How Travel Improved My Quality Of Life

Travel by West Jet

Waking up on at the sound of an alarm clock, like a programmed robot that reacts to a certain sound. Doing the same thing, routinely without even thinking about it. Riding the tube, surrounded by commuters having the same gormless look on their faces. Gents carrying their brief cases and ladies in heels they forced their feet into, because of work requirements. I don’t think i’ve ever seen a smiley chirpy commuter before. This is what I experienced when I caught the tube during the morning rush hour, getting ready for a press trip. My suitcase in tow, wide eyed with excitement and a suitcase full of clothes, shoes and skincare. I sat back and thought to myself, am I the only genuinely happy person on this tube? It saddened me a little, because it seemed a lot of people didn’t love what they did for a living.

Whilst I was at university, I vowed to myself that I would never do a job I didn’t love. I didn’t want that dreary feeling of getting out of bed in the morning, with all the regret of taking a job I never wanted in the first place. Only to be stuck in it for the next twenty years. It seems not everyone is so lucky to have had that ambition and support to do so. This is partially why I didn’t seek a long term career in Biochemistry, after graduating. Being a millennial, I felt had a lot more to offer than just sitting in a laboratory ┬ádoing the same old mundane job day in, day out. That’s not me. I have no much creativity and passion for travel and writing to be doing that. I want an interesting life. A life that makes me jump out of bed, before my alarm clock.

I haven’t been in permanent full time employment since I finished uni, around 6 months ago. Do I wish I had a better income? Yes. Do I have any regrets? Absolutely not! Do I love what I do? Every single day. Whilst i’m still doing freelance work and my blog, i’m actively seeking a job in public relations or marketing to keep my passion for creativity and my love for travels alive. I want to share the love of what I do, with other people who love doing it to. Just on the other side. Does that mean I would ever consider dropping my blog? Never.

Travelling to the airport

There is something that is so freeing about travel. Watching everyone scurry around with their suitcases to reach the check-in desks, handing over their plastic credit cards in duty free making pre-flight purchases. The sound of passengers cheering as they all clink their champagne glasses after take off. The pleasant and luxurious service that can be offered 50,000 feet in the sky. Not forgetting that slight adreneline rush you get as you reach the runway and a 600 tonne metal tin is taking you to a far away destination, where all your worries and troubles just vanish.

This isn’t just a job, it’s a lifestyle. It’s a passion, it’s a true love.

Travel makes you feel so empowered. Making your own decisions and the fate of each day is in your hands. It’s not dictated by your boss or your colleagues or even your family. It’s all down to you. That makes me feel like the pilot of my own life and it feels so good.

I’ve also learnt a lot about class and poverty. Travelling to less fortunate countries like India and Africa, really makes you realise how the other half the world live. How we obviously look past those television ads, but in reality it’s true. When you adolescents coming up to you, begging for money because that’s what their parents have sent them out to do. It makes you put aside your materialistic thoughts and your must have attitude.

Emotions have been impacted greatly by my travels. Sometimes I can’t control my emotions at times, especially when reality hits you when you least expect it. At the same time, it shapes you and makes you. It hardens your soul for the better and makes you compassionate towards those truly worthy of it.

It teaches you that language is no barrier and race is a sense of diversity, but we’re all the same. When I was a child, visiting my grandparents in Africa was always the highlight of my summer. I would go out and play with the neighbourhood children, where the majority were native Africans. None of them knew a single bit of English and I couldn’t speak a work of Swahili. However, over six weeks, I became the best of friends with the boy opposite named Shabani. We used to share oranges, mangoes, play with footballs and climb trees. We became so close, that when it came to me leaving to go back to England, we were both hysterically crying. Even when I go back now and we’re both in our twenties, we still remember each other. Only now Shabani has learnt English and we’re able to hold a intellectual conversation. You just learn to communicate in your own way.

Meeting Hayley in Paris

Meeting new people has to be one of my favourite things about travelling. Individuals from different walks of life and backgrounds. It’s truly inspiring. Many people I have met on press trips, I am still in contact and connected with. It just goes to show that travel can bring people together. Especially those you wouldn’t have met otherwise. I’ve also become incredibly close to people in London, through sharing the same passion of blogging and travelling. Most of my close friends are now bloggers!

Through my travels, I figured out things I never knew about myself. I learnt that i’m actually scared of bats but i’m not phased my crawling through dark caves. I’m phased by cockroaches, but i’m not scared to chase off wild monkeys with a broomstick. I developed a taste of exotic fruits and drinking coconut water from a carton at home just wasn’t the same. How would I have learnt these things about myself if I never travelled?

My advice to everyone? Travel. Travel to your hearts content, experience things you never would. Keep learning and never stop loving. You only get one chance at life, why not live it to your hearts content.

Until next time…

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  • “Travel is the only thing you can buy that will make you richer.”

    This, and your post, resonates with me because I feel like I can only ‘find myself’ when I’m in a new and unfamiliar place. Ah, the poetic irony!

    It’s a big old world out there. I do think that we need to step out of our bubble and see it, or we’ll never learn anything new. x

    Penang, Malaysia: 4 Historical Homes To Visit (and stay in!) – Posh, Broke, & Bored

    • Aftab – Fresh And Fearless

      Preach it sister!

  • I love travel, apart from the commute, but I love my job… all about balance! Proper travel though – one of the best things, we are so lucky whatbwe can do that generations before couldn’t.

    • Aftab – Fresh And Fearless

      Commutes are never fun, so i’m with you on that. I agree. What a time to be alive, where we can get on a plane tomorrow and jet off to a different destination tomorrow, if we wanted!

  • Couldn’t agree more, travelling is the gift that just keeps giving! Love AP xo

    Andrea’s Passions

    • Aftab – Fresh And Fearless

      It is a priceless gift!

  • I couldn’t agree more with this post. I think travelling reveals more about ourselves than anything else and it’s an exciting thing to be able to include in our lives. I love that you don’t even have to travel far either to have that sense of adventure in your day or to learn something new.

    • Aftab – Fresh And Fearless

      I’m so glad you agree Emma! Totally, it’s the little things that you learn but wouldn’t know if you weren’t faced with a certain situation.