In 2014 I quit my job my job at McKinsey, sold all my stuff and set out to travel the world.
It was only meant to be a 6-month trip but, 130+ countries, 7 continents and 6 years later, I’m writing this update from Canggu in Bali, nearly 12,500 km away from London so… I guess no plan survives first contact with reality. 😅
Now, in the last 6 years, I’ve seen some weird things, been to some crazy places and had my fair share of adventures.
But in the next few updates, I thought I’d talk about something I’ve never talked about on The Art of Living. Something a bit closer to home.
I thought I’d talk about friendship.
Specifically, I thought I’d share what I’ve learned about making old friendships thrive, helping new friendships flourish and being the best friend you possibly can be.
Because, if there’s one thing I’ve learned from being “away” for so long, it’s the importance of investing in your tribe – in the people who love, inspire and support you – no matter how far away they may be.
And if there’s one thing that surprised me, it’s that it took travelling halfway across the planet to realise how badly and haphazardly I’d been doing that, right up til that point in my life.
Now, for the record, I’m no social recluse. I’ve spent years working in sales. I love people. I love networking. One of my favourite parts of travelling are the hundreds of locals, wanderers and colourful characters you brush shoulders with every week.
But it wasn’t until I left home that I realised how many great relationships I’d been taking for granted, how many toxic relationships I’d become trapped in and how many empty relationships I’d fallen into without ever really thinking about it.
It took thousands of kilometres of perspective to get me thinking proactively about the who, why and how of my friends.
Result? It’s taken years of refining, but these days I’m actually closer to my family and friends than when I lived in the UK. My friendships are more selective, more positive and more rewarding than they were before I left. And most importantly, I’m a better, more thoughtful, more intentional friend than I ever was when my loved ones lived under an hour way (or even just down the street).
And the best part? It all comes down to a simple, repeatable framework ANYONE can use to transform the relationships in their lives.
In the same way it’s possible to break fundamental productivity skills down into 10 simple steps in TAoL’s Ultimate Productivity Primer…
In the same way it’s possible to break life down into 8 core areas and 5 nested time horizons in TAoL’s TRACKTION Masterclass…
It’s possible to break friendship down into a few simple ideas, frameworks and systems that increase the joy you give to and get from the people you care about.
And it’s that system that I want to formalise and share with you over the course of the next handful of updates. 🙌
Sound good? Alright, awesome.
Look out for my next update where I’ll break out the first step in how to make friends that’ll last you a lifetime…
And until then, be generous, have a great start to your week and go well.