I'm going to need a year off in a few years to go travelling, and my job sounds very similar to yours. It depends what's more important to you. Your current job, or the experience of travelling. I love my job, it's very specialised, it's what I trained to do, the location is excellent but for me the latter is definitely more important.
I have no idea whether I will be able to go back to my job and I don't really care. I just hope that I will have enough experience at the end of it to be able to get another job in the same industry after a years break. I don't think taking time off to go travelling encourages employers, but hopefully if you have enough experience doing the job it won't matter.
If you're not sure you want to go travelling in the first place maybe you should take the 2 months, or even one month, then if you like it take 6 months at a later date.
Thanks so much for the advice. I slept on it but it didn't help. I have quite a long drive to and from work so get some thinking time. I decided to ask my boss for a compromise for 3 months break and use some of my holidays. I'm not sure if i will get but it's the obvious solution isn't it? If i'm enjoying travelling in my first month then i could resign. To be honest though i'm not really comfortable with that and i don't know why.
Sander you're right I have to ask myself why i want to travel. Initially i think it was an escape goat from the crappy year i have had but now since researching i want to discover all these fab places and be able to say i seen them for myself. I want to show myself that i can survive without all my material goods for a while and find maybe a new direction. I do some training in my job and enjoy it, i've always been interested in teaching and will be doing a short TEFL course before i go to see if i can do some volunteering teaching english.
I am apprehensive about the lack of a routine. I feel like my life has been one big timetable. I'm so used to getting up with the alarm, going to work, doing my work, going home, maybe go for a jog, have dinner, watch tv, go to bed. It's hard to break that routine and have a big wide open space that you have to fill by yourself. Not being told where to go and what to do. The big apeal for everyone i'm sure but how do you get out of the mind set?
If you think i'm reading far too much into this please tell me. Maybe i just need a kick up the arse, told to get out the country and deal with it!!
Leanne, I was actually in a very similar position. I've worked with this company for just over 3 years after graduating college in 2005. I wasn't absolutlely in love with what I did, although I had some great bennefits including a company car, cell phone, laptop, medical, 401k, etc. These luxuries where what made the choice soooo tough for me. I mean I haven't bought gas in over 2 years!!
However, my realization was that these luxuries may make my life easier, but they don't bring me happiness. Maybe travelling the world won't bring happiness either... I don't know. BUT, if I never try I'll never know for sure. I decided not to be an old retired man who's kicking myself for not living while I was young and able. Long story shortened, today was my last day with my company. I have a one way flight to Australia and a work visa for up to one year so that I can make a buck or two if needed. I leave Oct 7th and will be backpacking the whole way.
After weighing all of the pro's and con's I decided that the safe/ easy option wasn't for me. I will be able to find another career when I return (FYI: I passed up a job opp making nearly 2x my current salary to do this also). Others have told me that this can actually help find jobs in the future b/c it shows that you are confident, resourceful, ambitious and independent. PLUS, most employers will be very interested and envious of you experiences.
We aren't all the same though. I think that PIECAR is absolutely right. If they're giving you 2 months... TAKE IT! Hedge your bets and see what happens. This way you can go back if you've had enough or keep going until you get your fill. GOOD LUCK!!
I am in a similar situation. I am away for 2 months in Jan 09 to travel china and SE asia. I have asked for the two months off and been given it and am over the moon. The thing I would say is dont think this is the only trip you will be able to go on, you can have a great time and see so much in two months and if you have enjoyed it then plan another trip mbaye for 1 month in a years time and if you haven't enjoyed it , boy won't you be glad you didnt quit work. . You don't have to see it all in one go.
Well i've done it! Told my boss that i will have to resign because they can't give me the 6 months. I'm taking the risk!!!!
I thought about everything you have all said and appreciate it all. I decided i didn't want to go away with the "will i or won't i go back to work" dilemma hanging over my head on my travels.
When i spoke to my boss today i was glad i didn't decide to take the time and call him from Oz saying i'm not coming back as he made a passing comment that he wouldn't like that. I don't want to burn bridges as there may be a chance of me going back someday and i will need a good reference.
Oz intro is booked for the 9th to ease me in. I have enquired over flights £'s and will hopefully book this wk!
Yeh. It actually feels quite liberating! but it did cause a few sleepless nights.
Glad you've decided. Good luck with it all, and enjoy your trip!
I quit my job and travelled for 18 months. When I returned some interviewers said to me straight that they thought I wasn´t suitable for the job because I would leave again to travel more (erm, they were right!). But in the end it took just a couple of weeks to get a job (IT sector) and the key was that their were ex-travellers on the interview board. They will understand if you go back for a job some day.
I´m now another 3 years travelling.... should I get a job or enjoy life?
Just wanted to say congratulations on booking the flights - I'm sure you'll have a great time.
For what it's worth, I think the only two words more scary than "what if" are "if only." I'm sure you've had, as I have, plenty of people saying what if you don't like it, what if something goes wrong, what if you end up with no money stuck on the other side of the world etc.
Personally the prospect of thinking "if only" or "what if" is far more terrifying - if only I'd had the b*lls to just go, if only I hadn't chosen this dreary job that doesn't really make me happy to please other people instead of following my dreams of travelling the world.
I'm in the position of doing up my house to sell it just now - and with everything going wrong that can go wrong (including nights with no lights, heating or hot water) I'm more determined than ever to go. And I have absolutely no intention of asking my employer for a sabbatical. I'm 29, in a professional job in a tough industry with no guarantee of getting my job back - that's if I actually ever come back.
Yes, you've taken a big step. But I honestly don't think you'll have any regrets once you get out there, make friends and find yourself having an amazing time.
Thanks for your posts - it made me all the more eager to get my house on the market and go - even though I haven't actually decided where I'm going to go first yet!
Take care - and have a blast!