Travelling isn’t always as fun as my Instagram pictures may look. There are a lot of ups and downs. It’s confusing at times and changes you without you even realising.
You go out there to see the world. To explore. To meet people. To try new food. To see how the rest of the world live.
But when you go out there and see how the rest of the world live, you begin to question how you’ve been living.
We travellers don’t go out there looking for new opinions. Instead those new perspectives are simply formed by what we see and experience around us.
Things we once considered as the most important things in life start to lose their value, and other things soon take their place.
Take the dream job for instance. Why is it still a mere dream? If you want it, go for it and let nothing hold you back, or stop you in your quest to achieve it. Maybe you’ve done all you could and you still can’t get where you want to be? Well don’t stop, it may just be that right now isn’t your time.
But what about people?
Best friends you’ve shared your deepest, darkest secrets with. The ones you’ve grown up with, shared years of memories with, who understood you like no one else before. You’ll also begin to change in their eyes.
You’re opinions will evolve and you probably won’t think the same things anymore. You are living different lives now and the way you think about things may never be the same again – but that’s ok. My dad always said never forget the friends who’ve been there from day one. So no matter what their opinions may be, it’s good to be open minded, listen to their reasonings and have an open debate. After all there’s a reason you’ve been friends for so long.
Friends you make while travelling will change and some will become more like family. They’ll be there for you when you’re down, they’ll pick you up when you fall, they’ll be waiting at the bar with a gin & tonic after what felt like the longest day at work. The list could go on. A good friend out here once said “Family chosen by choice can be a bond stronger than blood” – I couldn’t agree more!
Where I come from we’re told many things whilst we’re growing up.
- go to school and get an education.
- go to university and get a degree.
- get a good job.
- save up and get on the property ladder.
- find someone, get married and start to build a family.
Society has created these list of things and made us believe it’s the ‘norm’ to follow them. But when we don’t follow them we’re often judged and questioned for the choices we make and the direction we’re heading.
But what is the right direction?
The 23 year old me this time last year would have said the list above is the right direction.
The 24 year old me, right now, disagrees.
Everyone is different. Everyone is capable of achieving anything they truly want. All they need is confidence and a positive mind.
There isn’t a right or wrong answer. Just as there isn’t a checklist we must follow in life.
What you do is your own choice. So don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Be open with your opinions and thoughts, but don’t be closed minded to others.
When I started travelling 169 days ago I never in a million years thought it would change me.
I never came out here to be changed.
But I’m glad it has. I’m glad it’s made me a more open minded person. I’ve seen things I’ve wished I hadn’t, but equally I’ve seen and experienced truly amazing things I never thought was possible.
Travelling can be confusing. But it’s also the most incredible thing that you can do to open your mind and truly learn about the world.
Have you had similar experiences or felt the same way? Don’t be shy to share your story in the comments below. We’re all in the same boat 🚣
Current location: on the move in Hanoi