"Experience does for the soul, what education does for the mind"
Everyone has different reasons to travel and everyone takes away something different from each trip, whether it is a year-long adventure, a one week holiday or travelling for business. Experiencing new cultures, flavours, sights and sounds awakens the mind and you always return from the trip a little bit different. Waking up somewhere new makes me feel alive and excited for the day ahead and gives me a sense of optimism.
As much as I liked my day to day life, it became boring and synchronised. I felt the need to break the routine and say goodbye to my comfort zone. I had hit a brick wall, I was stuck in a rut and for me, travel was the way out. I had reached my career goal and I sat at my desk and wondered "is this it?". It scared me that I could still be sat in the same office, 35 years on, earning money to pay the bills. The lack of annual leave felt like I didn't have the time to actually do things the I wanted to do with my life.
Quitting my job was a risk but it was more of a risk, not quitting and then still being sat at my desk, full of regrets. I knew that if I didn't go now, there might be the chance that I would never go. Marriage, mortgages and babies, alongside my career, would probably have stopped me. There is never a right time to go travelling, so now is a good of a time as any.
I wanted to experience different cultures and I wanted to be shocked so I could appreciate the different ways of life. The way we see the world can be very narrow-minded and seeing the diversity of the world can improve your grip on reality. Travelling gives you the chance to reflect on your current life, your past and what you want to be your future. It gives you time to decide what you really want from life. Travelling brings challenges, which you will learn to overcome and these challenges and opportunities will allow you to discover who you are and what you are capable of, which in turns increases your self-confidence. Travelling can be empowering and humbling, which you may not be as evident in normal life.
Travelling will allow you to have time to learn new skills, or evolve underdeveloped pre-existing skills. For example, this may be attempting to learn new languages and even if you only learn a few words or phrases, the locals will still appreciate your effort. Travelling to different countries with also develop your geography, politics, history and sociology knowledge. Even if you don't intend to learn something new, you can't avoid it and you will subconsciously be learning all the time.
While travelling you will meet new people from all different walks of life and you could end up making lifelong friends from all over the world. Being away from home allows you to be you and relax, but also make you appreciate your life, friends and family.
Travelling will create memories and will give you loads of stories to tell about all the amazing places you have visited and the crazy adventures you have had. Plus when you return, future employers may actually respect that you have taken some time out for yourself and you have returned as a more well-rounded individual.
Why travel the world? Because you want to and because you can and you never know what life has in store. There is nothing stopping you from travelling, other than yourself. Create your adventure, whether that is zip lining, cooking, bungy jumping, hiking or starting a new book....give into your wanderlust and live your life now.
I know it is cheesy but I love the quote..."We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.”
I would love to hear the reasons why you travel.