Is travelling worth It? What is travel about?
There are different advantages of travel. Here I’ll bring you three key reasons why you should get on the road and explore the world. When looking at human history, wouldn’t you say that travel, movement, migration, going from one place to another is part of human nature? Isn’t it the thing that kept us growing, learning, building the world and discovering new ideas? People have migrated since the beginning of time. Isn’t even evolution “a journey” of genes, mutation of DNA into something bigger, stronger and healthier?
Nowadays, travel is often associated with rest, with a holiday from your usual day-to-day, but I see travel as a growth opportunity. Here are a few things that make you grow and enrich your life into something bigger, stronger and better!
Being on the move, you meet loads of new people – that’s quite obvious. Have a think about how many people you meet when you live your daily life – you go to work, see the same people, and another group of the same people on your commute journey (or those who really don’t want to talk to you before they get their first morning coffee at the office). What does it give you? Knowledge, smiles, connection! Over my last 12 days (at the time of writing) of being in Australia, I spoke to at least one new person a day – all the conversations or even casual chats enrich you with the other person’s experience, views, opinions and knowledge. This is truly priceless – all the years they lived, all the books they read, all the places they have seen, their education and life wisdom – it’s there to share with you. Sometimes it is that one random sentence or word or quote that changes your day or the way you think!
As you travel and move through to the unknown, every day enriches you with a variety of views, ways of living and ways of thinking. It scopes out what you know about the world, people and life, and challenges your status quo. You start asking yourself questions – how am I living? Is this what I always wanted? Is this how I want to carry on? You may come to the conclusion that you don’t want it anymore – and that less is in fact more! I met people who worked in the usual “city life” and then moved to the countryside in the middle of nowhere, in places at the end of the world such as Tasmania, and started lavender fields. I met a couple – the lady was an auditor in the city and the guy was a chemist – who decided that city life was too much and ended up on a farm. People and their stories give you ideas, knowledge and wisdom. You see places that you could not have imagined before. You see the slums in the suburbs of Santa Marta, Colombia and you just have that blissful moment – how good your life is, how much you can appreciate all you have. You see a man with a half-leg selling mangos and pineapples as a source of living and finally, you appreciate your 9-5 job that you do with both legs and sitting! He has no choice but to work. In the Western world – in the city of London or similar, maybe he’d be on benefits and living off the state social system, but not here in Colombia – if he wants to live he has to pull his fruit cart at 6 in the morning and go to the corner of the street. When you run in the morning for that beautiful super-sweet pineapple, which tastes so different from the supermarket pineapple in London, you look into the man’s eyes. What do you see? Regret, pain, entitlement, bitterness? NO. You see a smile on his face that you’re having a breakfast there for the second day in a row. You see the appreciation and happiness in his life that you came again. You see a super hard-working man, with a great work ethic, happy and smiley face. Then, you feel so grateful for all you have and regret all your complaints about the silly things you moan about – like when you’re sore after your gym workout! So travel, see the world and appreciate the life you’ve got!
Confidence & intuition.
When you’re thrown into the deep end, this is when you build your confidence the most. I’d deviate from the dangers that put your life at risk, but when travelling you don’t have to go that far. When you travel – whether with someone or solo – you must make decisions that are out of your comfort zone; you need to sleep in places that are different to your usual comfy bed, you need to push yourself a bit further to discover the beautiful treks, hikes and nature. You need to eat food that is different to your usual, but it will not kill you! There are moments when you’re on the road and there is no internet, and your GPS suddenly stops working; you need to make decisions based on what’s inside you. This is how you train your intuition. Then, when finally, you discover you made the right choice at that left turn, you build yourself up and trust yourself more. Intuition is a trainable skill. The more you use it in a variety of fields, the more powerful it becomes.
You need to talk to people in sign language if you don’t speak their local language, and you learn that we are all very basic creatures and, indeed can communicate in so many different ways. For example, when you drive along the Pan-American Highway across Chile in your scrappy rented car and you get stopped by the police. What do you do? Yes, you have signed up for a Spanish course, but you were a bit lazy at the time and remember just random words. You think, what do they want? And then, in that one moment, one word saves the journey and turns it into a great laugh – “LUCES!” they shouted! No, the policewoman is not called Lucy – they want you to turn your lights on and then they can let you go. And you don’t get the whole sentence but that one word you learnt makes you just proud enough to sign up for that Spanish course again when you’re back in Europe. Any unexpected moments and the way you deal with them help you to build your confidence and be proud of what you learnt and who you are.
So go on, travel the world, meet great people, build your wisdom, confidence, improve your intuition and appreciate life more! There is much more wisdom that you can gain and if you’d like to learn more about where a journey can take you, check out the full story of Lola and her journey towards the mountains in The Sacred Mountains parable, where I explore the concept of discovering a new world.