So, you've quit that job you were really good at to go travel for a few months or years -- or you're dreaming about it. First of all, congrats. Realizing the world is amazing and that you should go see it is a big first step, one that a surprising number of people never take.
Before you buy your plane ticket, though, consider the possibility that you are not ready. Maybe you've been working for the past 10 years as, say, an event planner. Or an optometrist. Or a mortician. While you were throwing parties or testing eyesight or preserving the dead, you were neglecting a lot of skills you're going to want to rely on as you head into the unknown. For instance: you gotta be able to take a dump anywhere. And you probably haven't been switching things up much in that department. After all, why would you? It's not your fault the funeral home had a perfectly functional bathroom.
As we specialize in our careers, the skills we need for world travel tend to lie dormant. The good news is, you can resurrect and sharpen them -- a great way, also, to get to know some forgotten parts of your character. So before you quit that job you do so well, consider polishing the following superpowers.
20. Dealing with unwanted attention
In China and India -- and a bunch of other places, but for sure in China and India -- outsiders are stared at relentlessly by local men, women, children, everyone. Some people may try to take pictures with or of you, simply because they've never seen anybody with a different skin color. This can feel like a curious, friendly kind of attention; other times it's less pleasant. In Papua New Guinea, locals may even approach visitors to touch their hair and skin. Rolling with this can prove difficult for travelers who aren't used to it, and for sensitive types, it can be overwhelming. To prepare for this gentle scrutiny from strangers, consider taking an acting class or attending a cuddle party. And perfect your smile and peace sign for the photos.