Iama 27yo Redditor who's been traveling the world for 8 years figuring out what to do with his life: teaching English, organic farms, web design, work exchange, painting murals, leading yoga, hitchhiking, filmmaking.. Thanks to my years involved i...
I notice a lot of interest in the traveler posts in /r/IAMA, /r/IWantOut, /r/solotravel, /r/Psychnonaut and other subreddit communities where people want to explore both themselves and the world more. I’ve been on the road a lot since early university, not always out of choice but out of necessity—I wasn’t always happy with where I found myself and what I was doing, so I kept moving forward, refusing to be content with anything but personal satisfaction. The last few months have at long last delivered me to a place where I finally believe I am successfully sharing something of value with the world while not sacrificing who I am.
Growing up, as hobbies I was always into online forums, web design, video editing, and the digital creative outlets my iMac offered me. Since I didn’t pursue any of that after high school, I never figured it could amount to anything and wrote it off. After studying abroad twice during university, afterwards I dropped it all and left to travel and have never really returned to anything permanently (besides reddit, I guess).
In the last six months or so, traveling has lead me to rediscover some childhood passions. Working to help expose the do-good organizations and loving people in the world, I realized that I could not only do what made me happy (amateur videos and graphics), but also do it my way and always believe in it. I am still seeing where it’s going and what it will turn into, but luckily there's nothing really to lose.
I’m not about saving up money and trying to budget $X per day in developing countries, nor about starting a SEO travel blog to sustain traveling—those things are cool, but there is so much to discover in life and traveling without plans and avoiding expectations really opens you up to that. I’m here to share some of my story and answer your questions based on my own experience with this philosophy.
So anyways, AMA! Time, money, stories, relationships, courage, whatever comes to mind. It’s 9pm in India right now (I'm in Bangalore at the moment) so I’ll stay up as late as I can.
PROOF: Instagram, Twitter, or personal YouTube channel all with same username (also some travel vids/pics)... if my bandwidth decides to step it up I'm gonna livestream me doing this tonight... Oh yeah, and here's a podcast I was featured in where I tell my story and talk about all this for a couple hours.
EDIT 1: a few of you are asking about my long-term sustainability plans. Basically, a YouTube Channel focusing on people instead of tourism would appear to be a missing ingredient on the internet these days, so that's step one. Being a member of the online generation has opened me up to the idea that people in the world WANT to connect and WANT to help each other: I'm working to develop non-profit business systems that sell the work of artists in the developing world while also funding videos that help showcase these artists and local peoples that are full of smiles and joy (because our media nowadays seem to only show the ugly side of people in the world).
EDIT 2: It's getting late for me and I'm starting to see double and not put as much energy into my responses, so I'm going to come back to this after a few hours of sleep. A lot of questions are asking for advice and that's cool, keep them coming--but if you're interested in the type of work I am doing lately with do-good organizations and positive vibes, please see:
Divayanatra Orphanage & Community School in Kathmandu, Nepal: this guy runs his business doing sound healing with singing bowls and uses all extra profits to sustain this orphanage for 9 boys that also acts as a school for migrant workers' kids in the area (42 kids) during the day.
Farmer's Yard Permaculture Hostel in Bali: Bali is a beautiful island but is absolutely destroyed by its tourism and rampant development, and Farmer's Yard is one of many groups that aim to show tourists that there are more sustainable ways to travel.
Permablitz Bali: These guys meet up once or twice a month somewhere on the island and set up a new organic permaculture garden set-up on a new plot of land.
Rainbow Children's Home in Pokhara, Nepal: The volunteers that run this place (not including the western 'voluntourists' that pay to come help out for a few weeks), dedicate all their extra time to teaching the orphans skills that will help them get on later in life: tourism, trekking, handicrafts, English, and more. It's absolutely beautiful, and they've got a pretty good set-up going which is impressive and inspiring. We're working on a fundraiser with them:
and our current mission is to both fundraise for a local community in Nepal while producing a web series about traditional yoga in the modern world.
Meanwhile, if you're aching to get out, start with:
Couchsurfing. Make yourself a nice profile and get meeting people! It might be scary at first but soon you'll be addicted to connecting to new people.
HelpX to get some work exchanges going, abroad or nearby. You can even offer something if you've got a project needing help.
WWOOF is also an option if you've got a green thumb.
EDIT 3: Back for a bit.