Be Comfortable Where You Are

Posted By Trav


This may seem like strange advice from a restless traveler who is always urging you to get off the couch and see the world, but in this case, the where isn’t about a physical location.

3 years ago, Chris Guillebeau was a relatively unknown blogger who was publishing his first book and going out on a book tour that he was putting on himself.

He was asking for volunteers to host him and some of his team members as he came through different cities.

I jumped at the chance to host when they came through Philadelphia.

Preliminary plans were made, and I was going to meet and be inspired by Chris, a hero of mine, in person.

We were going to stay up at night talking about life and entrepreneurship.

His guidance was going to help me hatch an idea, and I was going to finally start something of my own…and it was going to be big!

And then I moved to Switzerland.

The months rolled by.

I moved back to America and started teaching high school again.

The months rolled by.

I decided I needed a change.  I moved to Japan and continued teaching high school.

The months turned in to a year.

Nothing big happened.

And then, finally, after a year and a half of inaction, I started this site.

Readership grew slowly.

I wrote some really good posts, and some not so good posts.  I started to find my voice.

Readership grew more rapidly.

I started an email newsletter to build a stronger community.

I wrote a book.

People loved it.

I started a podcast and have had the chance to interview some of the world’s top travel experts.

People love it.

And yet, as I plan to head to the World Domination Summit in July and finally meet Chris for the first time, I can’t help but think….

What could have been?


If I had hosted Chris way back then, would I have reached the incredibly high heights that he has reached?

Would I have over 100,000 twitter followers?

Would I be hosting a world renowned conference of over 300 people?

Would I be chums with some of the world’s foremost internet entrepreneurs?

The answer to some of these questions might be yes.

And sitting here now as medium level blogger with a 1,750 twitter followers, looking up at Chris, I sometimes get jealous.


Longing for what he has.


If I had never gone to Switzerland,

I never would have had the hilarious experience of driving a $250,000 trophy up the coast of Italy to Lausanne.

I never would have attended the world’s greatest party, Oktoberfest, with some of my best friends.

I never would have drank wine from the vineyard that I LIVED ON.

And I never would have been inspired to travel more, which means:

I never would have gone to Japan and made some of the best memories and friends I’ll ever have.

I never would have backpacked through Thailand, Cambodia, and Malaysia.

I never would have eaten the best food of my life, or eaten the weirdest.

I never would have scuba dived on the Great Barrier Reef.

I never would have ridden camels in India or elephants in Chiang Mai.

And I never would have started this website, because I never would have had the passion to teach others about travel.

I never would have 1,750+ awesome twitter followers.

I never would have 30,000+ monthly viewers.

I never would have 1,200+ incredible newsletter subscribers.

And I never would have the amazing community that has been built here at Extra Pack of Peanuts over the last 1.5 years.

So instead of lamenting “what could have been”, I think it’s time I’m happy about where I am.

Because where I am is pretty damn sweet!

(photos courtesy of 2ni, Dicko2007)


  1. Joey says:

    It’s definitely better to compare yourself now to where you were a few years ago versus comparing yourself with others (like Chris Guillebeau) :)

    1. Trav says:

      @Joey- I agree. Comparing to what I was doing 1.5 years ago always helps give some perspective, for sure.

  2. Grant says:

    Great post, my site is small now (all of them start small), but I’m hoping to have it grow month by month. I can relate to the good posts and bad posts :/

    1. Trav says:

      @Grant- Yep, the important part is that you are doing SOMETHING. It won’t grow magically on its own without taking action, and just by posting good content, you’re 75% of the way there!

      PS- Loved your post about the free tickets from Fandango. Didn’t know about that before. I’ll be telling all my newsletter subscribers about it and pointing them to your site!

      1. Grant says:

        Thank you Trav, I appreciate that. Keep up the good work.

  3. Gene says:

    You will always be happy if you are grateful for what you have rather than being envious of others.

    1. Trav says:

      @Gene- Agreed. That’s what I try to do each and every day.

  4. Robert says:

    Congratulation! You have matured instead of just got older.

    1. Trav says:

      @Robert- Surprising, huh?

  5. Eva Sheftel says:

    I’m new to your post but I have already learned a lot from your fountain of knowledge. Keep it up helping people to see the world!!

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