Hey! Briana here. This is a guest post by my friend Nikki from SheSavesSheTravels.
Hey! I’m Nikki. I run the travel and personal finance blog, SheSavesSheTravels.com. I want to share my journey with you in the hopes that you can find your passion and get more out of life. By the end of this article, you’ll learn the 4 things to do have a more fulfilled life.
*This post may be sponsored, contain affiliate and/or referral links. It doesn’t cost you anything extra to use the provided links to purchase any of the below products or services. Please check out my disclosure policy.*
I had wanted to start a blog for years. I was so envious of those fancy travel bloggers who seemed to have such lavish and exotic lifestyles. You know the ones that are riding elephants in Thailand, taking gorgeous pictures outside of the Eiffel Tower, and walking casually with a dress flowing behind them toward the Taj Mahal.
But at the time I fell in love with the idea, I was in my mid to late 20’s. Back then most travel bloggers (at least the big ones) traveled non-stop. I knew that I didn’t want a 24/7 travel life. So I put the idea behind me. I thought I could never be a travel blogger.
I knew I wanted to have kids, own a home and hang out with my friends and family. I loved to travel but decided to continue to do so on long weekends or during my vacation time from work.
Well fast forward a couple of years later my husband and I went on a personal finance journey. We had just had our daughter. And while we weren’t in terrible financial shape, I knew that I wanted to have extra cash in our bank account at the end of the month.
So I dove into researching everything I could get my hands on about personal finance. I felt like I was constantly looking at blogs, reviewing ways to save money, to earn money, to manage your money better and to get out of debt.
Basically, every single thing that I could learn about money management, I was doing. I started following my favorite personal finance bloggers, learning from them and understanding how they’ve paid off all their debt, or are earning a nice living now with complete financial independence.
At this point in time, I started researching what it would be like to be a personal finance blogger. Trying to understand what kind of lifestyle you could have, how you make money, and what it would be like.
I guess you could say I was little obsessed with bloggers at this point in my life. I was envious of travel bloggers, I deeply admired personal finance bloggers, but I guess I just left it at that.
Meanwhile, life was happening. I was having my second child, and going through the motions. My husband was going through his master’s degree at this point, and I guess you could say we were living the “American dream. We were both working in corporate America and living for the weekends. We had the textbook “busy life.”
And that’s about the time I started to realize that I was not as happy as I thought I should be. I felt like I wanted more out of my life. I had these beautiful children. I looked at my life and realized that if I’m spending time away from my children, then I should be doing something that I absolutely love.
So I went on a journey. To figure out what that thing was. I listened to audiobooks, podcasts, and started to really dive deep into what I really really wanted out of life.
Meanwhile, while this was happening in the background I went to a conference and listened to one of the keynote speakers, Jack Canfield. During his speech, he talked about and offered each of the participants in the conference, a free book of his: The Success Principles.
It was a book that was meant to help people get from where they are to where they want to be. You guys, I was mesmerized. I left the conference on fire and really dove into the book.
It totally resonated with me. I understood how to take action, change my mindset and strive for more.
But what was missing was what I actually wanted to do in life. You see I have a marketing degree and I love connecting with people. But I really didn’t know what that looked like. I felt like society had conditioned me to climb the corporate ladder. I felt like I needed to “level up” in my current career path.
I knew that I could do it. But I didn’t know if I really wanted to do it. I didn’t know if being a marketing executive and working 60+ hours a week would bring me more fulfillment.
So I started to look at alternative options. I was interested in helping people more. I really wanted to make an impact on the world. Meanwhile, my husband and I continue to travel. We continued to explore this great earth.
And every time we would return home from a trip, my view of the world was changed. I would then go back into my corporate environment and slowly die inside. I recognize that sounds a tad dramatic but it’s true!
What I also found was that people kept asking me how I could afford to travel so much. I saw that there was a perception that people must make a lot of money in order to travel as much as I do. When in reality, my husband and I had just been through a personal finance journey. We set goals that aligned our spending with our values. My husband and I love to travel and we spend our money accordingly.
So while this was happening I stumbled upon the book called The Passion Test by Janet Bray Attwood and Chris Attwood. The Passion Test walks you through how to figure out your five life passions.
There’s a series of exercises in the book that help you to define what lights your heart on fire. And I spent hours and hours, and days and days going through the process to really understand what my passions were.
So I had identified my five life’s passions. When I looked at all those five things, it pointed to entrepreneurship. Then I went on the path of trying to figure out how I could actually make a living off my passions.
And it’s almost like it was staring me in the face for that long. I never really thought I could do it. I had never given myself permission to just try. So after all of these different events happened I found that I definitely should just start a blog.
My niche is to help people to save money to travel. I knew that I had the tools knowledge and resources to help people. Help them save money and prioritize travel in their lives so that they can live their best life. To inspire them to travel the world…or as much as they want to.
So I did the research. I figured out how I could create a business that I would love. That would give me the freedom and flexibility to meet my life goals. And I’m sure that many people would love to escape the 9 – 5 but for me it was more than just a dream or wish. I really wanted to make it a reality.
I want to travel to create a life that I didn’t want to vacation from. I want to help to inspire others to live their best life. I want to help people to get out of debt, to save money, to create a different financial feature for themselves and for their children.
I want to show people the world through beautiful photos and inspiring stories. And I wanted to be able to do it to support my family. My husband and I have worked very very hard all through our teen years and in our adult life to build a life that we’re proud of.
I want my children to see the other parts of the world, other cultures, other cities, other landscapes, other ways of life. And I know that by starting this business I will create that. I will create it for myself, for my children, and for my husband.
So this journey is absolutely unique to me. And it feels like on one hand I waited so long to get here; I waited so long for this to happen. But it also feels like it’s the right time. It feels like I’ve been learning for years what my next step would be and I just couldn’t see it. My journey took several years but I’m very happy with where I’m at today.
Here are 4 things that I did, that you can do if you’re on a journey to self-discovery.
1. I was honest with myself. I asked a lot of questions!
What do I want? What do I really really really want? What sets my soul on fire? What, at the end of my life what will I want to look back on and say I’ll be glad I did that? How could I live my life without regrets?
What if I never had to go to an office again? What if I would have total financial freedom? What if I could be debt-free? What if my husband and I could travel for a month or more in a time exploring new places, tasting new foods, and enjoying life? What if I could be available to my children for field trips, and what if we could just take the day off on a random Tuesday because we felt like it?
2. I found mentors. I know that sounds cheesy but you honestly don’t even have to know them in real life. It’s listening to podcasts, audiobooks, positive social media influencers, etc. This mentorship can positively change your thoughts and fill you with info that will help you to be the best person you can be. To live the best life that you want. To live your dream life.
3. I wrote out my goals. I created a vision board. I said daily affirmations. I journal every morning. Basically, I got really really clear on what I want my life to look like. I’m going for my dreams and I’m working really hard. I now understand the phrase, “if you do what you love never work a day in your life.”
4. I took action. I first learned it in Jack Canfield’s book. Just how to take action on a goal. Because life isn’t stopping. You’re not getting any younger. It’s never the right time. And yes, it might be hard. But this is your life we’re talking about!
So I would challenge you today to figure out what you want. And I know that’s a hard statement. But that’s where it all starts. Really really really need to figure out what you actually want your days to look like, what you actually want your life to look like. Then go for it!
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