Lessons Learned from a Nomadic Lifestyle

We tend to think of our physical journeys and our soul’s journey as two separate things, but they are the same. The urges of our soul motivate our choices and the things we do impact our souls.  They are intricately entwined. 

Travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living. Miriam Beard

Physical travel has literally been a big part of my life’s journey.  My husband had recently retired when we married in 1995. He yearned to travel. At the time, I was more of a home-body.  The perfect answer: a motorhome. For the next 6 years, we lived and traveled full-time all over the United States and Canada. Then it was time to see the rest of the world. We took countless small cruises, sailed around the world twice, spent extended periods of time in China and India, and toured all over Europe and the U.S.  

So much of who we are is where we have been. William Langewiesche

When we sold our last motorhome, we automatically assumed we needed a home and bought a condo in Boca Raton, Florida. We rarely used it so we sold the condo on 1/11/11, and officially became nomads. It has been 6 and 1/2 years now; a journey of the soul as much as the body. 

I soon realized that no journey carries one far unless, as it extends into the world around us, it goes an equal distance into the world within. 
Lillian Smith

A nomadic lifestyle teaches you…

The Simplicity of Life 

You Don’t Need a Lot of Clothes  

It is amazing how little we actually need and use in day to day living. Outside of clothing required for work, we tend to wear the same clothes over and over. Take a look in your closet and notice how many items you don’t wear often, don’t really like, don’t fit anymore. Clothes and shoes that are just taking up space. 

You Don’t Need a Lot of Food 

Occasionally we rent an apt. for a week or a month and make our own meals. On the road, we choose hotels that serve breakfast. In Europe, we often opt for half board – breakfast and dinner are included. Otherwise, we generally have a late lunch, and at night we snack on the cheese, crackers and fruit we usually carry with us. 

You Don’t Need a Lot of Things 

We do carry a laptop, phone, and 2 Ipads. In the States, we can find pretty much whatever else we need at the Dollar Store – such as nice wine glasses and mugs. 

The Gifts of Travel

Humility  

Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world. Gustave Flaubert

Travel is humbling because you realize how little you know. And what you do know might, just might, be wrong. Perhaps my country, my culture, my religion isn’t the best one or the one that is right for everyone. 

To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.
Aldous Huxley

Awareness

To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted. Bill Bryson

The brain loves novelty. It is more alert and alive when presented with new experiences. 

The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper. W.B. Yeats

Acceptance

Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends. Maya Angelou

When you can’t communicate with everyone around you because you don’t speak their language, you learn to reach out in other ways, with a touch with a smile. And then people reciprocate in kind. We have found that natives usually go out of their way to welcome and help a visitor.

If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home. James Michener

Courage

Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore. Andre Gide.

Entering unknown territory can be fearful or exciting. Physiologically, those two sensations are the same within the body. Depending on what you label that feeling, you will be open or close down. Fear rejects and closes the energy field. Courage vitalizes and opens the energy field. 

Travel is about the gorgeous feeling of teetering in the unknown. Gaby Basora

Growth

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. Marcel Proust

New experiences change us. A life without change tends to become static and close-minded. This is where the merging of the soul’s journey and the physical journey can be most easily seen. We are larger people, more aware, more accepting, more adventurous for having stepped into a new experience.

Furthermore, travel offers an opportunity to recreate yourself. 

When you’re traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.
William Least Heat Moon

People will see you as you are when you encounter them. Travel teaches us not only who we are but who we can be. It forces us to break through self-imposed boundaries and extend ourselves.

Even those life journeys that do not turn out well have gifts for us. We learn through mistakes. We grow through trials. 

Not until we are lost do we begin to find ourselves.
Henry David Thoreau

In all things, we find what we are looking for. We get what we give. Nowhere is this more evident than in our travel experiences.

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not. Ralph Waldo Emerson

PLEASE NOTE: We sail back to Europe on April 22, 2017. Future blogs will be about the 6 months we are spending overseas. You can subscribe and follow on www.gerioneill.com

Why You Need to Let Go to Grow

A man was hiking through the forest when he heard a rustling sound. He turned and saw a mountain lion eighty feet behind him. The animal cast hungry eyes upon the hiker and made a threatening growl. The hiker took off at top speed running deeper and deeper into the woods.

He spotted an opening in the trees. Running through it, he went over the edge of a cliff. As he fell, he caught hold of a small tree growing from the side of the mountain. Under his weight, the limbs began to crack. The hiker looked up and saw the lion licking lion-515029_640his chops. He looked down at the bottomless abyss. He knew in moments he’d plummet to his death. There was no place to go, nothing left to do but pray.

He raised his eyes to the sky and cried, “God, if you’re up there, help me. I haven’t been much of a believer, man-1519875_1920but if you’re there, I’m begging you, tell me what to do.”

There was a crack of thunder and then God’s Voice bellowed from the heavens: “Let go, my child.”

The man looked down at the abyss, up at the hungry mountain lion, raised his eyes to the sky once more and yelled, “Is anybody else up there?”

Fear of Falling

We are all hikers through the forest of life. Just when we think we know the territory and feel safe, something appears to push us over the edge, past our comfort zone. The tendency is to grab onto the old and familiar and hold on for dear life. We feel ourselves falling off a cliff and fear there is no place to go except down. But there is another alternative.

“Come to the cliff,” the Papa Bird said to his babies.
“No, no,” they cried. ducks-204332_640“Come to the cliff,” he said.
“We are afraid,” they cried.
“Come to the cliff,” he commanded.
They came. He pushed them. They flew.

Every stage of life requires jumping off a cliff. Whether we fall or fly depends on our willingness to let go of the familiar and enter the unknown. The Law of the Vacuum applies to the mind as well as nature: opposite things cannot occupy the same space at the same time. Love and hate cannot coexist, happiness and sadness, trust and fear, hope and despair, holding on and letting go. We can’t cling to the past, base our identity on former achievements, be bound by the familiar, and be fully alive, learning and growing in the present.

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.  Anais Nin

The Forward Force of Life

Life is growth, and growth requires change. We are changing every day, every hour, every second. Each thought that passes through your mind changes the configuration of the brain and affects your emotional and physical state. Resistance to change is resistance to life, and…

RESISTANCE CAUSES PAIN!

There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
Anais Nin

Resisting the natural changes anriver-1594106_640d stages of life is like trying to hold back a raging river. You’ll drown unless you go with the flow. To grow, you have to be willing to let go of the old and embrace the great unknown that lies ahead.

Courage does not mean that we jump off the cliff without fear. It means we jump in spite of it.

Life will push us forward, whether we like it or not. Whatever our mountain lion may be, whatever pushes us over the edge of the cliff, we should be grateful for it. If it were not for that push, we might never let go, and if we don’t let go, we won’t grow.

Adapted from: Make the Best of the Rest of Your Life

Are you ready to jump off a cliff?

The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice
what we are 
for what we could become. Charles DuBois

You are never too young or too old to change. Change is a magic wand we all possess. You can change your brain, mood, lifestyle, body, beliefs, jobs, friends… the list is endless. No matter how good or bad your life is, it can change for the better. No matter how young or how old you are, you can be healthier and happier.

Courage is the power to let go of the familiar. Raymond Lindquist

A man was enjoying a leisurely hike through the forest one day. All of a sudden, he heard a rustling sound. He turned and saw a mountain lion than fifty feet away. The animal cast hungry eyes upon the hiker and made a threatening growl. The hiker took off at top speed running deeper and deeper into the woods, fear building with every step.

Finally he spotted an opening in the trees. He ran through it and went right over the edge of a cliff. As he fell, he caught hold of a small tree growing from the side of the mountain. Under his weight, the limbs began to crack. The hiker looked up and saw the lion licking his chops. He looked down at the bottomless abyss. He knew in moments he’d plummet to his death. There was no place to go, nothing left to do but pray.

He raised his eyes to the sky and cried, “God, if you’re up there, help me. I know I haven’t been much of a believer but I need you now. If you exist, if you’re up there, I’m begging you, tell me what to do.”

There was a crack of thunder and then God’s Voice bellowed from the heavens: “Let go, my child.”

The man looked down at the abyss, up at the hungry mountain lion, raised his eyes to the skies once more and yelled, “Is anybody else up there?”

We are all hikers through the forest of life. Just when we think we know the territory and feel safe, something appears to push us over the edge, past our comfort zone. The tendency is to grab onto the old and familiar, and hold on for dear life. But our safety nets have become frayed and can no longer support us. We feel ourselves falling off the cliff, and fear there is no place to go except down. But there is another alternative.

“Come to the cliff,” the Papa Bird said to his babies.
“No, no,” they cried.
“Come to the cliff,” he said.
“We are afraid,” they cried.
“Come to the cliff,” he commanded.
They came. He pushed them. They flew.

From Make the Best of the Rest of Your Life bestlife-compressor-3http://tinyurl.com/onzjtp7