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Hoping travel will help clear my head

Has anyone here traveled in order to get their head straight?
5 years ago, March 22nd 2010 No: 1 Msg: #107034  
I'm a second semester college student right now, and I've been very low on my ambition and drive. I think a good part of it (despite having a plan and supportive girlfriend) is that after high school, instead of doing this, I went straight to college. So, I'm considering traveling around Europe with a friend for a summer, so I can clear my mind, have time to think, and get the want to travel out of my system.

Has anyone here had any success in traveling to rethink their life? And after traveling, did it help any?

It's something that, I realize, isn't a global experience, and that some will, and some won't. But I'm curious, nevertheless, as to what the experiences of people here are. Reply to this

5 years ago, March 23rd 2010 No: 2 Msg: #107119  
Hi Nick -

I feel like there are lots of individuals who experience situations to the one you currently find yourself in. After high-school I went straight through to college and by the time I was finished I could wait to travel, but lacking funds took an extended trip around the U.S instead of going abroad (I am a strong advocate that one does not necessarily need a global voyage to experience the rewards of traveling). It was wonderful - I enjoyed the freedom to learn about the world outside a classroom and challenge myself in new environments. But at the end, I can't really say I "found myself" or made any grand epiphanies, although I did discover some new interests, and upon returning I continued upon the path I had already set for myself, actually eager to start 'progressing forward' again.

You may just be burnt out and needing a change of pace for a while. A summer trip sounds like a great idea, because at this stage in your life you have the opportunity to see what's out there without really having to give up anything either. You may find that when you return to college in the fall, you'll be feeling reinvigorated about your studies. It becomes a grass is greener issue. When you're stationary, travel is liberating. When spontaneity becomes the plan, having daily routine starts to feel comforting again. Ideally I try to strike a good balance between the two.

- Stephanie
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5 years ago, March 24th 2010 No: 3 Msg: #107158  
Hello Nick 😊

It did help me get my head together. All my family and friends are super academics, with multiple degrees who earn a lot of money. I always felt that I wasnt as good as they are, because I am not miss academics, and sitting still long enough to study and pass exams was a struggle and a bore for me.

Moving to another country at 19, getting a job, saving money and then taking off on some travels showed me that I too can do things, and it is not all about university degrees.

I did go to the university I got into on leaving high school, after working and travelling, but dropped out a couple of years later. I think, it was just too conservative and rigid to suit me.

I did some more working and travelling, and then a few years later felt a genuine need for more education, and went to a college which suited me more(because the skills it thaught were more practical, and the exam method of continual assessment reassured me along the way that I was doing well). The important point here is that I was ready for more education and doing it for myself, rather than doing it because I thought I should.

Then during this college course I got a job, and travel added the fun to life, so I had some of that balance Stephanie mentions above. I used to work long hours, but in return they gave me lots of holiday time.

I dont know if a summer trip around Europe will be enough to get your head together. Getting my head together in life has been a continuous and gradual process, and travel helped, and so did other things. Remain open minded, but dont put too much expectations on what travel can do for your head.

An option for you might be to defer your ccollege place for a year. That was an option in Ireland where I come from. I did it twice, while I was at university. Maybe trying new things will help point you in a direction that will determine some aspect of your life.

Mel Reply to this

5 years ago, March 29th 2010 No: 4 Msg: #107495  
Hello Nick,

First of all, yes! I have been one of the individuals who have travelled to get an idea of what I was doing and what I wanted etc.

I went on a month long trip solo to the UK an on a Contiki Tour last September. I honestly think it brought me clarity and helped repair my home life.

I have since gone back to my job and university but I am ready to travel again! It helped me. The travelling absolutely improved my life 100%.

There is something so liberating about travelling and seeing the world and being on your own in a foreign country can help to make your problems seem quite small.

I recommend going on a trip - I wish you all the luck in the world and wish you safe and happy travels!

=) Reply to this

5 years ago, April 3rd 2010 No: 5 Msg: #107866  
So, my girlfriend has to go to Cleavland for a little bit in July (2 weeks) so I may take the time that we have to spend apart anyway to travel the US with a couple friends (assuming I can uproot them from their lives for two weeks).

Thank you everyone who responded! Reply to this

5 years ago, May 25th 2010 No: 6 Msg: #111742  
I started backpacking and moved to England to get my head straight too. Still haven't quite got it straight in as much as I still don't know where I want to live or quite what I want to do for a career but I have a much better understanding of myself as a person and what truly makes me happy. It's a good start! And I haven't finished travelling yet. I think seeing the world also helps you to realise that whatever was worrying you or stressing you out at home isn't the be all and end all of your life. It's a great way to put life into perspective. So GO FOR IT GIRL! Get out there and have fun and get as much out of it as you can. Reply to this

5 years ago, May 27th 2010 No: 7 Msg: #111903  
travel is one of the best amazing and experiencing way to enjoy and have fun. Reply to this

5 years ago, May 27th 2010 No: 8 Msg: #111927  
it was one of the best decisions I've ever made, to run away from it all when everything seemed confusing and nothing could make me feel better. i just needed some time by myself so i travelled. it helped me big time! hope it works for you too. Reply to this

5 years ago, May 29th 2010 No: 9 Msg: #112045  


Ah, yes, travel provides great clarity, but be careful what you ask for


Since I was ten years old I have known I was going to be a traveler. I've always been a little restless and a dreamer, planner. I have a gypsy in my heart.

There have been years in my life were I did "what was expected", "what I was supposed to do" -- went to school, became a functioning human being, made a good living and saved my money for retirement. In 1990, I was a one of life's crossroads and took off to work in Antarctica for five months. That was a time of clarity for me. I finally made decisions about what I wanted and what was important in my life without too much influence from those I loved. When I returned I knew exactly what I wanted to do for a few years. I had some drive, focus and ambition, I did it and was content.

For me the restlessness always seems to come back eventually so in 2007 my husband and I quit our jobs, put everything in storage and traveled the wonderful world for several months. Starting off on this great adventure I was expecting the same kind of clarity that I had come back with in the 90's. Each adventure is different and so will be the results. The people you meet will have a different impact on you.

Re-entry into the work world has been difficult for me this time. I enjoyed the time on the road so much. Each day now my free flowing thoughts are filled with fabulous memories and thinking, planning and desiring the next trip around the world. This last trip changed me in that I want to help others more than I ever have. It is a strong desire. I love the moments when you meet a stranger on a bus, standing in a line or in a cafe and start talking. I long for those. I love to hear their stories.

In Vietnam, we met a gentleman who had served with American forces for seven years during the war. He was so proud to have done his part. Meeting him was something special for me because I lost my brother in that war. It was good to hear how he felt about things all these years later.

So, my point of all of this rambling is-- be careful what you ask for. You may leave hoping for clarity-- It may come or maybe not-- but more than likely you will be changed in some way that you are not expecting. I am 100% certain this will be good for you but it may help to change your life path. It may change the direction that you will head next.

OK- so now I'm going to sound like your mother. You will be able to travel more in the future if you actually return and finish your college degree. You will need to find an avenue to fund all of your future travels.
My personal opinion is that those of us who have replied to this question are working for the most part to fund our next adventure!! Reply to this

5 years ago, June 5th 2010 No: 10 Msg: #112514  
Ok.. I see that there are so many people giving good advice so I’m not going to touch on that. Before I say the rest, one bit of advice that i can honestly give you is that you should not interrupt your studies. If you can afford to go on a short trip and get back to it without adversely affecting your studies, then read on. Look after yourself.. Hope you find the answer you need.
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5 years ago, June 7th 2010 No: 11 Msg: #112679  
I don't know if I would classify this as "clearing my head" but I have traveled to get rid of that nagging feeling of ordinariness, repetition, of being "in a rut." When I get this way one or two weeks at a beach, B&B, or ski lodge is not enough. I need to get away not for weeks but for months, living and working overseas in order to rekindle the fire in the belly, if you know what I mean. Does that qualify? Reply to this

5 years ago, June 8th 2010 No: 12 Msg: #112721  
I need to clear my head before I go to USA The last days help came from the least expected quarters and even the most .The other needed details were sorted out by travel bookings and hostel. Reply to this

5 years ago, June 9th 2010 No: 13 Msg: #112789  
Traveling is a great way to gain perspective, and yes, clear your head. Highly recommend it, and as often as possible. There is a big world out there to visit and explore, people to meet and share new experiences. Start traveling while you are young and you will always have the travel bug, the desire to always see more and more will always be with you.

٩(●̮̮̃•̃)۶ Reply to this

5 years ago, June 17th 2010 No: 14 Msg: #113466  
D Posts: 5
Thanks to share your nice informative information in this forum site the topic is very interesting you choose you must tour of Europe with your friend may be alone if you did alone you will learn lot of thinks such as how to spent time alone how to low budget plan how to spend minimum amount of money how to save the money for your next destination there are lot of things you will learn.
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