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“Where are we going to get the money for that?”

I noted mentally that I had seen this before, the shadowy enemy of adventure: Hesitation.
We had just sat down and were waiting for appetizers to arrive. Renae recently finished reading “The Little Book of Hygge” and was eager to experience the ‘Hygge Life’ for herself. I suggested that we should just go and started discussing a ten-day trip around Europe, with Copenhagen as the main anchor.

Growing up, I used to have a saying, “He who hesitates, waits.” I am not certain where this sage-like wisdom came from; my guess is that I heard it somewhere… I surely didn’t come up with it at 16, right? This little phrase still rings true, and I hear potential travelers find all sorts of excuses to avoid making a decision and pulling the trigger on travel. Most often, the biggest culprit is money. You may have mentioned some of these very same reasons if you took our travel survey.

Following my advice, (plus the badass advice of Jennifer Sincero), I said, “If we don’t commit to the trip, we will NEVER have the money for it. We have to decide to do it, then find, or budget the funds for it.” Dinner arrived, and that was the last thing we said about the trip. This was a Tuesday evening, and the wine was great – by the way.

So what is the deal with this hesitation mentality?

Let us phrase this another way: Why do we make excuses?
Waffling or avoiding pulling the trigger is an easy way to avoid failure for some. For others, it is easier to throw out excuses than to find ways to make it happen. Maybe, maybe we have built up an impression of this task in our minds that makes it seem more daunting and complicated than it is.
The only way to find out if it is that difficult – is to try.

Airport waiting lounge


Take a deeper look

So, let us run through the gauntlet of self-introspection and get to the bottom of the WHY in this WHY NOT situation. Take a deep breath; we will start with a few easy questions to define the problem and maybe reveal some ways to get around it.

  • Prioritize: Is it important to me? If so, HOW important?
  • The pot of gold: What would success look like? How would I feel if I made this happen? How would I feel when I told my friends about it later *Picture their faces when you are recounting your story, imagine how your emotions – be as detailed as you can with this exercise.
  • Analyze: Why am I hesitating?
  • The hard truth: What is the worst that would happen if I missed the mark?

Give some time to these questions, if you find yourself going down a rabbit hole, keep going and see where it takes you – you might be surprised. Sometimes the biggest solution is to drag the issue out into the light so you can see what you are facing.

If money is the big hurdle, and it is most often cited as the case, create a spreadsheet with all the potential costs of the trip. Here’s a basic spreadsheet we used for our most recent trip, feel free to use it as a template for your personal budget. Once you have a more accurate idea of the actual costs, look next at where you will find the funds. Does that mean canceling cable, making coffee at home instead of that daily $5 latte (I am writing this from a coffee shop, by the way)? Would you rather go drinking every weekend, or take a once in a lifetime trip to New Zealand??? If you want it bad enough, you will find a way.

“He who hesitates, waits.”

…the story continues

Wednesday night, we had a spreadsheet filled in with a complete budget for the entire trip and were checking all of our frequent flier accounts to find the best/cheapest way to get overseas. One week later, we had booked flights and rooms for the entire trip.

We had found a way to make the trip happen. To be fair, we consistently sign up for credit cards with frequent flier rewards throughout the year.
Don’t believe in using credit cards to make travel happen? Not to worry, check out this post where we cover the upside and potential pitfalls of using travel reward credit cards as a means to fund travel.

We all struggle with hesitating on decisions: whether for travel, life decisions, or maybe you catch yourself making excuses for everyday decisions. If going outside of your comfort zone was “comfortable,” it would not be a challenge or a growing experience, and it would not feel amazing when you surprise yourself by going beyond what you thought was possible.

I promise you, if you do this once, it will be worlds easier the next time.

How do you make travel happen?

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