OFF THE BEATEN TRAIL: A young man’s soul-searching journey through Central America
At eighteen, Jake Heilbrunn entered college like millions of other high school graduates. But after developing a chronic skin condition and falling into depression, Jake realized staying in school didn’t align with his dreams.
Listening to his inner voice and following his heart, he took a leap of faith, left school and hopped on a one-way flight to Guatemala. Without a phone and having no knowledge of Spanish, he spent four months backpacking through Guatemala, Nicaragua and Costa Rica so he could explore other ways of life and disconnect from a society dominated by social media.
From camping in the jungle and teaching poverty-stricken children to meet inspirational people from around the world, Jake's quest took him to exotic locations beyond the fringes of civilization.
His pilgrimage led him to realize there are limitless ways to live and that people can create their own destinies through self-reflection and by taking action. Jake’s story shows that it is in the pursuit of our dreams and passions—not the destination—where we find personal fulfillment and inner peace.