Traveling is an experience of a lifetime…..
My recent posts only share my travel adventures; however, I wanted to take it a step deeper and get rooted into the base of it all. Why travel? Let’s break it down a bit. There are many reasons why you shouldn’t travel right? Long lines at the airport leading to security, it can be expensive, you have to buy a whole new wardrobe depending on the climate difference or just travel essentials you might not have. Wait, you can’t forget about the endless number of hours searching for good deals on hotels, flight tickets and planning your whole travel itinerary. Heck, traveling is time consuming and a money eater!
Yes, I may sound like a pessimist and hypocrite right now since I am a travel blogger, but just wait… there is always light at the end of the tunnel 😉 In addition, many times all of the bad is oddly or rarely mentioned. Just the good and the positive things are shared and the end result of it all. For instance, one of my trips to Oslo last year, I ended up experiencing a 10-hour delay, which made me miss my connecting flight. Long story short, I ended up going on an unexpected trip to Moscow for a quick vodka shot before heading over to my initial point of destination. Okay, okay… I was just being stereotypical there; but come on; I know you were thinking it!
Needless to say, I only documented my end result journey, which included how marvelous my time spent in Oslo was. Included in my post, I shared the beautiful scenery of the city that I saw throughout my journey. But the process of getting there was a sleepless and hectic one. Yes, traveling is not as seamless and glorious as many people portray it to be. Even myself… guilty!
Once I’m on that flight, the pilot has taken all necessary measures for departure and makes the announcement for all flight attendants to be seated for takeoff, my heart starts racing and I start to low-key panic. I begin to voice out my own thoughts under my breath, “why do I keep on doing this to myself when I know I am afraid of flying?!” The thought of my arrival at my destination throughout the duration of the time that I am thousands and thousands of feet up in the air, keeps me sane and focused while I am sunken into my seat on the plane. Once the captain’s voice appears in the intercom and announces our preparation for landing, my heart skips a beat. This isn’t due to my anxiety, but by the excitement of landing and embarking on my travels.
As I previously mentioned, there is always light at the end of the tunnel. Let it begin. The thought of experiencing the unknown gets my adrenaline going. Once I step off the plane and breathe in crisp, new air full of endless opportunities, I know adventures and new knowledge await me. I completely forget about the emotional drain the process of arriving had caused me. Then, I am ready to experience an adventure of a lifetime.
Traveling, to me, can be best defined as an investment for a lifetime, filled with stories to tell. I also view travelling as an investment for personal growth. I can assure you that once you travel outside of your comfort zone, your life will change forever. Why do I express with my opinion such certainty? Because once you arrive at a new place your body is unaware of, survival mode kicks in and your mind and body automatically opens up to what awaits. You start to notice the differences in the lifestyle, languages and food. Overall, you start to experience and be part of a different culture. It’s an experience like no other… far beyond what you would’ve imagined before embarking on such a journey.
Human beings are wired to always want more after experiencing something that is out-of-the-ordinary. It is similar to when one first start training. The process of adjusting and seeing results can be time consuming and somewhat draining to the body; however, once results start to appear and are visible, you start feeling better internally and externally. One then begins to grow more confident throughout the process. Our bodies begin to ask for more and more training, which provides a consistent, healthier lifestyle. Very similar when you travel, once you experience a taste outside of the ordinary, you immediately want to experience more. Including culture, more knowledge of a different setting, lifestyle, food, etc. That’s when you start to see the world in a different way.
You begin to realize there is much more to life than your little town where you grew up. There are more people out there to meet and discover other than your own group of friends. You will be surprised what happens once you open your mind to experience different cultures. You’ll come to find out that regardless of the cultural differences, there are many similarities and interests in common shared amongst the locals of the city you visit.
After reading some articles about traveling, there are some points that are mentioned repeatedly. I will be sharing with you some points I can relate with, as well as my personal touch and experience to each of the following points:
One of the BIGGEST and obvious changes about myself that I noticed after I started traveling was becoming a better conversationalist. You can seriously pick up a conversation and connect with just anyone you meet, no matter what his or her professional background is. When traveling, you become a lot more attentive to your surroundings and the people around you. Picking up a conversation with a person from another background in the city of travel destination helps one become much more open-minded, less judgmental and gives you the boost of confidence needed to strike a conversation.
Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. There is going to be some moments during your travels where you might feel out of place or home sick; trust me, this will happen. Accept the change! Once you accept the change in time, climate and culture, your body will slowly start to adapt to the changes. You will also, slowly break out of your shell and welcome in new experiences, friendships and lifelong memories!
Traveling is easier than you think
Many have asked me how I can travel so much when traveling is not cheap? There are many things in our daily lives that we either consume or wear that is not cheap or the smartest buys. Sometimes we have to draw out wants and needs to see which one of our frequent purchases should we eliminate. By doing this, we can put that money into a travel savings account. If you make time to go out to drink, eat, shop, you can make time to travel. It’s up to you to make the dream come true and to take the first step.
Travel opens your eyes
Once you see this world has more to offer, you will start to see things in a wider lens vision. Instead of focusing on the obvious, you’ll start to open your mind and notice the bigger picture. Once the wide lens glasses are put on, you’ll never want to take them off. If you’re open and willing, travel will make you a more incredibly well rounded human being. Surely that’s the end goal, right?
Traveling helps you learn who you are
Sometimes when isolated, you hear your own thoughts and you voice becomes clearer to you. When you travel, your refresh button is turned on. Your mind starts to wonder on your goals, dreams and ambitions. This is because you accomplished something great by just travelling! YOU got yourself there, meaning that if you use the same energy, discipline and planning, you are capable of doing beyond of what you can imagine. You learn what your passion is and what your strengths and weakness are.
Travel helps you learn new languages
Hearing a language that you didn’t know existed just a few weeks before is an incredible feeling. It’s like light bulb has turned one and it stays on. You notice that learning different languages to converse with the locals is fun and a great icebreaker too! Who need Rosetta Stone when you have the locals of each country out there eager to share their culture with you. But don’t forget, if you don’t use it… you’ll lose it!
Traveling gives you perspective
Meeting people from other cultures will teach you that the way you’ve been looking at the world is not always the way everyone else does. In fact, your point-of-view might have some major blind spots. Seeing the world for yourself will improve your vision and improve your grip on reality. In the end, it will help us become less judgmental and more understanding; hence, steering us away from ethnocentrism.
Travel is education
Are you not a fan of school and can’t remember the last time you opened a book to read? When you travel, you have an endless amount of information that is out there, ready for you to discover! Seeing the world provides an education that’s absolutely impossible get in school. Travel teaches you economy, politics, history, geography and sociology in an intense, hands-on way no class will.
Travel challenges you
Getting lost alone at 2 AM in a completely different country, where a different language is spoken, is scary. You start thinking the worst and panic starts to creep on you. However, when you later find a solution, and only you were the one to get yourself out of that lonely situation. Later, this experience becomes a comic story to share with friends. Travel is full of moments of joy and challenges. Overcoming the challenges gives you some of the greatest joys of all.
Travel is literally food for thought
Taste the world’s delicacies while traveling around the world that will give you a variety of delicious options to choose from. Your taste buds won’t believe what they’ve been missing out of this whole time! You will experience the way people in other cultures and countries prepare food. The best part is breaking bread together… it’s astounding!
At the end, traveling helps you realize, that home is not a place, but where the heart is….
Did you enjoy this T R A V E L U N R A V E L E D series? Want to read more on topics that interest you about traveling? Send us an e-mail at: Travelwithcurls@gmail.com with your request. I would love to feature you in my next post!