Getting Lost 101

Getting Lost 101

Guest post by Ryan Dunn

I was captivated by Ryan’s blog the minute I noticed he calls himself the World’s Dumbest Traveler. So many people profess to know everything about travel, they act as though they are wise and all knowing… but that’s rarely the case.

Ryan isn’t afraid to admit that he doesn’t know everything. If you’re looking for a travel blogger who’ll make you laugh – he’s your man.

On that note… I’ll leave him to introduce himself properly in his guest post all about the wonder of getting lost.

Some may call it an art form, others may call it a dangerous habit, I think I’m going to start calling it “unpredictable adventure” (or at least use that as a cover so people don’t immediately think that I can’t follow a map…).

For all of Laura’s awesome readers out there I’m Ryan or RY3 or 3 or “The World’s Dumbest Traveler,” whatever you prefer, really. I just recently set out on an adventure where I’ll be living and working in a different international city every month for an entire year. I haven’t traveled much in my life and I’m not exactly the savviest traveler, but if you ask me that sounds like a perfect recipe for taking a trip around the world.

You might be thinking, “Why in the world would I take a ‘lesson’ from a guy who calls himself “The World’s Dumbest Traveler?!” And it’s certainly a fair point, but bear with me. We can get lost together…

There is no better feeling in this world than getting lost and discovering something amazing. It might be a hidden park, a beautiful outdoor bar or an unexpected view, but it’s these things you go back home and brag to friends and family about, more than any tourist attraction you’ll visit (more on that later). But in order to get lost and discover these hidden gems, regardless of the location, there are three distinct things you need. I once thought I was going to take these three earth-shattering secrets to my grave, but now it seems only fitting to share them with you good people. You need:

  1. Willingness to get lost
  2. Irrational confidence in your ability to get where you’re going
  3. Ability to lie directly to the face of friends, family and social media

Let’s go into a bit more detail on each one of these…

Willingness to get lost – It all starts here. Sure, you might have list of places you want to see or an idea of what you want to do, but if you can’t let go of these plans a or at least be okay with going off-script you’ll probably be miserable and cranky and die alone end up having a fine time. You’ll see the same sites, visit the same places, take the same pictures as the millions of other tourists who have come before you. If you’re fine with “fine,” then I’m fine with “fine,” but if you’re looking for more you need to be open to getting lost.

Irrational confidence – Maybe this is just a me thing, but you have to truly believe you know where you’re going. Deep down, in places you don’t talk about at parties, you have to believe you’re going the right way. You look at a map or you briefly plug an address into your GPS and you say to yourself with a swagger in your step, “Yup, I’ve got this.” The problem is that 9 out of 10 times you do not, in fact, “have this.” But it’s at that exact moment of the “oh shit, I’m lost” that the fun really starts. Which leads us to step three…

Truth bending – While every step of this journey is crucial, this right here is what separates the men from the boys, the women from the ladies, the sophisticated from the sissymuffins, so I want you to listen closely. You must never admit that you are lost, were lost or ever will be lost. When a friend asks you how you were so lucky to find such a beautiful private beach you say things like, “Oh, I just stumbled upon it,” “It was a recommendation from a local bartender,” “I just followed the sound of the live music…” You deny, deny, deny. You were NOT lost. You were simply enjoying an unpredictable adventure.

This probably isn’t the travel lesson you expected, but it’s the travel lesson you need.

If you liked what you saw here and want more sarcasm, bad jokes and run-on sentences you can follow along at and @ry3dunn on Instagram. Also, be sure to like RY3 on Facebook for all the updates. Feel free to reach out and say hi or shoot me a message if you’d like to work together.


Ryan’s post is featured as part of the Lessons Learned series – If you have a story to tell or a lesson to teach and you’d like to be featured – I’d love to hear from you!!

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