Career Breakers Gather & Stir it Up!

Posted on: Sunday, August 26th, 2012
Posted in: Sabbatical Shuffle, Blog | 2 comments

A few nights back, the BreakAway meetup group hosted a co-bill event with career-break maven Sherry Ott.

17 wanderlusty souls laughed and chatted about past travels, evolving plans, omnipresent obstacles and more. I left with a fat backpack full of inspiration and impressions; here are 5 worth noting…

  • Sherry Ott is a rising rock star. You saw it here first (though it’s obvious all over the internets): Ms. Ott is the hardest-working person in the career-break ecosystem—and clearly the smartest. Oh sure, she somehow travels ALL THE TIME, so she’s got more experience than God. But she’s bubbling over with ideas and answers. Yet she’s 100% humble and available. Follow her, and go far.
  • Long distance is close to folks’ hearts. Based on these 17 random vagabonds, it appears that long-term travelers don’t need no Paris or Rome. Exotic, less paved places deep in Asia, South America, and beyond are high on hit lists. The fact that your money goes farther provides one incentive. But authenticity and exploration beckon too.
  • Travelers want to “settle down.” No, not as in picket fences and puppies. But rather, a surprising amount of these BreakAway artists want to hunker down in one alien locale for a year—or maybe two. They want to learn a language, absorb a culture, excape America, and be more than a “tourist.”
  • It’s the healthcare, stupid. The obstacle course gets no easier as the years go by. Yet most career-break enthusiasts already have an impressive passport-stamp collection and “what it takes.” But health insurance now sits atop the wall of worries—beside usual suspects like money, career, and (literally) stuff.
  • Dreamers mean business. When preaching the gospel of Sabbatical, I’ve seen both stink-eye and rolling eyes in the audience. But more and more, the eyes are filled with feverish fervor. For most, it’s a matter of when—not where or how or why. One of our guests, for example, will exit his Fortune 500 road and go RTW this fall. He’s been working there since a college internship. But nothing can stop him now. We wished him well, admitted our jealousy, and again had that forehead-slapping revelation that, Yes, Anyone Can Do This!

Thanks again to good-hearted guru Sherry Ott for making time on her everlasting tour to chat with us; now she’s off to New York to host Meet, Plan, Go—and then Hawaii and then Antarctica with her dad.


p.s.  I’ll be a panelist at the Minneapolis Meet Plan Go event on October 18 at REI in Bloomington.  Details to come!


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2 Responses to “Career Breakers Gather & Stir it Up!”

  1. Jeremy Olexa Says:

    Hey, thanks for the kind words. I’m the guest that is exiting my Fortune 500 road 🙂 I just gave my employer notice last week and am very excited. Depart in 35 days!

  2. kirk Says:

    Yes! Yes! 1,000 times yes! You are my hero, guru, mentor, and pal! Thanks for coming to your travel Meetup last month…though you hardly need our inspiration! Going solo–way cool. RTW–the best. Congrats for having the courage to do this, as you say, before kids + house + destiny paint you in (nice, but at times crowded!) corners. Godspeed and stay in touch!

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