Travelling has always been a way to explore one’s limits, but unfortunately, people tend to forget the significance of it in terms of discovering one’s true selfever since it became so overwhelmingly popular. Being an integral part of life, it is a way to explore different cultures, get closer to nature and meet new people. But what about the impact of travelling on YOU?
Does it have an influence, and if so, how does it manage to get you out of a comfort zone that you’ve been stuck in ever since the COVID-19 pandemic?
People have focused on travelling even more in the post COVID-19 world. As soon as travelling became available, whoever was able to, rushed back to their favourite activity of all. But have you ever questioned yourself why? I love travelling and if you do too, there are certain things that you will find interesting in this article.
Undoubtedly, psychology students must all have heard about The Big 5 Model; a notion in which core personality traits are divided in 5 different dimensions. Research has shown that these core personality traits can be altered when you start travelling. To no surprise, the trait most affected is believed to be openness. In my experience, when comparing people who have never left their hometown to those that travelled all over the world, I see a big difference in mentality and a higher level of openness to new experiences.
Sometimes you travel for leisure, but you end up learning about yourself.You find out how much of an introvert or an extrovert are you, which can help you to change your approach towards things and impacts your personality.
A fun by-product of travelling, quite helpful in psychology practices, is that the more you travel, the less anxious you feel about your day-to-day problems. Instead of feeling angst and uneasiness about not being able to find a parking spot around university, you learn to just go with it – possibly because you remember how your early morning flight to Istanbul was cancelled half an hour before the departure time, while you were cashing out in the duty free store!
Another benefit of travelling is the adrenaline rush. Is there a more thrilling way to challenge your comfort zone, than to feel adrenaline rushing through your blood stream during take-off or landing? You get a glimpse of the new scenery, that differs in many ways from that of your home country. You get to try things you cannot try at home, go to new places, meet new people, see the things you never knew existed– and for many, this is what really motivates them to travel. Long train rides across Italy, marching in the wrong direction in Prague, and the stark realisation that not having spoken to another person for half a day means you have been spending quality time with yourself – which is both a confronting and an enjoyable experience. When you travel alone you start feeling the world in a different way.
Is it scary? YES.
But flying alone means being challenged in all sorts of ways, leading to personal growth and transformation. All in all, your comfort zone practically gets wiped out by the perks of travelling, but for what it’s worth, travelling can be a once in a life time experience that transforms you into a more self-aware person.
Bachelor of Psychology Honours, 2nd Year