Why I HAVE to travel and why some people just don’t get it

seaEver since announcing my plans of jetting off next year, I’ve spoken to a lot of people, friends and family, who are all very excited for me. But on the flip-side, I’ve also heard from a few people who don’t seem to understand why I feel the need to jet off to the other side of the world when I have a good job, a long-term partner and friends and family all around me here. I’ll be honest, when these things were pointed out to me, I just gaped at these people and just replied, “You don’t understand.”

It’s become clear to me that there are two main types of people in this world – the adventurous and the cautious. I think that we all have elements of both in us, but at varying levels and it just depends on which way your own personal balance tips. I would never argue that one is better than the other because we need a healthy combination of both for society to survive – without the cautious we could all be dead, likewise without the adventurous, we might never have flown to the Moon. But, I do think that the two extremes find it very difficult to understand the life the other has chosen. For example, I have chosen to up sticks and go travelling alone, leaving everything behind me. Sure that could be seen as a big risk, I might not find a job when I return, I might no longer be in a relationship and I might have nowhere to live. BUT, I feel I would regret it so much more if I didn’t go. I know that there are many who would not understand why I want to do thisΒ because it is not something they would consider doing.

I understand because I know so many people who have done the complete opposite of me, the ones who started families and set up homes, got married and settled down instead of taking the university and work route that I followed. I really admire the people who have done this, mainly because I am impressed that they have felt so strongly that this is the path they wanted to follow and because they felt ready for all of this. At nearly 24, I certainly don’t feel ready for any of that, especially when it comes toΒ raising children, but I am so impressed by those that do. This is what helps me to understand why they feel so surprised byΒ my decision, because I know that I felt exactly the same when hearing about their plans. Neither is right or wrong, just different.402843_10151043139357617_1461972852_nSo why do I feel the need to travel? Here are my reasons:

  1. I want to see the world, to taste and experience everything out there. I want to learn and meet people and see things I never knew existed. I know I must satisfy this curiosity or I will always wonder.
  2. To escape. As my wonderful friend put it, like she, I just need to quit life for a bit and to take a break from it all. I’ve been constantly working and in education since I was five-years-old and I want to give my head a rest.
  3. I need space to figure out my next move, both career-wise and geographically.
  4. I will regret it for the rest of my life if I didn’t go.
  5. Who says that travelling won’t help my career and will lead me into a new path? It might mean I go into travel writing or even leave behind writing altogether if I am so inspired.
  6. I miss having time to read and write. Between my job, festival work and blogging, I have no real time to really get into reading a book like I used to at university and I miss it. I miss having no distractions.
  7. I want to get out of my home-town and experience something different. I want an excuse to leave that doesn’t mean moving away immediately.
  8. I need to leave my job – I feel I have progressed as much as possible in my current job and think that the only way to go further is to leave and start afresh elsewhere.
  9. I have been saving for a really long time, but never knew what for – now I want to have that rainy day where I splash out on the best experience of my life.
  10. I really, really want the chance to do something completely by myself. I have never really been alone, I have always been surrounded by friends, family and my boyfriend and this is my way of proving to myself that I can cope.
  11. That amazing job that is out there waiting for me will still be there a year from now, or another one will be in its place – the opportunity to go travelling might not be there.

Why do you feel you HAVE to travel the world? Or what is it that keeps you at home?


30 responses to “Why I HAVE to travel and why some people just don’t get it

  1. Ohh I loved this post so much and I admire you SO MUCH for doing this! I definitely agree with everyone having a cautious and an adventurous side to them but obviously one thing that someone might find adventurous, another might not but like you said, there’s no right or wrong as we’re all entitled to do what we want that makes us happy.
    I can pin-point the both sides of myself as in, I couldn’t settle down, get married, have kids or even get a 9-5 office job because it just ISN’T ME (right now, anyway) I would be absolutely bored senseless and feel like I’m wasting my life but at the same time, I couldn’t go travelling alone like you. I’d like to have a friend or a partner with me which I guess is the caution side talking. It’s fascinating to think about really πŸ™‚
    No-one should question why you’re doing what you’re doing – it’s your life and I think it’s amazing πŸ™‚ xxx

    • Thanks Jenny! That means a lot πŸ™‚ You pointing out that you are kind of between the two has made me think that (something I didn’t point out in the post) there are also varying degrees of adventure – so for some adventure might be jetting off somewhere the other side of the world, but for you, your adventure might be something different.. that doesn’t make it any less or more of an adventure – I guess what I’m trying to say is that no-one can judge anyone else’s level of adventure because they don’t know what these things mean to the individual! My boyfriend is retaking his a-levels and contemplating giving up a career in engineering to go to uni – that is just as big of an adventure as my travel plans in my mind πŸ™‚ Wise words at the end as well missus – you’re so right that no-one can question anyone on their plans. I just hate when people look at you like you’re mad and it actually makes you start to question if you are making the right decision – not that I would change my mind πŸ˜› xxxx

      • Yes! That’s exactly what I meant! Re-taking your A Levels and giving up your job to go to uni is an extremely big (and scary) adventure. It doesn’t make it any bigger or scarier than you deciding to travel around the world, it’s just a different kind of adventure and as long as it makes him happy then there’s no problem πŸ™‚ Some people just need to stop being so judgemental! You wouldn’t judge someone for having a baby or getting married in their early 20’s. I think the only reason they’d judge is because what you’re doing is a bit out of the ordinary and you’re not conforming to the social norm of school – uni – job – married if you get what I mean? Good for you though for doing it and not letting anyone change your mind πŸ™‚ xxx

      • So true – you’re right. I think the problem is those who often judge negatively are the ones who regret not doing it themselves or who are regretting their own choices. I completely agree with you, but I’ve never been one for doing what everyone else was doing πŸ˜› I’m the same as you, the idea of getting married or having kids scares me silly but I’m sure in time that will change – we’re all just programmed differently and work through life at different paces. Thanks πŸ™‚ xxx

  2. This is a fantastic blog. I will follow.
    I love how you explained your need to just set off.
    I also feel the same way.
    Although I am 23 and a motherbto a 2 year old I figured he will love it too!
    I feel so many similarities as you described and also love writting and want to see where my passion and curiosity takes me. I am jetting to Europe & singapore with my 2yr old in just ten weeks for a few months! Cant wait!!
    Good luck to your travels!!

    • Thanks so much πŸ™‚ I’m glad I’m not alone in this and what a wonderful way to bring up your son! I dream of bringing up children around the world and exposing them to all the things I have been lucky enough to experience. He will grow up all the wiser for it and will have you to thank for an incredible childhood! Thanks so much and look forward to reading about your travels as well! xx

  3. I love this! I am totally with you on this one… I definitely have the travel bug. I think it is strange when people tell me they don’t want to travel. I mean there is so much of the world to see I can’t fathom how people can be happy staying in the same place all of the time. But each to their own and I respect that.
    I am kicking myself because I just turned down a opportunity to study overseas by myself for six months and I had a moment of weakness so I declined. It was the worst decision that I have made thus far in my life but there is a 6 week one coming up so I am definitely not saying no to that opportunity!
    Good luck with you travels and I can’t wait to read all about them πŸ™‚ xx

    • Thanks Alex! I’m glad so many people could identify with this post πŸ™‚ I totally agree, I also find it odd that some people just have no interest in knowing more about the world around them, but I am endlessly curious and always wanting to know and learn more – perhaps some just aren’t programmed in the same way? That sounds like an amazing opportunity – but don’t feel you have lost out, like you say you have another opportunity right around the corner and new ones will always crop up πŸ™‚ Where are you looking to study and what will you be studying? I always half-wish I had studied abroad like some of my friends but studying English and living in England limits you somewhat unless you want to teach which I didn’t think I was cut out for… Thanks so much πŸ™‚ looking forward to reading about your travels as well! xxx

      • Yea I guess so, everybody is different πŸ™‚ Well I am studying Italian as one of my majors so I am hoping to go to Rome and study the language there for a bit. Hopefully all goes according to plan and I can earn a few of my uni credits in Europe πŸ™‚ ahaha xx

      • Oh that sounds wonderful – I loved Rome when I went on a school trip years ago. Such a beautiful city and how amazing to learn a language while living in the actual country. That will be such an amazing experience πŸ™‚ I look forward to reading all about it! xx

  4. Love your reasons to travel, its a major goal in my life. To explore this wonderful world before settling down. Great post thanks for the honest share.

    Meg | Meghan Silva’s Blog

  5. You have the right attitude and if you do not do it when you are young without major responsibilities it will be much more difficult to do later in life.. Yes, many people have pulled up stakes for a year or so in their later years , say forties or whatever but as I told an employee of mine years ago, what is your problem, you have no furniture , animals, leases, mortgages to tie you down. In that case it was a job in Bermuda and he was on the pacific Coast. Now he is married , with children, house and of course in Bermuda.:)
    Regardless of family, partner ties , job ties.. you have a dream to explore , your dream.. do it. You can only become a richer person overall


    • Thanks πŸ™‚ This is exactly what I thought, I know that if I don’t take my opportunity while I plan to leave my job anyway, I will get tied to another one and before I know it 20 years will have gone past and I’ll have a family and a house which as you say will make it so much more difficult. You put it so well in your comment and you obviously know what you are talking about if your employee has based a whole new life on your advice πŸ™‚ Thank you so much xx

  6. Now I need to know where you plan to go? My world might have been very different if I’d come to this view sooner, but I take what opportunities I can find πŸ™‚

    • Hi Jo πŸ™‚ I’m planning on doing South East Asia, particularly Thailand and Cambodia, but also Laos and possibly Vietnam, then on to Oz and NZ – have always wanted to visit all of these places and I’m so excited! I’m hoping to work over in Oz or NZ and save some more money so many even carry on from there if I can save enough! I would love to do South America – but would need a lot more money. I think that’s the case for all of us, we could always have done things earlier or better, but as long as we are happy in the present that we are taking opportunities and doing what we want to do, that is all that matters. I love reading your travel stories – the latest one about Poland was beautiful πŸ™‚ xxx

  7. You sound so amazing. I wish I can detach myself from my life like that and just take off.

    • Aww what a lovely thing to say – thanks 😊 but I’m really not amazing, I think it just depends on the type of person.. I don’t feel like I’m leaving much behind compared to what I will gain.. Xx

  8. I love your reasons for travelling, its true how we’re locked into this life of school, uni, marriage, job and kids.. and that’s our happily ever after when actually our dreams to actually see what other life is out there! You sound like such a lovely person Lucy, and such a good Reiter how you can hook your readers in and I feel so gripped by your posts. Definitely right to see travelling as an approach to nurture your skills and focus on some travel writing, I think that’s a great idea πŸ™‚

    • Thanks Jody – you’re so right. I feel like we go through school and are constantly pushed along this path whether it is right for us or not! There are so many different ways to live and we all have to find our own πŸ™‚ Thanks – that’s such a sweet thing to say, I’m so happy you’re enjoying my posts and it means a lot that others, whose opinions I really value, think I am doing the right thing πŸ™‚ xxx

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