It's easy to dream that a new career or apartment or significant other might change everything. And it could. Habits form around even the smallest of changes. But sometimes you need to reset, take a step back, and break all your patterns.
I'm starting a two-week stay in Dublin, Ireland today and I'm already pushing through the changes. Everything is a bit more expensive with the Euro and there is no need to tip waitstaff. The sky is a cool grey when it's not raining, which is a nice change from black ice and frigid wind in the States. And meals are so heavy here, snacking seems ridiculous.
The popular opinion about travel is you do things when you travel that you don't do when you're at home. I have to disagree. Travel shouldn't be some escape from normal life, where you get to be the person and do the things you want just because you got on a plane and landed somewhere foreign. It should be an experience to make you better and have you return home changed, not back to business as usual.
With that, I have some plans and you can hold me accountable. Because my job afforded me this great opportunity, I want to use it to put myself more into my work. It's boring not to be engaged with what you do for a living. I plan to get to know my Irish colleagues and find out what they're all about on this side of the pond.
I'd like to get in the practice of eating authentic food, not constant junk. And I want to enjoy my apartment, not hide in my room.
It could be that simple. Make the changes. Just put your mind to it. Lifehacker posted a photo on their blog the other day with this exact message: The happiest people don't have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything.
While there may be no place like home, it's never the same when you step outside your door. In the words of the great stand-up comic Bill Hicks, it's just a ride. And you always have a choice for how you want to experience it.