9 Surprising Ways Travel Can Change Your Perspective

Are you embarking on a big trip for the first time? Or perhaps you need a little inspiration to finally book your tickets, and tell work you’re in need of a hiatus. Travelling the world can be a great way to open your eyes to what it is you want from this life, and a way to make you completely shift the way you see the rest of the globe. Here’s a few of the ways that travel can shift your worldview.

1. You appreciate the little things

Creature comforts start to take on a new light when you are travelling. There are simply things we take for granted when we get in a routine and stay in the same spot for a long time. Mainstays in your everyday life become blessings on the road. Things like like your comfy bed, WiFi, having your own room, organic food or a well-made cup of tea are sometimes not available. Travel gives you the gift of gratitude for all the luxuries you usually have in abundance.

2. You realise how context affects your priorities

One of the most liberating things of travel is it forces you to consider your life in context. Everybody needs shelter, food, water and love, but otherwise our lives can be entirely different to those living in other parts of the world. Immersing yourself in a new culture lets you step into someone else’s shoes and gives you an opportunity to reflect on your own life. You may realise just how lucky you are.

3. You figure out what you want out of life

With a completely open timetable, how you choose to spend your time travelling can really open up your eyes to what you most enjoy and value in life. The great time you have learning new moves at foreign yoga studios, going to art galleries, or learning to cook different cuisines – all these activities can shine a light on how you can bring more happiness to your everyday life back home.

4. You get a reminder that discomfort can be a breakthrough

Nobody ever got anywhere by staying too comfortable. Just like with yoga, pushing yourself to new heights can involve stepping across lines you don’t really want to cross. Travelling can at times be challenging – you may get lost, or be unable to say what you want in a foreign language. But putting yourself in new environments you can unlock skills you never knew you had, as well as practice creative ways to express yourself and communicate.

5. You truly value of the kindness of strangers

Conversations you have with strangers while you are travelling can make it all worthwhile. In fact, for many people, talking to others is the very reason they travel. Meeting people from diverse walks of life and sharing words and experiences that may be very different from your own lets you develop your capacities for empathy and human connection.

6. You start to truly live in the moment

Mindfulness comes easy when you are travelling. New scents, amazing views, and surprising scenery all demand your attention, and force you to be present in your here and now. This is a very valuable shift in perspective, as it will force you to view other things the same way when you get home.

7. You start to realise the importance of flexibility

It’s easy for the unexpected to arise while you’re travelling. Travel mishaps like missing your connecting flight or losing luggage can seem like a big deal, but getting overly upset about it doesn’t help you to rectify the situation. Travelling teaches you the value of flexibility and going with the flow in any situation.

8. You learn how to prioritise

When you’re roaming around the world with just a suitcase or a backpack, all the material items you have back at home start to feel a little wasteful. Travelling lets you see the value in the immaterial world. That great life-affirming conversation you had with a stranger, the beauty of a sunset, learning to live in the present – these ephemeral moments mean so much more than your possessions.

9. You get a boost in your problem solving and creativity abilities

You need to think on your feet while you are on the road. When things don’t go according to plan, sometimes you have to think and react outside the box. This can happen when you’re doing tasks like finding accommodation, or putting together a makeshift clothesline. These are an opportunity for you to develop your creative prowess and problem solving skills, which can transfer to other aspects of your life. You remember just how fun it is to write in your journal, or to try and capture the moment with an interesting drawing or photo. Creating and the ability to let your thoughts roam becomes something you value, and skills you’ll hold onto in your everyday life.

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Annie Au
Annie Au

Annie is an international yoga teacher, educator and writer. Specializes in yoga anatomy, she infuses anatomy knowledge in her yoga classes to help students practice more intelligently and avoid injuries. Annie has the ability to lead a dynamic class filled with inversions with a duality of restorative and healing sequences. She is grateful to learn from various genuine masterful teachers. Eternal gratitude and thanks to teachers: Dharma Mittra, Boonchu Tanti & Ganesh Mohan. Before yoga, she was a professional contemporary dancer and founder of Au Dance School in Vancouver. Her decade long dance career has taken her around the world including some fond memories touring in India, Egypt, Brazil and Germany. Annie teaches Dharma and Yin Yoga and is currently studying Tibetan Buddhism. Follow her on Website, Facebook and Instagram.

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