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10 Signs You Are A Superb Traveler

10 Signs You Are A Superb Traveler

It seems like more and more people these days are becoming fans of world travel, whether that be for 2 weeks, 2 months or even 2 years. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone is a good traveler. These people are usually easy to spot, too: they seem less interested and possibly even a little uncomfortable in their new surroundings. Contrast that with a superb traveler who seems to slot into his or her new environment effortlessly. If you’re wondering where you fit in, here are 10 signs you are a superb traveler:

1. You pack smart

One of your rules you stick to is not to over-pack, but rather to only take what you truly need. You also get to know the carry-on rules before boarding. When I backpacked through South-East Asia, I took only a carry-on and simply bought whatever else I needed along the way. This makes things so much easier, and allows you to leave the airport to start exploring.

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2. You plan ahead (but not too much)

A little research is always good. It’s helpful (and essential) to get an idea of the place(s) you’re going to, climate, admission requirements, local laws and other do’s-and-don’ts, but once that’s all out the way, you like to allow things to happen naturally. This is also reflected in the way you use travel guides, treating them only as a reference point and not as a checklist.

3. You learn a few words of the local language

You take the time and effort to practice some basic pleasantries such as please, thank you, hello and goodbye. This often times leads to a stronger connection with locals and makes your trip all the more rewarding.

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4. You ditch the technology (except when it helps)

There are certain apps which can enhance your travel experience, such as document storage, travel guides, language learning & translation, photography or even meetup apps. However, you are smart about how you use them and keep devices stowed away when not necessary. This allows you to be more present and enjoy the experiences in front of you.

5. You take part in the local traditions

Watching from the sidelines is never as fun as getting involved, and you take this same approach whenever you can on your travels. Often times, locals will welcome tourists into their routines or performances. And if you do end up embarrassing yourself, at least you’ll likely never see the same people again!

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6. You respect other cultures

Traveling possesses a unique gift in that it expands your worldview and exposes you to things you would otherwise never have imagined, whether that be new foods, rituals or behaviors. Whether you agree with them or not, you choose to respect them as a way of life for the community which you are visiting.

7. You can see the bright side

More often than not, there is bound to be some sort of hiccup along the way. Perhaps you get scammed by a tuk-tuk driver, get caught in a storm or miss your connecting flight. When these things happen, you take them in your stride and prefer to see the silver lining.

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8. You get out of your comfort zone

One of the greatest aspects of traveling (especially when in a foreign country) is the fact that there are no comfort zones. You are stripped of your usual luxuries and conveniences and learn who you really are as a person. As a superb traveler, you embrace this as part of the adventure.

9. You welcome the unexpected

On any adventure, there are bound to be some unexpected events along the way. Maybe you got lost or receive an invite from a local. A good traveler learns to go with the flow and makes the most of the situation. While on a tour in Cambodia, the tour guide learned I enjoyed sports and invited me to a soccer game with his friends that night. It was one of the highlights of my trip.

10. You make new friends

If you are a solo traveler, this obviously becomes even more important, but it applies to anyone exploring a foreign country. Travel friendships (and relationships) are a bond like no other, strengthened by the fact that there is a known deadline. On my own solo adventures, I realized that it was a choice between putting myself out there and meeting new people, or having a boring, lonely holiday.

The superb traveler possesses these qualities without thinking about them. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t adopt some of them yourself. You (and your travel mates) will be grateful you did.

More by this author

Bryan Teare

Coach and Podcast Host

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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