Travel as a volunteer…

I mean to explore the world and also help … it sounds good, right? And what if you also do your project? Sounds even better, doesn’t it?
We have all considered dedicating our efforts and energy to more noble issues than those that consume us every day.
Or at least, devote ourselves to more related needs to us, to what we truly have inside. That area we forget sometimes. That area where we feel and is close to the heart. Fulfill that area who feeds the soul.
Tell your boss: “Not today, pretty. Today I decided to travel as a volunteer and save the world. ”
Sounds good, doesn’t it? But, how to start?

Choosing an NGO: Where to look?

As in everything, there are good, bad and very bad NGOs. And you are not going to volunteer in any way. It’s about your effort being useful.
What to do then? If you search on the Internet you can get lost in a sea of information and existing organizations. Do you choose the big ones with their complex and eternal processes? Or choose small ones with the risk of being alone in a useless project?
I decided to dedicate my effort to medium and small NGOs where I had more global projects. And also, places with less bureaucracy and obstacles to enter. Places where the help was more direct to the problem and without having to pay the structures of the big organizations.
But how to look for these NGOs? Because it depends on which one you choose, you run the risk of being in the middle of a poorly planned project.
On the Internet, many pages qualify and certify this type of organization. You can find a huge number of reliable pages, where NGOs are classified according to the type of project, location, etc.

Which NGO to choose?

We have said that to travel voluntarily in a useful way, we will focus on small or medium-sized NGOs that are also reliable. We´ll be considering the big ones too, but they are the ones you already know.
In short, you should look one by one and see which projects you like most and the geographical area where you want to go. I advise you to create a huge list so that you can stay with a smaller group of “candidate” NGOs.

Time for Action!

Perfect! Now it only remains to send an email to each of the NGOs that interested. You have to send them, one by one, the cover letter you wrote before.
It seems like a lie. But many people hang here or in the search.
And you know what the reason is?
Yes. The doubt, the complexes … FEAR.
But I tell you, don’t worry, and don’t be intimidated by fear. Go ahead with your project and you will see that in a short time you will be carrying it out.

How to get out of the comfort zone

I have long realized that people have a hard time getting out of their daily routine (especially in Scotland, my homeland). Every time I try to make plans with someone who doesn’t usually make plans, they end up procrastinating and at the last minute back out.

I’ve always wondered why this sudden change was due when they had been excited all week wanting to do it. But I have discovered I´m guilty of this crime myself too but to a lesser degree.

People can put very bad excuses at the last minute just before leaving that point where they felt safe and secure. But we can all learn to overcome this, especially if you want to make trips to many destinations.

How do I overcome the comfort zone barrier?

You have to convince yourself that what goes through your head is not real; it is simply that your mind is sabotaging you.

Although it is good to have respect for fear because it can help you focus and thus avoid danger.

Of course, if you let fear dominate you can end nervous, anxious, sweating, crying, trembling, angered, frustrated, confused and a long list of horrible sensations.

As you get smaller challenges, you will feel more comfortable when facing unknown situations. You will have a series of experiences in the head to turn to when you need them.

Regardless of what you are going to do, whether you are going to do a high-level mountain route, a grade 6 climb, or talk in public, here are some tips that can help you take the step and not get stuck.

• Breathe deeply and in a controlled manner.

• Try to visualize the results you want.

• Sit quietly and be conscious of the posture you have.

• Listen to motivational music or to people who motivate you.

• See how someone did it before you and do it, as NIKE says: Just Do It.

• Think of all the things that scared you, but that you have managed to overcome.

• Don’t think and focus on the action of the present.

• Do not block your emotions.

• Lean on a mentor or someone you trust (but note, not that it doesn’t make you a dependent person).

• Start saying yes when you usually say no.

• Don’t plan things so much and learn to enjoy even what goes wrong.

• Change your route to work.

• Accept uncertainty and the unknown.

• Surround yourself with people who are always overcoming challenges and living adventures.

• Let yourself be carried away by the spontaneous actions that occur around you.

• If the strategy you use works, you will begin to feel comfortable in uncomfortable situations.

Adventures, whether large or small, are wonderful ways to learn in life, so I am addicted to them just as adrenaline junkie that these experiences produce.

“Life is much more interesting when you go further.”

I hope you liked this article, tell me what moments you have had when leaving the comfort zone and what you have done to face it, and if you have not yet left what are your biggest problems to leave.

Hugs.

And you, in how many countries have you been?

The important thing is not in how many, but in which you have lived and experienced their culture.
It depends on who asks and who of the answer, but this is one of the most absurd questions that can be asked. It gives us no real clue as to who we have in front of us.
There are even many travelers who do not even know how many countries they have already traveled.
I do know which ones I have traveled to. But I consider it much more important, in how many of them I have had enriching experiences, I have immersed myself in the local culture or met incredible people.

In how many countries have I been?

I’d rather say that I’ve been to 58 places that made me sigh, 3 countries that hated me when I loved them. Other numbers: A plane and 4 buses that I lost. And what about the 7 nights I sleep in airports and the more than 30 hours waiting for someone to get me in their car because I was hitchhiking.
I have 12 indelible hugs on the road and 17 gazes I will never forget. 3 girls, I loved in 10 different countries. 8 sunsets recorded on the retina and 2 stunning sunrises.
I cried in 6 countries, 4 of them were tears of happiness. I smiled at 33. And I burst out laughing in more than 20 of them; none was for compromise.
I can count 11 sleepless nights, 9 beds in which I slept a lot and one of them in which I lay down without asking permission.
In one country they gave me wise advice that I did not understand until a few days ago.
I made 3 promises that I kept and another 3 who are still unfulfilled. More than 10 dreams come true but there almost 30 in the bedroom waiting to come true.
I have made about 127 mistakes of which I do not regret any and would make them again if I had the opportunity.
I have learned hundreds of traveling lessons, but none like those three.
I have taken thousands of photographs, but whenever I see that image I have a chill that runs through my whole body.
I have 11 goodbyes of which in two I never really wanted to say goodbye. In 3 of them, the tears of sadness jumped at me. Five mixed feelings and two bad memories that became anecdotes.
I got lost in 18 countries, I found myself in 7 of them.
I made 87 friends on the route from 46 different countries. 19 forgot me, plus the 28 that I neglected. With the rest I still have contact and I hope to hug them very soon.
Sometimes, I miss the caresses I received in Malta, beer and Polish soups. The sex in Brazil was great two. And I fell in love with the people of the Balkans. And to your blue eyes, those I’m going to miss so much.