I can recall the very first trip I took with my family. It was a simple road trip to Detroit for a family reunion, but I can remember the distinct feeling of excitement. The preparation was as if it was a sacred ritual. Shopping for last minute items, planning and packing your favorite outfits, creating a music playlist, then picking your seat in the car. The long road ahead never seemed long. I was always kept entertained by either the music on my iPod, the snacks my mother packed, or from watching my siblings fight over the last CapriSun. There was never a dull moment.
However, little did I know that would only be the beginning of my love affair with travel.
What does travel do for you?
At some point, traveling became a breath of fresh air for me. It was like placing a bookmark in a novel then picking up another to learn something I hadn’t even though about discovering before. That’s the thing about traveling. You think you’ve planned out a trip to the T and you know all about what you’re about to encounter, only to discover the complete opposite of what you’ve read or watched on TV. It’s truly eye-opening. A bit scary at first, but it immediately teaches you a lot about yourself.
You know, sometimes you just have to put yourself in new environments, cultures, and situations to bring light to the things that make up the core of you.
During my first overseas trip to Florence, Italy, I began to question a lot of things. For some reason, it not only gave me time to truly think but time to think about things in a completely new way.
How does travel affect your mindset?
Taking a trip to a remote destination has a multitude of mindful benefits. It is known to boost your creativity, make you more trusting, increase problem-solving skills, bring humility and humbleness, makes you more open to new things, makes you sharper, less fearful, helps reinvent yourself, increases happiness, brings focus to work, makes you more patient, can help you get over a loss, and make you feel more present and alive.
According to Thrive Global, “Unlocking these things happen when you truly open up to the place you are visiting, whether it is a new country, a new city, or a new street in your own backyard. Opening up implies that you are ready to learn and to challenge any preconceived notions you might bring to this new place. It means leaving your mental baggage behind so that you may return with newfound riches in the form of unforgettable experiences, knowledge, cultural awareness, and friendships.”
Why would you need the break?
No one man or woman can hold themselves in solitary confinement for too long or they’ll go crazy. It’s been proven of the effects it does to the mind, emotions, and body. Solitary confinement? Yes. Cubicles, private offices, corner desks, and isolated workstations, all give you the privacy you need to get your work done and to stay focused, but for how long do you think you could actually stay there? Traveling serves many different purposes, but for most people, it is an opportunity to escape that monotony of everyday life. Travel cannot only lead to great personal growth but to unsurmountable reflection. It’s a time to take a much-needed mental break and simply ask yourself necessary questions like: Am I happy? What makes me happy? Am I living my purpose?
How do you start to travel?
Get a map and start looking at the places that look of interest to you. Research the place you spotted on the map. See if it will be a place that can accommodate your needs when traveling. Imagine yourself there. Get a passport! Next, look for deals that fit your budget. Places like Groupon, Airbnb, VRBO, and Hopper are dedicated to finding you all-inclusive packages, experiences, flights, and housing, all on a budget. So, no excuses!
This post was also published on BlackDoctor.org. Check it out!