There are a lot of people (the vast majority, actually) who travel and who actually come out all the better for it, simply bursting with enlightenment and glowing with patience and positivity. These are the people we want to talk about today – the awesome ones who travel and who really grow from it. We want to discuss five indispensable life skills that you can learn travelling to encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and get out there!
You learn to be patient
Picture this: It’s five am. You’ve been awake for twenty-seven hours and you have an eight-hour flight to catch. It’s midday in the time zone you just left (so you’re hungry, obviously) and you can smell something not-so-nice that you’re pretty sure is your armpit. The nice lady at the check-in desk in the small airport in Chile doesn’t speak English so you need to muster your broken Spanish and ask her where you need to go for your connecting flight. She can’t help you. You have a couple of options here – and they range from breaking down and crying in a lump on the floor to finding someone else to help you. No prizes for guessing which one of these is most helpful to you. You learn to have patience and humility in the face of so much chaos when you travel, and it’s a glorious skill to have in your life – whether your coworker is being a total fool, or if a client is being unmanageable. Simply project back to that airport in Chile and think to yourself: I got this.
You learn to be kind
If you weren’t kind already, travelling is a great way to work on that skill. You might be travelling with a friend or going it solo, but a kind deed is a kind deed no matter if you’re being sweet to your best mate or giving your last Malteaser to a stranger who looks like they really need it. This kind of kindness translates past language and over cultures and will make your soul stronger. Promise.
You learn to be resilient
Remember our little scenario at Lesson One? You know, the one where you smell and you’re probably going to miss your flight to Bogota? Well, guess what. You do miss your flight. You are now faced with a three-day wait for the next flight or a twenty-hour bus ride. You opt for the bus, and just before you get on board someone nicks your Kindle. That kind of life lesson will show you how to be accepting of basically anything.
You learn to accept things as they are
There’s something a good friend said to me once, and I’ll never forget it. She said that there’s no point trying to alter the things that are out of my control by worrying about them – things will still go exactly as they go, whether you’ve wasted the cortisol freaking out about them or not. When the entire world is at your feet and you can choose where to go and what to do, you need to be able to accept things and not freak out. A great lesson to learn and keep forever.