What did our parents tell us on the first day of school?
Go learn something and make lots of friends.
There was nothing more exciting than making friends during the first couple of weeks of college. We all were the new kids, away from home. Cliques weren’t formed yet and everyone was on the same playing field. Those new friendships were some of my closest from my entire college experience.
But what happens when we enter the real world? Fresh and genuine bonds become harder and harder to come by as we get older. Friendships can be made out of convenience such as those you meet in the workplace.
When you travel, that’s when you can make some of your best friends, IMO.
You’re mentally thriving on vacation.
You’re not stuck at work on a late night or in a mundane routine. There’s no house to clean or groceries to buy. All responsibilities were left at security before you got on the plane. Sometimes it takes traveling a thousand miles to realize how bogged down your life makes you, so it only makes sense that when you’re truly your best self, you’ll attract that energy around you. Go meet some people. You never know who you’ll come across.
You can be whoever you want to be.
A fresh slate. Literally nobody knows you. With no reputation (good or bad) looming, you can recreate your narrative. Exhilarating, in a way. Bring out the alter ego but still be yourself. You’re more confident than you think, smarter than you know and more adventurous than you believe.
We travel to push our boundaries and experience new things.
I often surprise myself on a trip like ‘damn did I just do that?’ We push ourselves. In the Caribbean I cliff jumped 30 feet into the second deepest blue hole in the world (663 feet deep). Challenge yourself socially too – strike up a conversation with total strangers at a bar.
Nothing beats local recommendations.
Sometimes befriending the locals is better than any Google search. Especially in a post-COVID world, from my recent travels it seems like many destinations have taken on a new life, where online information isn’t accurate or relevant anymore. It’s always fun to meet people of various cultures because no matter how different their accent or cuisine is, you’ll quickly realize that you have more in common than you think.
Travel buddies are the best buddies.
Just like how they say don’t live with your best friend, sometimes good friends aren’t the best people to travel with. Taking PTO is hard for some, but that shouldn’t stop you from wanting to see the world even if you go solo. And if you create strong bonds, maybe some of your new friends will join you on your next adventure.
Shoutout to my friend Dakota in the picture above at Epcot. Can't wait to adventure through Disney again soon <3
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