In our #MileStoneExperience tales we reached the moment in which we started to think about travelling around the world. We chose together the next events to describe, so from Anna sharing her personal life-changing experiences we move into sharing our common turning points. And making the decision of quitting everything was definitely one of them.
Making the decision - the very first step - is the most difficult part in every serious change. And we have very different approaches to it. Anna makes decisions fast, like King Julian from Madagascar nails it: “Hurry up ,before we all come to our senses”! She makes and implements decisions before doubts, inner critic and society tell her that it's foolish, impossible or not worth. Andrea instead takes his time. He researches, thinks things through, he tries to understand causes and consequences and only then he says yes or no. But once he does, he is stable in what he decided, going strong into the new goal.
It's difficult to say when the thought about going around the world appeared for the first time. In some sense one day we woke up and it was just there. The true, though, is that such an idea needed the space to germinate inside us and carving that space may take years, if not a lifetime. For us it was few years of serious work on ourselves, asking who we are and what we want from life, why we are here. We went through different trainings, coaching, we used the Camino Cards mentioned before and many other tools which helped us to go deep inside ourselves, getting to know crucial answers related to sense of life, dreams, values, etc. That was a painful process, full of tears, anger, leaving things behind. We needed to enter the dark cave, we needed to die in some sense to be able to reborn as a new self, more aware, stronger, sensitive and ready to make that decision.
When the thought about travelling around the world came we didn't accept it immediately, but we didn't reject it neither. We let it linger, growing in our minds and hearts. We started to think about it and discuss it in different occasions. We started to imagine, and as William Arthur Ward wrote: “If you can imagine it, you can achieve it”. That was very true for us.
Oftentimes, if you direct your attentions on one thing, suddenly everything and everybody speaks about it. We discovered that many of our friends travel quite a lot and they are happy to share their experiences and contacts. We started to see a lot of travelling articles and new opportunities coming from organizations we used to collaborate with. Slowly but steadily the thought of travelling around the world overruled us. Moving one step at a time, we were preparing to be able to hit the road half a year later. There were plenty of difficulties in this process, starting from choosing between embarking in a social project or keeping our expedition private, through unveiling the news with friends and family, till the crowdfunding campaign. Some of those will be the topic of future #MileStoneExperience posts, but for those of you who want to know more, we invite you to go to the beginning of our blog [https://www.exchangetheworld.info/blog-en] and read what we wrote back then. Our thoughts today are quite different from those few years ago.
Of all the challenges which awaited before us, in the preparation phase and then during the travel still the most difficult was simply this - making the decision. Once you make it for good and there is no way back, things are much easier. All those doubts, questions, thinking through take a lot of energy which could be otherwise invested in realizing your dream. Quit that job. Buy the ticket. Send that mail. Register the business. Break up. Tell that you love him/her. And see what happens...