I was introduced to Vagabonding by Tim Ferris from his podcast. I had been an avid listener and reader of Mr. Ferris’s and so I followed his recommendation on this book. From the first page I fell in love with this book. Just like Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance this book is so much more than just a travel book. This is a book is a manual on the journey to find who you are. Everyone should be required to read this book.
The thing is, few of us ever “are” where we are: Instead of experiencing the reality of a moment or a day, our minds and souls are elsewhere-obsessing on the past or the future, fretting and fantasizing about other situations.
3 lessons learned from Vagabonding
1. Stop using the future as a salve to bring a numbing to your present.
Ralph Potts from the beginning of the book forces us to look at our selves in a mirror and ask ourselves why are we doing what we are doing. He challenges us with the fact that most of us use our present to build resources and energy for a future goal that for most never come. Most of us look at these vacations, retirements, and such as an escape from real life. However, Mr. Potts challenges that assumption and states its should be a discovery of your real life.
2. Celebrate the questions, don’t always look for answers.
In Vagabonding the author challenges on not look at traveling ad a pilgrimage without a specific destination or goal. Most people I interact with are obsessed with answers. We have an answer for everything. In fact if there is no answer to the question it throws off our equilibrium and those are lives out of whack. But what if we began to embrace the questions? What if we approached our lives more focused on the journey than the destination. When things happen that throw off our agenda we are often too quick to get emotional and waste energy focused on getting back on track. What if we embraced the interruptions?
3. Stop being a tourist and start being a traveller in life.
Ralph Potts spends some time comparing and contrasting tourists and travelers. The summation of the difference is best said by Daniel Boorstin when he said, “The tourist is passive; he expects interesting things to happen to him.” Most people go through life as tourists just hoping interesting things will happen to them. The traveller goes out and makes it happen. They go out in the chaos and does the hard work of finding interesting things. Stop living your life as a tourist just waiting…