My name is Justin. I’m 27. I live a normal life. I run a normal business. I have normal aspirations and I want normal things. All of this is about to change.
I, as many others, have always had a philosophy, that says “you only live once, make the most of it.” This is cute, and it kinda sounds like you live on the edge a bit. Unfortunately, this is bullshit. You see, I have started to question all of this of late, in a pretty stark way. While I can say I am happy with where I am, and I can genuinely say I have no regrets, I feel as though if I continue on this path, I won’t be able to say this much longer.
I no longer believe in this notion of only living once – in reality, the only thing in life we can be certain of, is dying once. It’s a grim line, I know, but the fact is that we live every day. Every day we wake up and have the opportunity to live again, to chase what we truly desire, and to be honest with ourselves.
My wife and I have decided to pull up the anchor and embark on an adventure of a lifetime. This isn’t a holiday, nor a sabbatical (what a stupid word). This is an indefinite global walkabout, from which there is every chance we may not return. It was far from an easy decision to make this commitment, giving up our business, leaving the friends we hold so dear and venturing out with nothing more than a bag and a camera. But for too long have We been told that we should follow our passion, and told ourselves how unfortunate it is that we can never fully indulge in what we are really passionate about, because indefinite, long term travel is the realm of dead explorers and the mega rich. Fuck that.
So this leads me to The Big Year Project.
Sitting down to itemise our travel expenses, work out a savings budget and start cutting back on the lifestyle we have become so accustomed to, and coming to the realisation that we would have to go without those camping trips, those weekend adventures, and the occasional alcohol induced coma, was about as appealing as eating bark chips. Nevertheless, it had become starkly apparent that if we wanted a big year in 2015, 2014 would have to be a small one.
This got me thinking, and I have come to the conclusion that we need to revolt against the small year. Fight for the adventure we all crave inside. Reach for a bigger and better life, and stop settling for small. I have had too many years like this, and it is time I started practicing what I preach, before I end up like Kevin Spacey in American Beauty. No one wants that.
So here’s my commitment to myself. To make every year a big year, to make damn certain that every month, week and day that passes is better than the last. Who knows where this will lead, I’m opening a Pandora’s box and I have no idea what is inside, it is a complete mystery. This could be the greatest decision of my life, or it could be my greatest failure. I have no idea. But I do know where I will be if nothing changes.