If you want to overcome whatever is weighing you down, just remember that an airplane takes off against the wind.
That’s an old Henry Ford quote.
I started The Travelers podcast because I heard a call. This call came both from within myself and beyond the horizon. I needed to explore something new and I knew there was something more waiting for me on that frontier.
I was right. I found myself swept off to far-flung places to work with brands and destinations and speaking at conferences around the world. I awakened to a new self full of possibility. I met thousands of people and came alive with clarity and inspiration which I channeled into helping others do the same.
Because it wasn’t easy to get started. There was so much pushback. I didn’t have enough time, expertise, clarity, and nobody understood what I was trying to do. I was terrified of embarrassment and failure. I was against the wind.
I recently revisited Steven Pressfield’s book, The War of Art, in which he explores the concept of Resistance. He writes, “Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.”
I found travelers and creatives alike both struggle ALL THE TIME with Resistance. Perhaps this is because Travel is an inherently creative activity since by traveling we are creating ourselves.
So it makes sense that Resistance exists at the beginning of any adventure into the unknown, whether that’s at the beginning of travel or the beginning of a challenging new project.
I’m reviving both The Travelers and Holocene around a new framework that I think the world needs right now more than ever. I believe in this so deeply that I have been working on this for 5 years. I want to create transformative travel experiences for all of us, share a practical system to make our lives into works of art, and come together to support each other’s transformative journeys.
But I want to quit.
I really, REALLY want to quit.
I’m overwhelmed by how much I need to do to bring this dream to life. What lies before me feels so difficult that I can barely deal with the effort it’s going to take. Do you know this feeling? The old familiar voice returns. “I’m not good enough. I will disappoint, self-destruct, and then I’ll really be worthless.” Negative self-thought is a downward spiral. Welcome to the pit of despair, right?
But I haven’t quit.
Instead of giving in to these doubts, I used the Holocene framework to help me overcome Resistance, find footing, and crawl out of that pit.
If there’s one lesson above all that I learned from doing The Travelers, it’s that travel teaches us to approach the world with questions instead of answers.
What happens when you surround yourself with Questions? The aperture of your mind widens to absorb and process new information. You come alive with fascination or trepidation. Novelty leads to new questions and new questions crack you open further, and so on. This is the power of Wonder.
We can be given the answers to all of our problems. They can keep us safe. But if they don’t solve the one problem that’s gnawing within you, if they don’t answer that call to adventure that you hear, if they do not silence the despair, then answers are not what you seek.
We love Travel because it provides for us the experience of being more alive. Travel doesn’t do this by showing us answers but instead by bombarding us with questions. The more you travel, the more it teaches you to love questions, to embrace uncertainty, and to become comfortable with the unknown because the more you do that, the more the world reveals itself to you.
A few years ago, I realized that if I apply this same approach to my Creativity, instead of feeling overwhelmed or inadequate, I can step into a creative play-space of Wonder. Instead of trying to write the perfect email, I can just play with words. Instead of trying to record the perfect podcast, I can just play with ideas. Instead of trying to have all of the answers, I can share what I know and see what new questions arise.
And by embracing Wonder, I’ve begun to overcome Resistance – whether that’s in my travels or my creativity.
I believe we need more experiences that teach us to turn worry into Wonder, through which we can more easily step into new versions of ourselves waiting to be found, new roles waiting to be played, new lives waiting to be lived.
And this is just the start.
If there’s one takeaway I want to leave you with it’s this: Resistance is a signal that you need to take action. Embrace that sinking feeling and respond to it with the lightness of questions, playfulness, and adventure. The Resistance is the wind but wind resistance can lift you up if you stop looking for the perfect solution and instead give yourself permission to chase Wonder.