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One reason for a trip

Each trip must have a singular reason for why you’re taking it.

I used to live in the big city. Wanting more peace and quiet I moved out into the countryside. My work1, friends and family were still in the city though.

Naturally I took regular trips2 to the city. And while there, I might as well get some parts from my old bike store, visit this or that person, stop by at work, go to this event, get groceries from the specialty stores (Asia, Turkish), etc.

With time the amount of activities each trip consisted of grew. Along with it grew my discontent. I didn’t know why though. Visiting my grandma felt like an obligation, instead of a pleasure – like it had before.

When I was thinking about a trip and whether it was worth taking, I naturally had started to take into account all the little things I would be doing. I summed up the benefits of all the things I’d do and weighed them against the cost (money, stress, time) of taking the trip.

This made me resentful toward all the individual activites, because on their own they were not worth the whole cost of the trip. While doing an activity I wouldn’t think “Yeah, this was worth 20% of the trips costs”, because even if that were true, that’s not how your brain works.

At some point I came across this:

Each trip must have a singular reason for why you’re taking it.

I tried it. Started deciding which trips to take based on a single activity. Going to my best friend’s birthday for example. That activity by itself was enough to justify the costs of the trip. Meeting my grandma, cousin and another good friend were all extras on top I could really enjoy this time.

There was no pressure to enjoy the “side activities”, since there were “free.” The cost of taking the trip was already “paid for” or justified by the main activity, making these extra activities the cherry on top and much more enjoyable.

I now only take trips that can be justified by one activity alone. It means I take less trips, but they are all more enjoyable.

  1. mostly remote, but they want to see my face around the office from time to time ↩︎

  2. 2h one way ↩︎