READING TIME: 4 MIN
Traveling is more than getting to know places, is a journey of lessons. The open road has taught me many things, some are a little mundane, like not being stingy on waxing (that´s another story) but others are more practical and necessary.
Traveling is not a walk in the park, is not a vacation because you´re not a tourist.
You aren’t just sight-seeing with everything sorted out for you, you have to find your own way and the road can get tricky.
When things get tough you have two options:
- Give up and go back to the place where you come from.
- Keep going
If you decide to keep going, there´s not knowing how things will work out, but what you can be sure of, is that there will be mesmerizing views on the way.
2- Don´t make plans
You´d only be wasting time, you can make all the plans you want, but something completely different will happen. You can only control what you do, not what will happen to you.
3- Travel light
When you don´t know where you´ll sleep tomorrow, you need to be able to get on your feet fast and light. You´ll be catching trains, buses, airplanes, boats and a long track will be done by foot.
Be kind to your shoulders, when you´re carrying the weight of your possessions on your shoulders you feel lucky you don´t own a lot of stuff.
4- Your health is the biggest treasure you´ll ever have
My friend Stan (the biggest traveler, I ever met) would always say “As long as I have my health, I have everything”. He meant that you can work, get on the road, climb mountains, cross rivers, get to know other travelers and you get to live.
A traveler’s health is pivotal to everything and they know this, that is why they cherish it and take care of it like nothing else.
5- You are your best company
Being alone is not the same to being lonely, sometimes is nice to have company and someone to laugh with but then you´ll have to continue on your own journey and company will only get in the way.
Traveling alone gives you the opportunity to get to know yourself better, you learn to become your best friend because you can only really count on yourself.
6- Money comes and goes
Money is important because is a tool to get you from where you are to where you want to go, but sometimes being creative will get you further for a lot less.
When you´re traveling your bank account will become a rollercoaster, when you´re working it will rise, when you´re traveling it will lower, but money goes and money comes so don´t get to attach to it.
The experiences while on the road are what is truly priceless, not the amount of stars on the hotel where I stayed or the age of the wine that I drank.
7- Comfortable shoes
When you´re working 14 hours a day you´ll be glad that even if your entire body aches, your feet can still move.
When you´re traveling, you´ll be walking a lot, so wearing comfortable shoes will make the journey more enjoyable and they will get you places that high-heels would never reach.
8- Believe in the kindness of strangers
There are angels on the road. I didn’t believe in the kindness of strangers until I found myself in a pickle and out of nowhere someone I didn’t know came to my rescue.
There are still amazingly kind people who help others without expecting anything in return and they keep my faith in humanity alive.
9- Eat a big breakfast
The doctors are right, eating a big healthy breakfast is important; you can maybe skip lunch but never breakfast. When your days are long and active it is breakfast the one that will keep you going for longer and it gives you more energy.
10- No job is beneath me
I’m not talking about prostitution or drug smuggling here.
When I started travelling I was looking into getting a job related to my bachelors but I couldn’t find one, so I could run out of money or do a job I never imagined doing. Cleaning.
I never thought that being a maid was beneath me, I just thought it was a job for my maids, but when you´re on the road and want to stay on the road you come to realize that you can do any job and that your pre conceived ideas are worthless when you truly want something.
11- Things will go great and things will go wrong
When things are going well enjoy it but prepare yourself cause it won’t last forever. There will be amazing moments when everything falls into place and you´re living the dream, embrace it and have fun but get prepare.
Save money, stay in shape and keep your willpower strong cause when bad times come knocking at your door (and they will) you´ll be glad you have a little something to fall back on.
When you´re struggling during the hard times, stay patient and strong cause they won´t last forever either and great moments will come again, but always remember what the hard times taught you, they will help you enjoy the good times better.
12- Listen more than you talk
You will meet oceans of people and they all have a story to tell, that´s another reason why traveling is exploring.
I´m glad that for the first time in my life I managed to listen more than I talk. I got to know amazing human beings, heard incredible stories and learned about other places, different mindsets and different lives.
We learn more from listening than from talking.
13- Get out of the city
The cities of any country are only the skeleton of their being, they support the administrative body of its country but they can tell you nothing about its personality.
If you truly want to get to know a country get out of the mayor cities and go into the small towns, get to know their traditions, the landscapes and its people. Everyone has something to teach us and every country has a lesson to be learned.
14- Let go
EVERYTHING is temporarily, good times, bad times, destinations, seasons, people. Everything ends and new experiences, moments and faces will come.
Many of the friends you make today will be gone tomorrow, they´ll follow their road and you´ll follow yours, sometimes you meet again, sometimes you don´t.
The seasons will change, years will pass and you won´t stay the same. There will be many goodbyes followed by many hellos and every departure means a new arrival
The hardest lesson and the biggest lesson is to let go, because you will never make a moment last forever.
Do you have any lessons you´ve learned on the road? Please share and helps us learn.