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Johannes Holmberg

UI developer & designer

I’ve gotten a lot of questions from curious readers lately, regarding to what it actually is I'm doing right now, why I’m doing it and how I’m doing it.

Instead of answering every request individually I thought it would be fair to combine the questions and try to straighten out the answers in a letter.

So, what I am doing? In 2012 I left a well-paid job behind me to throw myself out into the world, to start off an undefined voyage, and proceeding the journey equipped with less than 40 belongings in a backpack.

I wanted to get to know the person defined as me a little bit better, he’s been way too fast for me in the past. Armored in layers of protective possessions, and by hurrying from one achievement to the next; he’s been kind of hard to get involved with.

The plan was, for once, to not have a plan. When I explain to people about my decision, to leave job and a regular salary behind, the reaction I get is always a bit puzzled. They wonder where the rationality in such a quest lies. The answer—within me.

I can only do whatever I feel is right for me as an individual. I cannot proceed with acting in accordance to a view my environment has established of me—in case I don’t have a sole reason for doing so.

Venturing out into the world to test my ability, get fresh perspective, try out new cultures, meet likeminded people, going on adventurous journeys, experience things I couldn’t dream of; all that was something that had captivated me for a long a time. Not pursuing it would have been my life’s biggest mistake. It was time to drop the controls.

So, why I am doing what I’m doing? It was the only thing I saw reason in.

People wonder what got me to book the flight. What made me go from wild, speculative dreaming to actually being able to pull it off?

There will always be a thousand reasons why you should not do what you want to. People try to scare you off. The obligations are too many. You haven’t seen anybody else doing what you’re dreaming of. You’re doubting your ability.

Excuses are piling up.

It’s easier to just fit in with the standard picture, it’s well known and it seems to work. If that’s what you want to do, it’s completely fine. But know that you alone are setting your limitations; defining them, is up to you.

I had to get to the essence of what mattered to me. Either I could keep pushing myself for something I had lost faith in, or I could reify a dream vital for my own well being? When a question of such nature is being put on edge, the excuses seems to fade away.

Another question is, how am I able to get along financially? I saved up some money in order to start off, but I never had any master plan about how I would be able to secure a financial income for an indefinite future. A day comes served with so many possibilities. When I need money, I will find a way to earn them. I can always try as hard I want to make things more complicated, but in the end it’s as simple as that.

So, how I am doing what I’m doing? I believe in myself. That’s all.

In order to get clear minded and flexible, I gradually reduced my living standards to the necessary. I have been doing so in belief that quality of life is defined by your own measurement, and has nothing to do with the amount of people gaping at you.

If you have a hard time pondering what to do and are torn between decisions, I’ll give you an advice; halve the things you own, put it in a stack in your garden and light a fire. You won’t miss it. You’d realize how that half just shielded your judgment of the things that actually meant something. It’s a bit easier to see clearly now.

When it all gets down to the point; I think it’s a matter of worry.

I can decide to get worried about all that tomorrow will bring, I can focus on the problems, I can choose to stay within my comfort zone, I can calculate every possible outcome in a futile attempt to bring control over my future. Or, I can follow what I believe is right in act of self-realization.

All summed up, this is the question: Will you be able to drop the controls and surrender yourself to the ability of your own reasoning?