All posts by DJ Baird

My name is Dan. That's about all I'm sure of.

First World Guilt

I’m eating dinner when the thought occurs to me that somewhere in the world another person is dying of hunger. Soon I’m overcome with guilt.

Most often I try to push these thoughts from my mind. Those people dying of hunger are so far away that we’re disconnected. The fact I’m eating dinner has nothing to do with the fact they don’t have any. It’s not my fault and there’s nothing I can do.

As soon as the thought has arrived, my brain gets distracted and it’s all forgotten about. Continue reading First World Guilt

Going On A Day Trip

After a few weeks in a country, the food starts to seem a little less tasty, the land a little less mysterious. We would be comfortable sitting by a pool all day reading a book, letting the rest of our time slip away into idleness. But our comfort is tinged with guilt.

Continue reading Going On A Day Trip

Motivating Yourself to Travel

canoeing in vancouver
Canoeing in Vancouver

Seven or so years ago, I was at university and severely depressed. I could barely peel myself out of bed in the morning, I didn’t have the energy for anything. Going to the kitchen to make breakfast was like climbing a mountain, so most days I didn’t bother. It was easier to starve. Eventually, the hunger would become too painful and only then would I stumble to make a sandwich. I was completely unmotivated.

I was completely unmotivated. Continue reading Motivating Yourself to Travel

I Quit My 9 to 5 Job to Travel (And It Didn’t Solve All of My Problems)

daniel miserable on a beach

Around four years ago today, I was sitting in an office, staring out the window, dreaming of travel. I’d finished university a few years earlier and instead of continuing to chase my passions, I had stayed put. I was trapped like a deer in the headlights of life. Paralysed and unable to do anything.

My friends all seemed to have gone on to better things. But me? I still lived with my parents, moving between menial jobs, doing not a lot of anything. Just sitting in an office day-by-day. Staring out that window. Dreaming. Continue reading I Quit My 9 to 5 Job to Travel (And It Didn’t Solve All of My Problems)

Learning About Generosity in Arthur’s Pass

After we travel, it’s often the people we’ve met that we remember the most.

Mountains and meals blur over time until they’re lost in the haze of memory. Moments disappear in our minds, sometimes resurfacing years later when we hear a song or smell something on the air. Tour guides and hotel receptionists meld into one in the mind. But sometimes you meet a person that is impossible to forget.

Maybe they touch your soul or you just have such a strong connection that you feel like you’ve known the person your whole life. You can make friendships while travelling that are so fleeting, yet so powerful. Sometimes it hurts when you have to say goodbye to a person that you’ve barely even met. Continue reading Learning About Generosity in Arthur’s Pass

Are You a Passionate Person?

fireworks exploding
If I had to describe myself with a word, it would be, “Meh.” A word for somebody with passion, “Woohoo!” I think of them running through life. A person full of energy, grabbing the world with both hands and shaking it.

By comparison, I plod along, not wanting to grab anything. When I rush it’s only because I’m afraid of being late. Continue reading Are You a Passionate Person?

Are You Making Your Facebook Friends Unhappy?

daniel standing in new york subway

In a not unsurprising turn of events, research has found that reducing Facebook use helps with depression.

Researchers argue that Facebook users only ever post about the good events in their life. This is leading to their friends having unrealistic expectations for their own lives. Continue reading Are You Making Your Facebook Friends Unhappy?

Walking Along the Yarra River in Melbourne

yarra river and bridge
Last week we spoke about the pressures of moving to Melbourne. We found ourselves overwhelmed by the big city and the knowledge that we had to start all over. It was starting to drive us insane.

This week has been better. We’ve managed to tick most things off our to-do list. Place to live, bank accounts, tax numbers. Everything but that elusive job. We’ve stopped panicking and settled a little. Still, after a few days of sending out resumes (and subsequent rejection) I needed a day off or I was going to go crazy.

Continue reading Walking Along the Yarra River in Melbourne