How travel changed my life

How travel changed my life

How travel changed my life

This may sound cliché, but I hope you bear with me! If you already travel, you probably know what I mean. If you haven’t traveled much before, maybe you’re hesitant to read on (I understand!). But I encourage you to continue reading — because these are some of the ways travel could change your life! Read on to hear how travel changed my life. Maybe you will even have something to add.

Confidence

The number one thing is confidence. When you travel you navigate different, interesting, and challenging circumstances. I struggled with confidence in high school. I still do, as everyone does here and there. But after I lived in Poland for 12 months, I came back to the U.S. so much more confident. When I was about to enter a situation that I typically would have been self conscious in, I would remind myself: “I lived in another country on my own for a year. I have nothing to worry about!”

Forever wanderlust

This is both a blessing and a curse. But I will forever have wanderlust. It’s such an amazing feeling to dream about the places you want to travel to and to appreciate each place you go to. It can also be expensive and all-encompassing of my thoughts. But I still wouldn’t change it for a thing 🙂

There are solutions to this! Check out my post on how to save and travel with less money and how to incorporate travel planning into your busy life (making sure to be intentional).

I have friends all over the world

I truly have good friends all over the world (Poland, eSwatini, Germany, Canada, South Korea, and India to name a few). And if I don’t have friends living in other countries, I have many friends who have had experiences in other places. It’s changed the depth of my friendships, how I travel, and the memories that I have.

I appreciate slowing down

Travel can help you slow down in your everyday life. After seeing how other people live around the world, and after going on a “vacation” where you slow down, you start to understand that you can make that part of your week. There are so many health benefits to slowing down to breath and to live in the moment.

It’s helpful to get out of the United States to truly experience this. Our culture in the U.S. is very driven and goal-oriented, where success is based on how many things you have on your resume. I think back to how fast-paced my life was in high school. I had sports practice, difficult exams to study for, friends to prioritize, clubs to participate in, volunteering to do, and a part-time job to work hard at. These things taught me to juggle responsibilities. But wow – am I glad I’ve learned to love life without being that busy.

I can embrace the tiny, everyday things — like tiny espressos

Similarly, travel has changed my life because it’s taught me to embrace small everyday things (like tiny espressos!). I really embrace my morning coffee, my short walks outside, petting my dog, and listening to a good podcast.

Related to slowing down, we almost feel like we can’t enjoy something until we “deserve” to — until we’ve worked so hard we’re exhausted. But what kind of life is that??! Even when we we’re so busy, it’s important to enjoy little things throughout the day. Travel has taught me this. Now, some of the things I look forward to the most are simple, everyday rituals.

It’s helped me build connections

This might sound silly. And honestly, I’m shy about talking about my travels. I don’t want to be “that” person. I don’t want to come off as privileged, or stuck-up. Because the truth is that I am neither of those things. But it’s amazing how much I’ve learned from traveling, how much it’s opened up my world view.

This shows in conversations. I can relate to a news story in South Africa. I get really curious about a co-workers experience living in another place. When someone brings up their experience in Eastern Europe, I can relate and we can connect.

Led me to my partner

This may sound cheesy, but I believe it’s so true! I’m not saying you will necessary fall in love with someone under the Eiffel Tower (but who knows, maybe you will!). But, travel has made me stronger in my values and priorities. This all helped me understand who to put energy into on dating apps, at parties with friends, and with random interactions.

For those that are looking for their partner, I’m not saying I did anything “right”, but I do think that travel has shaped me into the person I am. Thus, it’s solidified the person I want to be with. And I do think that has helped me find my amazing fiance 🙂

Helped me prioritize

How travel changed my life…. It helped me prioritize! It helped me prioritize in every way of my life. I learned what was truly important to me, who is really important to me, and the goals that are most important to me. If you haven’t done much traveling before, this is one of the ways that travel may change your life.

Taught me to budget for travel

The people I am writing to are people like me! You might not have a ton of discretionary income, you may not have grown up traveling the world, AND you might also have a family and career at home that you love. How do you travel affordably when all this is the case? One of the most important things you have to do is to make a travel-budget. Because I forever have wanderlust, I have to budget some savings to travel, even if it’s 100$ per month.

This is one way travel has changed my life. I no longer, feel like a huge trip is financially out of reach.

Makes the world feel smaller, but so much more interesting

It is ironic, but the more you travel, the smaller the world feels. Before traveling, I would hear a news story in another country. It would seem so…..far away…. so foreign….. Now, those international stories don’t feel so far away. They are much more relatable and somehow more connected with my life. It’s a strange thing to describe.

Curiosity that will never go away

Finally, the biggest way travel has changed my life, is that I have so much curiosity for the world. Some people may not think this seems so important. But I can’t imagine my life without this curiosity now. It gives me so much joy, appreciation, and love for the world.

What are some ways travel has changed your life? If you haven’t done much traveling but want to, I hope you found this list inspiring!

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