Updated: July 5, 2020
This is probably the year that I’ve traveled the most in my entire life. Just for the first half of the year, I’ve been to Malaysia, Singapore, and Vietnam; with a trip to Macau coming up in October.
Locally, I’ve spent nights in La Union, Cagayan de Oro, Bulacan, Laguna, Ilo-Ilo, Bohol, Dumaguete, Mindoro, Isabela, and Legazpi. I just arrived from Naga and I’ll be going to Bacolod in a few weeks.
Later this year, I’m headed to Cebu, Davao, and a few more provinces in the country.
And no, I wasn’t traveling just for leisure. For the most part, I’ve been conducting financial literacy seminars for corporate clients of Wealth Arki.
So why am I telling you this?
First, this explains why I haven’t been writing as much as I would have wanted here, in my blog.
Second, and more importantly, I’d like to share something that I realized lately, while I was at the gate and waiting for my plane to start boarding.
The love for travel.
Travel has always fascinated me, thanks to the endless hours I’ve spent watching the Discovery Channel when I was a kid.
Then back in college, I’d hear many stories about the hometowns of my dorm mates, especially the festivals, tourist attractions, and historical sites in their provinces.
It was during my years at the university that I decided that when the time comes for me to find a job, I’d choose one that had travel opportunities.
And I was mildly successful at achieving this. Working as an engineer, I’d occasionally travel to project sites in provinces and attend out-of-town conventions.
However, after a few years in the corporate world, I began to hear a new call to adventure — entrepreneurship.
While I was enjoying my job, I can’t help but wonder if there’s anything else I could be doing. And that feeling become stronger and more persistent as months went by.
A different kind of adventure.
One of the reasons why I love traveling is because it allows me to get out of my comfort zone. When you’re in an unfamiliar place, you need to be alert, street smart, and resourceful.
However, traveling isn’t the only way to experience that feeling. Pursuing entrepreneurship and working on financial independence also allows for a similar kind of adventure.
In my mid-20s, just in time for Quarter-Life Crisis, I answered that call to adventure and quit my job to start my own business.
I went out of my comfort zone and bravely went to unfamiliar territory. It was one of the most challenging years of my life, and I will always look back with pride on how I survived it.
I didn’t go out on trips as much during these years. I was busy managing my businesses and mostly just stayed at home. But it didn’t matter, because somehow I knew, my businesses will soon give me freedom to travel again soon.
Different routes to a usual destination.
Many love traveling. In fact, people would always have a destination they’d want to visit on their bucket list.
The most popular way to find time to travel is to wait for long weekends and holidays. While some, just like what I did during my early years, looked for a job that had travel opportunities.
I also have several friends who, thanks to the Internet, chose to become online freelancers and travel bloggers. A route that I would’ve never thought possible when I was in college.
And finally, there’s me today, conducting financial literacy seminars and doing speaking engagements. I didn’t expect that I’d be doing a lot of traveling because of this, but I somehow stumbled upon this route and is now enjoying every moment of it.
Many love traveling. And people satisfy their wanderlust in different ways. And that’s my realization, that there are many routes to reach a destination.
Which is the same for our other goals in life. It’s important to remember that there’s more than one way to fulfill our hopes and dreams; more than one route to achieve the things we want in life.
Financial independence is a personal journey.
Everyone hopes to have financial independence. Some will work up the corporate ladder to attain it, while others will pursue entrepreneurship and build a business.
And then there will be those who’d choose to be freelancers and professionals, while some would eventually achieve it through a route that none of us probably thought was possible.
We are running our own race. And we all have the power to choose how we want to go through this journey. The road is long, and new routes will definitely appear along the old and familiar paths we know.
Ultimately, it is up to us to choose which road to take. And because there are many ways to reach a destination, then there’s really no right or wrong choice.
The goal is to arrive at the finish line meaningfully, and in our own time.