Travel Life: Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

You’ll have to excuse the cheesy title. My boyfriend made fun of me a while ago for never having heard the phrase “have your cake and eat it too,” so I felt compelled to use it. At the same time, I felt like it really fit the topic of this post. I wanted to take a moment to remind you that it is possible to travel and have a normal life.

Travel Life Have Your Cake and Eat It Too


The Travel Dream

I caught the travel bug while I was studying abroad in Japan. When I returned home, I found it incredibly difficult to return to the life I had before studying abroad. Instead, I began looking towards the next adventure I could possibly go on.

In doing that, I began following a lot of travel bloggers. I read about all the amazing places they had been and saw all the breathtaking photos they had captured. Then, I researched all the tips about how to travel for dirt cheap and live out of a suitcase.

I wanted to chase that dream so bad. I mean, how amazing would it be to make a living out of traveling the world?

Then one day, after returning home from a two week vacation in Hawaii, it hit me. Is traveling full time really something I would enjoy? After two weeks of adventuring, I was ready to go home and sleep in my own bed and eat my usual junk food. Did I really want to be a full time nomad?

That’s when realization struck me like a slap across the face. Why had I believed that I had to choose between traveling extensively and having a desk job? It is quite possible to accomplish both. You really can have your cake and eat it too.

Travel and Have a Normal Life

A lot of travel bloggers brag about quitting 9-5 jobs to become full time travelers. I think that’s absolutely incredible. Kudos to them for being able to accomplish what many other people only dream of doing. I’m not being sarcastic. I admire them, because I have realized that it takes a special type of person to be able to do that.

Yet, when you read all of these amazing stories, it’s easy to believe that you have to choose between having a 9-5 job or being a full time nomad. I wanted to take a moment to remind you not to fall into that trap!


Travel And Have A Normal Life

Every morning you have two choices: continue your sleep with dreams, or wake up and chase your dreams. Choice is yours. – Unknown

Time and again we get caught up in our own lives. I’m guilty of it too. I have big projects going on at work, plans with friends and family, and all sorts of other commitments. Once we start getting crazy busy, we often find ourselves wishing we could just get away for a time. Yet, how many people actually go on that get away?

Traveling takes effort. You have to decide where to go, things to do once you get there, where you are going to stay, how much all of it will cost, and so on. Going on a “getaway” never happens because planning it all just adds extra work on top of our already busy lives. It remains nothing but a dream.

Truth is, planning a getaway doesn’t have to be a super stressful experience. If you start planning far enough in advance, you can spend just a few minutes a day working on planning your getaway, and then spend the rest of the day doing whatever else you need to do. Before you know it, your plans will all be coming together.

Don’t convince yourself that you have to be a full-time nomad to enjoy the wonders of the world. Stop letting travel be just a dream. Decide to start chasing those dreams.


Further Reading


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Travel Life Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

28 thoughts on “Travel Life: Have Your Cake and Eat It Too”

  1. Interesting read. I make a (fulltime) living out of my travel websites, but I am not a fulltime traveler. Nor do I feel the need to. I have my husband, family and friends and a lot more clients at home and I don’t want to give them up. Being a traveler definitely doesn’t equal being a nomad. Even with a fulltime job there is LOTS you can do to explore!!

    1. I congratulate you! It’s comforting to know that there are other travel bloggers out there who can make a full-time living from their websites without being full-time nomads. I hope more people will be able to realize that and get inspired to start traveling.

  2. So true. It needs a special character to become a happy full time traveller. It’s not for everybody. I love my job at home too and all the commitments which I never want to miss. But still I want to see the world and travel whenever possible.

    1. I very quickly realized that I am not one of the people who can be traveling for months at a time. Usually after a couple weeks of adventuring, I’m ready to go home and just lie on my couch for a week straight!

  3. For a few years, I was going on a ton of trips. My family returned home between each one to live our “normal” life of work and school, but be off again whenever there was a school break. In many ways, it was very exciting. But after a while, everything began to run together. I’d forget about some of the placed I’d seen. In some ways, it was like being at a fantastic, all-you-can-eat buffet but completely overstuffing yourself to where you aren’t really appreciating every single bite. Three or four trips a year seems to be the right balance for me. I have enough of a break between each one to really savor the memory before starting to dream about the next one.

    1. I definitely like the idea of limiting the number of trips you take. Sometimes I look at how many places I want to go and feel like I need to start planning a bunch of trips, otherwise how am I ever going to make it to them all? But I think you are onto something by saying that putting space between your trips allows you to savor them more. I could see how it would all start to run together after a while.

  4. We definitely go through phases where we want nothing more than to travel full time, and take our lives and livelihoods on the road. Other times, it is nice to have the comfort and familiarity of a home base. As in all things, there’s a balance. The real journey is finding the point where you feel balanced…and knowing that point will change over time. #WeekendWanderlust

    1. Definitely a good point! Just when he feel like we have found a point where we’re balanced, it shifts! I definitely go through phases where I feel like I’m not traveling enough, and then I’ll go through a phase where I feel like I’m traveling to much and just want to chill for a while, but the struggle is part of the adventure!

  5. You couldn’t be more right! When I started blogging some 5 years ago, I wanted the nomadic lifestyle. After leaving my bf of 17 years and my father passing away in the same year, I decided to give everything up at home and just leave for a nomadic travel blogger life. I spent most of my summer traveling (US, Sweden, Austria) and soon enough realized that being a fully nomadic blogger is not my thing. I always loved my office job (in tourism, so that enabled me to travel a bit, too) and even though I’m not sad I gave that up, I miss the routine of daily life. I’m currently in Bali and from here will move onto Nepal and then New Zealand. However I can’t wait to eventually head back home to Holland too, find myself a place to live and create a ‘home’ … (PS I wrote a post about this too, it’s in Dutch but if interested I can send you the link and you can use Google Translate)

    1. Sounds like we have similar starts! I was 17 when my dad passed away, and after studying abroad in Japan in college, I realized that the dream I was chasing wasn’t what I had really wanted. I wasn’t even sure why I had been chasing it. I talk a lot about that revelation in my post Travel Was My Wake Up Call. You should read it if you get the chance, and I would love to read your post about your revelations!

  6. I cannot imagine quitting my 9-5 and travelling full time to be honest! I love travelling but I also love some sort of stability, and a place to call home to come back to after a trip. I am passionate about my work, my career as much as I am about travelling. So yea, I agree, in that sense, you CAN have your cake and eat it too 🙂

    1. It’s a hard balance to find. There are times when I just want to up and go, and be gone for several weeks, but that’s not always easy when working full time. I do like the stability though, and it’s nice when you have a career that your as passionate about as you are travel!

  7. I agree with you. I admire those who have made travelling a full time living but to be fair when I left university, the internet did not exist so it was not an option for me. Now however I have carved a career which allows me to travel as frequently as I like (although I have to be creative with my leave!). I enjoy being able to indulge in luxury like the week we have just left behind at the Residence Zanzibar. I am however planning a early retirement although only retirement in the sense that I do intend to become a nomad

    1. Good to hear you have a career that has allowed you to do what you enjoy and I congratulate you for being able to retire early! The internet really has made the impossible possible.

  8. Great post, we really dont need to give up our daily routine to make time to travel. I have full time job that i love at the same time i love travelling. Yes its just making the right decision and plan a perfect vacation.

    1. I definitely agree. It can sometimes be a little overwhelming trying to find that balance between adventure and having a daily routine, so it’s nice to have that reminder every once in a while!

  9. “Don’t convince yourself that you have to be a full-time nomad to enjoy the wonders of the world” – This is SO true. Thank you for writing that out! I’m not a digital nomad at all but still manage to have my regular getaways and travel quite often. It’s not black and white; between 9-to-5 jobs and digital nomad, there are so many different lifestyles!

    1. Definitely! But I think when a lot of people think “travel blogger,” they immediately think “expat” or “nomad,” at least that’s what I thought when I first started getting into traveling. I think every now and then we need reminded that there are many different ways to have a travel lifestyle.

  10. I’d love to make travelling and blogging a full time thing, but as I’m only just starting off it is just a dream. I make the most of travelling locally so it saves a little bit of cash too! rather than the luxury travel you see alot of online.

    1. I’m definitely a little torn. I would love to make blogging a full time thing, but at the same time, I don’t think I could handle living life on the road. I need that “home base.” It can be a struggle at times, but I think people can find a balance between “having a normal life” and doing extensive travel.

  11. I have never heard that quote that you put it on the tilte but I tottaly agree with you that it fits a lot this post. Being full time traveler is not an easy decision to make because you are alaways under the risk of something to go wrong but in the end everything is a part of the big adventure. That’s why I admire the people who do that I even know some of this type of people and when I see them they are just so joyfull and positive about everything.

    1. It definitely takes a certain kind of person to be able to travel full time. Not everybody is like that, and I think that’s okay. I admire the people who can travel full time, but I think I admire the people who managed to find a balance between a normal life and travel even more.

  12. I must say, traveling is addicting. Once you go to another country, you will want to keep exploring! Though you didn’t have that desire before. Cheers to the traveling life, it takes effort as you say but it is definitely worth it!

    1. I definitely agree. After spending four months in Japan, I’ve been itching to go on another adventure outside the United States. You find people who live such different lives to you. It definitely takes some effort to find the balance between comfort and adventure, but you’ll also find that you’ll push your limits and accomplish more than you thought possible!

  13. Yes… it is not an easy decision to make (although I once made it on a whim). Most people whop live “normal” lives don’t even get it. The best way to be happy with this life is to not care about what others think. There will always be uncertainties in a freelance life but the freedom we have is worth more than that.

    1. It’s a hard jump to make, from “normal” to “nomad”. It was one of the things that scared me when I decided to start blogging about travel. I’m not somebody who can travel full time. I need that home base, and I thought that would spell my demise as a travel blogger. I decided to write this post as a remind to myself and others that you don’t have to jump from one extreme to the other. You can find a happy medium.

  14. I agree that planning a getaway doesn’t have to be stressful and you often don’t have to travel far to discover new places. I love to travel and plan vacations, but I also enjoy my time at home. It’s all about balance! Happy travels 🙂

    1. I definitely agree that you don’t have to travel far to discover new places. Now that I’m back in school, I find my time to go on extensive adventures very limited. I’ve had to stay close, but somehow I’m still finding lots of new adventures and places to discover!

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