Traveling is something that we all wish we could do more of. We often have dreams of visiting the pyramids, or the Eiffel Tower, or even a 30-foot dinosaur in the Midwest. It doesn’t matter where we go, what matters is that just we go. Traveling helps your soul, it helps your mental health, and it helps your physical health. It makes you much more able to deal with day-to-day stresses and activities. Some people love to travel so much they do it full time. Unfortunately, most of us have to work to pay for it, but we can sneak a few weeks here and there and still feels as if we’re a World Traveler.
Being able to get away from all your day-to-day problems is a stress reliever. To be able to step away and not have to think about anything is magic. You are in a new environment that keeps you interested, and the only deadlines you have to worry about are what you are going to see next. The American Psychological Association shows that travel helps you deal with stress by removing you from the sources of anxiety.
Get your body moving
When you travel, you are much more active. People tend to get up earlier and be happy to get up as well. You walk more and move all day. Evenings you might also be out doing activities that you would not do if you were home. You would be surprised at how much cardiovascular activity you get when you travel. Your health is the most important thing in the world, and walking is one of the best ways to get started making it better. Travel is one of the easiest ways to exercise without even thinking about it. You are in a new place, so go explore.
Your immune system
When you travel your body is exposed to new bacteria and microbes. The foods you eat have a different range of bacteria that you would not experience back home. Some of the more inimical ones are a shock to your system and this may lead to a less than pleasant experience in the toilet. But the majority of bacteria that you will come in contact with are more beneficial. Even being in a new location you will pick up different bacteria that will aid your immune system as your body adapts to them.
Travel increases your brain. You are having new experiences, seeing new sites, learning new facts, paying attention to your surroundings. All of these things will increase your brain power. Almost every study with animals shows that those in an environment with new things, and things that get their attention, develop in a superior way. Those that stay in an environment that is bland, actually show loss of mental facilities. That’s not to say that you can’t do these things all in your own city, but it’s much easier when you travel to a new one.
When we travel we tend to interact with more people in a social way. We often don’t feel as alone in the world. If you travel with a group tour for example, often many of those people want to talk to others and make new friends, like you do. We have made some very good lifelong friends that we have met on tours before ourselves. Somehow it’s easier to make friends when you travel than it is when you’re at home. The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology states that those that travel extensively are more emotionally stable.
It has been shown that those that travel live longer. Whether this is from the immune system, lack of stress, or the emotional support of new friends, we do not know. Probably everything helps. So it’s nice to know that if you travel you can live longer to travel more. Although the quality of life is better than the quantity of life, having both is better. So live long and travel.