Why Travel is Essential to a Happy Life

Inherently, we all love to travel, to get out and see new places, have new experiences. But why? What space, deep inside us, does travel fill?

Travel Breaks Routine

Imagine every day that you get up and do the same thing (perhaps you don’t have to imagine it). The body soon becomes stagnant and the brain numb. If both the body muscles and brain muscles are not stimulated they atrophy and without change they do not stay strong. The body and mind thrive on change. Travel is change. Going to new places breaks the routine of a sluggish mind and stimulates it. When you are traveling, do you ever wish the day to go faster, ever look at your watch to see how much longer you have to do what you’re doing? Do you ever wish you were doing something else at that moment? Doubt it. The day passes in luxurious satisfaction knowing you lived it in fullness and happiness.

Travel Peaks our Curiosity

When we travel, our natural curiosity is aroused. We begin to question our world and ask that which we spend most of our childhood asking … WHY? We open an inward space outside the constraints of daily routine to become once again inquisitive. It is the way that we build our knowledge about the world. The more we travel the more we desire to travel more and a grand addiction results.

Travel Involves Risk Which Makes us Feel Alive

Life involves a measure of risk and travel involves a slightly greater slice of the risk pie. When was the last time you were truly edgy about an unknown situation and felt uncomfortable? There is an excitement in the element of an uncertain outcome, which is the simple definition of risk. I’m sure it releases those feel good endorphins. Certainly don’t go out and throw yourself under a bus, but live a little, get out there and be uncomfortable. Create yourself a few new stories to tell.

Travel Allows Us to Connect with “Unlike Minded” People

Why would we want to travel all over the world to find people just like us? There are a gazillion people like you at home. It’s MORE fun to travel to meet unlike minded people. Open your mind to a different view, stretch and strain some of those contemplative, reflective, curious, analytical muscles atrophying in your gray matter, and reach for something new.

Travel Teaches Us About Ourselves

By experiencing a bigger slice of the world, it defines our place in it, where you fit into the puzzle of life. It might make you think how small you are in the world. Or you may see that you are needed as a big piece in some place to make it better.

Travel Builds our Mental Map of the World

If you’ve never been to Asia, the world that you see in your mind has either no concept or a pre-conceived map of that place. As we travel, we “fill in” the maps and the gaps. You can begin to connect the dots of the world map in your mind. Once you’ve traveled to China and Thailand and Malaysia they become “real”. You begin to see the similarity of people and place and physically connect them.

Recently I traveled to Nebraska. I had never seen the northwest part of the state. Up in that corner before it hits South Dakota there are rolling hills of Ponderosa pine trees, kind of a mini Black Hills that rise out of the Sand Hills. Now I can mentally see how these states fit together and it adds another block to my mental world map. The great puzzle of the planet begins to make more and more sense.

Travel Allows us to Bond – My Final thought

The reason we travel is to have new experiences and open our minds to great new horizons. And the more we discover the differences between us the more we discover how similar we really are.

Bonding with people and places worldwide leads to greater appreciation of the planet we share. Ideally we become more tolerant of each other, champions of change for good and ambassadors of peace for our planet. That is my greatest hope.

To Your Adventures,


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