Friday, September 20, 2019

Where to Next?

The Traveling Hillbilly has always been a planner.   I started writing down goals from a very young age.  I always had a list of things I wanted to accomplish within the next year, 3 years, 5 years and by a certain age.   I look back at those lists now and am pleased to see I've accomplished quite a few them.  But, not without sacrifice.  I was always so busy planning ahead and trying to get to my next achievement, I didn't always take the time to appreciate my accomplishments or give myself a break.   As I've gotten older, I've learned how important it is to take a break, allow myself time to relax and enjoy the moment.  The Traveling Hillbilly is much better at living in the moment and rewarding myself from time to time.   Sometime my rewards are big, like the annual holiday trip and sometimes they are small, like a massage or stopping for a morning coffee.

So before I give serious thought to what's next, this Traveling Hillbilly wants to maximize this gift of time by squeezing in a few more adventures.  I've been working since I was old enough to have a job.  I had three jobs in high school and worked full-time all through college and really haven't ever stopped working, so why not allow myself at least a couple of months to take off and enjoy the beauty this country has to offer.    Before figuring out what's next, I want to think about where to next!

I plan to stay here in New Mexico for a few more days and then I've decided I'd like to take the long way back home.   My cross-country train ride in early July, got me so excited about the beauty of this country and a strong desire to see more, including some of the places we missed from the train.  Plus, I've had several friends who took some amazing US road trips this summer and I've been inspired by their pictures and adventures.  I haven't finalized my route yet, but I'm thinking I might go up through Colorado, Wyoming (with a stop in Jackson  Hole, up to Montana (with a stop in Glacier National Park), maybe down to South Dakota to see Mount Rushmore, then a stop to see my sisters again before heading back home.   

Any recommendations from my fellow travelers out there?

I'm trying to avoid getting back to the south until the humidity is gone and the fall weather comes in.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Timing is Moving Too Fast

This Traveling Hillbilly woke up this morning and realized, it's already  almost 2 months in to the 3 month Summer Sabbatical 2.0.   How is it that time goes by so fast?   I still have so much to do before I'm ready to go back to work.   While I don't think I could every truly not work, I do enjoy this slower pace.   I love being able to get things done without having to cram it all in on a Saturday.   I love being able to treat a Tuesday or Thursday, like a Sunday.   I can sleep in when I want or jump up at 6:30a and work out if I want.  All without feeling stressed that I only have 30 minutes or I only have the one day to get all my errands done.     I truly enjoy the flexibility.    But at some point, I have to start thinking about what's next and start actively looking for a new job.    I just know once I start looking, this freedom and  flexibility will be gone.   I'll be tied to schedules, deadlines and many more To Dos.  I'm just not ready for all that yet.

While there is a pat of me that's nervous about not being able to find something when I'm finally ready to start looking, I want to take advantage of this time I've been given.  While it was never part of my plan to be out of a job at this point it my career,  I've looked at this like a gift.  A precious gift of time.  Time to take for myself to decompress, to explore.  Time to focus on those things that bring me joy; writing, spending time with family, traveling.   So yes, the not knowing what's next is somewhat scary, there's also an excitement in the not knowing.    There's a new adventure ahead, the Traveling Hillbilly just doesn't know where that adventure will take me.     Will I continue on my current career path, but possibly in a  new city?  Will I do a complete career change? There are so many possibilities and there's true excitement in possibility!