The top 5 excuses people make for not traveling (even though they say they really want to), and why they are wrong:
Traveling is expensive
Well yes, it can be, but there are ways to travel that incur very little expenses other than your plane ticket. For those of us who need a daily shower and a bed however, (not everyone can backpack across Europe after all), it comes down to a value proposition. For many people, it’s not that they don’t have the money; it’s just that they don’t want to give up their daily latte, a flat screen TV, a new iPhone, etc. None of these things are bad, and you have every right to choose how to spend your own money. The point is, however, that budgeting is all about prioritizing. To travel without a large disposable income on hand, one can begin by rethinking where one spends.
Traveling is inconvenient
Well, you are absolutely correct. Traveling is one of the most inconvenient and humbling activities you could ever find yourself in. It’s hot, sticky, tiring, confusing, and disorienting. It forces you to Gumby yourself into an airplane seat the size of a thimble, then remain inert for hours. Not exactly a spa day, but absolutely worth it.
There are ways to travel luxuriously. You pay heaps of money to a company to fabricate a continuously aesthetically pleasing and comfortable environment for you. The inconvenience of travel however, is a form of dying to yourself – sacrificing your comfort for the opportunity to love others. You will be amazed at how your eyes open to see the world around you in new and inspiring ways.
Traveling is dangerous
We’ve all seen Taken, and heard the stories of unsuspecting tourists whose wallets are snatched by pickpockets. Unfortunately, these things do happen, but a little common sense goes a long way. The last person I met whose money was stolen in Europe had pretty much written, “Rob me” on their forehead. The fact of the matter is that you are no more in control of your environment while traveling than you are while at home. The only thing that has changed is your comfort zone. Stepping outside of your comfort zone is challenging, but I swear that it will be the source of your best stories. After all, they don’t write books and make movies about people who never take risks.
You’re too busy
This excuse is one of the hardest to beat. Life has a way of continuously picking up speed, until one day you realize that your next 3 months are booked solid and you have no idea how it happened. Stepping back from our culture of perpetual “busyness” requires a level of self-control and discipline. It’s flat out hard to protect your time in the midst of a schedule where everything feels mandatory. It can be done however, and you may be surprised to find how the world doesn’t fall apart when you set boundaries around your time, tell someone “no”, and take a vacation.
Traveling is a waste of [otherwise productive] time
I once heard about an experiment where CEO’s were given two near identical résumés for a job opening. The one difference between the two résumés was that during a year of unemployment, one candidate traveled the world, while the other stayed home and hunted for work. The majority of the CEO’s opted for the candidate who had traveled during his unemployment. Traveling is a highly formative experience that requires initiative, tenacity, and develops marketable skills such as creative problem solving and cross-cultural communication. Not to mention it’s really fun, and could possibly be a life-changing experience. So the next time someone tells you that traveling is a waste of time, call him out on it. You will probably hear him say that it’s better to stay home and make money, at which point you are right back at Excuse #1.
What excuses do you hear?