Growing up, I felt a constant desire to travel; to be elsewhere; to be there, where there is life happening. In other words, I was suffering from a severe case of mixed wanderlust and FOMO (fear of missing out).
Wanderlust is glorified by millennials and overseas travel is perceived as a compulsory rite of passage.
However, not all of us have the means or the desire to travel. And there is nothing wrong with that.
Now, I am absolutely certain that there are people out there, who genuinely enjoy the travel lifestyle and all the instability (read: traumatic adventures that teach you life lessons and become the funniest stories ever) that comes with it.
However, I am also certain, that there are some of us, who use travel as a mask. For a deep dissatisfaction with their ordinary lives. For the butterflies in their stomachs that never flutter away. For the voice in their head that continually gnaws away at any sense of self-worth they may have had.
I hate to break it to you, but ticking off each and every single one of the items on your “To Visit” List will not solve any of your problems. (It might give you a break from them though, which is not always necessarily a bad thing.)
Neither will it cure your wanderlust, especially the kind that makes you compare yourself to other, more successful, more fortunate, more worldly people, the kind that makes you think that your life is not exciting enough because most of it isn’t “Instagram worthy”.
Nonetheless, I do know the cure. It’s significantly cheaper than travel, but also significantly harder because it involves your mind.
Whether at home or abroad, let go of your need for control. Allow yourself to be enveloped in the warmth of human contact. Marvel at the kindness shown to you, whether by a loved one or by a random stranger.
And then it won’t matter whether you are in the world’s most liveable city or a remote Polish village, because your mind will be abound with gratitude and your heart will be at peace.