“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.”
– Gustave Flaubert
Travel and tell no one, someone said. I believe if you travel, tell everyone. Share your story. I am sure we all know that traveling has become a must for the youth today. In comparison to our parents’ generation, certainly us millennials are exploring more than what our predecessors. An Article by Forbes explains how factors like escaping student loans, improving relationships, growing through culturally rich experiences and the mere desire for adventure have resulted in millennials becoming the most important customers for travel industry today.
If you’re feeling exhausted or stuck somewhere in the past, it’s time for you to take a few days off. Whether you plan a trip overseas or go cross-country, it will help you take your mind off all the troubles by giving you a new perspective to life. Indeed, money is a big issue whilst planning vacations but there are loads of websites today ready to help you with deals on flights and accommodation. You don’t have to choose a 5-star hotel when you can stay at a hostel somewhere with a chance at making new friends. There are definite ways of getting around the financial pressure. Just pick a spot where you would like to go and that could fit in your budget at the same time. Now, if you need a little motivation, here are a few reasons why I think traveling is beneficial for your mental health:
- Stress Buster. Leaving town and getting away from the monotonous schedule can provide you with a change that you very much need. Be it short term but while you’re on holidays, there is no obligation of getting somewhere on time or getting anything done and even if it’s for a week, the no deadline sort of life makes you realize the importance of stepping back and appreciating the world a little more. Moreover, the freshness of existing somewhere new will automatically make you worry less. Taking a walk or losing yourself on the streets knowing that you don’t have a chore waiting for you is a relaxing feeling. At least for me it is.
- Increases personal happiness and satisfaction. Less stress means enhanced contentment and peace. The more you explore and notice how tiny of a part you play in this gigantic universe, the more it brings you satisfaction. Meeting people, doing things on your own, learning new things about a city you’ve never been to will strike as an achievement. Every time I visit a new destination, I feel like my time on this planet has been worth it. Traveling just does that to me. Knowing that I am doing something other than just working and living, brings me happiness. I think it has more to do with the purpose of life that exploration provides us with.
- Boosts Confidence. Being alone in an unfamiliar place can be scary but once you overcome the initial fear, there is nothing that could bring you more confidence than knowing that you are able to wander without getting lost. Traveling alone means having to make decisions on your own and surviving based on your intuitions/gut feeling. Learning about a new country and it’s rules, cultures, traditions as well as obvious norms can teach you lots about communication. It becomes easier to approach strangers which upon your return, indirectly helps you in your everyday life. It might also strengthen your personal and social relationships with others since the feeling of inferiority reduces after one takes on a trip.
- Letting go seems easier. If you have lost something or someone recently, I know you feel like you’re never going to get over it but trust me on this one that it will happen. The more you see yourself getting comfortable with being alone, the more letting go seems closer. It won’t just happen with one trip but these excursions put you in the right direction towards making it happen. You will understand that life doesn’t stop with or without someone so you might as well just live it up while you have one.
- Personal growth and development. Vacationing, whether it’s for recreational purposes and/or rough adventures, introduces yourself to you in different ways. Certain experiences that wouldn’t have come your way back home, teach you about what you like and what you don’t (what makes you happy and what doesn’t). You acquire a sense of wonder for everything that has been going around you that you never knew of. The choices and experiences you acquire will make you who you are.
To conclude that traveling benefits your mental health, I’ll suggest you take a trip now. Go anywhere. Take a road trip to a different province you’ve always wanted to go to. Book a flight and think of nothing. I’d definitely recommend a solo adventure to everyone at least once in their lives. It broadens your perspective about everything and instills resilience and confidence in your personality. Let me know of your travel stories. I would love to hear about them. Much love 🙂
Fun Fact : I am in Montreal right now, trying to just write something while I have it on my mind. I promised myself I would write even when I am traveling so keeping up with my new year’s resolutions I guess.