How travel can be therapeutic ? Travelers are familiar with an ailment known as “The travel bug”. Luckily, it’s curable with a flight to anywhere but here. Besides the desire to mark off cities from a long travel bucket list, the journey can do so much more for a person. It can be a therapeutic experience no luxury spa can imitate.
If you live in a big, fast paced city, you want nothing more than a relaxing getaway. The same can go for a suburbanite looking to shake things up from a mundane routine. You begin to develop a love/hate relationship with the comforts of home and the desire of the unknown. For most travelers, once you set foot off the plane, the rush of a new journey rushes through your body and the therapeutic experience begins.
The Overall Excitement
It’s hard to imagine a single person on vacation, or an extended trip that is not excited. (If the reasons for the trip are positive, to say the least.) Visually seeing new places, new faces and destinations. One begins to highlight every other word in their guide book anticipating what this new city has to offer. Traveling is an exciting experience that most people look forward to. For some, it is the excitement of coming back home and sharing their insights and planning the next trip. Once that bug has bitten, you’re infected.
Suddenly, you’re diving head first into the travel experience. Your day is spent worrying about your camera batteries dying or wondering if you caught enough pictures of that gorgeous sunset. Seeing new places is probably one high dose of endorphins and the travel fix is the way to get it.
An opportunity to do more for yourself and others
Traveling can be a selfish experience, or not. There is nothing wrong with going on a solo adventure. You’re doing more for yourself as a person, expanding your knowledge through cultural and social interactions. Being on vacation can mean so much more than Facebook updates about where you are currently and buying souvenirs to bring home if only you let it. There are a lot of good vibes to soak up.
Indulge in yourself on your travels; do things you’ve never done before. A trip in itself can be the very first step in doing something you’ve never done before. Go further and find therapy in jumping off cliffs, hiking mountains or simply scuba diving with the fishes. You’ll look back at the photographs and videos and smile at the crazy and exciting moments you threw yourself into with the attitude of ”Why Not?”
It’s also a chance for some outward life perspective. Volunteer Travel is a great chance to give back and see new places at the same time. It’s a reality check to appreciate where you come from and to help others that may not be as fortunate to travel. It can be part of your travels or the entire reason you decide to make this trip. It’s a win win situation for yourself and others, so why not?
Interactions with new people
Painfully, I once admitted to being a socially awkward traveler. It was the social interactions with others on my trip that made me much better at communicating not only with others, but myself. For backpackers, it’s easier than you think to make a new friend. There is the common bond of living out of a bag and vagabonding around cities.
Having a person to share your thoughts, griefs and rants during travels is free therapy in itself. It’s also a bridge towards future friendships. How beneficial is it now for both parties to have a new friend rooted somewhere else in the world? Having global friends can make for another great reason to travel and explore a new country and culture.
Having “me” time
Sometimes when you’re worn out from pub crawls or long travel days with your travel buddies, you really need time for yourself. There is no value put to reflecting inwards on a trip. Having “me” time gives an individual insight on a multitude of things. You start to digest what you’ve seen and learned abroad. It also gives you a time to travel at your own liking. Ever so often does it get tricky to be respectful of others travelers needs and ways of travel.
Personally, my travels have been a journey of self realization. (And it still is currently.) You start to learn more about yourself than you ever have imagined. Every scenario you face, every place you visit and every friend you make becomes a fixated memory you’ll treasure forever. Traveling every once in a while is my chance to connect with the world, and myself.
Clears your mind
Whether you’re gazing at the Aztec ruins or tanning on a beach in Costa Rica, there is something about mind numbing experiences that every traveler loves. Some travel days are fast paced or too intoxicating to remember. But, there are moments that stop us in our track and clears the cobwebs in our head.
It gives a traveler a sense of place in such a large planet. Your worries about finances, homesickness or a robbery abroad don’t seem as important when you stop to realize where you are this very second. You begin to reflect about how you got here and how fortunate it is to have this chance to travel. Taking a step back is essential for any traveler- amaeteur or expert. Stress on the road can be dangerous when your mind isn’t in the right place; so clearing your mind makes for a great travel day.