight a new year is here. This is supposed to mean new goals, new inspiration, new motivation. Like we have not been working hard all year long, every day, or trying to find the motivation to tackle the goals that have been sitting in the back of our minds for many months. As you can see I sometimes get burnt out or turned off by this idea of a “New Year, New Goals” thing. Don’t get me wrong, intention setting, goals, and aspirations for our lives are super important, I guess I just don’t like being told when I am supposed to do that, or that by a change in the calendar (which by the way is arbitrary in itself) I am supposed to feel or do something different.
Instead, what I like to focus on is how do I stay motivated when dealing with life, full time jobs, passion projects, hobbies, friends, and even the occasional down time. I find myself struggling with a lack of motivation at times, or a lack of connection to where I am going.
This is especially true for travel. We all want to travel more, go on that adventure of a lifetime, see the world and find some new way of seeing ourselves and the world around us. What I would like to do here is just lay out a couple tips that help me stay motivated to meet my travel goals and make travel a part of my everyday life.
One of the best ways to stay focused is to find ways to be held accountable. This can be to yourself or to those around you. One of the best ways is to share your plans with your community. Let others know of your travel plans, or better yet plan a group trip together so you are all accountable to each other. Being accountable to others will help make sure that you don’t lose track of your goal and will give you an outside connection to your desire to make the trip happen. They will help keep you focused on your goal, and the social pressure to stay on track will provide some extra motivation to follow through. Whether that is betting money, having someone to check in on you, keeping track of goals, or having someone help you plan, just being held accountable will force you to stay focused, even on those days you are feeling a bit less motivated.
Dive Into Research
Another way that I find inspiration and motivation for my next travels is in researching the place, people, and landscapes of where I want to visit. I will usually read as many books as I can get my hands on or watching a documentary from the place. This may sound silly but by always keeping travel on my mind it keeps me excited for future adventures. I’m constantly researching, learning, and envisioning my next trip, which keeps me even more motivated to stick to any goals or plans I have made, or even to start planning a new adventure.
Learn A New Language
This is a great way to keep you motivated for your next travels, and is also a super useful and practical skill. You can join a class that you attend, either online or in person. This is a good way to learn the language, but also goes back to number one in that it provides some accountability to your goal setting. This is also a great way to meet other travelers and people who are interested in a similar trip or destination that you are. Having that daily activity that connects you back to your root purpose for the travel serves to not only create motivation, but ensures that when you do travel there is a much higher chance of having a truly transformational experience.
Meet Other Travelers
Sometimes it is hard to stay locked in and passionate when you are not surrounded by a community of people that understand your need or love to travel. Going out of our way to meet other travelers or joining spaces where we can talk about our passion for travel and our love of the experience can provide a powerful connection to our travel goals. It also provide the opportunity to learn from others who are interested in and committed to travel as a valuable and vital part of their lives. In our society and modern world this can be hard to find, so seeking that community can be a strong motivator for travel.
We have all done this: where we start planning a trip and BAM, before you know it, the time is here. This can be discouraging and take away from our connection to the experience both before and while we travel. My suggestion is to pick a day and time you are normally not busy, (evening, mornings or lunch time) and devote that time to planning your trip. Try your best to be consistent with the time of day and duration of time spent. Some days this will be hard and feel like a chore, but keep at it. After some time you will form a new habit and this daily connection to your desire and your intention will carry you forward toward your ultimate goal a deep travel experience. Just like anything else, the value we get from travel is tied to the passion and intention we give it. This on is hard but the return makes it worth the effort.
If you are like me, some days I feel super excited and motivated and other days that is lacking. Some days I feel overwhelmed and burdened by having to do one more thing in my day. But in my heart and soul I know that travel is what makes life worth living to me. Those experiences, connections, and insights I get from travel are really the only things that will matter when my life comes to an end. I don’t get to take houses or jobs or degrees with me when I die. What I get to take is the people and connections I made, the memories and visions that live deep in my heart, and the satisfaction that I accepted all that this life has to offer with an open heart. So I hope these tips help keep you motivated and excited for your next adventure.