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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 this 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 to raising children, but I am so impressed by those that do. This is what helps me to understand why they feel so surprised by 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?