When you’re dreaming about travel and travel-planning, your trip can become your whole world.
Does all this putting yourself at the center of things make you self-centered? Where does it leave the other people in your life? When it comes down to it, is travel a selfish pursuit?
Here’s why we think no, and why we think you should do travel anyway.
1) Doing Good For Yourself Lets You Do Good For Others
As soon as I started to travel and volunteer, my mood went through the roof. I was so happy to be doing what I’d always dreamed. I was so happy to be traveling.
That positivity rubbed off on others. Happiness engenders happiness.
When you’re living your dream, your positive outlook can make others stop and think about what they could do to feel the same way. Or, it just lets them join you in a laugh and a smile.
2) Travel Makes You Happier
It wasn’t just collateral cheerfulness I was spreading. As I traveled further, I became more active about sharing the good vibes.
My outer and inner life did a complete 180; When I was doing things for others, I was thinking a lot about myself.
Working hard at school or at a job, as I’d always felt I should, much of my thought processes were consumed with questions like: Why am I doing this? What can I do to be happier? What am I really meant to be doing?
When I was doing things for myself, I was thinking about others.
3) You Think about How to Give Back
Living the travel mission I’d always wanted to try, all my deep, existential worries about my purpose faded away – for the moment, I was living my goal instead of mulling over it.
With me sorted, I found myself thinking much more about the people around me.
How were they feeling? How could I help them? What would be a nice little thing to make someone smile?
And once you’re in that state, you’ll find it doesn’t end when your trip does. Travel continues to bring unexpected joys to my life.
4) You End Up Bringing It Home
Spending a year abroad was a big investment in myself, but now that I’ve put the time into pursuing my passions, I’ve noticed some definite changes to my outlook on life.
Solo travel was my big dream. It took a lot of hard work and a lot of time waiting, but I made it happen.
And that’s an accomplishment that’s given me a lot of confidence.
I’m more secure when faced with little, everyday hiccups that used to worry me endlessly.
5) You Return with Different Goals
When I was hellbent on travel, I tried to save as much money as I could, and live on just a little while I was abroad. Now that I’ve done it, I’ve found I don’t have a huge desire to live on more. Instead, I just feel more appreciative of what I do have.
It’s given me a stronger foundation on which to build better relationships.
6) Travel Makes You More Outgoing
With family and friends, I’m more cheerful, quicker to laugh at myself, and so thankful to be with them again after time away.
Travel made me much more outgoing. After making conversation with 40 new people at once, it’s a lot easier to chat with one or two people you encounter at home!
Striking up these conversations has led to interesting connections. I’ve been more proactive about meeting local and traveling volunteers in my area, networking with people who share my interests and making not just friends but friends of friends and even strangers feel welcome in my home.
Perhaps the best discovery I made while traveling is this:
You can only give other people what you already have.
If travel is the curiosity you have to satisfy, and the goal you’re longing to meet, don’t hesitate to put the time and energy into chasing down your dream.
Because once you do, you’ll experience those moments of utter joy and contentment that you can give back to the people you meet, and the world you’ve roamed.