There’s something magical about leaving the comforts of home, venturing out into the world, and exploring new places.
I would know; I left my home country of Ireland almost a decade ago and haven’t lived there since.
Traveling can be a life-changing experience for anyone willing to go beyond their comfort zone, leave their expectations and prejudices behind, and embrace new cultures and ways of living.
While you can travel at any age really, there’s no denying that it is better to travel when you are young.
Today, I give you 8 reasons why every young man should travel.
01 Travel Builds Independence
As kids, we rely on our parents for everything: to help us with our homework, for our transportation, for advice when we’re uncertain about something, and for our safety.
While it’s important to have a safe and secure childhood, as we reach adulthood and prepare to take care of ourselves, we develop our independence.
However, in your country or city where things are often familiar, it is easier. You likely have a support system and just know how things work. Traveling turns this on it’s head and forces you to become very self-reliant.
It can help you become more independent, as it requires you to take care of yourself in a variety of situations.
Once you book a flight, a bus, or a train ride to your destination, you’re responsible for your own transportation.
When you stay in a hotel, you’re responsible for paying for your own room and giving yourself enough time to get to the airport on time.
And if you want to communicate with people, you have to learn how to speak their language.
One of the best ways to build autonomy is to travel. It takes you out of your comfort zone and allows you to gain a new perspective, which allows you to break away from your regular routine and discover a new side of yourself.
I am not going to sugarcoat it; with this comes uncertainty and you are bound to have a few mishaps (I certainly have) but in the long run, it will make you more independent.
02 It Helps Build Confidence
Confidence can be described as the assurance that you can achieve your goals.
To me, it’s the belief that you can tackle any challenge in your life and succeed.It’s the assurance that you are good enough and you are ready for what life has to offer.
As a young man, you might be insecure about the future, unsure about your strengths and weaknesses, and not be very confident about your potential.
But if you travel, you’ll be forced to leave your comfort zone and gain new experiences, which will increase your confidence.
When you travel, you’ll most likely encounter people from different cultures, religions, and parts of the world, and you’ll be forced to interact with them.
The more you interact with people from different backgrounds, the more confident you become. In fact, one of the best ways to become more confident is to travel.
If you know that you can survive and potentially prosper in a country or place that is new to you, you are sure to be able to do the same at home.
03 It Builds Self-Discipline
Self-discipline can be defined as willpower and the ability to regulate your thoughts, actions, and emotions to achieve a goal.
It is about being able to control your impulses, follow a set schedule, and persist through challenges.
It goes without saying that the more self-disciplined you become, the easier it will be to achieve your goals in life.
Adventuring out into the world will provide you with plenty of challenges that will require you to exercise self-discipline.
When you travel, you will be forced to make sacrifices, such as postponing your social life or declining invitations from friends because you have to get up early the next morning for your flight.
When you travel, you will sometimes be required to follow a strict itinerary, so you don’t miss out on any experiences.
And when you travel, you will have to persist through challenges, such as difficult weather conditions, health issues, and maybe even a language barrier.
This level of self-discipline is not usually required when you are at home. Of course, it is beneficial but you can often get by without it.
When traveling, you will need it and it is a great habit to build.
04 Travel Builds Networking Opportunities
When you travel, you are likely to meet many people—locals and fellow travelers.
These people share your experiences, offer advice, and become friends you can remain in contact with for the rest of your life.
Some of my best friends are people that I have met while traveling. Most now live far from me but we keep in touch and meet when we can.
As well as meeting friends, some of the people you meet on the road will be helpful in introducing you to new opportunities, such as job prospects. Indeed, some fellow travelers have presented me with chances I otherwise wouldn’t have had.
If you have a social media presence, use it to network with other travelers. You can meet up with other travelers you’ve met online or through social media and exchange contact information with them.
You never know when this may pay dividends.
Even if you don’t get any career opportunities, it’s great to keep in touch with people and share stories of your travels. These are the only people who can truly understand the experience you had.
05 Traveling Is The Best Way To Learn Another Language
Speaking another language is a skill that will not only help you communicate with others, but it will also help you understand another culture better.
If you are a student, you can use your language skills as a part-time job or add them to your resume as an extra skill.
If you’re planning on working in the international field, knowing more than one language is a skill that will definitely boost your career.
I’ll be honest, I am not a great language learner and often struggle. However, I have met many people who by traveling (usually for a few months or more) were able to improve their current foreign language skills or even learn a totally new language.
06 Traveling Is The Best Way To Grow As A Person
This may sound a little general but as a whole, traveling takes you out of your comfort zone and allows you to experience new things and meet new people from different cultures and backgrounds.
It’s hard to pin it down but the experience of traveling, particularly to places unlike where you come from, can really help you to grow as a person.
You’ll gain valuable life experiences that will help you grow as a person and give you new perspectives on life. You’ll experience different types of weather, eat new kinds of food, and encounter different ways of thinking and living.
You’ll learn how to adapt to new challenges and deal with new hardships. You may learn how to communicate with people from other cultures in their native language.
And you’ll almost certainly learn how to be more humble, patient, and flexible.
07 Traveling May Be The Way To Find Your Purpose in Life
We all want to have a purpose in life but it is elusive.
Having a sense of purpose is one of the key attributes that set apart successful people from the rest of the population.
You may have yet to discover what your purpose in life is. Travel may point you in the direction.
We are not going to suggest that you go all ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ but there is no doubt that when you travel, you are exposed to new ways of living, thinking, and doing things.
You are exposed to new environments and cultures that help you find the best way to utilize your skills and abilities to help others in need.
08 Traveling Shows You There’s Much More Out There For You
When you travel, you are expanding your horizons and trying out different lifestyles, foods, and traditions.
You are exposing yourself to new ways of living, thinking, and doing things. You are also meeting new people, who can offer you new opportunities, like job prospects, language lessons, and cultural exchanges.
When you travel, you are taking advantage of the full experience. You are going out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself to do new things.
You are making new friends and gaining new perspectives on life.
As you may know, I currently live in South East Asia. Many of my friends have somewhat alternative lifestyles.
They are digital nomads running businesses, freelance writers, remote corporate workers, English language teachers or local business owners.
Many move around the world living in different countries.
To me when I was at home, all of this would have seemed like a fairytale; something that was unrealistic and unattainable. Of course, it is not. The people I spend time with, and I, are largely within this group.
As you can see, traveling has many benefits for both young men and women alike.
It is a great way to gain life experience, new skills, and knowledge, and even meet new people.
If you are a young man who has yet to travel, we hope this article has inspired you to plan your first trip soon.
And if you are someone who has traveled before, we hope this article has reminded you of all the benefits of traveling once again.
If you have any experience to share or points to add, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below.