Travel the world

7 Travel Questions: 4) How to Handle Family Relationships

A friend of mine from high school asked me a few questions about how we afford to travel and do what we do.  I realized that these are questions Carrie and I get asked pretty frequently.  So I’m posting the answers to her seven questions in a series of posts on our site here.

Every person has to find their own path to getting whatever they want from life.  At the same time, it’s helpful in that path to have the knowledge and experience of others.  Some of this is worded pretty strongly, but as always, take what works for you and leave the rest for someone else.

I miss my family.  But we’re not planning on traveling forever.  And it feels like there’s this window of time in our lives where we can do this… before kids, before our parents might need our help in their later years, before having a house, property, etc.

Nearly everyone tells us that now is the best time in our lives to be doing this kind of travel (around the world in 2ish years) so we listen to those people, knowing this is an opportunity we are taking advantage of.

We are also doing it as a business… traveling, blogging our travels, building relationships and seeking out opportunities for the future.

The work we’re doing now is setting us up for all kinds of *passive* and *residual* opportunities in the future.

If Carrie or I had a traditional “job”, and that job was telling us we had to travel the world for a year or we would lose our job, I imagine there would be more of an understanding about why we’re traveling the way we are.

But most people aren’t in the mentality of:

  • going to explore the opportunities
  • going to see what there is to see
  • actually fulfilling dreams and realizing goals is what life’s about
  • to say you’ve done it, and/or
  • because technology and the time we live in allows you to

I think that most people want the safe and secure options.  They want safe and secure options for you too.

Or maybe it’s just that your family and friends want to spend time with you.  Which you should take as a compliment.

So I don’t have definite answers on how to get your family and friends to be in support of a traveling lifestyle, except to say that if your family isn’t supportive or doesn’t seem supportive of your desire to travel, it’s probably because they love you.

They are:

  • concerned about your welfare, and
  • they are worried that the world is dangerous (often people are under the impression that “foreign” places are more dangerous than they actually are), or perhaps
  • they afraid that you might not have the skills to face the different kinds of challenges you inevitably face in a foreign place.

Regardless, they want to spend as much time with you as they can.

Your traveling gives them (legitimate) cause for concern that they won’t be able to spend the time with you that they want, and that it’s somehow more dangerous for you to be traveling than staying at home, which in most cases is not really true.

Unless you’re traveling somewhere like Somalia or places where crime against foreigners is a regular event and government (if it really exists at all) often looks the other way.

There are few places in the world where this is the case.

So research to avoid those places.  However, based on having traveled for months and having always been able to go other places and avoid these kinds of situations, they are the exception, rather than the rule.

Be true to yourself and what you want, and do your best to understand what your family and friends are really saying – not with their words, but with the emotion behind their words.

An adamantly stated “you shouldn’t go,” from a loved one can easily be “You shouldn’t go… because I will miss you so much that my heart will nearly break.”

Be patient.  Be honest.

I think that’s the best advice when it comes to anything, but especially when it’s family related.

6 thoughts on “7 Travel Questions: 4) How to Handle Family Relationships

  1. Adam

    It might also just be that they are used to being able to get a hold of you when they have questions…but with 18 hour time differences, it is a pain in the butt. 🙂 I end up having to figure stuff out on my own…darn nuisance.

    Just kidding…I also miss just having long random conversations.

    Glad you guys are taking and enjoying the opportunity.

    1. strive4impact Post author

      Yep. Me too… re: random conversations. Sorry on the time difference.

      It’s really simple: Just add 6 hours and then move it 12 hours ahead from there.

      Or, subtract 6 hours but move it to tomorrow.

      Okay… not so simple.

  2. Mom

    I miss the casual conversations that don’t always happen when a phone connection actually occurs at a good time. Even email is tricky. Of course, I miss the hugs too, but we’re happy for the both of you and look forward days when you’re close by again.

  3. amy

    word! spoken like travel sages…i think you’ve officially reached that level now…enjoy your new titles. 🙂

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