A lot of people when asked about their bucket-list tell us that they want to travel the whole world. However, when pinned down with specific questions like “When exactly do you plan to travel?”, the answer always starts with “Ummm… I don’t know yet, but soon.”
When asked even more specific questions like “What are the things stopping you from traveling?” The typical answers range from
Ummm… but, what about my job?
Ummm… but, I don’t have the right company
Ummm… but, I don’t have enough money
Ummm… but, I have to settle down/marry my boyfriend/girlfriend
Ummm… but, is this the right way to approach something that you have always wanted? Maybe you are just scared of doing it. Maybe, you don’t need company to travel. Maybe you don’t need that much money to travel. Maybe you just don’t want it enough.
But if you really want to wander around the world, then just f*** these reasons and travel.
Don’t just become that someone who had this dream of travelling the whole world, but never actually did. You can do all of the above things (marriage, job, earn, etc.) and still travel the world. These reasons are just innocuous ways to kill your dreams. Get that life you have always wanted. Because someday, you will be just too old to do it and have even bigger responsibilities to let go. Instead of you controlling your life, life will just sort of happen to you. Now is the time when you get to do what you really want to. If you think of yourself as an independent individual, go do something which pleases you.
“I do not regret the things I’ve done, but those I did not do.”- Anonymous
So, my dear friend, travel now. Travel like no one is watching. Travel like there is no fear.
In case you are still not convinced, remember these 3 reasons to travel before you turn 30.
1. Traveling is about experiencing life to the fullest
A lot of years later, looking down the memory lane, you will surely retrospect about what went right and what went wrong in your life. Well, these things definitely won’t be in the latter list:
Snorkeling with an elephant
Seeing the alps
Learning a new language to just survive
Sitting in the Colosseum
Visiting Karni Mata temple with more than 20,000 rats
Traveling in the local trains of Mumbai
Smoking up with babas in the Maha Kumbh
I have done some of them and I, for sure, don’t regret them. In fact, nobody would regret them. Though I am sure I would have regretted not doing them. I would have regretted being scared, making excuses and not doing what I have always wanted to do.
The reason why I am asking you to travel young is so that you can experience life to its fullest. Because, it takes time to see the world and experience it. Think of it as an investment, as a sacrifice and I am sure you would be overwhelmed by its results.
However, I am not asking you to be a tourist and see the world in 80 days. I want you to experience it. It is only after you experience true adventure that you will be free to let go our your fears, venture out of your comfort zone. Because it is only then that you will be truly able to appreciate and understand what life is.
2. Travelling makes you a more humble person
What we are as an individual is the sum total of all our past experiences, our relationships and our surroundings. Our perspectives, weather moral or social, have been derived by seeing and experiencing things around us. Now imagine experiencing 10 new ideologies, learning 10 new ways of looking at the same situation, acquiring 10 new skills to make an informed choice. Imagine visiting Malana in Himachal Pradesh and being treated as an outsider and an untouchable. Imagine visiting Germany and encountering traces of genocide and holocaust. Visiting Israel and witnessing the birth of different religious. Visiting Bodh Gaya and experiencing the calm halo of a monk. Visiting Africa and realizing that having internet is actually a great privilege.
Travelling will change you unlike anything else can. You will be in situations where you would learn and start caring about issues that are much bigger than you, your city and your personal life. And these memories will be with you, for the rest of your life.
Travelling is not just about witnessing tragedies and feeling sad about them. It is about understanding that the world is gigantic and you are just a small part of it. You will feel lucky to be alive and be more respectful about your own life.You will realize the positives in your lifestyle and observe things more optimistically. You will be able to connect more to the human species and to their desires and problems. You will stop taking things for granted and be more humble towards the people around you. You will start caring about them.
3. Travelling would be the best teacher to enhance you culturally
You might have studied in good schools or colleges. You might have been a good student throughout your life and learnt everything your teachers had to offer. But your learnings have been very limited, constrained by geography. You might be able to solve the toughest mathematics problem or crack any aptitude test in the world, but have you really learnt a lot in your life?
Ever wondered, what it would be like to learn from people coming from totally different backgrounds, miles apart from you – both literally and culturally. Imagine forgetting everything about your current culture and re-calibrating your thought process from scratch. Now repeat this exercise again and again, adding new ways of reflection with each new culture. See the Mona Lisa and other priceless arts in a Italian museum. Spend 6 months in France and learn all about their culture, manners and customs – reading is one thing, being there is a totally different ball game. Don’t just wikipedia about Egyptian civilization, how their pyramids were built or how mummies were preserved, be there, feel it yourself.
Travel, my dear friend, for this is the time. This is the time when your every step will count for the rest of your life. Don’t waste time by waiting for the right time, because there is no wrong time to do this. And maybe, once time flies by, you will never have it again. Because you won’t be young always.
Travel before you turn 30, because it is going to make you a more experienced, humble and learned person.
P.S: If you are above 30 and still reading this, I am sure you are less than 30 at heart. Go ahead and do it. It’s not too late yet, it never is
Choose to travel solo : Discover yourself