Take a Risk and Trust Strangers

My friend from Panama

As a child, I was taught not to trust strangers. “Don’t walk off with someone you don’t know” was drilled into me (as it is most kids). This was a solid lesson, especially for a kid that had a lot of energy.

Through my childhood and teenage years, I was reminded of this – you can trust family, close friends, teachers and so on. Strangers? They’re probably out to get you.

I remember rumors of a guy that used to hang outside of my primary school offering sweets to kids, drugging them. He probably had a van. Flyers went out to parents. Parents lost their minds. Mum gave me a stern talking to. Then we discovered it was all bullshit. But of course everyone remained scared.

Irony is, multiple teachers from my school have since been exposed and charged as pedos, including some all trusted priests, the pillars of society that they are. For those wondering, no – I didn’t receive the advances of said teachers or priests.

Even in my early adult years, my parents, extended family, friends and strangers on the internet have all given me unsolicited advice on trusting those I don’t know, whether it be with my money, diet, lifestyle, travel, politics and various other topics.

This isn’t meant to sound dramatic. My upbringing really was a normal one and my social circles are very standard. My parents didn’t wrap me in cotton wool like your average parent of today. By age 3 I was riding my bike up and down our street without shoes, likely waving to strangers and patting dogs I didn’t know without concern. Blanket distrust of strangers was something I had to learn and from what I’ve seen in friends, I’d say it’s the norm for most of us – at least from cities Australia and similar cultures around the world.

Frankly, I do think this distrust has helped me from being used during my impressionable years, but I’m getting the feeling that there’s a shelf life on how long it’s good for. Now I consider the lost opportunities as a result of not taking a risk here and there. How many experiences have been missed? How much money could have been made?

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Perhentian Islands, Malaysia

Perhentian Islands, Malaysia

If you live on or are visiting mainland Malaysia, it’s worth taking to time to visit the East Coast and find your way to the Perhentian Islands.

It’s a cheap flight to Kota Bharu, around RM60 for a taxi to Kuala Besut, then RM60 for a “fast boat” to the islands.

The “Perhentians” consists of  two islands very close to each other – Kecil and Besar (small and big). Kecil is cheaper and more of a party scene while Besar is more expensive but quieter. Neither are particularly “resorty” which is why we enjoyed our time here so much.

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The Perpetual Traveller Lifestyle

The Perpetual Traveller Lifestyle

In 2010, for the first time in my life I jumped on a plane with my wife to leave the country I’d always called home, Australia, for a year of exploring, living and working abroad.

Back then it was a rite of passage – something to get out of my system before returning to my great job in IT to un-pause The Game of Life.

As we planned our return to Australia however, something didn’t feel right – it didn’t feel as though we were returning “home”.

It was during this time that I first met someone living the perpetual traveller lifestyle.

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Using Habits for Success

Using Habits for Success

As we begin a new year many of us look at goal setting for the 12 months ahead. Whether it be health, financial, happiness or otherwise, this goal setting is often focused on the event instead of the process.

  • Chris sold his business and is retiring at 30
  • Matt has a 6 pack
  • Theresa has a luxurious new car
  • Shane rides his mountain bike like a pro
  • Andy bought a million dollar mansion
  • Nina made that marathon look easy
  • Jack does a heck of a lot of travel

When we see successful people, we’ve been conditioned to think that they are lucky, naturally skilled, had rich parents or some other justification as to why they can succeed and we can’t. What we’re seeing is the event.

The reality however, is that there was a lengthy process involved in the lead up to these events.

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2016 In Review

In an effort to remember when good things have been achieved, I’m keeping a log of successes and “big wins” for me each year.

Unlike most things I write, this post is for me. I find blogging to be a good way to research and in this case it’s a way for me to revisit all of the positive things that happened this year. It’s not a humblebrag. In the Instagram age, it seems as though everyone you know is doing incredible things every day while your life is on repeat. Don’t believe the hype.

Sticking to your habits of eating healthy, spending time with loved ones and hitting other personal goals may seem unimportant, but it’s not. What matters to you is all that matters.

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