When we are young, we are ready to experience the world and every new adventure that comes our way. The only problem is we tell ourselves we have time and put traveling on hold, and never get around to it. When adulthood strikes, responsibilities, and obligations take priority. While travel is still possible and strongly recommended for adults, young adults are trekking outside of their comfort zones. Study abroad programs are gaining popularity, yet still, only forty percent of Americans have passports. Here are five reasons why travel is so important to millennials.
Traveling Changes the Way We See Our Own Worlds
Many of us grew up in small towns where everything was familiar to us. From the streets we grew up on, to the comfort of knowing our neighbors, things start to lose their color. The nature around us loses its charm, and we start to lose appreciation for the lives we live. Until we step outside of our comfort zone we cannot mentally change our viewpoint of our own surroundings. Seeing the different ways that other people live allows us to put our lives back in perspective and re-admire it.
It Also Humbles Us, Tremendously
Most of us believe we know everything life has to offer, but no one thinks they know better than millennials. Assuming that we are aware everything is how we try to place control on our lives. It gives us comfort about making decisions and where to venture next in our lives. Ensuring ourselves we know everything is a bad habit that encapsulates our minds and convinces us to be the center of the universe. Traveling teaches us to let go of attempting to control everything. It is a big enough feat to try and control and understand ourselves.
It Places Suffering in Perspective
In first world countries, we often overstate our problems out of proportion. Many countries have severe poverty; a state of being that frequently escapes us who do not see it daily. Leaving the comfort of our country allows us to lose our egotistical attitude of the rest of the world. We can start to relate to people we’ve seen and the places we’ve been with our own lives. Realizing how much poverty and famine has plagued the rest of the world enables us to help at home, too.
It Forces Us to Become More Independent
Traveling as a millennial often means we are by ourselves. Traveling alone, or with a group of similarly aged adults, places a different type of responsibility on our shoulders. We are put into real-life situations that improve our street smarts while also helping us become more strategic with money.
We Grow Far More Than We Ever Could On Our Own
The rest of the world is overflowing with culture and influences foreign to us. Traveling to a far-off place removes our stigmas for different cultures, and it forces us to open ourselves up. Once we experience a new place, it is permanently etched onto our hearts. Even if we don’t know it, traveling paints colors onto our canvas we didn’t even know existed. It also makes us that much more interesting. Having stories to tell about our ventures abroad will inspire others to join in on the global adventure, as well.
Don’t be fooled, traveling alone as a millennial is entirely terrifying the first few times. However, that is no excuse to put our dreams of seeing the world aside for another day. Our time is now. Remove the “what-ifs” from your vocabulary, and let your global story begin.
Don’t be afraid to travel, fellow millennials. Travel with passion, courage, and knowledge. More importantly, travel with a full abandon of everything we think we know.