A Dichotomy of Desire

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Something I have been grappling with lately is balancing my desire to continue to travel, explore, and experience new people and places and my desire to set up a real home, find a permanent, full-time position in a town that I love, and do that thing society pressures us to at a certain age… settle down!

I read blogs of, follow on twitter, and know people of all ages, incomes, gender, who are serial travelers. They thrive on being on the road, meeting new people (other travelers and locals alike), and living a somewhat unconventional life, by society’s standards.

However, all of my family and most of my closest American friends are in the other category: those who are fully or at least partly settled. Settled meaning they are deeply invested in their family/spouse, current jobs, their home, their community, their network.  Many of these people enjoy traveling they way most Americans enjoy it; a week or two a year spent on vacation. It is not necessarily something that is ingrained in their everyday existence.

How can I be in both of these categories? How does one decide which path to fully invest in? Is it possible for me to continue straddling these two desires, especially without unlimited funds? These are just some questions that have been on my mind. There is no “right” answer. I will continue to grapple with this for the foreseeable future, and I have to be cool with that. Some people are perfectly happy to stay in one place most of the time, while others are blessed/ cursed with the desire to move, explore, and live an unconventional life. Perhaps falling somewhere in-between isn’t so bad…

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jhansensnaps/4398395609/

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3 thoughts on “A Dichotomy of Desire

  1. Oh GOSH this is me. I feel the call to wanderlust as often as I feel the need for rooted community, and balancing out the two is a real and constant challenge. Thank you for writing this–it truly helps to hear this experience from someone else!

  2. I SO get this! It’s the reason I’m a part-time nomad right now, even though I’d love to be a full-time nomad. It’s really hard to simultaneously want two very different things, isn’t it!

    Thanks for linking this post to the #MyGlobalLife Link-Up at SmallPlanetStudio.com!

  3. I can definitely relate to this! This is the dichotomy of my life and it’s the challenge that’s the core of the international career coaching service that I’m launching soon. I’m also in a situation in which I need to make a decision about whether to settle down here in Chile for what seems like forever. The desire to pack up and move (where? I’m not sure…) is still there in the background.

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