Longer or shorter, further or closer – nowadays traveling has become an essential part of the lives of many people. For some, traveling is only about taking cool new photos for social media, checking off the attractions from the bucket list, or lying by the hotel pool sipping drinks all day. But for other travelers, it can be one of the most meaningful and life-changing experiences. Let’s check how traveling can change your life based on real-life stories from other fellow travelers.
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Travel abroad changes how we look at life
In the beginning, we would like to mention that personally, we think that the most life-changing experiences happen during international travels. Then we are away from everything familiar and what we grew up with. We meet different people and experience new cultures, beliefs, lifestyles, and habits. That’s when we begin to understand that our way of living isn’t the only (appropriate) one.
We found an interesting study by Rice University in conjunction with Columbia University and the University of North Carolina. In 2018 they conducted six studies involving 1874 participants, and they found out that “living abroad increases “self-concept clarity” the extent to which individuals’ beliefs about themselves are clearly and confidently defined and consistent and stable over time.” Also, very interesting is the fact that more important is time spent abroad rather than the number of visited countries. Cool, huh? If you want to read more about the study visit sciencedaily.com website.
How Traveling Can Change Your Life?
Traveling has the power to change your life in many ways. Here are some examples. Traveling can:
- broaden your horizons, change your mindset, give you a new perspective
- provide a new way to perceive life, teach what’s important
- help form your personality, shape perception of many things
- help you get outside your comfort zone
- help you open to new experiences
- teach you new useful skills
- teach you how to deal with stressful situations
- make you more confident
- improve your mood, make you happy
- make you appreciate your life even more
- make you less materialistic
- teach you how to communicate, even without knowing the language
- make you well-organized and good at planning
It looks like traveling can change life in many areas but this is just a list without examples. Keep reading and discover how traveling changed our lives and the lives of our fellow travelers.
How has traveling changed the lives of our fellow travelers’ friends?
Some time ago on Twitter we asked our fellow travelers friends and here’s what we got:
Being able to travel and visit new places, meet new people and learn about new cultures is something I will never take for granted. I am incredibly lucky and grateful that I am in the position to do this and learn more about the world. Seeing more than just your home town or country makes it much easier to understand people, I believe. Even if others have a different view or opinions from your own, travelling has made it easier for me to see other people’s points of view. I’ve learned how to be a lot more independent while travelling and deal with the “unexpected”. Things don’t always go according to plan, especially when on a trip, and having to find creative ways to deal with this is something that even helps me in my day-to-day life at home. The anxiety of not being able to control everything is something I still struggle with, but travelling has definitely made it easier. Plus, the newfound inspiration and creativity I find abroad can’t compare to anything else. I never feel as refreshed and ready to make the most of everything as I do when I come back from a trip.
I have been traveling frequently for 10 years now but for the last past 3 years I have been also documenting my travels on my blog and Youtube channel. I absolutely love traveling and each trip has changed my life because from every new experience we learn something. We never return with the same thoughts or views. I always try to speak with the locals and try their way of living because so many people live so differently all over the world. A lot of times I have changed my opinion about things because different cultures have let me view things from different perspectives. I love to learn and each trip has learnt me something which I am very grateful for. I will never stop exploring and learning and that is what makes traveling so special and life-changing for me.
Out of the many things travel has brought me, I must say that becoming fluent in English is what has completely shaped my life for the past 10 years. It simply opened a completely new world to incredible cultures, opportunities and sides of who I could be.As a French citizen, I have learned English in School but never would I have ever imagined I could get a life or even a job in my field in an English-speaking country. Since I was a child, I had always been attracted to the foreign world and coming from a small town far from the busy cosmopolitan life, this was just not possible. Even Paris seemed unreachable… But then came the 2010’s, when travel became a lot more accessible with low-cost flights and working holiday visas. I grew confidence and moved across the world to Australia and then to New Zealand. There, I had to quickly learn English to earn a living and ensure I could continue eat… and continue my trip around both countries. These 18 months became the start of a new life. Little did I know that 10 years later, I would still live abroad (currently settled in Ireland) and barely speak any French in my day-to-day life.
I was in an abusive marriage and had 3 young boys. I had no confidence in myself and no freedom. One year, we had planned a family vacation and I was so excited because it was the first time I was “allowed” to have a say in what we did with our money. I had the trip all planned, and then my husband decided he didn’t want to go. The kids and I were devastated, but somehow, they convinced him to let us go without him.I took my 3 young boys in a road trip to the National Parks in Utah, by myself. We had so much fun. I realized I was capable of so much more than I had been led to believe. That trip literally changed my life. I came home, filed for divorce, and created a new life. One where the boys and I were safe, healthy and happy. We started traveling more. We traveled for holidays, and instead of buying things we experienced things. Travel has given us all a new perspective on life and a sense of confidence and adventure.
I don’t think I’d be the same person I am today if it weren’t for travel. Until my early twenties, I wasn’t really a ‘traveller’. I’d been around, but it didn’t really get me going the way it does now. At the time, I was the kind of person who’d rather be a stay-at-home couch potato than head off to parts unknown. But then a book inspired me to buy a tour-worthy motorcycle, and everything changed! I joined a local motorcycle club and started going on rides with them. I realized I loved the sense of freedom that came with riding for hours on the open road, stopping wherever we wanted and soaking up the landscape. The thrill of experiencing new places in that way was something I’d never felt before! And that made me see a whole new side of life. In retrospect, it probably played a big role in my decision to leave the corporate world behind, and become a freelancer instead. It’s been almost 15 years now, and I have zero regrets! Road trips, and motorcycle trips, in particular, are still my favorite, but I’ve embraced other ways to travel, too. And it’s revealed parts of my personality, and led me along paths in life, that I would probably never have discovered if I hadn’t started travelling.
I’m a part-time travel blogger and vlogger, and a full-time social worker. Travel has changed my life in a variety of ways. It’s broaden my perspective and thoughts on the world, other cultures, and how we are all connected to each other despite living separate lives in different places. Travel has taught me to be very patient, flexible, and creative because things do not always go according to plan. Finally, travel has taught me to be appreciative of what we have in life, to enjoy yourself, and to do what makes you happy because we’re not guaranteed tomorrow.
As a couple, we’re fairly unassuming & mostly grounded in our outlook. Travel has played a big part in strengthening these traits in us. Whenever we travel, we realize how insignificant we are & how privileged we are. Almost all of us like to think of ourselves as the center of the universe. But when we travel, we realize we are merely specks of dust in this cosmos. That’s really helped us take ourselves lightly and value people more. The second aspect – privilege – traveling a lot in India has opened our eyes to how so many live a fulfilled, happy life despite not having much. It has made us grateful for what we have, it has inspired us to adopt minimalism, and it has made us use our privilege to help, whenever we can.
Hi! My name is Shyam Kodavarthi and I live in Bangalore in southern India. I am 60+ and have been travelling since the age of 15. So, travel hasn’t changed my life. It’s been a part of my life. However, I did get divorced and have been living alone. Travel gave me a purpose in life. When I get up in the morning, I research and plan a trip. That’s something that I enjoy doing. I also write about my travels. Most of my travels are slow paced, solo and I write about journeys, people and chance encounters. My dream in life is to travel overland through Congo, from East to West. From Goma to Kisangani to Kinshasa to Pointe Noire. Let’s see if it happens!
I’m in my mid-50s, a mum and grandma based in Melbourne Australia, who loves photography, wildlife and travel. Cultural experiences, going outside my comfort zone, and exceptional wildlife encounters are what drives my passion for travel. And having opportunities to travel locally and overseas continues to enthrall me.
How has traveling changed our lives?
A bit of history
We started traveling in our 20s. The more countries we visited, the longer time we were spending abroad – the more we were changing. Thanks to traveling we discovered that we don’t want to live anymore in our home country. That we want to be digital nomads, live in many places all around the world and finally, one day find a place (or places) we’ll be proud to call home. Hence, we reorganized our lives, our work careers, and our business and did just that. We are still “just starting” compared to more seasoned and well-known travelers but we enjoy every moment of it.
Our traveling benefits
Traveling and seeing more than only our home country allowed us to see that the world is a very diverse place, and our way of living isn’t the only right one. We learned that the world isn’t a big, bad and dangerous place like the media loves to show it, and there are many good and helpful people everywhere around. We also became more confident about what we can achieve and what is possible in life.
To sum up: traveling showed us what we want from life. All places and all experiences shaped, and still shape our future, our beliefs, our lifestyle, and everything else even our work career.
Various people, various stories, various life-changing experiences. Before the travel starts you’ll never know how it’ll change your life. Maybe you even don’t expect this to happen. But one thing is for sure – traveling will change your life somehow, and you won’t run from it. Let yourself be guided by adventure, observe, learn, and grow into a better, more experienced version of yourself. Ready for a change? We hope so!
How traveling has changed your life? Share your story in the comments below.