We typically associate travel with leaving home, spending money, and doing a great deal of planning. Travel is something most of us enjoy but tend to engage in less often than we’d like because of the real or perceived effort involved. Yet travel can be more accessible to us and simpler to arrange than we might imagine. We would like to redefine the notion of travel and suggest that meaningful journeys can take many forms – including those that can take place in your living room, cost no money, and do not require an itinerary. After all, isn’t travel really about experiencing new vantage points, trying out new behaviors, and discovering new parts of yourself as well as the world?
Here are a few easy ways to incorporate the essence of travel into your life:
• Take a new route home even if it takes a little longer.
• Sit at a different place at the dinner table, sleep on a different side of the bed, read in a different chair.
• Re-arrange your furniture or living space.
• Get some fresh air: take advantage of a local green space, picnic in the park, go on a garden tour.
• Meet your friends and family in a new spot: skip the usual places.
• Try a restaurant or cook a cuisine that seems exotic to you.
• Visit a local attraction that you had previously disdained as “only for tourists.”
• Attend a worship service different than your own.
• See a movie with subtitles, or attend a cultural event new to you.
• Search the Internet and travel books for stories, photos, and maps of intriguing parts of the world.
Travel means exploring unknown territory and taking paths not taken before, therefore it may feel a bit awkward at first. Bear with it – just as when in a foreign country you may feel challenged by the unfamiliar, you will need to be patient with the process and give yourself the time and space to be a novice. Approached with this spirit, your little journeys can offer you new opportunities for renewed energy, greater self-awareness, and FUN!
Self-Discovery Tool Number 9
Are there simple journeys you can take to enrich and enliven your day-to-day existence? How might you increase your zest for life by taking a new trip, whether all the way to the next county or simply to a part of your neighborhood that you don’t typically frequent? Embrace the true essence of travel – make the choice to get to know yourself and your world anew by doing something out of the ordinary!