How Often Should I Move?
So you’ve chosen to become a nomad.
One of the most important decisions that you’re going to make is how fast you want to move around. One way of becoming a nomad is by constantly, and frequently, changing your location so you can explore more places and cultures in a given period of time. The contrasting way would be by taking your time and staying longer in each place you stop.
So let’s discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each option.
If you’re traveling with a definitive timeframe, you might want to consider moving frequently. For example, if you have only three months to spend in South America – and it will probably be your only chance to visit there – staying for a long time in a small city might not be reasonable. You might want to take advantage of being there and getting to know the major attractions. Make sure you constantly listen to yourself and don’t wear yourself out, though. Traveling, although it seems passive (for example, spending hours on a bus), can be quite exhausting and energy draining. In the case of having a definitive timeframe, it is all about finding the balance between getting to know a place and having fun there, while enjoying it in the appropriate timeframe so you still have time to expose yourself to other places.
When I first started my nomadic journey, I was a big fan of constant, frequent change. Even if I really enjoyed a place, I would force myself to leave it as soon as possible so I could explore new places. As I said though, this is an exhausting way of life that does not allow you to really make the best of each place and will negatively affect your happiness.
In the case that you have a lot of time and no definitive timeframe, I suggest choosing the option of taking it slow. I’m not suggesting you lower your speed of life while in a place but instead take the time to really get to know it and, in a sense, feel like a local. Changing location too frequently can be a sign that you’re running away from yourself. Being a nomad is exactly the opposite; it’s about re-connecting to yourself. Therefore, spending more time in a place allows you to expose yourself to various situations, establish a real social circle, and new, healthy routines.
We cannot ignore the risk of moving too slowly, however. Moving slowly can be compared to water freezing into ice. Being a nomad is not about freezing into the same place. Therefore, it is important to avoid attachments that can halt your nomadic lifestyle while taking your time to get to know a place (read more about that here). It is also important to be brave enough to make the change the minute you feel you’ve exhausted a place. Some good indications that it’s time to move on are feeling like you’re bored, feeling that you don’t learn a lot in the place you’re at, feeling like you’d rather be seeing another place, and most importantly not feeling happy.
To conclude – as everything else in life, go about finding the right balance for you. Staying for a longer time can allow you to really get a feel for a place but don’t overdo it; the world is full of exciting places to explore.