Travel

Travel can help you be your best self

Braies Lake

Hiking in Lago di Braies, Italy

Traveling allows you to do so many things you never do when you’re home. The lessons you can learn about yourself and others are invaluable. I’ve found some basic ways to make sure I enrich myself while I’m traveling.

Break out of your comfort zone
Challenge yourself to do things that you normally wouldn’t try. Do you have trouble talking to strangers? Talk to everyone. Don’t like trying new foods? Taste at least one thing you usually would say no to if offered. Not a hiker? Hike. Having second thoughts? Just go for it.

I’ve found it easier to try new things when I travel because everything is already different, what’s one more new experience? And who knows, you may end up bringing one or more new things into your life.

Learn as you go

Listening to a podcast in Central Park

Listening to a podcast in Central Park


You end up spending a lot of time in transit. Why not take the time to learn something new while you’re on a plane, bus or train? Podcasts are amazing for this. Time goes by so much faster if you listen to music, or someone tell a great story, or interviews with experts. You can gain new knowledge about any topic.

Learn from the people around you
You can learn a massive amount about different cultures and traditions by talking to people. Make it a point to speak to people that live there. Basic English is spoken across the world, so it’s easier to communicate than you might think if you’re in a country that doesn’t speak your language. Hand gestures and body language also help get your message across.

I wrote in another post Vacationing like you’re local, not to be judgmental. You can learn a lot by listening to others’ points of view, even if you don’t agree.

Treat your body well

Swimming in Italy

Swimming in Elba Island, Tuscany, Italy

Traveling can throw your body and schedule out of whack. You tend to sleep less, workout less and eat worse than you would at home. It doesn’t have to be this way.

It’s not difficult to exercise on the road. Read My keep fit while traveling guide for ways to stay active. You can also walk or bike as much as possible. Choose healthy options at restaurants. You’re on vacation so I know you may not want to do that all the time, but if you manage to eat well for the majority of your meals, your diet won’t be completely turned upside down. Try to get enough sleep; if it’s loud where you are, ear plugs can help. Stay hydrated and use sunscreen.

Splurge at least once

Nuba

Falafel appetizer at Nuba Lebanese restaurant in Vancouver, Canada

I’m a fan of budget travel. It allows you to go away for a longer time and more often.

That said, budgeting everything can get boring after a while. With some upfront planning, you can see if you can spend some nights on the town or eat in a top restaurant.  Before I go, I figure out where I’m comfortable cutting back costs so I can use some of my travel money to indulge.

Watch what’s going on around you
If you want to get a feel for a place, spend a few hours sitting in a park, a coffee shop or on a busy street corner to people watch. You can see how people interact with each other and what daily life is like there. If you pay close attention to details around you like colors, the interactions, sounds and smells, you’ll see stuff you’ve never noticed before.

Don’t take yourself too seriously

Snowboard crash.

Make sure when you fall, someone is there to capture your photo and add the perfect lighting effects to make it look cool! Snowboarding in Quebec, Canada.

Don’t be afraid to mess up. You’ll most likely do something foolish at least once when you’re visiting a new place. I learned a long time ago not to get embarrassed.  Instead, I laugh at myself. Try it! Laughing at yourself is much better than feeling bad or shame over doing something you might think is silly.

It’s a beautiful and fascinating world. Explore it in ways that give you lasting memories.

47 replies »

  1. Great blog Aldo,
    I always feel more comfortable trying new things when I am travelling and trying not to do the same things at home. After all, “when in Rome”.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like the point “learn from people around you” During my travels I interacted with a lot of people from different cultures and I became really good in reading their intentions and to understand what there are trying to say even with little to zero English.
    I am looking forward to more 🙂

    Like

    • I agree. There is so many ways to communicate with others that don’t involve speaking the same language. Thanks for your comment. I hope my next one is as good then 🙂 Enjoy your day

      Like

  3. Great article Aldo. I learned to love podcasts recently and I’ve downloaded quite of few inspirational books. I also downloaded audible.com for Ebooks and love to listen to them when I’m traveling long hours. Thanks for the great tips !

    Like

  4. I really loved this post. One of the greatest things about travel is that it can open your eyes to so many amazing things and you can learn so much. I am probably more active during vacation because of desk duties every other day so I come out fitter usually haha 🙂

    Like

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