Why We Fear Our Inner Nomad
That’s all you have to do. Just make a decision. It’s just that simple. Zero hesitation or overthinking required.
Whether it be that dream job, moving past that troubling relationship or what to make for supper. All you have to do is make that decision. Right?
If only it were that simple.
Interesting word decide. Derived from the Latin dēcīdere it means to “cut off from.” To exclude all other options leaving only one remaining possibility. Easier said than done.
Let Fear be a Counselor, Not a Jailer
Despite having multiple reasons for embracing a nomadic lifestyle, few of us decide to. Apart from money, fear is what keeps most of us in our home. Somewhere along the line, I serendipitously stumbled across the proverb, “Let fear be a counselor, not a jailer.” Since then, I’ve incorporated that little nugget of wisdom into my life.
A nomadic lifestyle isn’t suited to everyone. It does require a certain laissez-faire to drop everything and head out into this uncertain world. Like a trapeze artist working without a net, there are many self doubts and inner fears to overcome.
There’s concern over perceived language barriers. Will you understand and/or be understood? After all, won’t a lack of communication hamper travel plans, botch accommodations and threaten personal safety?
Then there’s anxiety over how our sensitive palettes will react to foreign cuisine. Maybe it will be too spicy or just too bland. Perhaps they’ll overcook your food or worse yet under cook it causing you extreme health issues. Will they cater to your vegan or vegetarian lifestyle?
So many thinly veiled and often unsubstantiated worries. And let’s not even get into currency exchanges, real estate laws or strange foreign tax treatment. It can all appear to be so overwhelming.
But all of these concerns pale in comparison when it comes to The Biggy. Sure enough, it gets brought up every time I brooch the subject of residing in some distant land. The ominous universal health care. The big bugaboo. It’s like a dog on a bone.
Health Care Dare
I understand why this concern is at the forefront of many people’s minds. For those afflicted with a precondition or high potential health risk, it’s a valid concern. That said though, it’s certainly not a legitimate concern for all.
Living life with the worry that you may suddenly fall ill or be involved in a catastrophic accident does seem a bit overly paranoid. I myself believe that consciousness does somewhat affect our reality so I stay far clear of that type of doomsday thinking.
Falsehoods and Fake News
We tend to discount and dismiss moving to another country based on false beliefs and biases without ever taking the time to do our own due diligence. We assume, wrongly, that our country’s health care system is superior to that of other countries. In many cases, nothing could be further from the truth.
Here in North America, we’ve come to accept the belief that in order for health care to be good it has to be expensive. Anything less is looked upon as inferior.
We’ve been sold a bill of goods by those with a vested financial stake in costly healthcare. But, as is with many other ideas we have come to believe and accept, we simply don’t challenge our own preconceived notions.
Apart from this, a decision to embark on any nomadic journey is further hindered by our ineffectual mental baggage. Imagined threats arise from old cliches such as “burning your bridges.” Now that’s something every parent warned against.
Most mothers and fathers went through some form or another of personal or financial struggle. Such adversity results in us adopting a deeply-rooted fear of losing what we worked so hard to gain. The notorious “if come, maybe.” was a possibility never to be seriously entertained. After all, “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”
It’s a wonder we can muster the courage to do anything at all with our, “don’t leap before you look” mentality. The irony is that there is nothing less secure than security. If you recall in the Parable of the Talents it was the servant’s decision to “play it safe” that resulted in his negative consequence.
Fear Is Temporary. Regret Is Forever
Regardless of whether you are 25, 35 or 45, the fact remains, you will be 65 one day. That’s a given. The only uncertainty is what your life will look like when you get there. And that depends entirely on the courage of your decisions today.
At 30 years of age, I thought I was too old to return to school. Then 40 came around and I realized that I had had ample time to study. Being 40 now though, I thought for sure that it was much too late to start a new career.
Then the day of my fiftieth birthday arrived and it dawned on me. At 40, there had been innumerable opportunities for me to choose a new path. I just never possessed the inner belief and foresight to grab one of them.
But with me now moving toward sixty at a seemingly accelerated pace I believe I may have finally clued in. I am going to be 60 soon and dammit it isn’t too late. It may be later but it is most definitely not too late.
One Day or Day One
Of course, this self-reflecting from one decade to the next cannot be dragged on in perpetuum. That is why I have decided. Hitherto, I am a Freelancer. A Digital Nomad destined for far off lands. UpWork estimates that by 2030 close to one Billion Digital Nomads will be roaming the Earth and I’ll be dammed if I am not one of them.
And so, I have cut myself off from all other options. Then again, perhaps life itself has thrust this decision upon me. No matter. The decision has been made and I am very glad to have made it.
Thus far, few friends have reached out to me with respect to Doyen Digital Nomads. I am still pretty much a solo traveler on this crazy journey. Although, at this early point of my sojourn, I am perfectly alright with that.
I may not have many links to post nor email lists to auto-respond to. No websites to drive traffic or opt-ins to engage with. Not yet, anyway. I do have this blog though and that’s a darn good start.
It was the Buddha himself who said, “No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We alone must walk the path.”
It’s not for me to say whether or not there’ll be any form of redemption on my nomadic journey. Of one thing I am sure. Though everyone dies not everyone lives. I have decided to live.
88 thoughts on “Why You Fear Your Inner Nomad”
Worry and anxiety can certainly consume us. For me, prayer and faith helps me cope with my anxiety. In the past I have dealt with panic attacks and unless someone has experienced those, it’s extremely hard to comprehend the inability those attacks cause and how life changing they can be. Excellent article.
People have a mental illness should need to read this article. In my own experience When anxiety attacks me I do prayer and listening music. Life is really but you need to keep going and do the things that makes you feel happy.
That’s all you can do. Keep on keeping on.
Fear is temporary but regret is forever! I love that piece. Normally, it feels so frightening to take up some of the decisions we make but it is better than not; because when regret comes in, it just haunts you.
It does indeed.
as someone who deals with sever anxiety issues i can write a book about how hard is to let go on fear when is time to make choices ! but yah ultimately the regret is worse than the fear
“Conquer Self or be Conquered by Self.”
What an amazing and inspirational article! I suffer from anxiety but I am working on it and slowly become stronger.
Everyone I have ever met struggles with something. No one has it totally together. Best wishes moving forward Elena.
You got it girl! We all have our struggles and at some points of my life I can relate everything you mentioned here to myself. We just have to remind ourselves that we’re humans, we don’t have to have everthing figured out
I agree. Fear is temporary, regret is forever. That is why I take chances and try new things. I need to travel some more this year.
You do indeed.
You have some amazing pictures there I must admit. And yes we have numerous opportunities ahead of us every day, if only we are willing to take a chance on them. Unfortunately, we don’t, far too often.
True. But the older you get the more motivated. Time is a tickin. lol
I love this and you are so right. I suffer with anxiety, always have, and I really struggle to fight my fears and take the plunge sometimes! I need to just do it!
I have decided not to let fear control my life. Each time, I read positive post like yours, they strengthen me to do more.
I am glad. As Marianne Williamson put so eloquently, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Great article, I think we all suffer anxiety some find it easier to deal with than others x
It’s understandable. A lot going on these days. Personally, I am following the sun to South East Asia.
I really loved reading this post. Currently, my depression has gotten worse. My mom just passed away last February and it hurts so much to think I no longer have a mom. Mother’s day this year will be extremely difficult for me. I am thinking of going on a spiritual retreat, to clear my mind, to rid myself of my inner insecurities and fear.
That sounds like a great idea. Something tells me a retreat would help give you closure and move forward.
Take one day at a time and turn those negative to positive. Those are things I have learned recently for self-care.
You only have today, this moment. Thank you for taking a moment to read my blog
With all the trials happened these past few weeks I realize that we should cherish and make the most out of everything. If we always keep our fears we have lifetime of regrets in store for all of us.
Wow awesome post this really blessed me, with one having to know all this life could be made easier and fear will be just a counselor and not a Jailer, beautiful post This is really thoughtful of You And educative as well.
Thank you so much.
Awww this is so inspiring! I think I’m too old to finish my master’s degree but your experience inspires me. I think this post is my sign.
In 5 years you’ll either have your masters or you won’t. Either way, those five years will go by. That’s a given. I say you go for it.
I believe in the quote, “The person I am today is the result of the choices I made yesterday.” We must overcome our fears and move out of our comfort zone. Live simply and always spread kindness.
It just goes to show that when we badly want something, the best way to do is go for it and give it a try.
A very interesting and smart perspective on why we ignore that normad part of us. I am actually seriously debating about a huge lifestyle change. I have three kids who homeschool, they’re older now, and I am just tired of paying rent ot someone else at high costs. For what i pay in rent, we could be living a more traveling style lifestyle and have so much fun. I am ready but fear is holding me back 😉
Nice post. Very interesting topics. I wonder how you look in person. So curious. hehe
Thank you. That profile pic is me Michael. Lol
That’s a strong statement. Let fear be the counsellor and not a jailer. I also like the highlight on moving to other country related to health privileges. I agree with all points. Wonderfully written 🙂
Thank for for taking the time to read it.
Oh I could really relate to this. I know it’s easy to say, but it’s really hard to decide what we should have for lunch or even for dinner. Anxiety hurts.
I can appreciate that. I have clients that I work with privately and anxiety can be quite devastating.
I have learnt the hard way over the years to let go of the baggage x
We all have emotions and anxiety is one of them. One which can turn fearful. It’s about intelligently controlling these negative emotions.
And understand them. Thank you for sharing.
I can understand why some struggle with the fear of travel but I love it, but it may be because we moved so much through my childhood…i crave new experiences and adventures
My wife had a similar upbringing so travelling or moving is no issue for her either.
Fantastic post on reminding us all to live our best life without regrets or apprehension. We owe it to ourselves to see the world and do whatever it is we want to do. Great post and thank you for the reminder. I went back to school in my 40’s and I will be graduating with my BAS in criminal justice next week and will be continuing on in the Fall to work on my Masters. There’s no time like the present.
Congratulations. That’s fantastic. Glad to hear that you’re living life to the fullest.
My Mother once said “fear is just a state of mind”. She always said that never think of it because it will only give us doubt. I guess she is right.
It does serve a purpose at times. For example, we fear getting hit by a car so we are careful to look both ways before crossing the street. It is when fear disables and debilitates us that it becomes a problem.
I feel everything is interconnected here. And as a severe anxiety patient I know it sucks and as I live alone there are sometimes when even if I want i can’t do anything as my innerself starts leaving. Obviously everything is controllable but also it takes time.
I understand. I work privately with people whoe suffer from severe anxiety so I do have some sense of what you are going through.
Anxiety is horrible I have friends and family who suffer with it and seen how they try to cope with it x
thank you, i think i needed this post; while i know it is not too late at all at 45, i still hesitate to take the plunge sometimes.. and you helped reaffirm that it is not too late
Never too late. I am 59 and whereas most my age are gearing down I am gearing up!
I would love to experience the nomadic lifestyle, spread my wings and explore places I can only dream of right now. The only thing holding me back is family responsibilities, especially my husband who has mobility issues. I can’t find it in myself to leave him behind.
That’s understandable. Best wishes.
Well, first of all congrats on finally making a leap to pursue something you’ve wanted to do even if it took you a while. I have a stable career that I’m grateful for but i can’t help the feeling that I want more in life. I’m slowly taking whatever free time I have and devoting it to go after something I’m passionate about which is content creation and exploring more of my creative side.
Best wishes on your content creation career.
Man, that mental baggage hit me. So true. Hard to address but a must to overcome. It is just now that i thought of that. Good read.
Thank you Michael.
Sometimes, it amazes me to see how I am scared to take a simple decision and free myself from troubles or unwanted situation. It might seems easy but it’s not. Thanks for sharing such a great post.
You are most welcome. Thank you.
Oh I love this, what an amazing read and I can recognise so much of this myself! So beautifully written too!
Thank you Laura.
Such a beautiful post! I love reading it. Sometimes I too get scared about making a decision but then ultimately everything falls in place. Sometimes a small faith or believe could guide us to follow right path
I believe that. Thank you.
I used to fear the unknown and not being like the others around me. The reason was because here in Japan, you should conform and never step out of line. I been reading self-care and self-help books that say fear is the start of you doing something right. It sounfs silly to some, but it feels right for others.
Does your path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t, it is of no use. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life.
The Teachings of Don Juan
As a person who deals with anxiety the world is terrifying but I have to make the choice everyday to live and and conquer the world. I love that in your 50’s you realized that it’s never too late to do something new.
You can do it young lady.
I’m at a loss for words, I dont know what to say. All I can say is that I just loved this post. And I know that I’m going to save this and come back to it when I’m in self-doubt. Thankyou for sharing this.
Everyone experiences self doubt. It’s part of the human condition. Luckily, so is faith and belief.
Decision paralysis and self-doubt is definitely real and potent! It was so good to hear your take on it.
This is indeed a great article. Thank you for sharing, this article will help a lot of people especially those that are suffering with anxiety. There’s always something inside you that people don’t understand but you have to be strong.
Conquer Self or be Conquered by Self.
Awesome read….travel is not for everyone but even trying something new once is exciting…
Very true. It’s never too late to try something new. Thank you.
Such a very inspiring article to read today. I agree that fear and anxiety can really stop us to do something that we want but we should learn how to fight these things by way of believing and trusting to ourselves first.
Trust the process. It’s never too late.
This really is a great article for those suffering with anxiety or for anyone who does not understand how to support someone suffering
Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.
Such a great content, I can also relate to this anxiety topic. It was always nice to read about problems that you can relate to.
Oh, I think it’s a pretty common theme given the comments I’ve received. Thank you.
Fear of unknown is what blocks people in all the decision that lead (apparently) away from our comfort zone. I say apparently because in the end, that unknown is the place that really makes us feel better.
Its all about personal growth. Thank you.
I often find myself being jailed by fear. I’ll try turning it into my counselor as advised here. Thanks for an article I can relate to
You are most welcome.
anxiety topic is interesting for me.. I can relate 100% on this post.. THanks for sharing this to us.. It is really helpful.
I am glad. Thsnk you.