I am the type of person who spends hours a week thinking about traveling. Not just thinking, but fantasizing, wishing, yearning. Not just fantasizing, but exploring. I am constantly searching for any way I can fulfill these dreams (without completely emptying my bank account, pockets, and piggy banks).
In my free time, while I sit in the desk chair in my bedroom, I fill my brain with words that only build on my desires to be sitting on a plane instead. So here are some of those words (along with some of my own) to spark (or ignite) your own adventure-seeking heart:
“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” -John A. Shedd
“There’s a world that was meant for our eyes to see.” -“Ends of the Earth” by Lord Huron.
Every time I hear this lyric, I think of the vast, immense beauty around me. Throughout time, humans have been known to wander. There are countless stories of explorers with no clear destination but rather an idea, a dream. They then find themselves somewhere they could’ve never imagined, a place that validates why they left in the first place. The world is an enormous place. We shouldn’t stay in our tiny corner of it. There is so much to see and so much to learn.
“The best of travel seems to exist outside of time, as though the years of travel are not deducted from your life.” -Paul Theroux
If you’re concerned about time and have the idea in your head that you’ll be losing it by traveling, don’t be. Travel takes away very little from our lives. Money you’ve spent can be regained. Time, on the other hand, may be spent, but it is not lost. You gain so much more from traveling than you give. And in life, those who give, gain the most.
“Not till we are lost…, do we begin to find ourselves.” -Henry David Thoreau
To be in a place that is foreign to you requires accessing parts of yourself you may not have had to before. For those who need everything planned to a t, you’ll have to learn to loosen the reigns you hold onto so tightly. You’ll experience a different side of yourself that comes out in a situation you cannot control. It’ll be in that state of vulnerability where you may meet a new part of you. For some, traveling and being thrown into a completely different environment and culture requires you to fend for yourself in a way that could be completely unnatural for you. But you’ll come out of it as a new person. No matter what path of self-discovery you take, you will be a changed human. You’ll still be YOU, but a more developed, wiser you.
“If there’s even a slight chance at getting something that will make you happy, risk it. Life’s too short, and happiness is too rare.” -A.R. Lucas
Take a chance and strive towards happiness. If traveling could give that to you, then make it happen. Ivan Turgenev once said that “If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin.” Don’t constantly put something off because every single thing is not in order. Trust that life works out how it is supposed to and leap. One of the few things in life that truly matters, and will always matter, is happiness. Take risks and follow your dreams, wherever in the world they made lead you to.
“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” -Oscar Wilde
If you remember only one thing from this article, remember this: Live. Please, live. It is a privilege, a gift. Maybe for you this doesn’t require going to another country and that’s okay. But don’t live your whole life sitting on a couch with minutes endlessly passing you by. Get up. Do something. Something that will make you happy. Abandon your comfort zone and explore, whether that means going on a hike, trying a new restaurant, or hopping on a plane and going somewhere you’ve never been before. I promise you, it’ll be worth it. La bella è vita. Life is beautiful.