3 ways I am motivated by travel.
Recently I've been seeing a lot of posts and comments about travel and digital nomadism being called out as forms of escapism and it got me to thinking, hard.
Now don't get me wrong, I know of people who have moved away or gone travelling for long periods of time to get away from their troubles. Heck! I was that person aged 20. But I moved to Brazil and my personal problems became ten times bigger. We all go through our own journeys though and after two years of serious self-development, I still have the itch and a wandering mind.
For the first time in my life, I can say I have nothing to run away from. I have a good job, a great flat in an incredible city. No loose ends. No drama. I have time and no where I need to be. The world is officially whatever I say it is.
In London, most people are motivated by status and/or money, so why am I still motivated by travel?
1. The thrill. Some like rollercoasters, others like bungee-jumping, me? I love the adrenaline rush from clicking the flight "confirm" button. Waking up when most people are coming home from the bars and stepping on to a plane for a new adventure. Swapping your local coffee shop one Saturday for a new one in Copenhagen. Swapping my work heels for trainers and a rucksack. Entering a new world. Even just for a few hours.
2. The fulfilment. To quote a cliche: "travel is the one thing you can buy that makes you richer." No matter how I try, I cannot "do nothing" with my time. Binge-watching Netflix is fulfilling for a while and then I have to be doing something again. Even if it's the washing or food shop. When I return to the office on a Monday, I feel most refreshed when I have spent the weekend travelling. Not on the sofa. I am in no way making anyone wrong, we all have different preferences. However, I know that I am that much more motivated on Monday when I have spent the weekend filling my brain with new experiences. Owning certain brands of clothing, partying in certain clubs and brunching in certain cafes just simply do not match up to the inner smile I get from travelling. Learning something new, seeing something new, trying something new.
3. The memories. Swapping nights out - and consequently hangovers the next day - for coaching people early on Saturday mornings, changed my life. Because in being clearheaded the next morning, I rediscovered what a productive weekend could be. It was addicting. Swapping nights out and money spent on outfits, booze at pre-drinks, booze at the club and then the chips after plus the Ubers, for a plane ride and, yes, a blog post of memories, was one of the best decisions I ever made. For myself. It's coming up on two years since I moved to London and it honestly feels like I have been living here for five thanks to the sheer amount of things I have had the time to fit into my diary. By removing alcohol and old habits. The beautiful thing is that you are almost always accepted by the community on the other side, into their family. Travel motivates me to love community and expand it. To see most as simply extended family. With a little bit of effort, you can create family wherever you go.
BONUS: the motivation itself. Having something to look forward to. Having something to organise. Is motivation enough. Booking these trips breaks me out of small thoughts and encourages me to think bigger and wider. To expand myself. Travel is the thing that keeps me going. I've been a manager, director and trustee, lived abroad twice, done a degree. But the thing that I aim for, is travel. The thing I don't think twice about, is travel. Whenever I am asked in seminars, by friends, colleagues and family about what excites me most, every time I think of travel first.
So there you have it. Does it still seem like escapism? Am I missing a reason in your opinion?
Why do you travel?