Travel is one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves. No price or value can be placed on its importance or its power to teach you, to mold you in a way that no school could ever do. It's not because schools are valueless, but rather the fact that traveling teaching possibilities are truly endless—with each destination offering a new and exciting insight to our world and the people who live in it.
Through the many different cultures, traditions and perspective of people all around the world, we can put pieces of our understanding of life together in a way that formulates a more diverse, forward thinking way in which we choose to live our lives. Travel teaches us not just the big things like appreciation, and respect but the small things too, like patience and the importance of organization. The best thing about all this learning that you will do, is that it doesn't come with a scorecard, and there is no test—no right or wrong answers. Taking it all in happens naturally and gently, the lessons are unavoidable, and you're guaranteed an A.
So, if you're looking for a reason to take that next trip abroad (not that you need one) here are the five things traveling teaches you, five things that you will undoubtedly learn. No matter where you go, whether it be an African Safari or a trip Down Under your possibilities are endless. So pack your things and get ready for an enriching adventure of a lifetime, as you discover yourself and the world we live in through the magic of travel.
The Importance of Disconnecting
We live in a world where we are constantly tethered to some sort of technology. Whether it be our smart phone or our laptop, we are never too far from the click of our favorite buttons—or too far away from our favorite social media sites—ready and waiting for the ‘likes’ of our new vacation uploads to roll in from all our ‘insta’ fans.
We are constantly comparing our lives to other people and spend a lot of time scrolling the never ending pages of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. This is not only super distracting from all the wonderful things going on in the world around you, but can even be damaging to your relationships, your self-esteem and your ability to be truly present.
Traveling makes it hard to be one with your phone or your laptop and the break is exhilarating—never mind so good for you. When you're traveling you're so busy admiring and taking in all the sights and smells of your new destination that you don't have time—or the desire—to constantly check your phone. You are no longer concerned about what other people are doing but rather about soaking up all that your new destination has to offer.
How to be Present
We spend so much time living in the past or longing for the future that we miss what is going on right in front of us—all the magical moments that are happening right under our noses. Traveling, however forces us to be present, to enjoy the moments that we are in. With so many new sights and sounds we are often overwhelmed, having to constantly be aware of our surroundings.
To constantly have our wits about us forces us to be more present than ever before. Waking up in a new place with endless possibility ignites an excitement that's hard to dampen, that makes it hard to linger on the past or worry about tomorrow—all your focus is on today—and the endless possibilities of right now. This is one of the most important lessons you can take back home with you—experiencing every second of your life instead of dwelling on things that have already happened, things that are out of your control is vital.
People Are So Similar
Regardless of our culture, backgrounds, race, heritage, language and geographic location, we are actually more similar than we are different. No matter where you travel in the world, you come to realize quickly how alike we as humans really are. We all want to live lives that we are proud of, lives that are full of happiness, success and prosperity—there is no us versus them.
Once you have left your comfort zone, your place of familiarity, you'll see how quickly you can relate, understand and even see some of yourself in people with whom you thought you would have nothing in common. There is a human tether that runs between all of us, and you can feel more than ever when you are traveling.
When we travel, we are able to negate negativity easily, We are able to shed the things we think we need and rather give thanks for the things we already have. Material matters seem to melt away when we are surrounded by different people, with different values and different wants and needs.
Travel puts into perspective the desire we have for the things we think we want—and how much we actually have. When traveling you can't help but develop an attitude for gratitude for all the small things in life; like a tall glass of fresh water or a clean bed.
There is No Place Like Home
Dorothy said it a lot, but it fails to sink in until you're actually away from your own home—There's No Place Like Home. It's a reminder that Dorothy was right and there is in fact no place like home.
Traveling is an extremely rewarding experience. One that is filled with lots of lessons and some obstacles—and there is no place that won't teach or gift you with something enlightening. Everybody enjoys a vacation, but there is nothing like coming home to the familiarities you're accustomed to. Traveling makes you appreciate the people and places you grew up with—and how fortunate you are to have grown up with so much love and amenities at the tips of your fingers.
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