Inner Reflections
October 25, 2021

5 Lessons Learned From Traveling The World

“A person’s capacity for growth is directly related to their ability to handle uncertainty.”

In 2017, my wife and I made the impulse decision to sell 80% of everything that we own and book a one-way ticket to Bali, Indonesia. We were both working in Los Angeles as meditation and yoga teachers, and our careers were going very well. We had a wonderful life, living in one of the most exciting cities in the world. However, we both felt called to an adventure…like there was something more waiting for us on the other side of the unknown. 

We moved to Indonesia four and a half years ago, and I can honestly say it was both the scariest decision of my life and the most rewarding. My wife and I went through some dazzling highs and deep lows. I have grown exponentially in the past five years, and my yoga and meditation practice have been literal lifesavers. We have been to 14 different countries in five different continents and the life experience gained has been immeasurable. 

Looking to travel the world? Here are five things that I’ve learned from the journey. 

1. The world LOVES yoga! From Italy to Egypt to New Zealand, there are so many people practicing yoga and meditation. There are amazing, quality teachers and studios everywhere and more and more men are showing up too. 

2. The USA is NOT the center of the Universe. As an American, I was completely blown away by the technology in Asia, the culture and beauty of Europe, and the beaches in Australia. Being immersed in different cultures gave me a new perspective on how to live my life and where my priorities need to be. I learned to slow down, appreciate good food and buy less junk. 

3. People are kind and the planet is quite safe. There have been very few moments where we truly felt “unsafe”. In almost every country, the crime rates were either on par or lower than in the US, and other than a few people ripping us off for $20-30, our journey has been crime-free. On top of that, people have gone out of their way to show us their homeland, from private tours, to inviting us for dinner, to lending us their cars, opening up their homes and so many more stories of incredible hospitality. 

4. Spend money on experiences, not things. When traveling, it’s important to pack light. It saves you a lot of time and money. We have learned to only buy souvenirs that are really meaningful to us, and that our money can be better spent on a hot air balloon ride or skydiving trip. 

5. Money does NOT buy happiness. We have traveled through countries where people are sleeping on dirt floors, living without computers or iPhones, and wearing clothes that are tattered and old. Many times, the people that we have met are quite happy and at peace with life. They have learned to appreciate the little things in life, and have humbled me by their positive attitude and commitment to innocence and optimism. They are honest and trustworthy and compassionate. In times like these, it’s been a breath of fresh air. 

Booking a one-way ticket to an exotic location is DEFINITELY not for everyone, but I honestly believe that all can benefit from some more adventurous travel. Take a risk, you’ll thank me later!

By Paul


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