I’ve contemplated quitting Remote Year almost every day for the first 6 months #SpoilerAlert #IWillSurvive

They tell you this journey will be full of ups and downs – that is an understatement.

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I get that I’m not your average bear, but I think that my fellow remotes can attest that this “lifestyle” is an emotional roller coaster.

As you can see, the first 2 weeks were a huge high – the honeymoon phase. Night shift was tough, but somewhat novel and edgy. I was so happy absorbing the new experiences and doing #allthethings that I didn’t mind not sleeping – yes 0 sleeps – 4 nights out of the first 10 days. That did not come without consequences. One of my first encounters with the entire “tramily” was during town hall which I proceeded to take a beauty nap through the entire presentation while the program leaders were presenting.

Hi, Nice to finally meet you in person…I’m Mei and I’m a professional napper. 

NAP

In my expert opinion, I believe the group napping technique is how do the young kids say -on point.

First weekend – $13 round-trip flight to Penang? Count me in!

Currey

The famous Sister Curry Mee – pigs blood soup – eaten at 10 am with @adescalso.

Second weekend – Balling out in Bali…Is this real life?

2

@paullymcman – Are you ever coming back? I miss your Aussie face and awkward references to motorboats.

By the third week, I was starting to feel the alcohol, travel lag, night shifts, and work guilt build up, but I already had made plans to meet my friend in Japan. We had a blast none-the-less, but it was hard to keep my energy up.

Sushi.jpg

Throwback to the best meal of my life to date. $35 Omakase @ Sushi Dai. Worth the 4 hour wait…and doing twice!

When I got back to KL, I was dying to  be a normal person and do nothing except sleep, work out, and work.

Dineinsky.png

Not sleeping, working out, or working. Dinning in the Sky – Kuala Lumpur.

PRO-TIP: Don’t have your friends visit the last week in any city because you will be exhausted. Have your friends visit the first week so you can knock out all the things.

When we transitioned to HCMC, the next morning I left for Mui Ne. My friend and I had made plans weeks in advance to go visit and at the time, the last thing on earth I felt like doing was going to another beach and sightseeing for 3 days. In retrospect, it turned out to be one of the best side trips – crashing a Vietnamese Wedding will be an experience I will never regret.

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I wrote a note to myself that weekend (word-for-word below) which I chose not to publish. –

I’ve been in the dark as of late, going and going, but I’m starting to feel again and here’s what my heart has to say.

Something’s not right here. I am the journey of a lifetime traveling to by every definition the word “paradise” with 60 other people who I love like family and who have adopted me back – seeing all the wonders of the world, tasting authenticity in every bite, hearing stories passed down for centuries, smelling all the aromas of earth, wind, fire, and water, feeling warm and delightful, being treated like royalty, laughing harder than I have ever laughed in my entire life, and more than anything else – loving this community that we’ve built on this journey. Yet I’ve been feeling something’s not right here. 

I’ve been feeling down and the marginal pleasure of Doing All the Things has been rapidly declining and the marginal cost to my health and mental sanity has been slowly increasing. 

So this is to be expected. This is normal to “burn out”. You knew this would happen, and you need to know when to say no.

I proceed to pay to book all 3 extra tracks events and a $350 side trip to Ha Long Bay because I can’t say no. I reminded that I have no self control.

I’m addicted to the unknown. 

So then, I consider maybe it’s Guilt that I’m not doing enough for my career. Letting time slip away without a strategic plan to set the foundation for next year when I’m back. 

Maybe if I put some intention back into my work, I’d feel better. So I spent some time journalling my goals and how to achieve them and tried to put my heart back into work yesterday. 

I found no new revelations, and I am doing exactly what I need to do. In fact, work felt like I was working to work rather than to create – which is totally against everything I believe in. So I shut off my laptop at 1 am and proceeded to get some rest. 

Like most of us on this trip, I am reminded that I wouldn’t have chosen to be here if I hadn’t thoroughly considered the impact to my career already. I’m defaulting to the easy excuse for why I am feeling unsettled.

I spend 1 hr researching hair salons that specialize in bayalage in HCMC. My heart is beating at a million beats per minute. Why am I so nervous? – it’s just hair and it grows back. I realize that I’ve been feeling extra happy to doing first-world, materialistic things that can be done anywhere in the world –

  1. Going to Flycycle
  2. Getting a Keratin Hair treatment 
  3. Shopping
  4. Running 1.5 miles on a treadmill in the gym in our apartment

Hmm. I thought doing this travel thing was supposed to make you value experiences and not things? Kidding. I do value the experiences; however, I am anxious about someone from a completely different culture imparting a significant change to my identity. Where do we draw the line?

So what I’ve landed on this whole situation is that we all have demons in our past that choose to come out to play when we make ourselves vulnerable to new experiences.

I’ve only shared this with 2 people in my life. Not even my closest friends “officially” know. I’m a recover(ed/ing) (anorexic/orthorexic/bulimic/normal person). The sad part is – my closest friends will probably say they are not surprised and/or don’t even consider how I think about food/my body or eat disordered. When you look into the mirror and you see yourself back – normal begins to take a twisted shape.

Paired with the fact that exercise and healthy foods have been challenging to commit to among all the exotic, once-in-a-lifetime decisions we are faced with every day. I feel I’ve lost a big 

All-in-all a story for another day. Just feeling like a bit of a shadow of myself at the moment…

FIN

Another “outline” for a “I’m Struggling” Blog Post I wrote near the end of Asia, but never followed through with.  –

Let’s play a game.

Guess who will leave next?

So far we’ve had 

This is now the second time

Spurred by being close to work friends

How? Social Media X Reality Y

Option 1

Option 2

Deadline

Every hour it changes

Either way work hard and hustle until then 

Mentally I’m in the US

FIN

I tried to “abort the mission” the first week we got to Serbia. My MD wouldn’t let me. He told me that if he were me, he would finish what he started.

(I literally work for the best company ever…and yes we’re hiring 😉 )

Was I living everyone else’s dream? How long could I keep this going?

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Your moment will run out
‘Cause of your sex chromosome
I know it’s so messed up how our society all thinks (for sure)

What you waiting for? Take a chance you … @ Guinness Brewery – Dublin

The funny thing is 6 months in and I think 35% of our group has dropped out, but

Guys, I really think I’m going to make it.

On July 25th, Something clicked. Like running a marathon and hitting mile 13.1.

Maybe jumping out of a plane rearranged the molecular structure of my brain, and now I feel like every moment left is precious. 

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Maybe I’m choosing to accept love instead of making decisions out of fear.

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What-if I get fired?

What-if I regret spending this much money on travel when this year is over?

Um…

What if I’m ruining the present by being so afraid of things that may or may not happen?

What if I chose to embrace every experience as if it was my first (and/or last)?

Because I know that day isn’t so far away, when we’ll wake up in the morning and realize our #tramily has spread it’s wings and parted ways.

And we’ll wish we had loved more deeply.

Instead of focusing on the little gremlins in our minds…

To my #KUBLOVERS&FRIENDS: Happy 6 months! #ILYSM

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Meina > Waldo.

 

 

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