If you’ve ever felt like you can’t put in words what travel means to you, or all the ways in which travel has made you feel empowered, then this is for you. If you’ve ever felt like travel is overrated and can’t fathom why it is so important to other people, then this is also for you.
I found myself in a situation this week where I had to explain to someone what travel meant to me and why I was so passionate about it. That got me thinking, and below is my feeble attempt to pen down why seeing the world is worth it to me.
Feel free to use any of these reasons the next time someone says you’re wasting your time and money on travel (if no one has ever said this to you, you’re damn lucky!)
To break the monotony and escape for a bit. Sometimes you feel like life is in a rut, and you’re on a train that doesn’t seem to be heading towards a destination. Taking a brief soiree from daily life can be very refreshing.
To have an adventure. I recently tried Skydiving in Florida. It was an epic experience, equal parts nerve-racking and enthralling. But you don’t have to be an adrenaline junkie to have an adventure. Maybe its the foreign atmosphere, not having familiar faces near by or just the rush from doing something spontaneous and exciting.
To get new perspective in life. Meet new people, see new things.You realize there is no one way to live life, it comes in shades of gray and every other color in the spectrum. You’ll return to your life with different notions and expectations. Seeing the world can be more educational and insightful than any school or college class. I think it’s because you learn essential life skills that no lecture can teach.
To start over and find purpose again. I read a quote somewhere that went something like “Sometimes you have to travel to the center of the earth to find your own center”. Now it doesn’t have to be the center of the earth, but a new place will allow you to let your mind wander and reflect on life. You get the time and space to reevaluate and prioritize. Travel allows not just escape and relaxation, but also healing. You’ll return at peace with yourself again.
To feel grounded. It’s easy to lose sight of what you have when you’re bogged down by life. While I’m seeing amazing new places, I’m also thinking back to my home with a little more appreciation for creature comforts. When you realize what a tiny speck you are in the grand scheme of things, it makes your problems seem inconsequent. And I’m always happy to be back.
To be inspired. You are your best self when you’re inspired. A new place can clear those cobwebs around your head and get the gears running again. All the new sights and sounds can trigger some great ideas and inspirations. Every destination is unique and you never know what your mind takes away from the journey. You’ll come back energized, bursting with ideas and positivity.
For bragging rights, duh. Lets just be adults here and admit that there is a sense of pride in being able to brag about all the exotic places you’ve been to.
To experience new culture and get some sensitivity. Exposing yourself to new cultures, places and people will give you a wider world view. You’ll learn that people think and behave in different ways. What is considered a way of life in many places is considered offensive in others. Traveling has made me more liberal and inclusive in my views, made me sensitive to people from different walks of life, and made me aware of issues on a global scale.
To celebrate! A special occasion become even more special when you’re celebrating it away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. A birthday, a wedding, a new job, a graduation. Heck, at this point I even want to celebrate waking up everyday and being an adult 😀 You mark a milestone and every reminder of it always comes with fond memories of the trip! One of my favorite occasions till date has been while celebrating a dear friend’s birthday in Vegas.
To break out of your comfort zone and learn new things about yourself. There is nothing like traveling to a new place to make you test yourself. While the pictures might look amazing, travel can push you to your limits and make you discover sides to yourself you didn’t know existed. Maybe it’s discovering a city all on your own, staying in less than comfortable accommodations or ordering food in a restaurant without knowing the local language. Even the small things will feel like a personal victory and will do great things to your self confidence.
Because you can. And therefore you should. I am so grateful each and every day for how lucky I’ve been in being able to travel and explore all that I have. I used to envy people who have jobs that let them travel, or people whose job is to travel. But I’ve learnt that you don’t have to be all those things. It’s simple really; if you wish to go somewhere, just do it. You don’t have to be super rich, you don’t need loads of free time, or unlimited travel miles. You just need to plan it right.
For the stories and memories. Traveling throws a lot of situations at you – funny, exciting, sad, embarrassing, serious. All of them are stories to tell and retell, memories to relive. Use them to make yourself (and other people) laugh, cringe, and share. Recalling memories helps sustain that feeling of contentment in you until you go on your next adventure!
To see with your own eyes, places you’ve only heard of or seen in movies. You’ve envisioned it, read about it in books, seen it play across your TV screen, even planned it in your head. Guess what, now you’re actually there experiencing it for yourself! And that’s a joyful moment.
So there you have it folks! Travel really does make you a more confident, wordly, happy and relaxed person in the long run. It’s like an investment in yourself – the more journey’s you go on, the richer your life becomes 🙂
As always, thanks for reading!
All pictures dustyshoesandbeautifulviews©