Do you wish you had more freedom to travel?
Do you wish you didn’t have to be a slave to your 9-to-5 job?
Many people say they want to be free. They say that they wish they could live on the beach drinking margaritas. Have they really thought about it?
I used to say that I would do any kind of job for six months every year if it gave me enough money and freedom to not work the other six months. That might mean that I would have to clean toilets – or clean up dog poo – I didn’t care. I swore that I’d do anything that would give me enough money during six months of work to have six months free.
You may be wondering what I wanted to do during my six months of freedom. I wanted to travel, paint, learn another language, learn to play piano – oh, so many things. I wanted to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, wherever I wanted, with whomever I wanted.
Well, I didn’t end up cleaning toilets or picking up dog poo in a park. What I finally ended up doing is far better than those two options. You can read more about my journey on my About page. You’ll see that I was genuinely serious about creating that lifestyle.
I didn’t develop this lifestyle quickly. For several years, I went from job to job – teaching Spanish, working as a secretary, doing word processing, working as a waitress – all in an effort to find a lifestyle I’d love. I also tried several businesses – a pet album that I sold at dog shows, import/export, making dog biscuits. But none of those jobs gave me the lifestyle that I wanted.
Tour Directing – a Lifestyle of Freedom
I don’t belong to that group of people who only want to work four hours a week until retirement or who want to spend every day free as a bird, lounging on a beach in some beautiful tropical country. I’ve always been willing to work hard, especially in order to attain my goal of six months of freedom to travel every year.
And then I stumbled on the idea of becoming a tour director. And stumbled is exactly the right word. It was serendipity.
Tour directing is seasonal work that naturally gives the tour director months off every year. Not every tour director wants that much freedom to travel, but I certainly did.
Once I became a tour director, I looked back on my life. And yes, hindsight is 20/20. I saw that many things I had done along the way had led to the inevitable result of tour directing.
Taking Risks Gave Me Freedom to Travel
The most important thing I’d done was to take risks. When something came my way, I jumped at it. I didn’t sit and cogitate about whether or not it was the right thing to do. And believe me, sometimes it was most definitely not the right thing to do. But when I made wrong decisions, I just picked up and tried something else.
Eventually, I ended up being ‘semi-retired.’ That’s what I called tour directing six months on/six months off – semi-retired.
Becoming a tour director is not the answer for everyone. It was the most difficult work I’d ever done. But that was ok because it helped me reach my goal of semi-retirement freedom.