9 Reasons Why You Should Travel Alone At Least Once in Your Life

travel solo

Traveling alone may be the single best catalyst for personal growth.

My solo traveling experiences have created quantum leaps in various areas of my life. And every person I’ve met who has traveled alone has been among the most interesting and awesome people I’ve encountered.

Read more about my solo travel adventures and the resulting insights here:
Why I Left My Job
The Joy of Minimalism: Traveling the World with Only Carry-On Luggage
11 Unique Ways to Optimize Your Travel Experience Wherever You Go

It may sound paradoxical, but the more you explore the world outside, the more you explore the world within. Solo travel gives you free rein for the exploration of both the external and internal world.

Sure, it can be lonely at times, but you meet a lot of people and get to know yourself when there aren’t familiar faces always around. And yes, it’s hard leaving your friends and family behind for any period of time. But it’s completely worth it and you will come back a better person.

9 Reasons Why You Should Travel Alone At Least Once in Your Life

1. Self-sufficiency – You learn to be independent, do things on your own, problem solve for yourself, navigate on your own and become your own best friend. Self-sufficiency is an invaluable byproduct of solo travel.

2. You meet more people – When traveling alone, you’re forced to talk to more people (unless you just want to be by yourself 24/7, which would drive anyone insane). I’ve gone out alone plenty of times and I always end up meeting more people than if I went out with a group of friends. Why? If you go to a bar alone, for example, you’re not just going to stand in the corner by yourself. It forces you to leave your comfort zone and talk to anyone near you (which leads to the next reason).

3. You become a better conversationalist – Because you meet so many people when traveling alone, you naturally enhance your conversation skills. There is no one else who you can depend on to carry a conversation; it’s all on you. So naturally, you get better at starting conversations and less hesitant about approaching people.

4. You get comfortable being uncomfortable – During solo travel, you’re almost never in your comfort zone. You get used to the excitement, the adventure and the bold decisions. Though you’ll undoubtedly face inner resistance, push through it. This is where the magic happens. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. Growth only happens when you push your boundaries. This is a big reason why traveling alone spurs so much personal growth.

5. Flexibility, freedom and spontaneity – You are in complete control of everything you do during solo travel. If you want to do something, there’s no one else to consult with and no consensus to be made. You just do it. Traveling alone gives you ultimate flexibility, a high degree of freedom and the opportunity to be as spontaneous as you wish.

6. You’re able to put yourself first – This is most applicable to highly empathetic individuals, but still applies to everyone. When you travel alone, you have the rare opportunity to do whatever you want, whenever you want and spontaneously follow your own intuitive desires on a whim. It also allows you to work on any personal projects or develop specific skills you desire while traveling. To use myself as an example, I get much more writing and blog work done when traveling alone compared to when I’m with other people.

Traveling solo creates a situation in which you can put yourself first, without worrying about hurting other people’s feelings and having to come to a mutually beneficial consensus about everything. If you’re at all empathetic, you always make sure that people around you are happy. This is good of course, but sometimes you have to put yourself first in order to really know yourself (which is the next point) and evolve. And don’t view it as selfish; when you do the inner work, you actually expand your capacity to give to others.

7. You get to know yourself – When you have to do things on your own and spend time alone, getting to know yourself better is an inevitable side effect. You become more self-aware (in a good way). You become more in tune with your emotions, tendencies, habits, patterns and the deepest aspects of yourself. “Know thyself” was inscribed on The Temple of Apollo at Delphi for a reason. It’s that important.

8. The lone wolf aura – There’s something beautifully enigmatic about someone who’s confident when they’re alone in a new place. I call this “the lone wolf aura.” People are curious and intrigued by someone who is genuinely self-assured. Solo travel cultivates your own unique lone wolf aura.

Read my poem “The Lone Wolf Aura” for a deeper look at this.

9. It’s a pilgrimage – You’re the hero, the star of your own movie. A key component of any hero’s journey is some form of pilgrimage. And it’s always been a crucial step on the path of life for humans.

Jesus apparently went to Asia for many years to hone his spiritual practices. Buddha supposedly ventured into the woods alone and meditated under a tree for a while. Ash Ketchum traversed Canto and Joto to catch ‘em all (I had to drop a Pokemon reference). The hero archetype is brought to fruition by some form of a pilgrimage.

What’s unfortunate about our society today is that there is no real guidance regarding this stuff anymore. There are no rites of passage in the modern world.

But that missing ingredient is why pilgrimages have been making a resurgence in the form of things like backpacking and world travel. People are exploring the world more now than ever before. So this phenomenon is becoming something like a nondenominational pilgrimage. Not subject to any rigid rules of what you should or shouldn’t do. It’s a personal journey. And the details of it are up to you.


I hope this post inspired you to embark on an adventure of your own. It may take time and effort to line everything up, but it’s totally worth it.

I’m not condemning traveling with others either (I’m doing it right now for this part of my trip). However, I believe that everyone can benefit immensely from solo travel, even if it’s only once in your life. If you feel that inner calling, take heed and make it happen.

It’s all about the journey.

Live each moment to the fullest.

– Stevie P!

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My Experience at the OSHO International Meditation Resort


There I was, wearing a maroon robe, in a pyramid-shaped auditorium full of people, screaming incoherent gibberish in a voice that was half Yoda and half Jamaican until I broke out into uncontrollable, cackling laughter.

Here’s the kicker… This was all part of a meditation. How awesome is that?

I just spent two weeks at the OSHO International Meditation Resort in Pune, India. The word cathartic immediately comes to mind in describing my experience.

What is the OSHO International Meditation Resort?

It’s a meditation retreat center, founded by the author, philosopher, spiritual teacher and not-giving-a-fuck-connoisseur Osho. Osho founded the center prior to the death of his physical body in 1990. (Check out the website here.)

Even though the OSHO center is based on meditation, it’s far from sitting in the lotus position and being serious all day. Most of the meditations are active meditations, combining various kinds of movement, dancing, laughing and all sorts of eclectic techniques along with the traditional sitting in silence. I’ve never danced so much in my life, my activity level was through the roof and I felt like a little kid again.

Another distinguishing characteristic of the OSHO International Meditation Resort is the attire. Everyone has to wear maroon robes throughout the day and white robes during the evening ceremony held each night. I actually had resistance to this idea at first. I’m such an individual that wearing the same thing as everyone else feels like I’m stifling my authenticity. But everything has a purpose (especially when it comes to Osho). When people wear the same color, or the same outfit, it syncs everyone up and amplifies the group’s energy. This collective syncing can be used for positive (meditation, celebration…etc.) or negative (dictatorships, armies…etc.). I wore a sleeveless maroon robe, so I felt like a badass warrior shaman for two weeks. It was surprisingly enjoyable to wear each day. And after every meditation, I felt like I was gliding more than walking. I may never go back to pants again.

Here’s a little run down of the strengths and weaknesses of the OSHO International Meditation Resort, from my perspective:


The Atmosphere – The vibes of the place are just so positive, peaceful and freeing. It’s conducive to leaving your inhibitions behind and reclaiming your childlike nature. Everyone is pleasant, everyone talks to each other, laughter is ever-present, dance is continuous and the whole place is coated in a feeling of joyful serenity. Besides a few slight imperfections (which you’ll read below), it’s an ideal way of living.

The People – It’s a potpourri of interesting international people. I met dozens of amazing people during my time at the Osho center. The people in general tend to be very open and friendly, which I really appreciate. There’s not really any awkwardness either, because the environment enables everyone to be wholeheartedly genuine and authentic.

The Meditations – Osho’s meditations are so effective because they’re active. They’re designed to clear out all of the mental/emotional baggage through movement and expression before going into the depths of meditation. If you were subjected to western conditioning, there is no way that you can just sit in silence with a clear mind. You must first get rid of all the bullshit you’re holding onto before you can experience true meditation. Movement and expression are the mediums through which you become a blank slate again. And from that blank slate, you quickly learn to transcend the incessant chatter of the mind.

I’m able to go far deeper into meditation after I’ve exerted myself. It’s really difficult for me to just sit in silence and pretend like my body doesn’t exist. When I fully express and let go of everything I’m holding onto, my mind stops getting caught in circuitous thought loops. I’m able to dip into the blissful serenity of nothingness. That’s true meditation. This is why Osho’s meditation techniques resonate with me far more than anything else I’ve come across.

For more information, check out OSHO Dynamic Meditation.

Fun – The place is a lot of fun. People leave their inhibitions at the door. No one takes anything too seriously. Everyone dances their heart out, laughs a lot and radiates positivity. During the evening meetings, Osho’s talks are played on a big screen. They’re the perfect blend of insight and hilarity. Osho is funnier than most stand-up comedians, and that’s no exaggeration.

I had so much fun during my time there. My dear friend hit the nail on the head by describing it as “a place where we learn to become a little kid again.”


Too Many Rules – There’s a bunch of tedious rules. You have to wear a maroon robe all day, you have to wear maroon when swimming in the pool, you can’t walk through the campus while the evening ceremony is going on (They lock the gates. What happened to freedom?), you have to scoop food into your bowl a certain way at the cafeteria…etc. There are a bunch of weird, little rules. As someone who values extreme freedom, this was a difficult adjustment for me.

I think the rules are excessive. I know that some are meant to create awareness, but it’s to the extent where it makes things a bit frustrating, especially for a “no rules” person like myself. I got charged extra for not putting food in certain containers one time. And I couldn’t go in the pool my first day because I didn’t have a maroon bathing suit (I had to buy one). But I learned, adjusted quickly and got into a nice flow before I knew it.

Also, by the points above, you can tell that it’s becoming more of a beurocratic structure by the day (and especially because Osho himself isn’t around to lend his vision). Although it’s still far more open and freeing than most places, it really epitomized that when it first started. Apparently it was cheap, had little rules and was even more free and open. That’s why some people think that everyone just has sex there. Maybe that was the case back in the day, but now it’s just about as sexual as any open European culture; which is a good balance, in my opinion.

Costly – It costs a lot to be there. Most people from Western countries can afford it, but it’s very expensive for India. It’s as costly as most retreats I’ve seen in the US. It’s also the opposite of all-inclusive. There are also countless little things to pay for. You have to pay for food, to use the pool, for your robes, a maroon bathing suit, courses, any meditation accessories (meditation chair, mat, blindfold…etc). Just when you think you have everything you need, you have to buy something else.

Because of those two drawbacks (rules and costliness), it’s not a quick or smooth adjustment when you first come. I expected to just walk in and be all zen’d out from the get go, but I actually went through a day or two of frustration before I eased into a nice groove. Most people I talked to experienced the same thing as well. But you know what? Overall, it’s worth it. The juice is worth the squeeze.


I would recommend the OSHO International Meditation Resort to anyone looking to get to know themselves better, do some inner work and have fun throughout the process. If you’re willing to shell out some cash and adjust to mildly annoying rules, you will benefit exponentially, meet some amazing people and have a truly life-changing experience.

“You are a paradise, but you have forgotten yourself. You are looking everywhere except within you, and that is the only place where you are going to find the treasure, the truth of beauty.” – Osho

One love.

– Stevie P

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Overcome Stagnation with This 3 Minute Trick


I just spent the whole morning writing. And I definitely sat down for too long, so I was feeling stagnant and utterly uninspired. I wasn’t just physically stagnant, but mentally as well (they’re intimately interconnected).

You know that feeling, right? It’s that eye-rolling combination of being drained, dreary, exhausted and indecisive, with no mental capacity or motivation to do anything.

I knew that I had to do something about it. I needed to create a shift somehow or I would feel like a rusty wheelbarrow with a flat tire for the rest of the day.

So I did the following, and in about 3 minutes I felt anew and reinvigorated.

3 Minutes to Overcome Stagnation

Step 1) Put on a song you love – Play any song that makes you feel good.

Step 2) Take 10 deep breaths – Breathe deeply into your belly. Feel the energy flowing within. Remember this: Shallow breathing makes you feel like shit and deep breathing makes you feel awesome.

Step 3) Do some stretches, yoga poses or any mobility exercises – Do whatever comes to you, whatever your body feels like doing (listen to it). Just get your body moving, release built-up tension, get your blood pumping and your energy circulating. Break out of the rigid rigamortus. Open up and bring your body back its healthy, supple state.

If you’re a complete newbie to this stuff, try Elliott Hulse’s Bioenergizer Warmup.

Step 4) Dance – Feel the music. Let loose and let your body creatively express itself. This is cathartic physically, mentally and emotionally. Don’t underestimate the power of dance. A few minutes of dancing like you’re possessed by the music will shift your momentum for the rest of the day.

By the time the song’s over, you’ll feel like a new (wo)man.

This is a quick and simple strategy to help you overcome the inertia of stagnation and set your momentum in a positive direction.

From there, you’ll feel like you can do anything. After putting this technique to use, I had so much energy that I went right into an intense workout. It felt amazing.

Try out this technique the next time you’re feeling stagnant. It really works.

Life is movement. No movement, no life. Know movement, know life.

Keep flowing.

– Stevie P

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Should We Always Be Happy?


People have asked me this question many times…

Should we always be happy?

The short answer…

Of course not.

The long answer…

We all just want to be happy, right?

Why do we want a good job? Why do we want an awesome wife/husband? Why do we want to travel the world? Because we (falsely) believe that those things, once attained, will make us happy.

Bliss is what we yearn for in each moment. But here’s the key point: We would have no appreciation for bliss if it was all we ever knew.

“If you want to know what the water is like, don’t ask the fish.” – Chinese Proverb

Without experiencing an alternative, we have no perspective. We need the negative to be able to fully enjoy the positive.

As human beings, we need the “bad” to appreciate the “good.” Challenges and struggle make our lives a fulfilling, worthwhile experience.

We need darkness to recognize light. We would not even see anything if reality was all darkness or all light. We would not hear anything if reality was all noise or all silence. The law of duality permeates our universe, birthing a continuous dance of the yin and yang, helping us gain perspective.

Who appreciates a warm, sunny day more? Someone in Southern California? (Where it’s like that every day.) Or someone in Alaska who just experienced months of blistering cold and darkness?

“Sunny days wouldn’t be special if it wasn’t for rain
Joy wouldn’t feel so good if it wasn’t for pain”

– 50 Cent (Yes, I just quoted 50 Cent. That’s a great line.)

Something is cherished only when you know its opposite.

That’s why we’ve incarnated into this reality; to experience limitation and challenges in order to spur growth. This state of physical limitation allows us to fully appreciate the infinity that we’re all aspects of.

Everything is a Learning Experience

Experience the negatives and view them as a learning experience (because they are).

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of a greater or equal benefit.” – Napoleon Hill

Wallowing in victimhood and self-pity has never benefited anyone. We have to work through obstacles, learn from “failures” and use challenges to spur growth.

Working Out: A Microcosm of Life

Just as avid weightlifters learn to love the intense resistance of the weights, we can all apply the same mentality to life in general. Workouts are inherently challenging, but that’s why the practice is worthwhile. You must push yourself and struggle with weights you can barely handle to grow stronger. If it were easy, there would be no benefit or sense of fulfillment. Life is the same.

Success and Failure

Highly successful people persevere through struggle and hardships.

“Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.” – Bruce Lee

Heroes work through struggle and overcome obstacles. Life would be boring and consist of no growth if it was one big cakewalk. There’s a reason why sheltered, spoiled kids grow up to be incapable, unpleasant people. They’re never forced to challenge themselves and grow.

Note: Though all things negative are crucial to any learning experiences in life, you have the choice to avoid unnecessary pain and suffering. For example, getting depressed or beating yourself up because of a perceived failure instead of using it as fuel for future success. A lot of people get hung up on their struggle and attach their identity to it. This is what creates a victim mentality, where you will limit your experiences to the “negative” side of the spectrum until your mentality changes.

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” – Wayne Dyer

Video Games, Novels, Movies and Stories

Would you play a video game if it was too easy? Hell no. You would be as bored as Michael Vick at a PETA meeting.

Think about the best video games, the best novels, the best movies and the best stories. They all involve tremendous struggle that has to be worked through and overcome.

While things like war, in my opinion, are unnecessary forms of struggle (because they’re manipulated into existence), some form of struggle is necessary for a worthwhile experience.

My Personal Perspective

I’ll admit that I’m more positive than most (which is why I write about this stuff). But I’m not happy all of the time, nor do I pretend to be.

Like everyone, I experience the full spectrum of human emotions. And I’m grateful for it. It’s in feeling the brilliant diversity of emotions that we can call ourselves truly alive. However, it’s a choice whether or not to be consumed by these emotions. This is where things like meditation and mindfulness provide tremendous help.

Sometimes I’m frustrated. But I acknowledge the frustration and observe it without judgment. Then I’ll do something like deadlift while bumpin’ some Sean Price (RIP!) to release the frustration. Next thing I know, I’m back to my feelin’ good, feelin’ great self.

The Takeaway

Life wouldn’t be the miraculous learning experience that it is if we were always happy. We need darkness in order to truly appreciate the light. Embrace the struggle and persevere. Everything is a learning experience.

Life is a video game.

Have fun.

– Stevie P!

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How to Achieve Mastery in Anything by Making Use of Your Travel Time


Do you capitalize on your idle travel time?

Or do you waste time staring at Facebook like the next post in your news feed is going to reveal the meaning of life?

Most people do the latter. But whenever I see someone making use of idle time, I know that they’re successful in whatever they do. Putting your down time to use is big indicator of both having a purpose and overall success in life.

If you want to maximize your life, you need to learn how to make use of idle time. Traveling can be a tremendous opportunity for this.

Here’s a good example. Deepak Chopra said (in this conversation) that he wrote his classic book “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success” on a long flight. The possibilities are endless if you view travel time as an opportunity instead of a burden. It’s all about perspective.


The biggest chunk of travel time in most people’s lives is commuting to and from work. So it would only make sense to optimize such a large portion of your life.

Do you drive to work? You can listen to podcasts or audiobooks.

Do you take the train or bus? You can read too. Or write. Or actually do anything you want, because someone else is doing the driving for you.

Do you stand on a crowded subway? You can listen to podcasts and audiobooks there as well.

Here’s a little real life math:
My dad (like many professionals in the NYC area) spends an average of 3 hours per day commuting to and from New York City. And he’s done this for the last 28 years or so. Let’s do the math…

3 hours per day X 5 days per week X 49 weeks per year (I’ll give him 3 weeks of vacation) X 28 years.

That amounts to approximately 20,580 hours!

That’s more than twice the time of the 10,000 hour rule that Malcolm Gladwell proposes (in his book Outliers) in order to master something.

So that means if you make use of a similar commuting time over a 28 year period, you can easily become world-class at 2 things. And that’s only during your commute! Think about that!

The same way of thinking applies to any form of travel. Make use of your flight times, bus rides or even road trips. (Especially if you’re alone. If you’re with others, this can also be a great opportunity to get to know someone better.)

The sad thing is that most people don’t have that deep, clear sense of purpose to achieve these kinds of things. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t.

How to Optimize Your Travel Time Towards Your Goals

1. Find a purpose. Decide what you want. Do you want to develop a certain skill? Do you want to gain knowledge on a specific subject? Do you want to write a book? Do you want to start a company? Figure out the direction you want to head in.

2. Pick your means of doing it, taking into account your means of travel.

3. Do it. Take action on a daily basis. Even if it’s just small chunks, it will compound profoundly over time.

“Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A note for the overachievers: Find a balance. There’s a fine line between optimizing your idle time and burning yourself out. Intermittently give yourself some time to rest and do nothing. This balance will be highly dependent from person to person.

I’m not telling you exactly what to do and what not to do. Find a purpose and consistently work toward it. That’s how dreams are brought to fruition.

Enjoy the journey.

– Stevie P

PS – I wrote this on a bus from Dubrovnik to Split, Croatia.

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11 Unique Ways to Optimize Your Travel Experience Wherever You Go


In case you don’t know, I’m on an epic trip right now. (Here’s a little background)

Travel is one of the best ways to expand your perceptions. Everywhere you go adds depth to your character. Exposure to new cultures and new places are priceless experiences.

I’ve been thinking about techniques I use to make the most out of my experiences, no matter where I am. So I came up with a list. They’re as applicable to a weekend trip to a nearby town as they are to backpacking around the world.

These work incredibly well for me, so I suspect that you’ll find them useful too.

11 Unique Ways to Optimize Your Travel Experience Wherever You Go

1. Get in the right state of mind – If you want to maximize your travel experience, you have to have an adventurous mentality. Be spontaneous and bold. Drop the inhibitions that don’t serve you. You may even have to periodically psyche yourself up (that’s what I do).

2. Pack light – There’s something magical about minimalism. Plus, it’s easier to get around when you have less stuff. (Read my article about traveling light here)

3. Walk a lot – My favorite thing to do in a new place is walk around, a lot. Exploring places on foot is an intimate experience with wherever you are. And as a bonus, walking comes with a near endless list of benefits. It’s what our body is designed to do.

4. Find the highest point – Every city has a structure with a great view and/or a hill with a phenomenal vantage point. Find out what it is and go to it. It’s always breathtaking. And if you’re not in a city, still find the high ground. Like if you’re In New Hampshire, hike Mt Washington.

5. Leverage the power of fasting – I’m a big fan of intermittent fasting. It comes with a host of health and cognitive benefits, along with making life easier. I always fast during flights if I’m changing time zones, and break the fast once I get to where I’m going. This helps me sync up with the place I’m at much quicker. What my usual day consists of is skip breakfast, having a light, healthy lunch and eating whatever I want for dinner. I never get energy crashes and feel amazing. Think about it, you can’t really function if you’re eating heavy during the day. This eating cycle also has the benefit of detoxification after indulging in food or alcohol the night before.

Resources on intermittent fasting:
The Warrior Diet by Ori Hofmekler
8 Incredible Health Benefits Of Fasting
Why Breakfast is Nothing But a Scam

6. AirBnb – I use AirBnb almost everywhere I travel to. It’s cheaper than hotels and you get to meet locals who host their places.

When I was just in Barcelona, I got a room in a nice 2 bedroom apartment. The host was an Italian guy named Daniele who lived in the other bedroom. He ended up being one of the coolest people I’ve ever met. It felt like I was visiting an old friend. He had everything set-up for me and gave me the inside scoop on the best places to go. I even went out with him and his friends one night, which was a lot of fun.

7. Tinder – Yes, it’s an app for hook-ups, but it’s also a useful tool for meeting new people around you.

When I was in Marseille, France last week, I downloaded Tinder and within a few minutes I was talking to a woman from Marseilles. After we confirmed that we were both decent people, we agreed to meet up. She drove me around in her awesome little golf cart car. It was small and had no windows or doors haha. We went to a cool, local bar and then she took me to the café that her and her mother own. She knew everyone in Marseille and it was an experience I would have been hard-pressed to create on my own.

8. Find the cool spots for food and drink – The touristy places are always more expensive and worse than the good ones. They’re the overpriced ones closest to the main tourist attractions and/or squares. The best restaurants are usually smaller places on side streets. Look for handwritten menus on chalkboards, as places with those never disappoint.

9. Eat local – Eat the local cuisine. Get the genuine experience. Are you really going to eat at a chain restaurant if you’re in Italy? C’mon son. They say “When in Rome…” for a reason.

10. Drink local – This is the same premise as the food. If you’re in Belgium, drink beer. If you’re in Italy, drink wine. And even if there isn’t a famous type of drink, every place has a local brand that they’re proud of. Do yourself a favor and try it. (See my picture below with a good Croatian beer)

11. Don’t be afraid to ask – Ask for directions if you’re lost. Ask someone to take a picture of you. This will not only help you, but asking questions is a great conversation starter as well. I’ve met a lot of cool people by just asking them a question.

Try implementing some of these on your next trip. I’m pretty confident that they’ll add to your experience.

Cheers from Dubrovnik, Croatia.

– Stevie P


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The Joy of Minimalism: Traveling the World with Only Carry-On Luggage


My rap name = 2 Bagz

Hey there, earthlings.

I’ve embarked upon my journey. I’m traveling to at least 5 different countries and for at least 2 months. Basically being a professional nomad.

And as you can see from the picture, I’m not bringing much; just a small duffle bag and backpack.

I packed so little that I’m only traveling with carry-on luggage. (I carry on like a wayward son.)

My packing strategy:
1) I only brought the absolute necessities – One pair of shoes (Merrell Men’s Vapor Glove 2 Trail Running Shoe), 8 pairs of socks and boxers, 7 nice, versatile t-shirts, one long sleeved short (I’m not going anywhere cold), one extra pair of pants, one pair of khaki shorts, one bathing suit, a few toiletries, my laptop and a couple books. That’s basically all I packed. what else do you really need?

2) I rolled my clothes up, instead of folding them – With the rolling method, you can pack much more clothing into a small duffle bag, and with less wrinkles.

I absolutely love the feeling of owning no more than I can carry. It’s so freeing.

The more things you own, the more things own you.

“Live light, travel light, be the light.” – Yogi Bhajan

This is a metaphor for life as well: Excess baggage weighs you down.

I believe that life is best lived when you’re “like water.” Water is flowing, dynamic and flexible. And having a lot of baggage, whether physical or emotional, hinders this state of being.

Minimalism is freedom. And minimalism is conducive to living in the moment, without the burden of excess baggage.

Experiences > Stuff

Experiences are far more fulfilling than things. Experiences create lasting happiness and catalyze personal growth.

The debate of experiences vs stuff has been well studied too. When someone buys a new car, they get an initial happiness boost because it’s new. But after a couple months, it loses its novelty factor. And like a fiend, this person will need another fix and buy something else to chase happiness.

Accumulate experiences, not stuff.

I’ll keep this post light as well and end it here.

Stay tuned for some fun travel blogging.

Much love from Marseille, France.

– Stevie P!


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Why I Left My Job


I just quit my job…

It was what most people would call a “good job,” a comfortable position at a software company that looks good on paper. But it was deeply unfulfilling and represented the polar opposite of who I am as a person.

I always instinctively knew that the well-trodden path wasn’t all it’s cracked up to be. You know the whole deal. Go to college, get a “good” job, get married, get a house with a white picket fence, have kids that repeat this cycle, delay all gratification in life for the dream of retiring with money saved…etc. But it wasn’t until I read The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss that I become consciously aware that it was all, for the most part, bullshit. That book shifted my paradigm and verbalized what I intrinsically knew to be true.

Due to my voracious reading and soul-searching, I’ve become acutely aware that sitting in an office, doing monotonous work that doesn’t add much value to society is simply not for me. I’ve spent a lot of time contemplating my life’s purpose and I’m arranging my short stint on Planet Earth accordingly. Everyone has so much to share with the world. It’s a shame that so many people relegate themselves to jobs that don’t allow them to express their true purpose.

I really dislike spending my time doing things that are not deeply fulfilling. I’m also finding inauthenticity difficult as well. If you work for someone else, you have fake enthusiasm to a certain extent in order to keep your job. (Of course, the level of this depends on who you are and what your job is.)

Another factor for me leaving is that marathon sitting is the bane of my existence. Sitting for 8 hours a day is rough for me (and staring at a screen exacerbates it). We humans are built to walk, not sit. I would find myself antsy at work and getting up every half hour or so. I would take walks or stretch throughout the day and set myself up so I could work out during lunch breaks. I like to have control over my sitting time, which is why I prefer determining my own schedule. I’m most effective when I get into the zone on the computer for 20-30 minute intervals, and then go do something else.

I’m a self-motivated free spirit. (That would probably be the summary version as to why I left my job.)

I thrive off of and value a high degree of personal freedom. It’s just in my nature. I don’t like being told what to do. I’d rather hop in the driver’s seat and be the captain of my own fate.

The Age of Infinite Opportunity

There are massive opportunities for people to earn a living by expressing their true purpose and helping others; more so than any other time in history. The internet and global communication has provided a vast array of ways to make money, with the only limit being your imagination. All of the information you need is right in front of you, you just have to metabolize it and put it into practice.

Realization and Bold Decisions

I realized that I was staying at my job out of complacency. So I lined myself up for departure. Then I made the bold decision to leave in favor of traveling the world and pursuing writing (along with some more of my own endeavors).

“Be bold and courageous. When you look back on your life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the ones you did.” – H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

I view life as a grand video game. Overcoming obstacles and making bold decisions creates a worthwhile, fun and fulfilling living/gaming experience.

On the other hand, remaining within the confines of comfort zones does the opposite. It stifles growth and glazes life with an insidious, underlying dreariness. And that’s no fun.

My shift into boldness occurred because I’ve learned to follow my heart. I act on my intuition, feeling out situations more than over-analyzing everything. Even when my mind doubts, I know that my intuition sees the bigger picture. This has worked out well for me, every time. Life seems to unfold in a beautifully serendipitous manner when you embrace the mystery of it all and step with faith.

“Although the road is never ending
take a step and keep walking,
do not look fearfully into the distance…
On this path let the heart be your guide
for the body is hesitant and full of fear.”

– Rumi


How I Left: The Practical Steps

1. I knew exactly what I wanted.

Before you embark upon any journey, you have to first decide where you want to go.

I knew that I wanted to work for myself and be able to travel more. And I’ve been consistently working towards this for a while.

Here’s the affirmation I’ve been writing down and saying to myself for the last 2+ years:
I’m earning a living online, giving me freedom of time and location.

And guess what? It’s coming to fruition. (specific desire + consistent action = success)

2. I saved money.

Anyone can save money if they prioritize it and find creative ways to do so. How you do it will completely depend on your individual circumstance.
3. I set myself up with other options.

I started Feelin Good, Feelin Great over 3 years ago and I’ve kept at it. I’m finally getting significant traffic and building a substantial email list. I have books and courses, as well as other means of monetization to experiment with on there.

Also, the writing I’ve done has already opened the door to many other things (like GorillaRadio.tv). I have a whole host of other endeavors and ideas that I’m pursuing.

I’m barely making any money now, but the trickle is already transforming into a stream. Persistence pays.

Put yourself in a position to bring your goals into being.

4. I made bold decisions.

You have to take some leaps of faith to live an awesome life. It’s as simple as that. Quitting my job was a leap of faith.

This goes back to what I explained earlier. If you want to live a great life, you have to take risks. Life is a video game, keep exploring leveling up.


What I’m Doing

You know when you first meet someone, they might ask you that old blasé question, “So what do you do?” Here’s how I would answer that now. (Well, after whimsically proclaiming that I’m a Laughologist, of course.)

1. Writing, writing, writing.

I’m writing on here (of course) and for GorillaRadio.tv. I also have a novel in progress and a few other books in the pipeline.

2. Expanding Feelin Good, Feelin Great.

I’m driving more traffic, staying active on social media, adding more products and courses…etc.

3. Traveling around the world

It’s shaping up to look like France, Spain, Croatia, India, Thailand and some more of Southeast Asia. We’ll see how it goes. Stay tuned for updates on my travels.

4. Pursuing any other creative/entrepreneurial adventures that pop up.

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.” – Joseph Campbell

Live boldly and take action.

Remember, no one on their death bed looks back and says, “I wish I’d spent more time in the office.”

The world is yours. Go get it.

– Stevie P

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How to Own Your Day: Tim Ferriss Shares His 5 Morning Rituals


In order to achieve any big win, you must first achieve the prerequisitory* small wins which compound to make the big win.

Think about it… A painting is a series of brushstrokes, a war is a series of battles and a sports game is a series of plays.

Likewise, your life is a series of days. So consequently, you maximize your life by maximizing each day.

“To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.” – Henry David Thoreau

If you want to have a good day, you must proactively create a good day.

If you want to be successful at anything, you need to know what you want and apply persistence towards it. On a day-to-day basis, this persistence takes the form of a ritual, routine or system.

I’ve stopped thinking about goals, in favor of systems (which are basically interchangeable with routines and rituals). Systems are more effective than goals, especially regarding any major undertaking. Systems are more easily implementable, they take you in the right direction, and they’re flexible. While lofty goals can become irrelevant as you get closer to them, systems can unfold as dynamically as your life unfolds. You can adjust a system to hit any target.

Which is more effective?
Doing some form of exercise every day, or having an ambiguous goal of “losing weight”?
Implementing a system of writing a page a day, or having the goal of writing a novel?

Obviously, the former is much more effective in both cases. What do they have in common? The establishment of a daily ritual.

A major commonality between all successful people is that they all have daily rituals. And not obsessive or neurotic rituals done out of fear. I’m talking about routines which are consciously implemented to keep you moving in a desired direction.

“The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.” – Mike Murdock

The most effective rituals are morning rituals. Why? Your morning is your pivot point which the rest of the day hinges upon. The morning is your origin point of momentum for the day.

And you don’t need to be obsessive about a morning routine. If you don’t partake in a morning ritual one day, it’s not the end of the world. It’s about consistency, not perfection.

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

In one of his latest podcasts, Tim Ferriss shared his 5 morning rituals. I found this particularly insightful and validating, as it’s very similar to My Carpe Diem Morning Ritual. Establishing a morning ritual has been a powerful, success-propelling force in my life. And it’s wonderful to know that I’m in good company.


Tim Ferriss’ 5 Morning Rituals

1. Make the bed
The first thing that Tim does when he wakes up is that he makes his bed. (This is something I need to incorporate.)

Why it’s effective:

  • Gives you a sense of control, no matter what else happens that day.
  • Start your day on the right foot. Plus, you come back to that accomplishment at the end of the day.
  • Creates an organized environment that limits distraction.

“If you see distraction externally, you end up creating an internally distracted state.” – Tim Ferriss

2. Meditation
Tim does 21 minutes of transcendental meditation every morning (one minute to get settled and twenty minutes of actual meditation). He also emphasizes the fact that meditation is a common routine among almost every ultra-successful person he’s spoken with.

Why it’s effective:

  • Clears your mind
  • Strengthens how you deal with distraction
  • Tim states that he gets 30-50% more done on the days he meditates. I can attest to this phenomenon as well.

3. Hanging
He hangs from a pullup bar for a few minutes.

Why it’s effective:

  • Decompresses the spine
  • Improves grip strength

4. Tea
Tim makes what he jokingly refers to as “titanium tea.”

Why it’s effective:

  • Caffeine (And it benefits like cognitive enhancement and alertness)
  • It tastes good

5. 5 Minute Journal
The last part of Tim Ferriss’ routine is writing in his 5 Minute Journal, which I personally use as well.

Why it’s effective:

  • Helps you focus on your most important tasks for the day
  • Cultivates gratitude

Check out the podcast HERE.

So there you have it. You don’t necessarily have to copy Tim or myself, but these habits will give you an idea of ways to help you win the day.

READER CHALLENGE: Pick one ritual and start it tomorrow morning.

“Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden

Stay feelin’ good feelin’ great.

– Stevie P!

*I’m not sure if “prerequisitory” is even a word, but it sounds cool and gets the point across.


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The Astonishing Link Between Gut Health and Anxiety

Announcement: My online course Annihilate Anxiety has officially launched! Join the course today.


Do you suffer from anxiety?

The remedy might be residing in your belly…

There are about 100 trillion bacteria cells in your gut. Yeah, that’s a lot. This microbiome is critical for the immune system (over 80% of the immune system is located in the gut), helps with digestion and plays a vital role in the overall health of the body.

One of the more surprising links is the relationship between the microbiome and brain function. Recent studies have shown that there’s a definite link between gut health and anxiety.

Mental health and mood are negatively affected by a lack of “good” gut bacteria. So optimizing your gut flora will help reduce or even eliminate anxiety.

The Link

Holistic health practitioners have long said that gut health is intimately tied to mental health. Before the science backed it up, it was dismissed as quackery. But now the science strongly supports those assertions.

Dr. Joseph Mercola explains the connection well:
“To put this into more concrete terms, you’ve probably experienced the visceral sensation of butterflies in your stomach when you’re nervous, or had an upset stomach when you were very angry or stressed. The flip side is also true, in that problems in your gut can directly impact your mental health, leading to issues like anxiety, depression, and autism.”

And here’s what Scientific American has to say:
“The gut-brain axis seems to be bidirectional—the brain acts on gastrointestinal and immune functions that help to shape the gut’s microbial makeup, and gut microbes make neuroactive compounds, including neurotransmitters and metabolites that also act on the brain. These interactions could occur in various ways: microbial compounds communicate via the vagus nerve, which connects the brain and the digestive tract, and microbially derived metabolites interact with the immune system, which maintains its own communication with the brain.”

Ever have a “gut feeling”? That’s a testament to this phenomenon.

What Causes Poor Gut Health?

Processed foods and sugars destroy good bacteria and enable the proliferation of bad bacteria. Because western diets are dominated by this kind of food (if you can call it that), poor gut health is a widespread issue (and the cascading health problems that result from poor gut health).

On the other hand, natural, living foods provide a conducive environment for “good” bacteria. Fruits and vegetables contain prebiotics, which act as nourishment for healthy gut bacteria. And fermented foods contain probiotics, the actual healthy bacteria (see the list below).

How to Optimize Your Gut Health

1. Only take antibiotics when absolutely necessary – They kill all bacteria, good and bad. (Break the word down: anti-biotic = anti-life) It’s like dropping a nuclear bomb, it destroys everything, leaving your immune system completely crippled. So only use antibiotics when you really, really need to.

2. Reduce consumption of processed junk foods and sugar – This stuff feeds “bad bacteria” and kills the “good bacteria.” Put the pop-tart down, it’s not worth it.

3. JERF (Just Eat Real Food) – Vegetables, fruit, grass-fed meat, wild-caught fish, nuts, seeds, berries and some raw cheese should be your dietary staples. As described above, real food supports a healthy gut. Like Jack LaLanne once said, “If man made it, don’t eat it.”

4. Get your probiotics – Either eat probiotic-rich foods or take a probiotic supplement. This is your gut health insurance.

Top Probiotic, Fermented Foods

  • Sauerkraut (raw is best)
  • Kimchi
  • Kefir
  • Kombucha
  • Yogurt (avoid the kinds with added sugar)

Ultimately, anxiety is a fear-based mental projection into the future. So anything that cultivates presence or supports the mind in letting go of fear will annihilate anxiety. And optimizing gut health is a powerful weapon to have in your arsenal.

For this kind of information and much, much more, sign up for my online course Annihilate Anxiety, which is now open for registration!

Stay feelin’ good, feelin’ great.

– Stevie P



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