We all know how exciting and rewarding travelling can be – but did you know that travelling can actually work to boost your emotional health and wellbeing? When we travel, we are putting ourselves into new situations and challenging ourselves, and this can do great things for our minds and bodies. Let’s take a look at some of the ways in which travelling can help your emotional health and wellbeing.
Travelling produces endorphins
When you’re travelling around, you are constantly seeing new things, meeting new people and experiencing different delights every day. When the mind is exposed to novel conditions, it has to work harder to interpret and define stimuli, and when you are exposed to pleasant things like new foods, or a new friend, your brain is flooded with endorphins which are the ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter. This is psychologically beneficial to you, and is a great reason to book a flight overseas!
Travelling is a challenge
When you’re challenged, it can be a difficult thing. When you overcome a challenge using your wits and skills though, it’s hugely rewarding and mentally beneficial. When you’re travelling, there is rarely a day that will go by when you’re not exposed to some kind of challenge, whether it’s figuring out how to pack that extra pair of shoes you just bought into your already bulging backpack, or whether it’s struggling to understand a bus timetable that looks like it’s written only in Sanskrit. When you get through these challenges, your brain gets a boost from the reward that comes from solving a problem, and this has a roll on benefit back at home as well, once you get back to the ‘real world.’ If you were able to navigate the back streets of Delhi on your own, you can certainly get through a tough meeting!
Travelling expands your mind
Travelling is a constant learning experience, and as part of this new learning experience, you discover things about yourself and about the world – things that can help to shape your worldview and things that will help you to better understand your world at home. This helps you with many things, from negotiation, conflict management, comprehension, and myriad other things.
Travelling is a physical challenge
Jumping on a plane and heading overseas is a physically demanding thing to do, and it’s almost inevitable that you’ll suffer some kind of physical discomfort or illness – whether it’s mild dehydration or something more serious – and when you get through that and have your health back – it’s always a great time. Travelling tells us that we have our health, and that is something worth a lot more than money.