Tom needed new pants. He had been wearing the same Dockers for way too long and they looked pretty tattered. However, Tom hates to shop, and unfortunately, so do I.
So when Tom needs new pants, he’s on his own. But when faced with the option to go buy new pants or do pretty much anything else, he undoubtedly chooses "anything else.”
One day about two years ago, Tom recognized that he needed to force himself to go shopping. He knew that if he were sporting new pants, I wouldn’t be able to resist squeezing his little ass, and then he'd be glad he shopped.
So what did Tom do?
He walked into the bedroom picked up his Dockers and ripped them down the middle. He looked at me as I stared back at him in shock and he said, “now I have to go buy new pants today.” He gave himself no other option.
From that day on, “ripping your pants” became a metaphor in our family for intentionally doing something in order to leave you no other option, but to do the very thing you don’t want to do, yet know is best. So when Tom quit his job last week, he “ripped his pants.”
He left us no other option but to continue our plans to travel. We no longer had his job as a security blanket on which to fall back. We no longer had a reason to stick around Southern California.
Now people keep asking us how we could leave “good” jobs. Below are 10 beliefs that led us to our decision.
For years we said we held these beliefs, but we realized that we weren't acting accordingly. So we finally decided to align our actions with our beliefs and the result was quitting our jobs to travel:
If we are honest with ourselves, most of our actions (mine included) are motivated by two objectives, finding pleasure or avoiding pain. To intentionally look beyond these and act according to what we believe to be true requires discipline and determination, but it is so much more rewarding and often necessary in order to achieve our dreams. Sometimes we just need to "rip our pants."
Is there something in your life that you need or want to do, but it requires either pain or a temporary lack of comfort and pleasure? Do you need to rip your pants?
*I know some of you are reading this blog because you want to know exactly how we left our jobs and how we can afford to do so. Don’t worry, I’ll get there in future posts, I promise.
7/18/2013 09:19:39 am
Amazing!!! I think everyone wishes at some point in thier life that they could or would "rip their pants" . I wish you both happy and safe travels and look forward to reading about your adventures. XO
7/18/2013 12:20:18 pm
What an inspiration! I am absolutely envious. Safe travels!
7/19/2013 12:49:45 am
Hey Jamie I am going through some rough times financially and reading this blog really helped me focus on the bigger picture. I look forward to reading your future posts for guidance and support. I am super envious of you guys being able to travel for a year. I hope u have fun and b safe and I love u both very much we will miss u at the Christmas party! You guys are my inspiration to follow my dreams so one day hopefully me and my Tom can do the same! Safe travels and may u always find urself with the wind at ur back!
7/20/2013 03:37:54 am
Thanks for the good wishes everyone! Keep following the blog and stay in touch while we are away. We will miss you all this next year.
7/20/2013 06:32:14 am
Sounds like a book title, Rip Your Pants... and Dress For REAL Success! (Yes, I will take 10% of all royalties)
Becky Burke (Mom)
7/20/2013 11:53:36 pm
PROUD of you, EXCITED for you, but SAD for your absence from our family for a whole year!
7/21/2013 10:50:48 pm
You will never regret this decision! The world is so much bigger than we are. Enjoy the beauty of architecture, be amazed at ancient construction (how did they build that?) and get a tear in your eye when you see people who are happy with so little. This trip will form what is REALLY important to you in your lives. Bon Voyage!
8/2/2013 02:43:52 am
Have fun and be safe. We will be following your experiences with much envy. Maybe we can meet you somewhere in the next year. I want our young son to appreciate what the world has to offer.
8/8/2013 03:53:23 am
You guys don't even need to wear pants for a year; especially in the Amazon! I wish I could tag along just to pick up the Bar Tabs!
8/15/2013 10:05:01 am
So excited for you! I will miss you at Crossfit! I can't wait to follow your travels.
8/15/2013 12:50:39 pm
God bless, good luck, safe travels and enjoy these next months, undoubtably the very best times of your lives!!
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I'm Jaime. My husband is Tom. Suburbanites, backpackers, and expats...we've been them all!