Hi, I’m Jess (@jessbowenn), a 23-year-old, living in the beautiful land of Australia. In the last three years of my life, I’ve really pushed and challenged myself to get out of my comfort zone and experience the beautiful world around me.
I haven’t conquered a unachievable goal, but getting out there and exposing yourself to new experiences and spaces can be an intimidating push. You can make this leap to travel and adventure less overwhelming than you think.
Some say ‘to travel is to live’ and I’ve figured out how to live and keep living for the rest of my life. The solution to traveling more is simple and I want to tell you about how I found it.
I work in a contract dependent industry which leaves gaps of time off in-between jobs. So when a gap between jobs comes about I make the most of it, pack my bags and head for my next adventure.
Yes, it absolutely costs money, and I’m no Insta Fame Queen. So here's the first simple secret…Budgeting is ultimately the most important, simple, way I can make room for regular traveling in my life. My job fuels my bank account, but my ability to spend less enables me to travel more.
The second simple secret is my ability to look at the moment and jump into it. Yes, I know, I am a typical Generation Y in the way I look at the time. But honestly, what’s the point of working hard if you don’t blow it on an epic adventure. #YOLO, right?…ya okay, maybe YOLO is now dated, let me translate that into a more relevant hashtag…#LiveTheMoment, #FindItLiveIt, #LiveTheLittleThings, #TheHappyNow… I could go on, but the point is it’s a movement. That's why when a gap in between jobs comes about I start planning and researching my next potential adventure. I get in touch with friends to see who can join and look into what style of traveling/adventuring will be feasible.
The third simple secret is perspective. If you truly want to travel more, you have to make it happen. We all can come up with 110 excuses to why traveling doesn’t make sense ‘right now’. When will it make sense to travel? Ya sure, retirement, that's cool…But if you work through your mental constructs of what you SHOULD be doing now into what you WANT to be doing now, you will be pleasantly surprised with how awesome you are! Your brain/mind is a muscle, you have to train it like anything else in your body.
Now, for the fourth simple secret....getting out and chasing travel and adventure doesn’t mean an expensive overseas trip to Greece, sailing on yachts with attractive people, popping bottles of Moët. My definition of travel and adventure is simply exploring somewhere new that puts me out of my norm and pushes me to my limit. Maybe that somewhere is a destination an hour away from home… road trips count, (via bike, car, skateboard, by foot, scooter, whatever your means of transportation are) and they are awesome!
Travel is freedom, freedom is growth and growth is an important part of me.
I’ve had the most life changing moments simply down the road from home, sitting down, catching a sunset and taking in the beautiful art that is this world. Take this moment to the next level and pitch a tent, make a fire and live outside your comfort bubble, just for one night.
Entering a new decade of my life, I really wanted to see what I was made of.
I booked a ticket to Spain with my brother Ben, and 2 weeks later we were heading to complete a 34-day trek on foot, 800km across Northern Spain on the Camino De Santiago. Yeah. I know, what leads someone to want to attempt such a thing?
I saw it as a challenge and went for it.
Every day we did the most basic human routine; ate amazing food, walked through mountains and jaw dropping landscapes, talked to and met friends from around the world, slept under the stars and gained perspective on the simplicity that should be life.
Whenever I’m back home and need an escape I think back to those 5 amazing weeks and remember that life should be simple, full and about living in the moment.
That trip will forever be cemented into who I am and who I want to continue to be.
The Big Picture …
If you feel like you’re trapped in someone else’s master plan, challenge yourself to something you never thought you could do. When you prove to yourself you can and smash that challenge in its face, you grow.
It makes you feel alive, gets your heart pumping and gives you the freedom every human should feel.
Perhaps Hans Christian Anderson put it most simply and eloquently: ‘to travel is to live’.
And I intend to live.
-Jess Bowen (@jessbowenn)
...Oh yeah, and here's a little look into my gear bags.
Video/Photo Project Bag:
Canon 7D Mark ii
Tamron 24-70 2.8 lens
Canon 50mm 1.8 lens
Apple Macbook Pro
GoPro Hero 4 silver +
DJI Mavic Pro Drone
Brevite Camera Bag
- Spivo Stick
Osprey Waypoint 80L Bag
Camel Back 1L Bladder (h20)
High-Intensity Camping Torch (Flashlight)
Columbia Hiking Boots
Outdoor Expedition 2 Man Tent
Kathmandu Sleeping Bag