Why You Will Not Regret Traveling in Your 20s
By Erin Lyman
In my short twenty-one years of life I have been blessed with many opportunities to travel. From Minnesota to Costa Rica, from Pennsylvania to Colorado I have experienced numerous different places. Although it is exciting, experiencing new places is not the only perk of traveling. I have gained more than just memories from my experiences. I have gained friends, life lessons, and most importantly an understanding of myself. Traveling is not something that I used to enjoyed, but I fell in love with all it has showed me. I will never regret traveling and will continue to do so until I no longer can.
Learning to Travel Alone
When I had traveled in the past I was usually with at least one other person. However, as I get older I have began to I travel alone. Usually when with other people I just followed what I was told to do and mindlessly made my way through the airport to my gate. However, once I was alone I had to learn how to conquer my fear of the airport alone. Getting through an airport is not as scary as it seems, although the first time you go alone you will feel overwhelmed. Eventually, you get in a routine and learn that you do not need to be with other people to do things. This may be one of the greatest things I learned while traveling. It gave me the ability to be comfortable being uncomfortable and accepting that I may need to ask strangers for help, and that is okay. I am thankful to have learned this now before I felt too scared to try things on my own. Having the ability to be alone and feel confident is something that I would not trade. I have traveling to thank for this.
What You Gain Traveling Alone
Another reason I do not regret traveling and will continue to do so is because I have gained so many friends from it. When living in Philadelphia for a brief four months I made numerous friends that I still keep in touch with. However, even with shorter trips I have made lifelong friends! I went to Colorado for a quick three-day trip and made a friend that I often keep in touch with via social media. About a year ago I went to Costa Rica for ten days and became very close with my tour guide. We talked just the other day. You can spend your entire life in a bubble and be okay. You can also break outside that bubble and meet people that you did not even know you needed in your life. Also, never forget- it’s not what you know it’s who! You never know when these people who are far and wide will be able to help you. In our 20s, at such an unsure state in life, each person you meet can be the connection you need to get you where you want to go. The more people you know the merrier!
Discovering the World
Every place I have travelled to have different cultures. Seeing people in these lifestyles has taught me a lot about the person I want to be. The South is a slower pace of life that usually involves a love for the outdoors, football and pretty dresses. The East is a much faster pace a life and it did not have all of the Midwest charm I am accustomed to. The North is cold with kind folks and it is beautiful in the winter and summer! Colorado, which is as far West as I have been, has such friendly people with a love for hiking, mountains, and being one with nature. Although I may like the South better for my future, I know that each destination is or is not for me because I experienced it. I am able to do this while I still have the chance to. I have nothing holding me to where I am currently and in my future search for grad schools, jobs and houses I will know where I want to be.