by Niall Doherty

I’ve been working from my brother’s house in Ireland this week. He’s been kind enough to let me use his speedy wifi and an empty desk so I can knuckle down and get stuff done.

My brother is less than two years older than me and we’re different in a lot of ways. While he’s lived here in South Kilkenny all his life, I’ve been away from home for most of the last four years. He got married last summer and moved into this beautiful new house (seriously, check the video) with his beautiful wife. He has a thriving business that he built himself from scratch, and he works hard and smart at it six or seven days a week. By all traditional measures, he’s a very successful chap. And he seems pretty happy with his lot, glad to be living the life he is.

By those same traditional measures, I don’t stack up very well against my brother, or anyone for that matter. I don’t own any property, I don’t have a car, I don’t even have many clothes… I only own a few dozen things and all of them fit into a single backpack. I run my own business, but have earned less than €3,000 so far this year, and I have less than €5,000 in the bank.

At 29 years of age, you could make a strong case that I’m failing pretty miserably at this life thing. Oh, except for the fact that I’m one of the happiest guys you’ll ever meet, and I’m only getting happier.

See, I know my values and I’ve structured my life accordingly. For the most part, I’m happy with how I spend my days, and I feel I’m constantly working towards bigger and better things, more freedom, more fantasticness. I honestly wouldn’t trade places with anyone else on the planet. I love being me, and I love this journey that I’m on.

Go your own way

My brother chose a certain path for his life, one which has brought him many of the traditional symbols of success, and he seems pretty happy with all that. Good for him. Meanwhile, I’ve chosen a completely different path, far away from the norm, and that seems to be working out pretty good for me. I’m fairly certain that my brother wouldn’t be happy living my life, and I wouldn’t be happy living his.

I believe everyone has their own unique path of happiness, and if you’re reading this blog, yours is also likely to stray far from those of the masses. This might sometimes cause you to question your own sanity, but I’m here to remind you that it’s all good. As long as you’re being true to yourself, hold course and enjoy the ride.

P.S. The cool folks at Gap Daemon recently asked me all about my upcoming travel plans and the vagabond mindset. Check out the interview here.

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