Embrace the Mental and Physical Challenge

Travel always has a way to challenge your perceived mental and physical limitations. While travelling, the mind is constantly engaged in making plans or reacting to unexpected situations. You missed the last scheduled train, now what? Nobody speaks your language, how will you communicate? You’re in an entirely unfamiliar city, where will you explore? There’s no doubt travelling requires mental fortitude, while honing your inner resolve and enhancing your problem solving skills. Thinking on your feet is the best way to live in the moment.

Long flights and cramped bus rides, changing time zones, less than ideal sleeping conditions all will take a toll on your body. Pushing yourself to uncomfortable extremes will not be beneficial, but managing the variety of physical demands will teach you a lot about yourself. It’s amazing the willpower one can muster when inspired by incredible new surroundings.

Ditch Your Comfort Zone to Try New Things

Travel is hands down the best way to break out of the monotony of everyday life. Certainly there is something to be said for enjoying a routine and savoring the conveniences of home life. But for many travelers, myself included, curiosity comes calling and the travel bug bite starts to itch.

5 Ways Travel Leads to Personal Growth - The Wise Traveller - Solo Traveller

If you’re stuck in a rut, why not start a new groove? A change of pace and scenery can really spark a renewed zeal for exploration and adventure. Stepping out of your comfort zone and becoming immersed in unfamiliar territories and cultures will fortify your courage and will likely carry over to confidence in other areas of life. You don’t know what you’re missing if you never take a shot!

Open Up to New Ideas and Ways of Living

The way you view the world will undoubtedly be shaken up. Exposure to different philosophies, ideologies, religions and cultures will have you questioning or finding reassurance in your own beliefs. Before passing judgement on others’ way of life, let us walk a mile in their shoes and look at the world through their eyes.

Make Lasting Memories and Friendships

Travel is the only thing I’ve never regretted spending money on. How can you monetize an experience? The encounters and memories forged will last a lifetime. They are immaterial and cannot be taken from you. Many things we buy and pay for turn out bringing more stress, anxiety and responsibility. Travel is the opposite. Every experience, even the bad ones, has the ability to inspire reflection and gratitude within. At the very least, fond memories will always be able to bring a smile to your face, the way no material wealth can.

While travelling, it never ceases to amaze how many like minded folks you’ll encounter. On the other hand, it's invaluable to connect with others we deem so different from us. These personal interactions remove the veil and reveal how similar we all truly are.

Fortune has a way of bringing people together at the right time. If bold enough to set out on a trip, expect to cross paths with intriguing future friends and form meaningful bonds.

5 Ways Travel Leads to Personal Growth - The Wise Traveller - People

Give Thanks for HOME

There’s no better way to gain a deep appreciation for your native, town, state or country than by leaving it. The perspectives and insights gained will illuminate the affection you have for home. The things that matter most, family, friends and community will all be waiting for your return. Homecoming after a long intrepid trek is a relief like no other. You’ll be returning wiser and humbled, yet feeling proud and more competent. Resuming familiar relationships and routines is refreshing, but nothing will be as enjoyable as reflecting on all that personal growth after crashing down into your own bed.

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.” - Mark Twain