How Traveling Changed Me

How Traveling Changed Me         In the past 3 to 4 years of traveling I can’t imagine what my perspective on life would be now if I had never decided to leave my home years ago. Not only have I been blessed with multiple opportunities to leave the state I was born and raised in, but I’ve had the privilege of leaving the country as well. Leaving my friends and family for my adventures was quite challenging but through departing, I only became a stronger individual and it helped me cherish each relationship that I had with the people I love the most. I didn’t have to leave the country quiet yet to experience culture shock.

         I was stunned to experience how different life was from the Midwest to the West coast in America. In my opinion, each location has its pros and cons but there is something beautiful about how different each part of the country is. Having an open mind is key when it comes to traveling/relocating. It’s important to expand your horizon on different ways of living when leaving the places you’re familiar with. More specifically, when I left the country I had no idea what was in store for me. It took me about a month to start understanding and to appreciate the way people live outside of my own country. There is so much beauty in the differences between each culture. Seeing the way people on the other side of the world live really helped my perspective on life. I realized that “my way” of living and how I was raised, isn’t the “right” way but its “a” way of living.

         With traveling come beautiful opportunities and challenges. Just to name one challenge I have experienced is the language barrier that I’ve come across when going into a foreign country. Frustration is defiantly apart of the journey when your the only one in the city who speaks your language. With time, discipline and will power, learning a totally new language can be accomplished. I’ve learned that as people see your effort in learning their language also being bold and actually trying to speak it in different situations, they respect that. Stepping outside of my comfort zone was the biggest way I grew as an individual through my travels. Not only did I learn a lot about the people/culture around me, but I also learned so much about myself. The best part about traveling is meeting new people and hearing their stories. You meet people from all walks of life and hear about their journey through it all. I’ve been truly inspired by the people, places and adventures I’ve been on and that is why I encourage anyone, if given the opportunity, to step outside of their comfort zone and see life through a new lens. I’ve always been told that ‘the joy is in the journey’ and I couldn’t agree more. “

By: Christina Voetberg