The One Thing No One Is Telling You About Travel

Everyday women in Rio De Janeiro in the 1970's

Everyday women in Rio De Janeiro in the 1970's

There’s another way. A way that uses travel as a tool for wellbeing. A vehicle to become the person you really are. The person you are here to be. The person who spreads light into this world, because you’ve first found it in yourself.

It has nothing to do with vacation-mode diets or getting wasted with people you half like. Nor does it involve mediocre food and sugary drinks, or sleeping around with guys for the stamp of approval you were seeking from yourself all along.  

People have journeyed for thousands of years to go on pilgrimages of self-discovery. This is nothing new. People have gone to the ends of the earth, not to see the place, but to see the person they become along the way.

But here’s the thing: the travel industry is a a one of the world's largest. There is money up the ying yang in travel. This means there is marketing and (false) narratives. And the cheesy messages and tacky brochures not only make people think Cabo and Cancun are the only options for a trip—it's also programmed well-meaning humans to believe in order to have an “experience we will never forget” we need to be so blacked out that in turn we remember nothing.

Another thing that goes unsaid is the leftovers, on the beaches and in the people. When travelers come into towns where people live, with jobs, and families, They air their dirty laundry all over the place and then leave. There’s no awareness or intention behind it. It’s reckless, it’s foolish, it’s not classy. And then the family and the town is left with the trash—or whatever else happened—and the people go back with their plastic souvenirs and hard-boiled pride.

This isn’t me just getting ranty (okay, a little bit ranty) but it comes from locals who’ve told me these stories. Mostly it comes from my own experience, because time and again I’ve felt the transformative power of travel, when it’s used as a vehicle for change, rather than escapism.

This other way. The mass consumerism and commercialism and tacky greed. This is not travel. This is not what it’s about. And it’s definitely not the spirit of the journey.

I say this because once we're aware of our conditioning, we can start do counterbalance it. This way, the experience is a tool for growth and expansion, versus an outlet for vices and habits.

There’s a difference between a person who comes back from a trip and is so transformed everyone can’t help but stare at them when they walk into a room, because they exude a powerful energy, an inner knowing, a radiant light. Versus the person who comes back from a trip with stories they half remember and take a week just to feel human again.

The difference is the process. The intention. The approach.

The one thing no one is telling you is this: traveling is a tool to become more of the person you really are, the person your soul is dying to become. And taking the leap itself is a self-correcting mechanism for change. The thing that makes all the difference? The intention behind it.