This is a guest post from Cez of e-Tramping. Together with his best friend, Agness, they “tramp” around the world and write about budget travel, teaching English and living their dreams! We are excited to have this wonderful guest post from them. Enjoy!

“Why do they always teach us that it’s easy and evil to do what we want and that we need discipline to restrain ourselves? It’s the hardest thing in the world–to do what we want. And it takes the greatest kind of courage. I mean, what we really want.”

Ayn Rand

I now think in retrospection of the tremendous efforts I put in to get where I was, and the simple realisation that this wasn’t where I wanted to be. That’s one of the hardest things to swallow – a thought that you were working so hard towards a goal you didn’t want to achieve. There is an alternative, and this is the story of my journey to dreams.

Facing the Great Wall of China

I had this moment less than two years ago. Sitting at my desk, in one of the biggest banks in the World, sipping on coffee. Yeah, that’s the perk of the job, you can bring a cup to work and refill it every so often with a brown mixture of milk, sugar and energy kick. As a bundled package, with such an amazing perk I also received a steady flow of stress – a norm in the banking industry. Predictable working hours, aspiring opportunities, official dress code, reasonable pay, all those things make people believe that this career is a good place to be. Many people would love to be in the position I was back then, and I don’t blame them, I wanted to be there too.

It took a few years to get to this stage in life, when I thought I had everything figured out. After failing my High School final exams, I didn’t have a chance applying for University. Money was also an issue, so I went to work. At the age of 19 I left Poland, went to live in UK and became a butcher (following in my father’s profession). I didn’t speak much English, so I was grateful for this opportunity. While working there 2 years, I realised that this is not what I want to do for the rest of my life. I learned English, passed my exams and applied to University of Wolverhampton, where I got accepted and studied Accounting and Finance. For the next 3 years I studied hard and worked hard to support myself (full-time university course and full-time jobs).

Exploring the Floating Hallelujah Mountains in Zhangjiajie

Upon graduation with a first-class degree, I applied for ACCA (professional accounting qualification) and received a £16,000 scholarship to do an MBA (Masters of Business Administration). Everything was paid for and ready to go. If I were asked then where I saw myself in 5 years time, I had a definite answer. I had my career planned and was slowly but surely moving towards my targets.

Sitting behind my desk, at the job I had not dared to dream of just a few years back, a thought started to grow. A thought about leaving everything behind and pursuing a life of a traveller. Learning from my best friend’s example – Agness – to change the environment and go far away from the world I knew and understood.

Looking for more adventures in Sri Lanka

Being an accountant type, it didn’t start with a simple realisation “I want to travel”. It was more of a thought process that eventually led to that point. A kind of conversation in my head:

What are you working so hard for?

For money. It’s hard to deny the fact that waking up in the morning to go to work brings a lot of stress. It leaves me tired in the evening and is anything but a necessity to get money.

What will you do once you become rich?

Travel the world and see all those things I used to watch on Discovery Channel when I was younger, but this time being able to interact with all that surrounds me.

What stops you from travelling now?

I don’t know…

My office in Laos

And then it dawned on me – I want to travel and there are no real obstacles stopping me. I’m healthy, still young, full of energy and open to the world of opportunities. I don’t need to work in a suit. At the same time, I didn’t have much money saved, but to hell with it, let’s rock. So I bought a one-way ticket to Vietnam. After some preparations (buying useless jungle survival equipment) and finishing with all the unfinished things, I was left with around $400. Nevertheless, I had a lot of new energy and passion in life, which helped me later survive on what I had and continue up to now.

The Great Wall of China with Agness

The grass on the other side

Of course it wasn’t always green, but I wouldn’t swap my life now with anyone! Ever since my departure at the end of 2011, I have lived my life to the fullest. I never before had the guts to leave everything behind and cycle a country (Vietnam, 2500 km, in June and July 2012) or pet a full grown tiger on my lap (October 2012) or even hitchhike a country (in 2011). While on the road I have been a teacher, web designer, photographer and blogger, but I want to do more. Ahead, there will be years of journeys through all continents and many moments of joy and struggle (“no struggle, no joy”). All of this is possible, thanks to one single decision – to do what I wanted to do, not what I was expected to do. Ayn Rand couldn’t be closer to the truth. And I’ve never been closer to happiness than I am now.


Please never stop
Dreaming and following your dreams


Cez of

Cez is now a happy world traveller with a baggage of experiences and limitless energy to gather more. After leaving his comfort zone in 2011 he joined Agness – his best friend – and together they have a mission to discover all amazing places on this planet. Join Cez at, Google+, Twitter or Facebook.



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From Career To Dreams - Escaping The Corporate World

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Nick Wharton & Dariece Swift

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Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift are the owners and founders of Goats On The Road. Together they have been travelling and working abroad since 2008 and have more than 20 years of combined experience in online business, finance, travel and entrepreneurship. Their expert advice has been featured on the Lonely Planet, CNN Money, Business Insider,  WiseBread and Forbes and they also spoke at the World Tourism Forum in Istanbul about the business of travel blogging.

Learn more about Nick Wharton and Dariece Swift on their respective author archives on this site and on the Goats On The Road About Us Page.

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15 thoughts on “From Career To Dreams – Escaping The Corporate World

    1. Yes…and no!

      We feel that if you really want something, it’ll happen. If there’s a will, there’s a way! Cez knew he wasn’t happy with his career path and wanted more out of life, so he took a chance and it all worked out. He left with only $400 and since then has become a blogger, website designer and English teacher!

      Most importantly, he’s doing what he loves and has freedom 🙂

      He’s an inspiration to us all!

  1. Awesome post, Cez! I also turned down a masters program in the UK in order to follow this travel itch, and things have turned out so much better than I ever thought they could. Haven’t looked back! 😀

    1. So glad that you followed your dreams…I can’t imagine a world without That Backpacker 😉 There’s more to life than a 9-5 and doing things you’re expected to do, rather than things that make you happy!

      Cheers Audrey.

  2. Thank you guys for publishing my story and all your kind words.

    Most of the people need money to live, especially when travelling. It’s how you’re earning them that makes the difference. I feel free when I can travel and earn at the same time, so that I don’t need to wait for holidays to escape from my life – instead live I live it the way I want to. It’s certainly out of most people’s comfort zones (including me), but that’s where the magic happens.

    Once again, thanks a lot and have amazing journeys!

    1. Well put Cez! It’s all about freedom and doing what makes you happy!
      Thanks again for the inspirational story 🙂


      1. One of the common things I read about people travelling, is that they are like you guys, can set up a web page and use that to make money to travel further . What if you aren’t computer minded, or haven’t done the English teaching course. How do you earn money then? Would you need to have some sort of passive income thing going on at home, or something. Also, because you are traveling as a couple, it is a lot cheaper and you don’t have to stay in dorms. I image it would be a lot different for someone that is single. I know that you would met people along the way, but it wouldn’t always be that way.

        Is there any single , older travellers, 45+. That an tell me about their trips?

        Loving reading your posts.


        1. Hi Liz, Thanks again for the comment! When we left on our first trip, we had saved enough money to travel for a year without working. We had made a decision in our lives to make a change and from there, everything worked itself out. You’d be surprised how positive things can happen if you have a dream that you believe in. We sold our house and cars and made a big change in our lives. Some people have the balls to just take off on a trip and trust that it will all work out (like Cez). We have an enormous amount of respect for these types of people because we know that the world will make things happen if you are positive.
          Our blog does not sustain our travels. We blog to help others and if we make a little here and there then we are very grateful. We will be posting some inspirational stories/interviews with our friend Bernie, who is nearly 60 and still manages to travel long term every year or so. He’s an inspiration to us all and he travels solo much of the time. There are ways to travel for cheap or even for free! You really just need to think positively and go for it! We’ll be posting more about travelling for free and making income on the road soon!
          Thanks for your comment and look out for Bernie’s inspiration coming up on GOTR.

  3. Thanks. I’m just about ready to make the decision to head out of here and my comfortable life, for the next four months. Just have to decide where to go, and just go for it!

  4. Wow man, if you can bootstrap your travelling life starting out with only $400, almost anybody can if they are prepared to work hard. I’m in the process of doing the same at the moment, so this story resonates!

    So happy for your success! 🙂

  5. An inspiring story I can relate to.

    I’ve been trying to escape the 9-5 world for a decade. As I sit now at 39, with a means for location independent income and enough cash saved for potentially years on the road, the prospect is very close. It takes huge nerve to give up a great job after finally getting stable. However, life is way too short and can end anytime. Better to act now, then die with regrets!!!

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