Traveling is an incredible way to invest both your time and your resources. And as for someone on the go many days out of the year, I find that through travel, I create some of the most memorable moments in my life. Traveling has the power to inspire so much in anyone’s life, bringing on new experiences, new memories, new foods, and so much more. With so much to see and explore, I’ve found there are also many lessons learned while traveling that I hold onto every day. So, I’d like to share with you some of the life-changing lessons I discovered while traveling the world.
1. Practice patience
Have you ever traveled somewhere and experienced a delayed flight? Or maybe it was canceled? As a seasoned traveler, I discovered early on how important it is to be patient, even in the most frustrating situations.
Maybe you are in a different country, and you hopped on the wrong train or, you’re having trouble understanding the local language. Whatever it may be, patience can take you much further than frustration ever will. When we’re used to running on autopilot, if things don’t go according to plan, it can cause us to become flustered and maybe even angry, potentially causing a snowball effect of further disappointment.
But sometimes it’s just a matter of taking a deep breath and practicing a little patience. You are basically allowing yourself the opportunity to stay calm. So you must pay attention to those tough moments and understand that you have a choice to make. I find that the calmer I remain, the better the outcome. So learning to just go with the flow has helped me even in the most trying times.
“Patience is not the ability to wait, but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.”
2. Trying new things
What’s your favorite thing to do when you travel? Explore new places? Try new foods? Well, you may not realize it at first, but when you try new things, you are adding precious memories and valuable experiences to your life. Even just reminiscing on the first time you flew on a plane or dipped your toes into the Pacific Ocean, you are reminding yourself and the Universe what brings you joy.
Again, when we get used to running on autopilot, we aren’t able to see the beauty in discovering new things. And when we feel like life seems monotonous, it can really just be a matter of changing things up and trying something new.
So maybe that’s trying a local delicacy in a foreign country or skydiving or just changing your route to work in the morning. Trying new things can come in the simplest forms, so even if you find it’s not for you, you can at least say you tried.
3. The value in getting lost
Did you know that some of the most magical moments in my life were not actually planned? You see, there is so much to be learned from getting lost. When you find yourself lost in a new place or situation, you are forced to pay attention a little more and embrace what’s right in front of you. You get to see how you respond to what life throws your way, ultimately challenging you to think and react on your feet.
I’ve had some of the most humbling experiences when I seemed to have lost my way. So it’s the unpredictable moments that you stumble upon that allow you to be present and stay in the moment. I strive to always be a better version of myself each day, so getting lost can actually help you find yourself. You’re able to learn and rediscover more about the kind of person you want to become. And any way you can grow to be better is an added bonus in life.
4. Finding the beauty of getting out of your comfort zone
Comfort zones make us feel safe and secure. So when you’re in your comfort zone, you don’t have to worry about the possibility of any unknowns. Taking risks can be scary, and sometimes we make up predetermined outcomes for those risks that prevent us from moving further. And most of the time, those pre-made outcomes never come to fruition, proving that there was nothing to worry about afterall.
But you see, it’s when we step out of our comfort zones that we have the power to grow. When you start to get a little more comfortable with change, you are telling the Universe to reveal newness in your life. That means more exciting, fun, and even thrilling moments you never thought you would experience.
Whenever I travel to a new place, I’m stepping into brand new territory filled with endless possibilities. Traveling has allowed me to see the beauty of getting out of my comfort zone, and it’s those moments that show you how much fun life can be.
“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?”
–Vincent van Gogh
5. Embracing other cultures (and our differences)
The world is a big place, filled with different kinds of people, cultures, religions, and so on. It’s really our differences that make us all so special and unique. Traveling and seeing how many different kinds of people are out there is a big reminder that the world is so much bigger than our friends, family, and inner circles.
Cultural diversity is what helps me understand and acknowledge people for who they are, and that not everyone is like me. When you can understand and embrace a world filled with different people, your daily interactions with those around you will be filled with so much more love, kindness, and compassion. I am grateful for the opportunity to travel, which has shown me the importance of embracing our differences.
6. Discovering a different way of life
In addition to embracing other cultures, discovering a different way of life is a life lesson that can really only reveal itself when you travel. You can learn a lot from understanding how others handle daily life. Let’s think about some of our morning routines for a second… We wake up, get dressed, maybe have a bite to eat, and then drive to work.
But for those living in other places around the world, their days may look completely different. Even just being in a rural town compared to a big metropolitan city, people spend their days doing totally different things.
Some people commute on underground trains. Some people live on farms and wake up early to feed animals. And for some, walking several miles to work every day is totally normal. So bearing witness to different lifestyles creates perspective in life. Seeing how others operate also helps shine a light on equality and that no one group is better than another. We may do things differently, but we’re all still equals.
These life lessons I have learned from traveling the world have helped me in all areas of life - work, relationships, love, and so much more. The ability to travel is truly a gift that I’m so incredibly grateful for.
And while you’re here, I’d like to show my gratitude for you! I’ve got some special tools right here for you to use to get in the daily gratitude mindset, including a very special gift from me. So here’s to more love, more gratitude, and more travel days! :-)
Natalie Ledwell is a best selling author, speaker and successful entrepreneur. She's passionate about helping others to achieve their greatest dreams and ambitions through her personal development programs and her online TV show, The Inspiration Show.