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Why it is Important to Travel

There are plenty of things one can gain from exploring different places. The list includes gaining new friends, new experiences, and new stories. When you start exploring new places, you get a better understanding of the people living there, including their culture, history and background.
As jobs become difficult to find and keep, people are also becoming increasingly concerned about their income, investing long hours at work at the cost of other important aspects of their lives. If you too have relegated vacations down your list of priorities, it is time to recognize that it is as important as good food and exercise.
Here are a few reasons why you should travel more often:

Making Friends

One of the best things about travel is undoubtedly the friendships and connections you make with people from across the globe. You might be surprised at just how close you can come to people within a matter of hours if you’re thrown together by circumstance in a country that is home to neither of you. Volunteer placements are a great way to establish firm friendships as you work towards a common goal, not only with other travelers, but also the local community. The interactions you’ll have will provide an incredible local insight into cultural traditions, beliefs and way of life on a communal level – something that you just can’t experience on TV or in a text book.

Mental Health

Travel makes you mentally resilient. Going and living somewhere where you feel excited and intimidated at the same time can help you toughen up mentally and emotionally. Also, facing difficulties in an unfamiliar environment, among new people, forces you to learn and adapt to a life that’s out of your comfort zone. This makes you more flexible, patient and emotionally strong. It can also help you deal with larger issues in life with more grace and patience.

Cultural Sensitivity

Being more understanding and tolerant about a culture different than ours is part of being smarter, but I consider it as benefits of traveling in itself. Being culturally sensitive is a key in our globalizing world. Many people view this cultural norm as the people just being lazy when it really has a lot more to do with the fact that historically Spaniards value family face time. Eating together as a family is more important to them than maximizing work time by scarfing a sandwich down at their desks.
Being aware of cultural values and norms is not only fascinating, but can help us understand international issues and conflicts, or even relate to the cultural norms of a foreign business partner. It is an important skill to be able to shift perspectives and see where someone else is coming from. Cultural sensitivity will help you with your communication on both business and personal levels.

Peace of Mind

You may be able to wind down on weekends sometimes, but when you carve out a solid week for a vacation, you are able to really get out of work mode. You can catch up on sleep and work on getting rid of habits that tend to contribute to stress. Travelling can help with a demanding job, a bad breakup, the loss of a loved one. Just like the heroine in Eat, Pray, Love, travel can be a great relief from the stress and unhappiness that come along with those.
People seek from their travels what they don’t have back home: better weather, nicer scenery, the freedom to do what they want, experiences they can’t normally have, a slower relaxing pace.
Travel has the power to let you not only escape but also heal. A new place with lots of fun distractions can work wonders. You’ll return home more at peace with yourself and your challenging situations.

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