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12 Common Characteristics Of People Who Love Traveling

12 Common Characteristics Of People Who Love Traveling

If you are like me, you absolutely love to travel. It is a part of who you are. And when you are asked why you travel by friends, family or complete strangers, you will list a myriad of reasons:

1. You love meeting new people.
2. You love experiencing new things.
3. You love seeing new places.
4. You love tasting new foods.
5. You love adventure and the spontaneity that the journey brings.
6. You enjoy pushing yourself out of your comfort zone
7. You enjoy the personal growth that happens within you through the culmination of everything you experience and the people you meet.

I want to specifically touch on this last point – the personal growth and the transformation that happens within because this can be difficult to express, unless you actually give it some serious thought. I know I struggled to express this in words when I returned from backpacking on my own for over a year. I had undergone a massive change personally. But, what exactly did this look like on paper?

Let’s analyze 12 common characteristics of people who love traveling. Bear in mind that many of these are learned traits that are refined the more one travels. And if you are an aspiring traveler – the best advice I can give you is take the plunge. Traveling will change you for the better. Without a doubt.

1. We are adventurous

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    Traveling more often than not involves venturing out into the unknown. It involves traveling to a new place, meeting new people and engaging in new experiences. As travelers, we naturally have an adventurous spirit. It is part of who we are, and the more we travel, the more we feed this spirit. Adventure is our normal.

    2. We are empathetic

    We have a strong sense of empathy. This is a culmination of our diverse experiences, the diverse cultures we encounter and the diversity of the people we meet. We may encounter immense poverty in certain countries. We will share stories with random strangers. We will work random jobs, from being a bartender, to a cleaner and even a waiter.

    We have experienced tough times such as being stranded or having our bags stolen. All these experiences and encounters allow us to accept and appreciate differences amongst people. They allow us to see the world differently and see things through another persons’ point of view.

    3. We are willing to learn; we are curious

    As we move from place to place and meet new people we continuously find ourselves learning new things (whether out of choice or not). We become intensely curious about everything and are eager to learn new things, whether it be cultural customs or a new skill.

    4. We welcome change; it’s a way of life

    When we travel, the only constant is change. We find ourselves surrounded by new people and new places regularly. Over time, we learn to welcome those changes. We learn to expect them. When we meet a new person, we are cognisant of the fact that that person has their own travel itinerary in mind and they probably won’t be around forever. Change becomes a way of life.

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    5. We have higher self-awareness

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      Self-awareness refers to our knowledge and awareness of our own personality and character. It also allows us to understand ourselves better and how others perceive you. It is the first step in developing your EQ and it is shaped by our experiences. As travelers, we draw from a diverse spectrum of experiences as it relates to people and cultures. Through traveling often and reflecting on those experiences we develop higher self-awareness.

      6. We have higher self-esteem

      Whilst we travel, we find ourselves continuously pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones. We talk to random strangers. We meet new people at hostels. We create travel plans on the move. We overcome challenges such as having to deal with having money stolen (this happened to me; my entire account was cleaned out in New Zealand). All this improves our confidence in our own abilities; to overcome any challenges that are thrown our way. Traveling develops our self-esteem.

      7. We know ourselves better

      This may seem cliché, but it’s true. Traveling teaches us about our strengths, our weakness, what we like and don’t like. It teaches us about our personality.

      For example during my travels, I spent time living and working on a dairy farm (very remote) and also time living and working in a city, where I lived with 16 people in a house. I enjoyed both experiences, but at some point, I either longed for more human interaction (when working on the dairy farm) or more ‘me-time’ (whilst working in the city). I am an introvert and an extrovert. What have you learned about yourself through traveling?

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      8. We are more observant

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        “A traveler without observation is like a bird without wings.” – Moslih Eddin Saadi.

        It may not seem obvious that we as travelers are observant. After all, there is so much that we need to take in as we move from place to place. Surely our brains will filter out a lot of information as to prevent information overload?

        If you think about it though it is for that exact reason that we are more observant. We have become accustomed to taking in a lot. A sensory overload if you like. Of sights. Places. People. Our brains are well accustomed to taking in a lot more and as a result we filter out less. We have trained ourselves to observe more. And besides, we have far less distractions such as mobile phones and laptops.

        9. We are more grateful

        Gratitude is the base or foundation from which appreciation grows. When we are traveling we are often exposed to other people who live in immense poverty. We are exposed to ways of living that seem morally incorrect. This makes us more grateful for what we do have. For being able to have food. To be able to afford to actually travel in the first place. It’s easy to forget.

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        10. We are more appreciative

        From our feelings of gratitude, we develop a greater appreciation. We find beauty in those things that we previously took for granted. We accept, that that plate of food we have is giving us the needed nutrition. We recognize it’s value. We are more than grateful for those hiking shoes, we appreciate the value they provide in supporting our feet hike after hike. We appreciate our family and friends back home. Our appreciation is heightened.

        11. We are very independent

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          When I was traveling and landed in New Zealand I didn’t have much money, but I made it work and organized myself accommodation and work.

          When we travel, we realize it is just us and the big wide world. We are responsible for every step and action we take. Where we go. The places we see. The people we interact with. We learn to deal with any challenges that come our way, whether it be having to sort out visas, book accommodation or even organize a job.

          12. We adapt well

          Traveling by nature requires us to continuously adapt; to new environments, experiences and people. Traveling to a new country where there is different food, language(s) and ways of living, requires us to adapt our diets, learn some of the local language and function within new laws. There is constant change and we need to constantly adapt. Use that on your CV when applying for a job, where someone is skeptical about your ability to adapt to a new position.

          More by this author

          Nick Darlington

          Nick is a Multipotentialite, an entrepreneur, a blogger and a traveler.

          Study Says Art Makes You Mentally Healthier, Even If You’re Not Good At It When You Can Stop Yourself From Multitasking, Your Brain Will Start To Change How Silence Affects Our Brains in A Good Way, Science Explains 5 Things That Will Happen When You Wake Up Two Hours Earlier For A Month Why Overthinkers Are Probably Creative Problem-Solvers

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          Last Updated on August 20, 2019

          How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

          How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

          Your mind is the most powerful tool you have for the creation of good in your life, but if not used correctly, can also be the most destructive force in your life.

          Your mind, more specifically, your thoughts, affect your perception and therefore, your interpretation of reality. (And here’s Why Your Perception Is Your Reality.)

          I have heard that the average person thinks around 70,000 thoughts a day. That’s a lot, especially if they are unproductive, self-abusive and just a general waste of energy.

          You can let your thoughts run amok, but why would you? It is your mind, your thoughts; isn’t it time to take your power back? Isn’t it time to take control?

          Choose to be the person who is actively, consciously thinking your thoughts. Become the master of your mind.

          When you change your thoughts, you will change your feelings as well, and you will also eliminate the triggers that set off those feelings. Both of these outcomes provide you with a greater level of peace in your mind.

          I currently have few thoughts that are not of my own choosing or a response from my reprogramming. I am the master of my mind, so now my mind is quite peaceful. Yours can be too!

          Who Is Thinking My Thoughts?

          Before you can become the master of your mind, you must recognize that you are currently at the mercy of several unwanted “squatters” living in your mind, and they are in charge of your thoughts. If you want to be the boss of them, you must know who they are and what their motivation is, and then you can take charge and evict them.

          Here are four of the “squatters” in your head that create the most unhealthy and unproductive thoughts:

          1. The Inner Critic

          This is your constant abuser who is often a conglomeration of:

          • Other people’s words; many times your parents.
          • Thoughts you have created based on your own or other peoples expectations.
          • Comparing yourself to other people, including those in the media.
          • The things you told yourself as a result of painful experiences such as betrayal and rejection. Your interpretation creates your self-doubt and self-blame, which are most likely undeserved in cases of rejection and betrayal.

          The Inner Critic is motivated by pain, low self-esteem, lack of self-acceptance and lack of self-love.

          Why else would this person abuse you? And since this person is actually you– why else would you abuse yourself? Why would you let anyone treat you this badly?

          2. The Worrier

          This person lives in the future; in the world of “what ifs.”

          The Worrier is motivated by fear which is often irrational and with no basis for it. Occasionally, this person is motivated by fear that what happened in the past will happen again.

          3. The Reactor or Trouble-Maker

          This is the one that triggers anger, frustration and pain. These triggers stem from unhealed wounds of the past. Any experience that is even closely related to a past wound will set him off.

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          This person can be set off by words or feelings, and can even be set off by sounds and smells.

          The Reactor has no real motivation and has poor impulse control and is run by past programming that no longer serves you, if it ever did.

          4. The Sleep Depriver

          This can be a combination of any number of different squatters including the inner planner, the rehasher, and the ruminator, along with the inner critic and the worrier.

          The Sleep Depriver’s motivation can be:

          • As a reaction to silence, which he fights against
          • Taking care of the business you neglected during the day
          • Self-doubt, low self-esteem, insecurity and generalized anxiety
          • As listed above for the inner critic and worrier

          How can you control these squatters?

          How to Master Your Mind

          You are the thinker and the observer of your thoughts. You must pay attention to your thoughts so you can identify “who” is running the show; this will determine which technique you will want to use.

          Begin each day with the intention of paying attention to your thoughts and catching yourself when you are thinking undesirable thoughts.

          There are two ways to control your thoughts:

          • Technique A – Interrupt and replace them
          • Technique B – Eliminate them altogether

          This second option is what is known as peace of mind!

          The technique of interrupting and replacing is a means of reprogramming your subconscious mind. Eventually, the replacement thoughts will become the “go to” thoughts in the applicable situations.

          Use Technique A with the Inner Critic and Worrier; and Technique B with the Reactor and Sleep Depriver.

          For the Inner Critic

          When you catch yourself thinking something negative about yourself (calling yourself names, disrespecting yourself, or berating yourself), interrupt it.

          You can yell (in your mind), “Stop! No!” or, “Enough! I’m in control now.” Then, whatever your negative thought was about yourself, replace it with an opposite or counter thought or an affirmation that begins with “I am.”

          For example, if your thought is, “I’m such a loser,” you can replace it with, “I am a Divine Creation of the Universal Spirit. I am a perfect spiritual being learning to master the human experience. I am a being of energy, light, and matter. I am magnificent, brilliant, and beautiful. I love and approve of myself just as I am.”

          You can also have a dialogue with yourself with the intention of discrediting the ‘voice’ that created the thought, if you know whose voice it is:

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          “Just because so-and-so said I was a loser doesn’t make it true. It was his or her opinion, not a statement of fact. Or maybe they were joking and I took it seriously because I’m insecure.”

          If you recognize that you have recurring self-critical thoughts, you can write out or pre-plan your counter thoughts or affirmation so you can be ready. This is the first squatter you should evict, forcefully, if necessary:

          • They rile up the Worrier.
          • The names you call yourself become triggers when called those names by others, so he also maintains the presence of the Reactor.
          • They are often present when you try to fall asleep so he perpetuates the Sleep Depriver.
          • They are a bully and is verbally and emotionally abusive.
          • They are the destroyer of self-esteem. They convince you that you’re not worthy. They’re a liar! In the interest of your self-worth, get them out!

          Eliminate your worst critic and you will also diminish the presence of the other three squatters.

          Replace them with your new best friends who support, encourage, and enhance your life. This is a presence you want in your mind.

          For the Worrier

          Prolonged anxiety is mentally, emotionally and physically unhealthy. It can have long-term health implications.

          Fear initiates the fight or flight response, creates worry in the mind and creates anxiety in the body.

          You should be able to recognize a “worry thought” immediately by how you feel. The physiological signs that the fight or flight response of fear has kicked in are:

          • Increased heart rate, blood pressure, or surge of adrenaline
          • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
          • Muscles tense

          Use the above stated method to interrupt any thought of worry and then replace it. But this time you will replace your thoughts of worry with thoughts of gratitude for the outcome you wish for.

          If you believe in a higher power, this is the time to engage with it. Here is an example:

          Instead of worrying about my loved ones traveling in bad weather, I say the following (I call it a prayer):

          “Thank you great spirit for watching over _______. Thank you for watching over his/her car and keeping it safe, road-worthy, and free of maintenance issues without warning. Thank you for surrounding him/her with only safe, conscientious, and alert drivers. And thank you for keeping him/her safe, conscientious, and alert.”

          Smile when you think about it or say it aloud, and phrase it in the present tense; both of these will help you feel it and possibly even start to believe it.

          If you can visualize what you are praying for, the visualization will enhance the feeling so you will increase the impact in your vibrational field.

          Now take a calming breath, slowly in through your nose, and slowly out through the mouth. Take as many as you like!

          Replacing fearful thoughts with gratitude will decrease reactionary behavior, taking the steam out of the Reactor.

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          For example:

          If your child gets lost in the mall, the typical parental reaction that follows the fearful thoughts when finding them is to yell at them.

          “I told you never to leave my sight.” This reaction just adds to the child’s fear level from being lost in the first place. Plus, it also teaches them that mom and/or dad will get mad when he or she makes a mistake, which may make them lie to you or not tell you things in the future.

          Change those fearful thoughts when they happen:

          “Thank You (your choice of Higher Power) for watching over my child and keeping him safe. Thank you for helping me find him soon.”

          Then, when you see your child after this thought process, your only reaction will be gratitude, and that seems like a better alternative for all people involved.

          For the Trouble-Maker, Reactor or Over-Reactor

          Permanently eliminating this squatter will take a bit more attention and reflection after the fact to identify and heal the causes of the triggers; but until then, you can prevent the Reactor from getting out of control by initiating conscious breathing as soon as you recognize his presence.

          The Reactor’s thoughts or feelings activate the fight or flight response just like with the Worrier. The physiological signs of his presence will be the same. With a little attention, you should be able to tell the difference between anxiety, anger, frustration, or pain:

          • Increased heart rate and blood pressure; surge of adrenaline
          • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
          • Muscles tension

          I’m sure you’ve heard the suggestion to count to ten when you get angry—well, you can make those ten seconds much more productive if you are breathing consciously during that time.

          Conscious breathing is as simple as it sounds; just be conscious of your breathing. Pay attention to the air going in and coming out.

          Breathe in through your nose:

          • Feel the air entering your nostrils.
          • Feel your lungs filling and expanding.
          • Focus on your belly rising.

          Breathe out through your nose:

          • Feel your lungs emptying.
          • Focus on your belly falling.
          • Feel the air exiting your nostrils.

          Do this for as long as you like. Leave the situation if you want. This gives the adrenaline time to normalize.

          Now you can address the situation with a calmer, more rational perspective and avoid damaging behavior.

          One of the troubles this squatter causes is that it adds to the sleep depriver’s issues. By evicting, or at least controlling the Reactor, you will decrease reactionary behavior, which will decrease the need for the rehashing and ruminating that may keep you from falling asleep.

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          Master your mind and stop the Reactor from bringing stress to you and your relationships!

          For the Sleep Depriver

          (They’re made up of the Inner Planner, the Rehasher and the Ruminator, along with the Inner Critic and the Worrier.)

          I was plagued with a very common problem: not being able to turn off my mind at bedtime. This inability prevented me from falling asleep and thus, getting a restful and restorative night’s sleep.

          Here’s how I mastered my mind and evicted the Sleep Depriver and all his cronies.

          1. I started by focusing on my breathing—paying attention to the rise and fall of my belly—but that didn’t keep the thoughts out for long. (Actually, I now start with checking my at-rest mouth position to keep me from clenching.)
          2. Then I came up with replacement strategy that eliminated uncontrolled thinking—imagining the word in while breathing in and thinking the word out when breathing out. I would (and do) elongate the word to match the length of my breath.

          When I catch myself thinking, I shift back to in, out. With this technique, I am still thinking, sort of, but the wheels are no longer spinning out of control. I am in control of my mind and I choose quiet.

          From the first time I tried this method I started to yawn after only a few cycles and am usually asleep within ten minutes.

          For really difficult nights, I add an increase of attention by holding my eyes in a looking-up position (Closed, of course!). Sometimes I try to look toward my third eye but that really hurts my eyes.

          If you have trouble falling asleep because you can’t shut off your mind, I strongly recommend you try this technique. I still use it every night. You can start sleeping better tonight!

          You can also use this technique any time you want to:

          • Fall back to sleep if you wake up too soon.
          • Shut down your thinking.
          • Calm your feelings.
          • Simply focus on the present moment. 

          The Bottom Line

          Your mind is a tool, and like any other tool, it can be used for constructive purposes or for destructive purposes.

          You can allow your mind to be occupied by unwanted, undesirable and destructive tenants, or you can choose desirable tenants like peace, gratitude, compassion, love, and joy.

          Your mind can become your best friend, your biggest supporter, and someone you can count on to be there and encourage you. The choice is yours!

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          Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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