Seriously, imagine that at 19 years old you are walking around the Vatican or the Colosseum! Having Limoncello and eating a different style of pizza everyday.
The Vatican Rome, Italy
Yep, that was me for about 9 days.
9 days of Italian bliss.
Traveling wasn’t the first thing on my mind at 19. Honestly, if it wasn’t for my friend who had convinced me, I probably wouldn’t have some awesome memories to tell!
So, I said yes to the trip and saved up for the ticket. I had no idea what I was doing but after each trip I had a whole different outlook on life.
I got the travel bug. And I still have it. It’s contagious.
Me Inside the Colosseum in Rome, Italy.
But Seriously, after these trips I got really focused on what I wanted to do career wise and college wise. And when you’re straight out of high school, you don’t really know what you want to do next. You might be going with the flow of what everyone expects, but you got this gut instinct that something better is at hand.
There’s a cure for that gut problem. It’s called exploration. And exploring the world helps you have a little more clarity when it comes to making life decisions.
They have honeymoons, and now babymoons. We should start the graduationmoon!
Here's my top 3 reasons why you need a graduationmoon before College!
Actually Discover What You Like
I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do after high school. I knew I would go to college but wasn’t sure what I would study. People tell you to take your basics until you find out what you want. But what if you finish your basics and you still don’t know?
I had been going back in forth from Business Major to Accounting Major. They have similar classes but still quite different in the end.
So the very first trip I took outside of the country was to Rome, Italy. I wasn’t a history buff or anything. I just knew it would be cool to say I’ve been there.
The first morning, I realized they don’t eat a big breakfast in Europe. It’s usually something small, like cereal and juice. I had this blood orange juice one morning. I had never even heard of a Blood Orange. I drank it down like it was quenching my soul! It was the best tasting juice I ever had and I still think about it 11 years later!
When you travel, you aren’t worried about life at home. You are immersed in the element of what’s around you. That few days away can really be the deciding factor you need in order to know when exactly you’re taking your next steps.
Traveling like a local can help you get out of your comfort zone and try all these fascinating or crazy food and drinks.
You can meet some interesting people and see the beauty in cities you used to read about in your history book.
Just the sites of the old cobble stone roads or the smell of the fresh air as you walk in the vineyards, you wouldn’t be able to help but compare home to where you are at right now.
And those minor comparisons can help you realized what you miss most about your home.
When I first saw the Colosseum at night time, it was literally a history book picture moment. I couldn’t believe I got to actually touch it!
The hot chocolate and pasta is completely different tasting than the Starbucks hot chocolate at home.
How will you ever know what you do and don’t like until you get out there and discover it?
Maybe after a break from the everyday norm will make you realize “Hey, I like it where I’m at” or you might want to explore more and learn about “European fashion”. Either way you will know, because you found out for yourself.
I’m not saying blood orange juice helped me picked my major, but when I came back I sure did know which way I was headed.
Learn How Different Life is Elsewhere
The Pink Palace “Casa Rosada” Where the President works in Buenos Aires, Argentina
You’ve heard of the White House, but have you ever heard of the Pink Palace? The Pink Palace is Argentina’s Presidential Office. You can go inside for Museum tours as well. I never heard of the Pink Palace until I saw it with my own two eyes.
That’s when it dawned on me that life is so different everywhere. Everyone has their own style of living life. When you are exploring the cultures and traditions of others, your mind truly opens up to the possibilities.
And you don’t have to go too far to experience the differences. They do things differently in the south of the US, than they do in the North.
Have you ever eaten a Beignet on the French quarter of New Orleans? OMG, the donut has got NOTHING on one of these powered, dough of heavenly goodness. But these are things you would not know unless you explore and find it out.
When I was in Mexico, I noticed how hard-working people are down there. They work to their tired bones can’t anymore. And everyone in the family helps out. There were little kids selling items to tourists, and you could tell every dollar made mattered. My heart opened wider when I saw that.
Some people might see these things and instantly realize they want to teach or become a social worker to help these families progress in life. But how would they know that’s what they want when they stay doing the same old same old in the suburbs?
Just To Take a Breather Before Hitting the Books
Above a Beautiful Waterfall near Toluca, Mexico
Well, the biggest reason you need a Vacay before college is just to get a break! I mean, studying for 13 years and you are about to go in for 4 more years (or more). I think a break is definitely well deserved.
Just know when you’re having a rough day or you're stuck in THE most boring statistic class in college, you can think about that last vacation to Costa Rica where your buddy and you raced down the zip lines. Or better yet, how you’re planning your next trip to Alaska to go skiing.
Right now, you have what all of us others wish we had more of—free time! Relish in it as much as you can!
Don’t let money get in your way. And don’t expect Mom and Dad to shell out the funds to cover the trip either.
If you still have to save for a major flight cost, my savings guide can get you on track to your travels sooner than you think. I just finished using it to finally book my Hawaii Trip coming in December! Grab it by subscribing and get to planning!
So Go Explore. It will open your heart, it will open your mind, and it can open multiple opportunities for you.