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My Goals: Defined

Abbey Road

This post is long overdue and I’ve needed to put these goals in pen for quite some time now. I’ve held back out of fear, out of uncertainty, and expectations set by others. I’ve held back for fear of judgment but what the hell, I only have one life (and that life is mine alone to live). So in this post I’ll reveal my most important life’s goals that until now, have been jokes in conversation and simple day dreams. Today, my goals will be defined and the only thing holding me back from achieving them now is me.

An old friend sent me an incredible video that told of the power of positive reinforcement and expectations.

Ever since I saw this video I’ve applied the teachings to my own life. I used to have a fear that I’d jockey a desk from 9-5 every day to try to pay off an apartment and car that I’d never have time to enjoy. So when people used to ask me what I was going to do after graduation, I’d always answer “I’m going to live in the mountains.” Let me make it clear that at first, I was 100% joking. While I was hopeful that I’d be able to pursue my dreams and live in the wilderness of North America, I never really believed it was possible. Only after repeating this answer to dozens of people, hundreds of times, for at least 5 months, did I start to believe what I was saying. No longer was my goal a pipe dream, no, this was becoming my only option. I’d told so many people that I was effectively creating an expectation.  If I didn’t follow through on my words, I’d be lying to others and, more importantly, I’d be lying to myself. Not only that, but each time I told someone my intention, I’d envision myself living in the company of Moose, Bison, and Wolves in the shadow of the mountains.  Seeing this taking place in my mind made it real to me.

So now, I must do the same if I’m ever to achieve my greatest two goals in life. While I’ve been telling people that I’ll be pursuing these achievements, I am about to take it a step further and present them for all of the internet to see. I can only hope that you will all help me in my journey to make these dreams a reality, and inspire me to achieve all that I’ve promised to do.

So here it goes…my two main goals for my early 20’s. *sigh*

1. To hike the Appalachian Trail in a straight shot from Maine to Georgia.
2. To backpack for over a year around the world.

I’ve been told that it takes nearly $5,000 to hike the Appalachian Trail and anywhere between $15,000 to $25,000 to backpack for a year or more. So while money might have been an excuse not to go in the past, my good friend reminded me how flawed this logic really is with a quote. “Empty pockets never held anyone back, only empty heads and empty hearts can do that.” -Norman Vincent Peale

You know what Mr. Peale? You’re goddamn right.

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8 Comments Post a comment
  1. greenkeen #

    “We are what we pretend to be”
    -Kurt Vonnegut

    I’ve always found that quote sorta fitting with this kind of lifestyle…but really, you can make most anything happen in your life that you want to make happen.

    July 24, 2013
    • Thanks for sharing this. I couldn’t agree more.

      Most of the time, I pretend to be an adventurer and hopefully someday someone else will actually describe me as one! Cheers.

      July 24, 2013
  2. Articulating your goals and putting them out into the universe is a huge step in achieving them. You need to connect with my friend (and fellow alumnus) Mig Pascual, whose videologue and website I shared with you in the past. He’s currently living his dream in Costa Rica, having checked out of the rat race to travel the world. Check out his new website “The Curious Nomad”: http://www.curiousnomad.com/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=WelcomeEmail

    Better yet, connect with Mig!

    Glad to hear you’re doing so very well, Nick! Keep keeping on! Love the Peale quote. Here’s a personal favorite, this one from William Hutchinson Murray:

    “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: The moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no one could have dreamed would have come their way. Whatever you can do or dream, you can begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”

    July 22, 2013
    • Saying what I wanted to achieve was one thing, but writing down my goals was another beast entirely. Taking this step has really solidified these things in my mind as matter of fact and something that will inevitably happen. It’s truly a great practice and one that I’d recommend to anyone looking to achieve a goal.

      I almost forgot about him but yes, I’ll definitely need to reach out to him and read his posts! I’m sure they’re packed full of tips, tricks, and awesome experiences.

      “Whatever you can do or dream, you can begin it.” Sounds like Mr. Murray hit the nail right on the head. Thanks for dropping a line. I hope all is well!

      July 22, 2013
  3. To try and help with the budgetry, my husband and I are managing on £30k between us for the year – that’s flights, belongings storage, insurance and everything. We’re helping it to stretch to being tourists in America by wwoofing for a month – your country is more expensive than we thought!

    It doesn’t matter how much money you have – you can do it. You need contingency plans for when you run low (wwoofing, friends and family, couchsurfing) – but it can definitely be done!

    July 21, 2013
    • Thanks for your input! The way it’s looking right now, I’ll have about $20-25,000 to work with. I’ve seen people do a year’s worth of travel for $16,000 and some with as much as $60,000. I know I can be frugal but I also want to enjoy the countries for much of what they have to offer. I trust that I can find a balance and I think wwoofing will definitely be happening in Australia.

      Yeah, the only things noteworthy in America are definitely not cheap but last I remember, your country isn’t so cheap either! 😉 I’ll definitely be looking to your notes in my preparation so please don’t shy away from detail in your posts. Cheers!

      July 21, 2013

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. why i hike | stuff laura does
  2. A Week on the Appalachian Trail | Paddle Faster

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