For today’s 20 something, traveling has become the go-to for creating meaning after college and fighting off the letdown that comes with most early careers. Avoiding the monotonous routine that comes with most desk jobs seems only possible if we just work, save, and then leave.
So what about those who don’t want to blow our life savings seeing the world? Or spend 6 months traveling only to come home to less opportunity after skipping out on work experience? For some, the ideal situation includes putting in the time at work, but still achieving the same fulfillment that comes from being a student of the world like our traveling peers. These three changes are easy to implement and can achieve just that.
1. Stop watching TV at night
Take a class. See a performance. Find a blog about something you know nothing about. Put yourself in a new situation you have never been in and you will find that your life will have a similar effect as traveling in forcing new ways of thinking. Part of the draw that comes from traveling is the new surroundings and the different cultures or opinions experienced that make you a little bit uncomfortable. That adventure aspect is the best remedy for the cubicle life. This is the variety that keeps your world interesting. If you can muster up the courage, do it alone! Meeting new people in these circumstances will only enhance the very necessary shake-up in your daily routine.
Best way to accomplish this: Subscribe and bookmark Groupons for things to do in your area.
2. Get a hobby
One of the biggest drags to working in an office is that after six months at a job your day gets pretty stale. In the beginning, work was exciting! You were learning something new every day and you had new responsibility and you were collaborating with new people. But once that shine wears off, Monday through Friday becomes a slow grind of going through the motions and waiting for the weekend. Get a hobby for after those 8 hours of each day that you have to look forward to and meet likeminded people. Binge watching Lost on Netflix after work won’t get you there, but the process of practicing and perfecting something you didn’t know how to do before is a true reward and will bring back the excitement and curiosity that your grayscale job is now lacking.
Best way to accomplish this: Tag along with a friend that takes a class or practices a hobby for your best chance at sticking to something. Be sure that what you choose is something beginners can enjoy.
3. Stop hanging out with the same people every weekend
Travelers are constantly meeting new people. You see the posts on Facebook, the pictures on Instagram, our friends that travel are always expanding their network and learning something new from someone new. The boring job already leaves us interacting with the same people on a daily basis. Recurring meetings and assigned work spaces stifle the variety of our daily routine. We all have our core group of friends we almost always go out with, but even making time for happy hour a couple times a week with other people will break up the week.
Best way to accomplish this: Go through your Facebook friends and make a list of old friends and friends of friends to reach out to when going out the next weekend. Most people are social once the weekend hits and will appreciate the effort you make in maintaining the relationship.
Honorable mention: Just take a different route to work each week.
Fulfillment comes from an insatiable appetite for life and constantly feeling the stimulation of doing something new. Traveling is a great quencher, but between trips or for those of us that are climbing corporate ladders, these three small life changes can accomplish similar results. If you have other examples or a time that these worked for you please comment them below!
Photo Credit: We Heart It