Traveling is a Mindset #4: Pay Attention to Nature

Bird in my backyard.
Squirrel in my yard.
View your immediate surroundings like you never have before. If you have a yard or a nearby park, sit outside in nature or watch through a window and really pay attention.  
There is often an entire world of life going on around you that you never knew of.  

While the rush of interest may be short lived for some, it’s sure to ignite some excitement when you see all of the life and worlds that you never noticed before going on around you. Look outside, what do you see?


Traveling is a Mindset #3: Take Photos

Photo I took on a walk with my I-Phone.
If you have a camera use it, if not go buy one. Use your camera phone or by an inexpensive camera if money is an issue. Keep your camera charged and take it with you wherever you go, with the intent to take photos on your journey (even if your journey is only a 10 minute walk to the store). 

When you are geared up to take pictures it forces you to take notice of things around you that are “picture worthy” wherever you go. You will be surprised at the things you come across and notice, when you are viewing your every day surroundings like a tourist.  It will give you a fresh perspective on familiar places and hopefully produce some quality photos as well.  

If you take a good photo, print it, frame it, put it in a photo journal or share it on Instagram.  Treat your photos from home just as you would from a big trip.

Sometimes I get caught up in my head wishing I was here or there, not appreciating the moment or where I’m at now. Taking photos daily and honoring them/giving them value helped me notice that where I am now is just as valuable and interesting as the places I long to be. After all the present is the only moment there really is, so I’m learning to appreciate it more and more. So step outside and start snapping away. Let me know what you see!


Traveling is a Mindset #2: Let Adventure Unfold Without Anger or Resistance

Courtesy of Soul Coaching Oracle Cards by Denise Linn.
Copyright 2005, Hay House Inc.
When I’m traveling and things don’t go as planned, I often get a rush of excitement.  Although sometimes it’s a little scary, I think of it as an adventure, an opportunity for a great story when it’s all said and done.  At home I notice I tend to be much more impatient and short when things don’t go as planned. Honestly, I usually get angry, which is something I rarely do when I’m traveling. How silly I’ve been to not apply my free wheeling travel philosophy to life when I’m at home.

I challenge you to view daily mishaps as an opportunity. There is a flow to life and when you don’t resist, you just let experiences happen (even if it’s not how you planned) often something positive will come from it.  Don’t make things harder then they need to be, just enjoy and watch things unfold.

This actually happened to me today.  My entire day was planned out.  Things took a curve ball when I noticed a dog running in the road about to get hit by several cars.  I pulled over to see if I could call the dog out of traffic, I left my car door open so I could make a quick escape if the dog was not friendly (I’m a bit intimidated by big dogs).  Lone behold she ran right by me out of traffic and hopped into the back seat of my car.

All plans were off, I now had a huge pit bull/lab occupying my backseat with nowhere to go. I know, I’m supposed to call the animal shelter but I knew that if the owner did not come forward within a few days, there was a good chance she would be put down. Her name was Susie-Q and she was such a sweet loving dog, she became my best friend for the day. We created quite the adventure searching for her owner. Visiting local vet’s, parks and neighborhoods asking if anyone new her and putting up found dog signs. When the sun went down and there was still no sign of Susie-Q’s owner, I was going to have to keep her for the night.

Then a little miracle happened. I had found the dog near my parent’s house (who live fairly close to me). My father was in his backyard letting his dog out when he heard a woman yelling Susie-Q from the street below. He called out to her and it was the owner.  She lived a couple of neighborhoods away, just got home from work and noticed the dog was missing. She was franticly searching the surrounding streets; she hadn’t seen any of the signs I put up because it was dark. Thankfully my father was in his backyard and heard her, it was all a bit serendipitous. Susie-Q had unexpectedly escaped from the yard and her tags were not properly updated. The happy owner was sobbing with joy and so thankful that we had the dog.

So while my day did not go as planned, in fact nothing I planned was completed, I had a fabulous experience and helped someone else out. It felt great and I’m going to bed with a smile. Cheers to traveling at home through new experiences. Have you ever experienced a time when things didn't go as planned but turned out better? 


Traveling is a Mindset #1: Watch the Sunrise. Watch the Sunset

Watching the sunrise in the freezing cold at Mesa Verde National Park.
It was worth it.

Get up early – watch the sunrise. Go outside – watch the sunset. If this is something you do on a regular basis, kudos to you. I find that it’s something I’m much more inclined to do while traveling but it’s a great experience that’s open to you every day. Each sunrise and sunset is different and the start to a new day, a fresh perspective. 

So whether it’s in your backyard or maybe there is a park, road or place nearby where you know the views will be spectacular. Search online for places recommended or find your own new spot…maybe your backyard or porch is the perfect place. Pay attention to the beauty around you, it will never cease to amaze you. If you like wine, enjoy a glass while watching the sunset, it never gets old.

When was the last time you watched the sunrise or the sunset? Do it today, I dare you...

Gorgeous sunset in Arizona.  


Think You Can't Travel? Change Your Mind

It surprises me how often people tell me that they are stuck in life and unable to travel. There are many excuses, some of which are very valid (money, time family obligations etc.) 

I've traveled to many places throughout my life, so people often ask me how I do it, or tell me I'm lucky. I don't know how to respond. I feel obliged to give people some great secret even though I don't have one. This got me thinking, how do I do it?

I've always worked, had plenty of home obligations and never had a large sum of money in my bank account but somehow there was always opportunities to travel. Was it just that I was more passionate about travel then others? Possibly, but I felt like there was more to it.

I realized that I approached my daily life like a traveler; to get me through the lean times and inspire me to see the world. The secret is that traveling is a mindset. It's not luck, or a magical gift some people have, it's a way you view the world. You can experience traveling no matter where you are. It’s about being open and viewing the world with a new set of eyes, being accepting of others' beliefs, way of life and willing to learn. 

I love to travel; I’ve been to many places around the world and plan on expanding that list throughout my life. Over the past year I have made some drastic changes in my life that have required me to shift my view of traveling. 

I quit my job to do writing, coaching, speaking and marketing work. This required an adjustment in everything I do. How I spend money, where I could travel to and changing my daily habits. The risk was great for me, mainly because of the fears it brought up. How would I survive without the regular flow of income? Would I be able to follow one of my primary passions and see the world?

Instead of being paralyzed by my fears of being trapped in the stability and stagnation of suburbia, I decided to shift my viewpoint. I would search out travel experiences at home and throughout northern California where I could afford to explore for the time being.  

When I am traveling I am the best version of me I know. I am open, I am forgiving, I am patient, I am an explorer, I am excited about life, I talk to strangers, I try new things…I decided to apply this mindset to everything I do at home. It has been eye opening. Sure I still can’t wait to hop on a plane overseas but the things I have learned at home have been just as life changing as my journeys to foreign lands. 

I've posted twelve tips below with links to details on how to travel at home and experience life around you in a new way. Several of the tips focus on preparing for your next big trip away from home as well. Remember there is always a new experience right in front of you. Traveling is about the journey, the people you meet, the things you experience, learning. Life is happening everywhere, open your eyes and let the traveling start now. Remember, traveling is a mindset.

How do you practice being a traveler every day? Share your tips so we can spread the love and inspire others to get a fresh perspective on life! If you know someone who is stuck in a non-travel rut and needs a new perspective on life please share this article with them. 

Traveling is a Mindset
#1:  Watch the Sunrise, Watch the Sunset
#2:  Let Adventure Unfold Without Anger or Resistance
#3:  Take Photos
#4:  Pay Attention to Nature
#5:  Learn a New Skill
#6:  Be Grateful For What You Have
#7:  Be Spontaneous
#8:  Keep a Day Trip Bag Ready to Go
#9:  Create a Travel Vision Board
#10:  Cook
#11:  Be Prepared to Travel
#12:  Don't Wait