All of our local Meet, Plan, Go! hosts have inspiring stories of their own career break travels. In the months leading up to our National Event on October 16, we will introduce them to you so you can see why they are part of our team.
Meet Our 2012 Chicago Host: Lisa Lubin
‘I’m going to go travel around the world for a year.’ That’s the line I told my friends and colleagues back in 2006 after the idea to take a career break sort of snuck up on me and implanted itself in my brain.
And now six years later, well, in some ways I am still on my break, depending on the definition.
On a Path…
I’d worked in broadcast television for thirteen years and had a very defined life and career before my long term travels. I was on a path. To what? I am not sure. But I was on the all-American path paved by generations before me. University. Career. Home ownership. I was the picture of ‘success:’ I owned a car. I owned a condo. I had a cat (now that screams success!). I was in a long term, serious relationship. Heck, I even had a 401K. Well, I still do actually. Just because I chucked it all, doesn’t mean I turned into an irresponsible ne’er do well after all.
And then the planets aligned, well, at least inside my head really, and I saw an escape and a way and a new path. So I swerved. I got off the fast highway-to-nowhere and slowed it all down. I just did it. The decision may seem big in retrospect, but at the time, I just took one thing at a time. I traveled to far off places. I met amazing people. I tried new foods. And I really took time to smell it all – the figurative roses, the pungent odors in hot trams of Istanbul, and the fresh sea air in Wales.
At the same time expected and unexpected, and planned and unplanned, my life has morphed into something it wasn’t before. And I am not just talking about the three years I actually was traveling consecutively, (yeah, one year became three), I’m talking about what my life has become now.
What is Work?
I never went back to a full time job, well not at least full time as defined for working for another employer. And I’m not sure I ever feel like I am working full time, since now I am working for myself, so it feels so much different.
Some days I work very hard and never put this damn laptop down until well past midnight and I’m falling asleep on it. Other days, I meet a friend for lunch or dinner or both or I’m traveling and I don’t get much laptop time in. It’s flexible and I’m free to do whatever I want. Of course with that comes the insecurity of when the next paycheck will come and how much longer I can sustain this new life.
But for now, I am so free, so happy that I wouldn’t change a thing.
Lisa Lubin is a three-time Emmy® Award winning television writer, producer/director, photographer, and video consultant. After more than a decade in broadcast television she decided to take a sabbatical of sorts which turned into nearly 3 years traveling and working her way around the world. She documents her (mis)adventures on her blog, LLworldtour.com, with photographs and articles from the road/train/rickshaw/camel. Her writing and photography has been published by the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, Smithsonian, Encyclopedia Britannica, and American Way Magazine. She also runs LLmedia, a video consulting business. Lisa loves cheese and kittens, but not together.
Join us on October 16, 2012 for our nationwide Meet, Plan, Go! events: