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Why I STOPPED Traveling

One of my readers asked me a question last month that I want to answer. He asked, "Why would you leave a life that most people long for to come back to Canada?"

In other words, am I giving up my dream to settle for something less than amazing? In looking at it from many people's standpoint, I can see where that would seem to be the case. Actually it couldn't be further from the truth.

First of all, amazing lives change structure and format. I guarantee you that what you define as "amazing" today will not necessarily be amazing five or ten years from now. You will have evolved and so will your definition of amazing. That is what has happened for me.

Living out of two suitcases, staying in various places around the world, having to still work and provide for myself financially has become more and more challenging. I began to miss having my own bed, my own pillow and a fully stocked kitchen. I have in many cases more or less "camped" when it came to the repertoire of food I could prepare, given the limitations. Most people, no matter what they charge per month for rentals, have no idea how to stock a kitchen for someone who still cooks everything from scratch! They think that a microwave and a coffee pot is cooking!

However, the reason for coming back to Canada earlier this month goes way deeper than just wanting better cooking tools and nicer sheets or being tired of garbage everywhere which is fairly typical of developing countries.

What shifted for me was realizing that I couldn't easily continue this gypsy lifestyle outside of North America and realize a much bigger dream I have. It's been a dream I've left on the back burner for some years now and it's never died or got cold.

As a matter of fact, in Panama it heated up - dramatically. While walking to the beach one day I met a young man, Roberto. An entrepreneur, he was called home to help take care of a father with kidney failure. His dreams of finishing his engineering degree at University were dashed with the expenses of his father's medical treatment. As the only one not married out of his 8 siblings Roberto took on the responsibility financially. The problem was that although he was a hard worker, dedicated to his clientele, and smarter than average, Roberto had no entrepreneurial training. His resources were limited and his access to more training completely unheard of.

I coached him on a few occasions but one big challenge always stood in his way. It's a challenge for many entrepreneurs in most countries. Yes, you guessed it. The challenge was m .o.n.e.y. Already in the hole financially, with nowhere to turn, Roberto had very few choices to make. Credit cards, a line of credit or a bank loan were not options. So Roberto lived hand to mouth, stressed to the max over his family situation - not because he wasn't willing to work hard or wasn't smart - but because of a relatively insignificant amount of m.o.n.e.y.

After 3 1/2 years of traveling in developing countries, previously living in Ecuador for four years and being well versed in microfinancing, I know that Roberto is not alone in the world. I also know that I have tools that could help entrepreneurs with their businesses - if they could be made available in other languages, in conjunction with some other very large undertakings. Interestingly and certainly not coincidental, my ebook, 10 Mistakes Most Entrepreneurs Make that Cost Them Time and Money was just translated by a branch of the Columbian government into Spanish for use with a woman's entrepreneurial cooperative. Working with them on the translation further spurred my desire to be of greater assistance to all entrepreneurs, not just those that can afford my coaching services, have access to my books and CDs or speak English.

So I was faced with the question: Do I continue doing what I am doing? It was in many ways an ideal life, for sure. OR, do I step up to the plate and create my biggest, juiciest dream which goes way beyond what I am currently doing? That meant coming back to Canada. I assure you that I tossed and turned many a night over this dilemma.

I feel the fear just like many of you do as you make the tough decisions - do you do what you know in your heart of hearts and soul of souls that you are here to do or do you continue to settle for second best? Do you step up and out or do you make excuses as to all the reasons why you can' t really show up in a big way?

We all question at some point whether or not we stay comfortable (even though it is never fully comfortable playing small) OR do we feel the fear, question our sanity a thousand times and then just say YES!

Well, I decided to say YES! Having made that commitment unequivocally, it's interesting that it appears it is going to all play out entirely differently than I planned. What else is new? Goethe said it so beautifully when he wrote:

"That the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never have otherwise occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would come his way."

So as it continues to unfold, I marvel, I smile, I laugh and I cry at how loving, s upportive and generous the Universe truly is. We have no idea what greatness is waiting us when we rev up our definition of amazing and say YES to our greatest good that is also the greatest good for the planet.

I can't say anything more this month but it's looking amazing. So right now I am going to encourage you to identify that greater definition of amazing that you have put on the back burner or buried in the back yard. Drag it out again, polish it up and make the commitment to say YES to it! The more we say YES, the more amazing life becomes.

Jan Janzen is a non-denominational minister, breast health activist, healer and coach. She is the author of four books and 8 CDs. To get Jan's monthly newsletter, Create an Amazing Life, visit

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