Just Like In Life, Travel Comes Down To The Right Fit And Timing

So much of my life is centered around travel so I always see parallels between non-travel happenings in my life and my life on the road. As I’ve been busy sussing out new opportunities over the past two weeks, I noticed a new parallel – fit and timing affect my travel just like they do my life and livelihood.

Last week, in addition to working for current clients remotely, I flew to Seattle for meetings with a potential client and his team. The meetings went really well until I met the person with whom I’d interact most closely. To state that the meeting came to a crashing halt is an understatement. This guy was as far away from my ideology as he could be. There was NO common ground and that is unusual. I can find a commonality in even the strangest of bedfellows but there was none to be had.

I left the meeting feeling a bit disappointed but firm in my decision to say, “no thanks.” It was NOT the right fit for me. On the flight home rather than mentally chew over my decision, I thought about how fit and timing help weave the tapestry of life. Fit and timing affect relationships, college and career choices, and, yes, travel.

Fit and timing have played huge roles in my travel experiences. The biggest impact of fit was during my first trip to Belize. I love the country and have been many times, but that time I stayed in Placentia for less than 12 hours. The ‘fit’ was so uncomfortable and I was overcome by such a feeling of unease, that I left in the middle of the night! After a midnight drive to San Ignacio, I settled in and stayed for a couple weeks, feeling much more at home.

Probably the most impact timing has had on my travel was  my journey from Taba, Israel to Cairo, Egypt. Having been on buses all day, I arrived at the border close to 11pm, tired and dusty. Throwing caution to the wind, I walked past the traffic circle to a throng of taxi drivers. After some hand gestures and showing of cash, I was in the back of an ancient Datsun flying into the night. Timing worked in my favor as that dash across the Sinai at night remains one of the highlights of all my travels. It was in 2010 and there is no way I could do that today without risking harm.

It looks like fit and timing were looking out for me last week, too. When I got off the return flight from Seattle and checked my messages I had word from another potential client. This time the opportunity to collaborate was perfect, for me and for the client. Not only was the fit right, the timing was, too.

I’ve always been a ‘trust your gut’ person and when I examine those gut feelings, I get to the core of what makes them – fit and timing. From informing where I’ve ventured, how long I stayed, what I did or didn’t do, and with whom I’ve traveled, fit and timing have always been my two closest advisors. Never steering me wrong and never letting me down. I learned to trust that fit and timing will always present me the best opportunities, so long as I do my part to make good decisions.

What about you? Do you listen to your gut? Share your fit/timing experiences with me in the comments. As always, thanks for stopping by!