The alarm clock rings and you get up. You go through your morning routine like a zombie. You drive to work and the stress hits you like a ton of bricks. Finally giving in to your stress you run outside of the institution where you work, look up at the sky and scream.
“I need a vacation. But I have a full-time job.”
Okay, that was a little dramatic. But one of the biggest complaints I hear is ” I wish I can travel more but I have a full-time job.”
And when I share with others my travels. The question I am often ask is ” how do you find the time?”
No need to ask I am willing to share the not so secret way I am able to travel with a full-time job.
“Mind is a flexible mirror, adjust it, to see a better world.”Amit Ray
Change Your Mindset
I know y’all tired of hearing this but everything you set out to do in life starts with the right mindset. The number one secret you should know so that you can travel with a full-time job is to change your mind. I know it sounds cliche but let me explain.
In our society we always want money. And therefore we work hard for it. We even work dead-end jobs to make it. Because we believe that our Work is our life. We live to work.
But we should actual work to live.
People think It sounds crazy when I say something like “don’t kill yourself for other people’s business.” Which they would counteract with “at least I got a job.”
But it was one of the best pieces of advice I ever got in my life.
I get it. Having a job is important but don’t let it rule your life. Having a job is not more important than living your life. I say that because I have a job too. But, I don’t allow it to rule me.
I understand that having a job doesn’t mean I’m going to put my life on hold to do it. That’s why you should change how you think about your work.
Your work doesn’t give you meaning but you give your work meaning.
I’m one of the few people who like their job. I worked hard to get where I am. It’s my career. I have a master’s degree in my field. That’s how much I like it. But I understand that my career doesn’t define me.
It’s something that I do because I like it. That means when the day ends I am free to pursue other passions. Even though it’s my career, it doesn’t mean anything more than that.
I have a career that I love because I get to use a very important skill, helping people. It’s rewarding but it doesn’t define me in any way.
That is why you need to change your mindset about what work actually is. Focus on your life and free yourself from the bondage of cultural misconceptions.
But, if your job defines you then remember that it doesn’t have to control you.
PTO Doesn’t Matter
Yes, I spoke about mindset so that I can explain why you shouldn’t worry about PTO. Let me be the first to admit, I actually never got the concept of PTO. I always wonder why I had to ask permission to live my life.
I have a friend who had difficulty going places and doing things because she didn’t have enough PTO. And yes, you guessed it, she often missed out. So imagine my surprise when she threw PTO out of the window and actually live her life.
I work hard for my money. So if I need to take a break to enjoy it. No one is going to stop me. But with that said I know that my views on PTO are revolutionary. And many people don’t think like me.
If you don’t, here’s a tip. Save a week of your PTO for a big vacation. And spread a week out throughout the year. And then take mini-vacations. You know stuff like staycations, weekend getaways, and so on.
You can even stretch out your weekends to make those weekend gateways last longer.
Budget Is Key
You can’t throw the PTO baby out with the bathwater unless you’re budgeting. If y’ all been following me. Y’all know I love to budget. And one of the best ways to free yourself to travel is by budgeting.
Most reasons why people who work a full-time job don’t travel is because they don’t budget. They are living paycheck to paycheck because they don’t know where their money is going.
That is why budgeting is important. You get to tell your money where to go and what to do. This way you are in the driver’s seat of your finances. Check out this blog post on ways to save money this year.
Life is what you make it. It is also what you value. The way you live your life shows others where your priorities are. And if you take a moment to look at your life you will be shocked. Because most of the time you prioritize work over everything else.
Don’t worry I was the same way. You’re not alone.
But then I took a long hard look at myself. Only to realize I was saying what I value but not living it. That’s when I changed my mind and started to Prioritize life overwork. Family and friends over money.
And you have to do the same. Write down what you prioritize and compare it to how you are currently giving your time to. This way you have a picture of where the shift in mindset needs to be.
Live below your means
Before I was giving you easy advice on ways to travel with a full-time job. But this is the hardest one. However, this tip involves you being disciplined.
I follow Dave Ramsey and he is always telling people ” live your life like no one else now, so you can live like no one else later.” In other words, do what you need to do to take control of your money.
I tell you this to give you the next piece of advice.
LIVE BELOW YOUR MEANS. Stop spending money on things you can’t afford.
Do you need to have that brand new car? Are you sure you ready to take on the financial responsibility of a mortgage? What your plan for paying it off?
Maybe it’s not a good idea to buy those 200 dollar headphones. Do you see where I am going with this?
Stop acquiring stuff.
We’ve heard before that we are a consumer nation. But to be honest that’s not something we should be proud of. We should be proud to live within or below our means.
One thing I know you’re probably blowing money on. Is cellphones. How do I know that you ask? Well, easy you finance your cellphones. I mean the technology goes out of date the moment you buy it. Stop doing this.
I only buy a phone when the one I have is on its last leg. And when I buy a phone I shop around for it. And I only start shopping after I set a budget.
Did I forget to mention that I make sure I have the cash ready to pay for it?
I don’t buy things I can’t pay cash for. And that’s how you should be living your life. Taking a loan and trapping myself into a payment plan should be the last resort. I reserve that for huge things like a mortgage and things of that nature. But even then I would seriously consider my budget.
There you have it, folks. Those are some of the ways you can start adjusting your life to travel with a full-time job. It’s not hard but it does require a lifestyle change. I did it and you can too. You don’t have to wait for your job to give you permission to live the life you want.
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