One of the biggest misconceptions about millennials is that everything we do, everywhere we go, we are taking our sweet time getting there and not thinking about the consequences of our actions. I think there is an element of truth in this ideal, as I can agree that millennials grew up in a generation surrounded by emerging technologies and prolonged education; therefore living at home longer with parents, taking longer to get married and have children, and even defying the odds by deciding against marriage, children, or the typical nuclear household that held generation x and the baby boomers in place. We are a generation defined by our will to defy gratification and do what we want, when we want it.
To me, as a twentysomething female, I can both agree and disagree with this ideal. I do still live at home, but I started working nearly a decade ago and saved my money, paying for everything myself, getting an education, and landing my goal of getting a stable job. When I look at my grandparents (aka the baby boomers), I see two hard working people who never took the time to leave their nuclear lives with three young children before the age of 25, to travel the world and ‘find themselves’ as many of us millennials partake in today. The philosophy was backwards; worry now, travel later.
As millennials, we are told to get an education and study hard in order to get the best job, but the best job keeps moving further and further away from us with more experience ALWAYS required and higher educational requirements continuously needed. We are told that we should be single, travelling, and taking our time to find what we really want out of life before the age of 30; yet expected to follow in our grandparent’s generational footsteps and mature at age 16. I have always found these misconceptions to be backwards, but the one philosophy I do agree with is the ‘Travel now, Worry later’ ideal. Here’s why:
Travelling forces you out of your comfort zone
Whether you have decided to take the plunge and travel alone or you’re joining a group of friends, you are subjecting yourself to a new place that you aren’t familiar with. This pulls you out of your familiar atmosphere and daily routine, and allows you to gain a new perspective. It has been said that the best way to grow is to do something that you aren’t comfortable with. By exposing yourself to a new place, you are opening doors in your mind that you had no idea could ever be opened.
You gain a new perspective
I’m really tired of the same old 9-5 work grind everyday. I don’t mind my job, but I’m exposed to the exact same environment on a daily basis. When you travel, the thoughts you experience every day when you have the same routine become different. You’re in a new place with new people, and you are granted the ability to see the world in a whole new light. Maybe you will meet your soulmate while travelling, maybe you will come to the realization that you hate your job and want to find something that you love. Maybe you will find a new passion. Whatever it may be, you couldn’t have possibly made this discovery while sitting at home.
There’s a lot of world out there, don’t you want to see it? Not everyone wants to pack their bags and take off halfway across the world, but as humans in the 21st century, we have grown accustomed to a certain way of living and we typically don’t know what else is out there to discover. At this point in my life, I’ve taken a couple of trips here and there but I see many friends travelling to places all over the globe and discovering parts of the world that I didn’t even know existed. By travelling, you are welcoming the different cultures and sceneries of the world into your existence and discovering what you are missing.
You might not be able to later!
There’s nothing wrong with people of any age taking off and seeing the world; my grandparents do it on the regular and they are even more awesome for it; but there’s no way they would ever take off and go to Vegas for the weekend, or sit on the beaches of Australia in their swimsuits (yes I have actually asked them these questions). You can certainly do any vacation you want at any age, but would going to Vegas be the same if you were 22 versus 70? Of course not, the experience of seeing the world also varies with age. I have spoken to my Aunt who used to be an avid traveler, and she has told me she just doesn’t have the will to get on a plane and go out anymore considering her job is close to home and she is comfortable. When she was in her twenties, she wanted to go everywhere. Do this while your young and you have the time to not worry too much. Travel before you have the commitment of kids, marriage, and even a full-time job.
Finding ourselves in this crazy, ever-emerging world that we live in can be a hectic and extremely difficult task; but never be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and out some money towards a trip you’ve always wanted to take. You’ll get your money back one day, and you can proudly say you put your hard earned money towards an incredible experience that you’ll remember for the rest of your life.