28 Apr ‘Places to go: How to decide where and how much research to do’
Lots of people ask me when it comes to exploring …how do you decide where to go and how much research do you do? The answer is… I stay open to opportunities and the amount of research depends. For example right now I am sitting on the plane from Milan to Budapest (well I am actually on the train leaving Budapest now that I am posting this!), having left Ibiza this morning. Once I land in Budapest I will take a train to Kosice (Slovakia)…that is 4 countries in 1 day (back to Budapest for the weekend!) The decision to do this trip was taken yesterday morning. So in this case, quick decision and close to zero research. I have never been to Hungary before and Budapest was on my list of places I would really like to visit and has been for years. My antenna was up…so when my husband mentioned that there is a technology he needs to understand developed by a Slovakian manufacturer and the supplier told him that the fastest way to get there was to fly to Budapest…it naturally and quickly evolved into a weekend trip. Now the truth is that this morning I had to look up the currency of Hungary…I know they are part of the EU but had no idea if they have the Euro…which they don’t by the way! The only quick check I did before buying the tickets was the visa situation…once I had the all clear on that we were good to go. By noon tickets were done but at 10pm last night I still did not have accommodation for Budapest for the weekend – who knew it was a long weekend May holiday?! Now we are all sorted and on our way. So in this case how did I choose to go – alignment of the universe…how much research – about 10 minutes!!!
I agree that this is not the normal way to explore these days…we tend to spend hours and hours and weeks and weeks planning every single element of the trip in the hope that it will ALL go as planned. Personally for me I like to leave some aspects of the trip up to the universe. I am certainly clear about the feelings I would like the trip to provide, but when it comes down to analysing all the nitty gritty I find that our comfort zone is not challenged if there are no variables, and we all know that SO much of the amazingness and joy of life happens from the unexpected and happens outside our comfort zone. The more we control everything the less freedom we have. Try it…you might enjoy it! Of course there are other adventures that require a little more research and planning…my recent trip to Nepal for example. I did do quite a bit of research as to the areas I wanted to trek and the people I wanted to meet..but at the same time I was sure to leave some gaps to allow the unexpected to creep in…and indeed it did. I had specific goals as to what my desired outcomes were and set off on my path towards them. I was very strategic and careful not to have my head down and bum up on a mission, as this is when we tend to miss signals and opportunities. We often worry about HOW things are going to happen…when my experience has shown time and time again, the how is not the best place to focus, as we often get caught up in it..what is important is to know why you want to do what you are doing and what you would like to get out of it…then TRUST. Trust is fundamental. Trust leads to magic. So when you are thinking about adventuring…unless it is climbing Everest, or jumping out of a plane in the middle of nowhere – which without doubt needs some serious research and planning – leave some gaps and watch the magic flow.