Leap, and the net will appear.
When your intuition draws you to a place, buy a ticket. Although the details are unclear, buy a one-way ticket. Couch surf, piece together multiple jobs; if you are truly drawn to a place, you will make it work. Wherever you go, the further, the crazier, you are coming home more deeply and fully to yourself.
When I bought a one-way ticket from Boston to San Francisco, everyone in Boston asked “what will you do for work?” “how will you find a place to live?” “you know it is sooo expensive there, right?”… When I landed in SF and told people here that I had just arrived, open to engaging with the city without much of a plan, I heard a lot of “Right onnn.” These are my people. Surround yourself with the voices that encourage and support, so that when the nascent and persistent tiny travel bug in your heart says “go,” it won’t be silenced and shamed by the masses.
I believe it’s impossible to over-romanticize the idea of travel. Travel is incredibly romantic. It fosters the most valuable and ever-evolving relationship with the most important person you could possibly commit to: yourself. Travel, ironically, is coming home again and again.
Now is not the time to be comfortable. Now is the time to push, open, dig, explore. All the tiny spaces of yourself via all the vast places in the world. The details will be unclear, and you will worry: what if it doesn’t work? You will list out all of the impossibilities, the reason you “should not.” From my experience I will say…if you wait until you know all the answers, your ticket will be pretty damn expensive. Go without knowing.
Go without knowing a soul, too. It is terrifying! But people are warm, and good – you will find your home base. During my first month in San Francisco, I completed my yoga teacher training, which connected me with a community of generous and interesting people that oriented and inspired me. Finding one open community and moving from their recommendations and connections is such a rich way to start out in a new place, and I’m so grateful to have found such a sweet place to land. Even knowing one person links you into a huge network of support – social media (I love Go Girls of the World, through which I met the lovely Kollin) is also an incredible modern portal to connecting with similar-minded people in any new location.
The distance may strain or end current relationships, ironically because your mutual curiosity and love of adventure brought you together. You may have to let go, or you may choose to hold on. What I do believe is that when/if you come back together, you will be a stronger and more interesting partner for having dug deeply into the earth of a new space.
Picking up and going absolutely requires privilege, and a certain freedom from obligation. Day trips and weekends away are saviors when we’re yearning to be far, but we really, truly have to stay. But: when you aren’t responsible for anyone but yourself, can save for the initial plane ticket, and know one place you can land to start off your trip, fling yourself into the weird and wild space.
Ryann Summers Boston native, currently living in San Francisco, and about to take off to Paris. She is a writer and yoga teacher, and an advocate of the weird and wild. Ryann is active on Instagram @laveranita, and curates the art project healingisanart.wordpress.com (@healingisanart on Twitter).