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Ikigai Project Interview – Shirine Taylor

Dave, Sora, and I arrived in Oslo last Thursday and have settled in with a new friend to catch up on sleep and recover from our flight over. I will have an update on our journey so far coming soon, but until then, I am delighted to post the first Ikigai Project interview! After discovering her journey on Instagram, which then lead me to her blog, I asked Shrine Taylor of The Wandering Nomads to answer a few questions. She and her partner, Kevin are traveling the world by bike and are currently cycling through the Atacama Desert in Chile. Check out her blog!

Shirine_3

About Shirine
In June 2013, when I was twenty years old, I set out to cycle around the world because I felt that there was no other way I would rather spent my early twenties. Though my routes and plans changed a million times, I ended up cycling from Canada to Mexico as a warm up before spending a year in the India  and Nepali Himalayas, cycling, trekking, and living with various families in remote villages. My boyfriend Kevin then came out to join me and after doing Nepal and India again with him, we set out across Georgia and Turkey before flying from Istanbul to Ushuaia. We are now currently making our way up the Andes, and have another nine months of cycling before we start a whole new adventure in Oregon.

What is your Ikigai?
I feel like my Ikigai, or calling in life, will change constantly, but for now, I feel like I’ve found my calling by cycling around the world. In a broader sense, I think my Ikigai will always involve nature, physical activity, and adventure and cycling around the world just happens to combine all three of these wonderfully. Most importantly, my Ikigai will always involve putting health and happiness first, and right now, I feel as if cycling around the world is helping me to develop other callings which I will continue to peruse forever.

I feel like my Ikigai, or calling in life, will change constantly, but for now, I feel like I’ve found my calling by cycling around the world. In a broader sense, I think my Ikigai will always involve nature, physical activity, and adventure and cycling around the world just happens to combine all three of these wonderfully. Most importantly, my Ikigai will always involve putting health and happiness first, and right now, I feel as if cycling around the world is helping me to develop other callings which I will continue to peruse forever.

Shirine_2

At what moment did you realize that the life you lead was not your Ikigai?
I feel like my Ikigai, or calling in life, will change constantly, but for now, I feel like I’ve found my calling by cycling around the world. In a broader sense, I think my Ikigai will always involve nature, physical activity, and adventure and cycling around the world just happens to combine all three of these wonderfully. Most importantly, my Ikigai will always involve putting health and happiness first, and right now, I feel as if cycling around the world is helping me to develop other callings which I will continue to peruse forever.

What steps did you take in order to find your Ikigai?
I feel as if others can benefit from my work by realizing that they too can pursue their callings. I love photography, and though I don’t ever expect to do it professionally, I’ve been able to create a blog I’m proud of which displays my work.

In which ways do others benefit from your work?
I’m sort of lucky, I happened to find my calling, or at least part of my Ikigai, when I was just eighteen years old. After graduating from high school I bought a one way ticket to South America and spent the next year climbing, trekking, and hitchhiking my way down the Andes which made me fall in love with living on the road. It made me realize just how many other ways of life there are, and that I could truly do anything I set my mind to. I feel like my Ikigai sort of found me, at least the travel aspect of it, and from there my personality (the determination, adventure, and social aspect of it) kicked in to create the lives I’m now happily living.

Shirine_1

What changes have you noticed in terms of your health, demeanor, or outlook on life since finding your Ikigai?
Like I said before, I feel as if I found my way of life, and my passions, at such a young age that it’s hard for me to really say. That being said I imagine that I’m a whole lot my physical active, and a lot more knowledgable about the world if I had chosen the typical path as most of my peers have.

Do you have a personal mission statement? If so, would you mind sharing?Personal mission statement.. I think I have a lot, and which one I use really depends on the day, but I quite like the quote I’ve set to sign my emails with: “You know all those things you have always wanted to do? You should go do them.”

What advice would you offer those who have not yet found their Ikigai?
Peruse your passions! Try new things, and figure out what you like, and what you don’t like. And then take those things you like and do them as often as you possibly can!

Since we’re about to travel, tell us your favorite travel destination.
Georgia has been one of our favorite cycling destination. It’s a beautiful country full of extremely hospital people who are sure to invite you to their picnics every single night. There are also beautiful mountains, and rivers around every corner which makes camping very easy and pleasant. I also loved Peru last time I was there and can’t wait to cycle through it (notably the Peruvian divide, a very remote mountain road with weeks of passes over 4,000m) in the coming months.

Thank you, Shirine!

Jen Sotolongo

Jen is the Chief Storyteller and Photographer for the Long Haul Trekkers. Born with the travel bug, she has lived in Spain, Chile, and New Zealand. When she’s not galavanting around the world by bicycle, she is running long distances in the woods, exploring nature, or whipping up delicious vegan meals. She is always planning her next adventure.

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