11 Lessons You & Your Family Can Learn By Traveling the World
If you’ve never traveled much, it can be awe-inspiring to talk with someone that does. They have a wisdom and understanding of the world that you can’t gain from camping at the local lake or vacationing at a condo in Florida.
Global traveling gives you a more complete picture of the world. If personal growth is important to you, international travel can accelerate your development and your children’s.
Change your perspective with these lessons I’ve learned over a decade of global traveling:
Materialism Is Overrated
When you travel abroad, it’s not easy to bring your guitar collection, BMW, and fine silverware with you. You quickly find that you can do just fine without all of the items you seem to love so much back home. You also see other people living perfectly happy lives with very little in the way of possessions. As much as I love our western comforts as much as the next mom, your kids and mine will be MUCH better off. (I promise)
Different Cultures Have Different Priorities
While our society values fame, fortune, possessions, and other forms of material success, many other societies (dare I say most?) have little concern for this sort of thing. You’ll notice that other countries put a heavier value on things like friendship, family, religion, adventure, and comfort (but not in the way you think). This isn’t to say that one culture is inherently better than another, but differences do exist. For example, you might find you like the idea of an afternoon siesta (this is when a country pretty much takes a pause, a complete stop & rest for several hours in the afternoon/evening hours. Usually between 3-7)
There Are a Lot of People in The World That Don’t Have The Basics
We take many things for granted. There are people that walk 20-plus miles each day just for water (Trust me, I know it first hand). You can see people living with dirt floors or playing soccer with a ball made of rags. It’s too easy to forget how much of the world lives on less when you’re so high up. This is such a great way to teach kids gratefulness.
Friends Can Be Found Anywhere
You don’t have to limit your friends to just the people you get to see five times a week. (& you can stay in touch with some of the ways I’ve outlined below.)
It’s Possible To Create and Maintain Friendships Across The Globe
Nowadays, it’s easy to stay in touch with people because of all the technology available. I’ve found that people in many parts of the world are far less guarded than they are in our neck of the woods. Of course, this isn’t fully inclusive but common for the most part.
Here are some ways to stay in touch:
- Apple Messaging
- Standard text/ phone call
- Social Media
- Handwritten letters
- Google Voice
You Learn To Be Flexible
Many things are less reliable than in the western world. From bus schedules to electricity, it’s not uncommon to have your plans disrupted on a daily basis (can you hear the New Yorker in me screaming?!). You’ll learn to be more flexible and creative and bring that new skill back home with you. Ask me how I know…
That feeling when you shower and water stops running…
Or you’re SHOCKED half to death with STONE COLD water…
Or the washing machine shakes due to lack of water…
Or your home turns PITCH BLACK
Or the food that you’re cooking STOPS cooking
Or that public transport you were waiting for…never arrives
Or the public transport you’re ON stops or switches route…JUST because they CAN…wtf?
Alright, I’m done. For now…lol
You Waste a Lot of Time
When you’re traveling, you won’t want to spend your time staring at your smartphone or watching TV. You’ll want to be out living and experiencing the local scene. You’ll soon realize how much time you waste back home doing things that provide little to no value to you and your kids.
Being Able to Travel Is a Privilege
Traveling can be a spectacular thing. You’ll also find people on your journey that travel a lot more than you do. Few places work even close to the hours and weeks we do. There are also people that have never traveled outside their town (this is common, so prepare yourself and your family NOW for small-minded perspectives).
People Are All The Same
While cultures can differ considerably, many things are the same. People love their children regardless of what country they’re in. Everyone is striving to be happy and to find meaning in their life. The most important things are the same wherever you go.
Your Perspective Of The World Will Change
If you get out of the country and visit someplace new, different people and societies will teach you a lot about the world and yourself. It’ll challenge and even rattle everything you’ve ever known and been taught. Luckily, you’ll be able to raise your kids differently and work through it while raising them. If they are older, then you all get to talk about it and walk through it together.
Travel Is Expensive (If You DON’T Know What You’re Doing)
There’s no doubt that in order to travel you NEED money and a lot of it depending on where you’re going and what you need. Go on and multiply that by how many family members you have and it adds up quickly. However, it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg, if you know HOW to save. Nevertheless, begin saving today for a trip that can be fun and might change your life.