Dust enters my mouth. Put holes everywhere. The scooter moans, going uphill, soars happily going down hill. The sun burns on my head. Cows are slowly walking on the road. Not at all bothered by the trucks, cars and buses passing them with load horns. Halfway to the beach I hit the brakes, turn around to the beautiful, wild girl on the back, give her a big kiss and drive on with a big smile on my face. I can’t help it, but I feel free, alive. And you? Want to be free? Just do it!
Weeks, months in a row I have this feeling now. Travelling makes me feel like this. Yes, I am working. I’m working pretty hard. I am so busy teaching anatomy and vinyasa flow classes, AcroYoga and Thai Yoga massage workshops and posture clinics at Sampoorna Yoga that I hardly have time to blog, answer emails or Facebook messages. But at the same time; I dive every day in the Indian ocean, meet amazing people who come and do their yoga teacher training, study and work with great trainers and teach every day.
Every yoga teacher training we start with a little introduction round, so the students get to know each other. I like this introduction, because I hear a lot of stories I recognize. “Hi, I’m from Germany, but I live in Dublin.” “Hi, I’m from Brazil, but I live in Spain.” “Hi, I’m from Denmark, but I live in London.”
Just do it
Every class a quart of the people seem to live in another country as they where born and grew up in. Others do what I do: travel and work. Others want to do it. Just like a lot of people I’ve been speaking to back home. They all want to travel, be free. The only thing I can say is: Just do it.
This might sound easy and it is. Do it and have faith that when you follow your heart, all things will work out and fall in place. I do it and it works for me. If you need a bit of help, check this old blog, where I explain how I work my way around the world. In this blog I like to focus on the ‘mental issue’.
I regard myself as a very lucky person. I have the capability to make decisions. Every decision you take has a consequence, I do realize that. But you only know if you take the right decision if you make it. And what is right and wrong? I have made some errors as well, but I don’t look at them as mistakes. See: if I make a decision and the result is beautiful, I’m happy. If the result is shit, I’m still happy, because I’ve learned a lesson and know better for next time. Good or bad; it’s just the way we look at things.
I’ve been a traveler for a big part of my life. Long, long time ago I decided to go to Australia on a working holiday. I played with the idea for a while and after interviewing a guy for a newspaper I was working for who did it, I knew: “I want that as well.” So I left a good job, a nice house and traveled around Australia for a year; backpacking, writing for newspapers and magazines. A lot of friends said I was crazy, leaving a good job, but a week before I returned home I received an email of the newspaper: if I could start as soon as possible. They had a job for me.
Seven years later I left my dream job – sports journalist at the second biggest paper in the Netherlands – because I wanted to travel again. This time I went to New Zealand. Almost everybody reacted in the same way: “I would love to do that.” My answer was always simple: “So go.” The only thing I heard were shitty excuses. “I can’t. I have a job. I have a house. I have a relationship.” He, I had a job. I quit. I had a house. I sold it. I had a girlfriend. She quit her job and came along.
Last year I went to Central America. This time I sold my yoga school, sold everything I owned except for some clothes, packed my backpack and stepped into the unknown. So far it has been one big, beautiful adventure. The people I told about my plans, reacted the same as when I went to New Zealand. Almost everybody wants to travel and be free, but only a few do it. Most are hold back by fear of the unknown. But do you want fear to be the leading factor in your life? Why not take a risk? A risk to be truly free and become truly happy?
I think the best slogan ever is the one of NIKE: Just do it! Don’t worry about failure or success. Just step into the unknown and see where the road will lead you to. Stop making excuses. Do you want to be free? Just do it!