Vagabonding and the Art of Living Curiously with Rolf Potts Episode #122

Aaron McHugh


Rolf Potts is a travel writer, essayist, adventurer and teacher. I discovered Rolf Potts from listening to Tim Ferriss. Rolf’s book, Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to The Art of Long-Term World Travel is attributed by Ferriss as the basis for his stick-it-to-the man 4-Hour Workweek.

I sat down with Rolf Potts over Skype from our Joy Bus to learn from him about learning to live curiously. Potts calls rural Salina, KS home after having his pick of equitable frugal options abroad. His Mid-West roots pulled him back to be near family and friends.

Rolf Potts in Ethiopia

Key insights from Rolf

  • Reframing your thinking enables you to power jettisons from real life to discover long-term world travel.
  • If you wait until society tells you to go, you never will.
  • We forget how easy it is to give ourselves permission.
  • Insulating yourself from discomfort limits our travel adventures.
  • How to build a Time-Wealth philosophy to create enough time to experience the travels you dream about.
  • GO. GO. GO. Stop waiting.

About Rolf Potts (from his website)

Rolf Potts has reported from more than sixty countries for the likes of National Geographic Traveler, The New Yorker,, Outside, the New York Times Magazine, The Believer, The Guardian (U.K.), Sports Illustrated, National Public Radio, and the Travel Channel. His adventures have taken him across six continents, and include piloting a fishing boat 900 miles down the Laotian Mekong, hitchhiking across Eastern Europe, traversing Israel on foot, bicycling across Burma, driving a Land Rover across South America, and traveling around the world for six weeks with no luggage or bags of any kind.

Rolf Potts in Greece
Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel

Great writing from Rolf

Song of the broken road

8 Thoughts On Keeping a Journal When You Travel

6 Thoughts on the Importance of Storytelling

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