Everyone else was doing it so I figured I should as well. Not that I’m one of those people that does something because others are, but when you’re wife has made a list of her travel resolutions for 2015 and posted them here on our website, then I thought it only best that I do as well. After all, we can’t have Sarah dictating everything we do in 2015, right?
So here goes, my list of travel resolutions for 2015.
#1 New York, New York
My list of travel resolutions for 2015 could be one item long and I’d be happy. Seriously, if I get to New York and spend a bit of time there getting to know the city and exploring its various areas and sights, I’ll be a very happy man. And by spending a bit of time there, I mean at least a month, but hopefully much longer. I’ve never been, but it’s pretty much been the only place on my hit list for years. Why I’ve never been is a mystery, but I’m a lot closer than I’ve ever been and within 4-5 months I will be there for sure.
#2 Write more eBooks
I was a little disheartened when I thought I’d only had two sales of my eBook ‘Saigon to Hanoi – Our Vietnam Travel Guide’, one of which was me when I was testing to make sure the payment gateway worked, and the other a good friend back home in Melbourne. Then I got an email from iTunes Connect with links to the payments and financial report for the past month, and guess what…I’ve had SIX sales!!! Ok, I know that’s not much, but I’ve basically done no marketing so I’m reasonably happy with that. So my goal is to write more eBooks, after all, if I can sell 10 eBooks a month on one subject, and I’ve got 10 eBooks in the iTunes bookstore, that could be quite a handy little earner.
#3 Worry less about money
As I mentioned in my article Angkor, Delhi, money, passion…my highs and lows of 2014, I talked about how I’ve been constantly worrying about our money situation from the moment we left Australia. It’s not that we’re going broke or anything, but given we’re trying to service two home loans while travelling we need to be careful. As such, every time a decision has to be made where money is involved, I’ve started to worry. Back in Australia I wasn’t a big worrier, but this particular issue has grabbed me and wouldn’t let me go. A few weeks before Christmas I decided enough was enough, and if we have to go home a little earlier than expected because we’ve run out of money having fun, then so be it. There’s no point travelling and not doing anything, so let’s spend a few pennies (without going crazy) and enjoy ourselves a bit more.
#4 Start a new blog
Since we started Travelling Apples and I finished my awesome online blogging course Travel Blog Success, I’ve taken a real interest in the idea of creating a website that’s all mine, about a topic I’m really interested in, while potentially making a few dollars along the way. One of the reasons I started this journey was to find something I’m passionate about for the first time in my life. I’m not sure if this is it, but it could be if I do some more research. I’m not a huge lover of writing if the truth be told, but when it’s something that I’m really interested in then I do enjoy it. I’m much closer to what I want my new blog will be about now than I’ve ever been, so I’m planning on definitely launching it some time in 2015, the earlier the better. I’ll keep you posted.
#5 Quality over all else
Travelling for many people is all about getting over any materialistic habits that are synonymous with Western culture, and focussing on more important things in life like experiencing new cultures, meeting new people, spending quality time with loved ones, and all of those intangibles that money can’t buy. For me travel has had a slightly different effect on my materialism. From now on, I want to own less things, but they must be of great quality. Before if I saw two pairs of shoes in a store, where one pair was on sale but not quite as attractive as the more expensive pair, I’d naturally gravitate towards the cheaper pair. Not any more, from now on I’ll buy things that are of good quality, but only when I truly need them and not for the sake of it. I had a friend once say to me about 15 years ago that he’d rather own one pair of Calvin Klein underwear and wash them every day, than own 10 pairs of supermarket boxers. I got what he was saying at the time, but I never really understood it until now.
#6 Do more research when choosing future housesitting assignments
Let me start by saying we’ve been blessed with the two housesitting assignments we’ve landed so far. The home owners have been amazing, the houses first class in every way, and the rural settings quite stunning. However, I’m going to make sure our next housesitting assignment is absolutely perfect for us. Why? Because I’ve discovered I’m not a rural person. Back in Australia I always wondered that we might be better off living out of Melbourne, perhaps down near Torquay instead. It’s a little cheaper to rent, not as much traffic, slower pace and as a family it might be easier to get involved in neighbourhood activities. But the reality is I’m a city slicker, and our next housesitting assignments are going to be right in the middle of cities that we really want to visit. These kinds of housesitting gigs are rarer, but I figure we’ve got experience and done our time in the country, so we’d be a prime candidate for when any do become available.
#7 Figure out what I want to be when I grow up
I don’t think it will be too long before we’re back home in Melbourne. I’m not saying we’re getting on a plane any time soon, and I haven’t got an exact date, but I’m guessing it will either be late 2015 or some time before mid-2016. I can’t see us going much longer than that, but you never know. So it’s time to work out what I’m going to do when I get home. I have a few ideas – 1) get a full time job. This will mean set pay, superannuation, holidays, etc. It’s a safe option, and we’d live reasonably comfortably from pay check to pay check. 2) Start another business and throw everything into it. This has great potential for success, and great potential for failure. I’ve done this before and know how hard it is, but I also know the opportunity to do really well for yourself. 3) Spread myself around a little, maybe buy a small low maintenance business, continue with my oDesk clients, do a little consulting like I was before leaving Melbourne, and build my blog to generate some income. I have a few business structure ideas floating around in my head, but the products and/or services are still developing. I’ll keep you posted.
So that’s it, my seven travel resolutions for 2015, and I think that’s plenty. If you have a list of things to do longer than your arm, chances are you won’t do any of them, because it all seems a bit overwhelming. But seven is a pretty good number to get through over the next 12 months. Some are easy and won’t take long at all, some are a change in mindset which is an internal struggle, while some will require good old fashioned hard work. But I’m really optimistic about 2015, and I hope you are too. Last year was huge in terms of turning our worlds upside down, selling everything, leaving family and friends, and venturing off to places that are much different from home. It was a massive change in lifestyle, sometimes life got very frustrating and hard to handle, and there were times when I was keen to head home. But now we’ve got over the six-month hump that many travellers say is the point when they fight the urge to go home, I can see some really plain sailing ahead, especially when we get to America.
What are your resolutions for 2015? Please let us know in the comments below, we’re really interested to find out what everyone else has planned for this year. Take care and I hope you all have a wonderful 2015, wherever you are on this beautiful big blue ball of ours.