Whether you’re a weekend wanderer or full time adventurer the memories you make whilst travelling enrich your soul and broaden your view of the world.
A recent study into the effects of extended travel actually showed that longer trips abroad and connecting with local people can also influence personality development making us more open, agreeable, and emotionally stable.
“These changes in personality were related to changes in people’s social networks as a result of travel.” - Psychology Today
With over 1,000 new house sits listed on TrustedHousesitters every month, some for just a weekend and others for over six months, it’s easy to secure an opportunity to make meaningful connections with people all over the world and expand your social networks when you travel.
So why not take the opportunity to live your dream of travel?
Keen to conduct our own research into the beneficial effects of spending time abroad we reached out to a handful of frequent travellers to find out how their adventures shaped their understanding of the world and at what point they realised they were #livingthedream?
Mariellen Ward from Canada
In 2005, I left the safety and comfort of my home in Toronto for a six-month trip to India. I was motivated both by a life-long yearning to experience India and by the need to recover from depression following a series of personal losses. I'd never done anything remotely like this trip. I felt like I was jumping off a cliff to a completely unknown destiny and destination.
Whatever fears and anxieties I had in anticipation very quickly evaporated within 24 hours of landing in Delhi on a sunny, warm December afternoon. I felt immediately at home. On my second day in India, I visited the Qutab Minar, a historical site. At dusk, the Delhi sky turned pink as I was walking among thousand-year-old turreted tombs, and it struck me: I'm in India. I could hardly believe it. I felt like I was in a dream.
I spent the next six months on a kind of magic carpet ride and it was during this time i realised that i was living the dream. I fell in love with India, with travelling and with travel writing and blogging, and I've never looked back. I still spend almost half of each year in India. I don't know if I'm living THE dream, but I'm living MY dream. I'm living my life.
If you're interested in travel to India take a look at Mariellen's blog BreatheDreamGo.com.
Laura & Tanbay from UK/Germany
The moment we realised we were living the dream was on our second house sit in Adelaide, Australia. The house was in a very prestigious neighbourhood with a view over the whole of Adelaide and a dog that we absolutely adored.
It was here that we realised we love to travel, however backpacking and staying in hostels isn't for us. We much prefer to travel with our home comforts and in a little bit of luxury. Thanks to TrustedHousesitters and the opportunity to house sit we had discovered a way to combine our love of travel and luxury on a budget that we could afford. During our stay in Adelaide we fell in love with our neighbours - who were wild koalas! It was such a great way to immerse ourselves in life Down Under.
Furthermore, the lovely lady we house sat for invited us to stay in her house on Kangaroo Island after the sit, which was a dream come true! We saw more wild koalas, wild sea lions and, of course, wild kangaroos!
Read more about Laura & Tanbay's house sitting adventures on their blog TravellingWeasels.com.
Aileen Adalid from Philippines
I quit my office job at 21 in exchange for a nomadic travel lifestyle back in April 2013, but it was only 5 months after that date when it FULLY "hit" me that yes... I was finally living my dream lifestyle!
At that time, I was on my first trip to Europe. I rented a car together with a friend of mine and we camped around in a lot of places (mainly in France). One of the stops we've made along the way was to this quaint little town called Annecy whose skies were speckled with numerous paragliders.
As I glanced up at all of these people who were flying above me, I just knew that I wanted to try it too (no matter if I was actually terribly scared of heights). End result: I did try it out, and while I was up there looking at the breathtaking terrain below me... I was suddenly overwhelmed by happiness. I wholly realized that I wouldn't have been able to see and do these things — things that were only previously contained in my daydreams — if I hadn't made the 'leap' to go after my goal. So I'm deeply and truly thankful that I did gather the courage to do so!
Read more about Aileen and her life of travel at iamaileen.com.
Sabrina Iovino from Germany
Back in 2008 I quit my job to travel the world for 14 months. This one trip changed my life forever. I fell in love with a life on the road, a life where there is no routine and everyday was a new adventure.
When I returned in 2014 I went back to my old life for a couple of months, and worked again in an office. It didn't take too long until I realized I just couldn't do it anymore. I was desperate to run away again, which I did 4 months later. I flew to the Philippines and shared thousands of pictures from my adventures online. My friends back home always envied my lifestyle and asked me for travel advice.
Back in 2012 I finally had the idea of starting a travel blog and writing travel itineraries for my friends. My blog Just One Way Ticket became quite popular, and nowadays, I'm 100% living off the income I earn online. They always say, do a job you love. I loved traveling to the point of madness that I was able to channel that into a job. For me it was at this point i realised i was living the dream. I have no fixed address, recently I've been traveling throughout the Philippines and have been house sitting and living abroad for 8 years now.
Find out more about travel through the Philippines over on Sabrina's blog JustOneWayTicket.com.
Here is a video from the Philippines, a place I'd like to call home.
Share Your #LivingTheDream Moments With Us
Do you feel as though you're #LivingTheDream? Has your experience of house sitting expanded your social network or enriched your understanding of the world? If you've a memorable travel moment that you would like to share with our community leave a comment below, send details to firstname.lastname@example.org, or enter our Moments & Memories competition!