So my plan is to become somewhat flexible in what I do and where I live. To have less demands on me both workwise (meetings, work hours, projects…) and living-wise (owning less things and not being responsible for maintenance). This is not the way we are tought when we grow up. Society tells us to study, get a job, get an appartment, get a better job, get a car, get a bigger apartment, buy stuff, find the love of your life, get kids, get a house, buy new stuff, get a bigger car. So when you start thinking and talking about doing it the exact opposite (quit your job, sell your stuff and your apartment and neither live somewhere or have a job anymore) people easily have doubts about it. Including me.
There are so many “What if”s in a life change like this. And to be able to move on in my plans I had to address them to now that, if not a solution, I at least had som kind of plan or thought if they occur. So these are my biggest and scariest “What if”s and my plan to handle them, not including your everyday risk just traveling the world though.
I won’t find a way to get an income
I have a lot of plans on how I will support myself, or how we can live and travel with low or no cost. But to have a plan of something doesn’t mean it’s a done deal. It could happen that neither of these plans fall out, and the money run out. But I can’t really do anything to handle this. The only thing I can do is work for a life where I make an income at the same time I am traveling the world. If it doesn’t work I will just go home and start over, and start saving up for next trip.
I will no longer belong to the swedish social security
This is what worries me the most. If I get sick or injured and can’t work I will not be able to get any sick leave from the social security agency. It’s a risk with fairly big consequences… But bad things could happen whatever I do so I can’t let a risk get in the way. If my money is starting to run out I will not wait until I have none left, I will make sure to have a buffer to live off of when we get home. And I have a family that will stick up for me no matter what. I can’t do more than that. Ok, maybe be careful when traveling.
My pension will get lower
Maybe this will lead to me getting less money when I’m old and retired. But you can’t live your life for the sole purpose of having a rich life when you’re over 65… My life is now and I have to live it. When I get old I will figure out how to live it well with the means I have. Maybe I won’t even live to retire. How happy I will be then if I didn’t do stuff, when I was alive and kicking, just to get a good pension….
I get homesick but don’t have a home there anymore
Well. I’ll go home. I have made myself a home in three different cities in Sweden in my life. I’m sure I can manage it again. And until then I have my family to sponge off.
My relationship ends when traveling
Traveling isn’t a bed of roses everyday. It can wear you out and it is easy to say and do things you don’t mean. And you live together 24-7. It wouldn’t be the first relationship to end on a travel. And even though I wouldn’t do anything to risk what we have, I can’t stay home because there is a risk of us splitting up. Absolutely not when I think that the risk is very small. We will just have to keep doing what we do best, talk about our feelings so that nothing blows up on us. And if it gets too intense we can always split up for a part of the trip, going our seperate ways and meeting up later on. Then we will get to miss each other.
There are a lot of risks when taking this kind of step. But risk isn’t the same as chaos. You have to distinguish between probability and consequence. How probable is it that something will occur and what are the consequences if it does. Like my risks above, if I suddenly want to go home the consequence isn’t that big since I actually want to go home, and the living and working situation will solve itself since I have people to live with until I find a job and some place to live. If me and my boyfriend breaks up it will at the other hand be quite a big consequence but the probability of that happening is not that big. It is only if both probability and consequence is high that it is something to really consider and make a plan for. So I feel much better after have gone trough my risks. There’s nothing I can’t handle so there is no reason not to go.
An update to my last post. All family trips during this fall has fallen off the grid. Instead it looks like we’re going to Vilnius with a bunch of friends in September, and then we (and maybe some friends) will travel around Sri Lanka for three weeks in January-February. Because one more winter in Sweden without some warmth and sun is not an option.