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by Going Slowly

Since our last really crappy cycling day (on Elba), we have thought and talked a LOT about what we need to ensure our trip stays enjoyable rather than devolving into ceaseless hard work. What it really comes down to is giving ourselves permission to relax.

There are lots of little things that add up to making this a reality. Firstly, any time we feel hurried or pressured to be somewhere we're forcing ourselves to reevaluate our perspective about why we need to be there now. Secondly, we're remembering to take rest days before they become a dire imperative. Thirdly, we're forcing ourselves to get up by 7AM every day. The extra time this affords makes every day less stressful.

Lastly, and this is a big one, we're re-evaluating our budget. Until recently we've adhered to a strict 25€/day budget no matter what the consequence. After a lot of discussion we've come to the conclusion that we can afford a little more (even with the ever declining value of the US dollar).

Our savings accounts are still doing fine and Tyler's programming is currently generating more income than we're spending. Moving from 25€/day to a more forgiving goal of 25€-30€/day makes a huge difference for us. We've been living on a strict budget for more than 2 years now and we've gotten very good at it. We can make an extra 5€ go a long way.

Underlying all of these changes is the basic idea that we're not trying to win any contests. This is our life and we want it to be enjoyable.

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One thing that helped us was to remind ourselves that the trip was not about cycling or even covering ground. It's about travelling and experiencing things, and if you are not enjoying yourselves something is wrong! We love reading your site!
Posted by jameswelle on October 13th, 2009 at 11:11 AM
good move guys. there's no point if it's not fun. you're not out to prove anything to yourselves.
Posted by benjamin on October 14th, 2009 at 9:35 AM