Travel has the potential to be one of the most rewarding and enriching experiences in life, depending on how you approach it.
Every year, huge numbers of people take their annual vacations abroad in order to get away from the frustration and mundane nature of their everyday routines, to experience some adventure, and to open themselves up to new experiences and opportunities in general.
There are many different motivating factors that inspire people to travel and spend time overseas. Vacation is one of these factors, and a lot of people will also jump at the opportunity to spend some time abroad for work, or to relocate to a new location for a prolonged period of time, in order to consider the possibility of a longer-term life change.
Whether you are planning on spending a luxurious vacation in the symphony tower balakong, or are backpacking through a rural setting on a minimalist getaway, there are various potentially life changing practices you can try while overseas, in order to really get the most out of the excursion.
Here are a handful of things to try.
Journaling isn’t necessary for everyone, but a focused period of journaling – particularly during a specific occasion in your life, such as while you are traveling overseas – can be a great way of helping you to get a better understanding of yourself, and to reorient how you perceive and relate to the world around you.
Your journal practice could take the form of long and introspective entries about your thought processes at any given time, or it could simply involve short sentence-long diary entries about what took place on a given day. Using journaling prompts can also be very useful here.
Then again, you could also try out a bit of photo journaling – where you try to represent what happened on a given day primarily through taking photographs that you can look back on years down the line, to get a great reminder of those special moments in time.
Often, a major motivating factor in why we travel, is a desire for self discovery and exploration.
Journaling can really help to emphasize this.
Participating in a local language class or club
Immersing yourself in the local culture or environment is always going to result in a completely different experience than just staying in an expat area, and keeping more or less to yourself.
Among other things, this kind of direct experience with a new culture, a different way of life, and new and interesting people, really has the potential to unlock much of the magic of the travel experience, in and of itself.
One great thing to try out – especially if you are abroad for a significant period of time – is to try participating in a local language class, or joining a local hobby or social club.
Learning a language can be an extremely powerful way of getting a deeper insight into a culture, and “gifting yourself” with something that you will be able to take home with you from the trip, and that will stay with you.
Participating in local clubs, more generally, can help to put you in direct contact with new people in a new context, in a way that can open doors to all sorts of possibilities, and really deepen and enrich your experience of the trip.
Confronting a fear by taking up a new physical pastime
As human beings, a lot of the way we experience and relate to the world around us is connected to our bodies, and the physical activities and pastimes we routinely engage in.
Many of our fears and insecurities are also tied up in physical pastimes as well. Meaning that it’s often by confronting your fears, in a physical sense, that you will make some of the most powerful personal breakthroughs.
While, of course, you don’t want to subject yourself to unnecessary risk, or to act recklessly, a journey abroad can be just the right setting to take up a new physical pastime, that simultaneously helps you to confront a fear or insecurity of yours.
Maybe trying some SCUBA diving with a reputable local school could be just the kind of life changing experience that you will be able to look back on and cherish for years to come.
Starting up a daily fitness routine
For many people, time spent overseas in a new location automatically involves a good deal more physical activity than usual, in a baseline sense – what with walking to and from different tourist attractions, for example.
This makes the time spent abroad an excellent opportunity for starting up a regular daily fitness routine, that can help to move your morning in the direction you want to head in, and to create a positive “cascade effect” of change in other areas of your life.
According to the writer Charles Duhigg, “keystone habits” – in other words, habits that automatically influence various other habits in a “domino effect” kind of a way – are some of the most powerful ways out there of changing our lives.
Reflecting on the kind of person you want to be, and identifying the vision and habits to take you there
Generally speaking, one of the most commonplace and powerful reasons why so many people enjoy traveling and getting away to new locales, is because it offers a break from everyday life, and it’s routines and systems.
Being away from these everyday contexts means that there’s enough “distance,” in many cases, to enable us to consider things from new angles, and to get more of a sense of perspective on the kind of direction we are heading in, and the kind of direction we might prefer to be heading in, instead.
If you want your time overseas to really be a transformative period in your life, one of the most powerful things you can do is to actively and intentionally use that time for refining your vision of who you want to be, and working on the daily habits you would like to adopt, in order to get you there.
When all is said and done, it’s often this combination of vision and daily habits that will make all the difference.