You did it! You did what every teacher and parent told you to do; you reached for the stars, followed your heart, and worked to achieve your dreams.
Perhaps you’re one of the top 3% of the world population who spent at least one semester going to post secondary education. If it clicked for you and you made it through, now you have a diploma, a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, or maybe even a doctorate putting you in the top 1%.
School wasn’t for you; screw it. You went right to work, apprenticed, found a job that paid twice as much as your friends who wasted their time studying things they’ll never use, and now, just like the rest of us, you’ve come to realize you’re not where you expected to be.
The reality for many 20-somethings is that they’re not as happy as they should be. Perhaps you’re the one who has a job you dislike more days than not, didn’t meet the soul mate you were supposed to marry and settle down with, realized that growing up meant debt, car insurance, rent, a mortgage, and buying more and more stuff that you don’t even use.
With all the luxuries so many of us are afforded in western countries, its amazing to think how many of us are unhappy, confused, wondering if there’s more to life, and thinking about how great it would be to just pick up leave and travel the world.
Why shouldn’t you get out there and experience life? Life wasn’t meant to be spent sitting behind a desk on a computer by day followed by the same number of hours glued to your smart phone by night.
In today’s modern world, we’re so busy that we don’t even have time to meet people; in turn creating social lives that revolve around binary interactions translated by a computer.
Which brings us all to the ultimate questions we keep asking ourselves at work, during our gruelling commutes, at dinner, all day every day, day in and day out. The questions that need you to stop making excuses. The questions that only saying “yes” will answer.
Will traveling make me happy? Will it cure the disappointment of real life? Will it change my life for the better?
Just the other day you saw a friends Facebook post that read, “loving life” with a picture of them swinging from a jungle vine into crystal clear blue water with a bunch of fun loving people who’s smiles were so big they looked like freakin’ bananas, and you wished you could be there.
The best part about being alive today, is that if you want to experience life on the road traveling the world without a care, you can. To be honest, travel probably won’t change your life in the way you expected, but that’s the beauty of if.
There’s no guarantee that if you travel life’s disappointments will be gone because life isn’t always easy. That being said, you will be a different person because you’ll learn.
You’ll learn that the world is a big place with different people, cultures, foods, and natural wonders.
You’ll learn that we as a global population have more commonalities than differences.
You’ll learn about the simplicity of life and that you don’t need more and more stuff to make you happy.
You’ll learn that sleeping under the stars is a beautiful thing that shouldn’t be scary.
You’ll learn that sharing a meal with new friends and talking about life is just as good as the craziest party you’ve ever been to.
You’ll learn to respect and understand everyone’s differences and celebrate their uniqueness.
You’ll learn that people are inherently nice and that love is all around us.
You’ll learn who you are as a person, and if you’re lucky, what you really want to do with your life.
You’ll learn how to listen; to yourself, to people, and to the world.
You’ll learn that money is important but it shouldn’t be your only priority.
You’ll learn that living a life with love, friendship, community, learning and new life experiences is worth more than any object.
You’ll learn why the saying, “don’t judge a book by its cover” exists.
You’ll learn to break down stereotypes.
You’ll learn that it’s okay to wear the same unwashed clothes for weeks a time.
You’ll learn that you can live out of a backpack comfortably, that you don’t need technology, and that just sitting somewhere can be inspiring.
You’ll learn to trust, love, and be a part of something you never knew existed; something that’s bigger than all of us.
You’ll meet new friends, new loves, new foods, new cultures, new places and new people.
And when you come home…
You’ll know who you are. You’ll know how to listen, love, and trust yourself. And most of all, you’ll know that life is a journey that’s different for everyone, and that’s a good thing.
So go out and travel, or stay home and be happy with what you have. Just stop making excuses for why life isn’t what you thought it would be, and start figuring out ways to change your perspective!
What have you learned from traveling?