How Traveling Will Save Your Life! Or at least make it better.

Credit to Chris Goldberg/ Flickr

Alright, this might sound crazy but I’m going to read your mind. Well sort of…. Ok actually I’m just going to make some blanket statements and some of them might stick. When they do, pretend like you’re amazed (just say “woooowww”) and then keep reading. Trust me, it’ll all make sense in the end.

Chances are that if you’re reading this and work anywhere near a computer you probably feel like you work too much. You’re overloaded with internal and social pressures to “be something”, to “do something”. You miss the “you” that used to have awesome ideas. You think you might still have them, but you just can’t find the time to make them come to life.

If you watch the news you might think the world is falling apart. You suffer from information overload and just want to find a way to feel alive again. You’re probably tired and reading this because you’re avoiding doing something else.

If you are. Wait!! Don’t go!! I can help.  

Any of the above sound like you? Or maybe you’re totally happy and probably already travel or go on mini-adventures.  Either way, traveling will make your life better. If all of the above applies to you, then it just might actually save your life.

Here’s how.

  1.   Ticket to Happiness

In a study literally called “Waiting for Merlot”, researchers found that the simple act of preparing for or anticipating an “experience” like vacation, will make you way happier than buying things. On top of that, the stress reduction allows you to “reset” a bit and has lasting benefits even after you get back from your vacation.

And while it’s awesome that you get a happiness boost just “anticipating” your vacation, think of the happiness you’ll get by actually going on one. Or better yet, stop your shopping therapy, buy a ticket instead and find out!

  1.   Get Sharper

When you’re booking your trip, be sure to include some nature in your vacation. Why? Well to sum up a lot of research; time in nature improves your focus, performance and has loads of health benefits. And if you’re like “duh!” then envision me “duh!”ing you back with more of an “exactly dude(tte)!” tone.

Go climb a waterfall, kayak to a tropical island, go surfing, climb a mountain or just lay on a beach and drink your favorite drink. So long as it’s in nature, you’ll shed some stress and be able to perform at your best.

  1.   Conquer Your Fears!

I mean this quite literally. From fear of heights to fear of others, traveling will introduce you to experiences that will help you encounter and/or overcome some inner fears. Especially if you choose to knock some off your list. (You can do it!)

It’s basically like getting a second chance at childhood! So go play, go try that thing you’ve always wanted to do and go meet some people. Then jump out of airplanes, swim with sharks, trek through jungles, try weird foods or do whatever! Each time that you survive to tell the story, you’ll be glad you had the experience… And soon enough, you might start to crave more.

  1.  Creativity Boosts

Have a creative issue that you just can’t seem to figure out? Go on vacation!

People who live, work and/or travel overseas are exposed to the reality that people think and live in many different ways. Yep, not everyone in the world shares your perspective. Experiencing this first hands helps you develop greater “cognitive flexibility”. And the more cognitively flexible you have, the easier it is to “think outside the box” and thus the more creative you’re likely to be.

On top of that you’ll be able to step back from some of the cultural dramas that used to seem “so important” and have a better idea of who you really want to be.

  1.  Emotional Balance and Stability

And the best part is that travel will help you feel relaxed when unexpected things come your way. When you travel, something is bound to not be or go exactly as you thought it should. Fortunately, you’re benefiting from all of the good stuff above so you’re also more likely to be patient and find a solution or the silver lining.

Basically travel will help you learn to love yourself, be your best self and will help you open yourself to the possibilities of the world. So if you’re feeling trapped at all then hopefully this article will give you enough excuses to get out there and live while you’re alive. And that. That will save your life.