Why you should Travel the World
I always tell people to “Stop trying to build a platform and start living a great story.”
One way to live a great story is to travel the world.
I just returned from a trip to England, Uganda and Zimbabwe. My heart is full of beautiful new experiences that are priceless — experiences that I could not have had without saying yes to travel, boarding a plane and flying to a destination.
I believe if you can afford to travel, you should — especially, if you choose to travel for the right reasons. Of course, many of us are simply too afraid to travel.
We use excuse such as:
- I don’t have time. You have one life, make time!
- I don’t have money. Save well, spend less.
- Is it safe to travel? What if something bad happens? What if something good happens?
- My kids don’t want me to be away. Maybe you need to go, if that is the case.
- My parents will worry about me. They will always worry about you; it’s their job! (And I hope my kids don’t read this.)
The list could be longer, but let’s be honest– they are just excuses. Fear cripples us to say no to opportunities and adventures that could be invaluable. (tweet that)
Here is why you should say yes to travel:
1) You can’t put a price-tag on experiences.
In 12 days, I was able to experience London for the first time. I saw Big Ben, The Tower Bridge, red double decker buses, and all the typical London adventures. We only had 12 hours, but those 12 hours were beautiful.
In Africa, I was able to raft the River Nile, see a sunrise over the mountains, go on a safari where I was able to ride an elephant, feed a rhinoceros and see all sorts of amazing wildlife.
We broke bread around the table of the locals. We tried new foods, saw amazing sunrises and sunsets, played with local kids and heard amazing stories of redemption and restoration.
I did this with some great friends and local Africans. Speaking of our African friends, they LOVED that we got to experience the beauty of their countries. They are happy and proud.
My heart is full; their heart is full. Great lives are lived through story and adventure. (tweet that) My African friends also love to travel and experience new cultures.
You simply cannot put a pricetag on these kinds of experiences.
2) Compassion comes through relationship.
I love to travel for fun, but the core reason why I travel is to help those who are suffering. Compassion simply means to “suffer with” and it also means to help “alleviate” the suffering.
My friend in Zimbabwe told me this: “Your very presence means more than words can say.”
When you visit a place, (and return over and over) when you pray together, when you eat around a table, when you share stories, when you laugh and cry together, you become more compassionate, your desire to help deepens and you all gain a better understanding of HOW to help.
We desperately need a more compassionate world. Furthermore, the best way to care for someone else is through relationships. We all crave, desire and need community, both locally and globally!
3) We live in a global world – we must know each other.
Technology, innovation, and travel have now connected our worlds together. We no longer have excuses to ignore each other. I no longer see myself as first an “American” citizen; instead, I choose to see myself as as global citizen who lives in (and loves) America.
However, my responsibility is to humanity, not country.
We have a shared responsibility to understand who we are, why we think the way we do and why we disagree on some key issues. This may never change because of the cultures in which we were raised.
But, if we are going to survive and even thrive in our world, we are going to have to take time to get to know each other, to understand our differences, to process how we can be help one another, to know each others history.
Politics are now global, business is now global, education is now global, music is global, sports are global. We do not have the option to ignore each other or to focus just on our own borders.
What about the money?
We all have to be wise when it comes to finances, but that is for another post. If you travel for story, experience and relationship, I can assure you that any funds spent will be well worth it. It might require a deep sacrifice. If you are traveling to a developing country, just use wisdom along the way!
You may have to shut off cable, stop eating out as much and stay out of debt. But trust me, it’s worth it.
It’s Time to Travel
Use wisdom, but if you can, travel. When you travel, do your best to be open to new possibilities. Be flexible, stay humble, listen and learn and honor the local culture. It’s important to be self-aware.
I think it’s time to travel, what about you?