Warning: Spending a month or two abroad (or indeed moving somewhere new permanently) will induce lifelong wanderlust that no amount of passport stamps will ever satisfy. It will also prove to be a life-affirming and life-changing experience, fundamentally different from just visiting a new place for a few days or weeks.
The whole process of adapting to a new place and finding new routines in your new home challenges you in a way that ensures that life will never be the same again.
Here are 50 reasons why everyone should live abroad at least once:
1. Materialistic things won’t matter to you nearly as much as experiences and memories.
2. You’ll stop waiting for things to happen and you’ll learn to live more in the moment.
3. And you’ll learn to relax. Living abroad means you won’t feel as pressured to constantly see and discover new places – you can learn new things (in your new home) without constantly being on the move.
4. The process of adapting to your new home will help you discover more about yourself.
5. And surviving (and thriving) out of your comfort zone will help you face all the challenges life will throw at you.
6. You’ll surprise yourself with what you’re capable of achieving.
7. Once you realize that, you won’t let excuses stand in your way or be afraid.
8. In fact, you’ll recognize that you can do anything, anywhere.
9. And feel at home in an entirely different place.
10. Seeing what’s possible will make you more driven to succeed.
11. And sampling different places will help you think more creatively.
12. New experiences will also inspire you and help you think outside the box.
13. Travel will help you realize what you love by clearing your mind of everything that’s superficial.
14. You will learn how to be alone. This is one of the most valuable skills in life.
15. And you might even realize it’s OK not know where you are in life or what you’re doing. Embrace the uncertainty and have fun with it.
16. By letting go of what’s familiar, you’ll notice that decisions about your future become easier.
17. And that the world truly is your oyster, in more ways than one (travel, career, etc.).
18. You will become really good at making new friends. Travelers and those that are new to a city automatically have a ton of things in common.
19. You’ll build more meaningful relationships with those new friends as you’ll be in one spot together for longer.
20. Making new friends from across the globe will help you see how much you have in common with the world.
21. And how much you can learn from people that might be very different from you.
22. Your confidence will skyrocket.
23. And your language skills will improve a gazillion percent.
24. You’ll become an expert packer and much more comfortable with spontaneous exploration. (After all, you’ll need to pack in a lot into that month or two abroad, right?)
25. Having to adapt to new situations is a skill that will prove vital in life.
26. As will accepting that things don’t always go according to plan – you just have to make the best out of the situation and learn from it.
27. It will become much easier to embrace the unexpected and realize that the best things happen when you say “yes” more often.
28. You will be able to carpe all kinds of diems without taking photos all the time; you can afford to have an Instagram-free day or two when you spend a longer period abroad.
29. And on that note, you’ll learn that a low battery doesn’t mean the end of the world. Go ahead, take those unplugging skills to the next level.
30. Being in a foreign country will teach you how to ask for help – and you will realize that most people are happy to help.
31. And you’ll always have an interesting story to tell.
32. Seeing life from a new perspective will broaden your own.
33. It will develop life skills that a classroom or your job back home could never teach you.
34. This will make you more employable.
35. Networking in a foreign country will develop the the skills and confidence you need to network in the business world back home.
36. You’ll learn that travel is all about being flexible and going with the flow, just like life.
37. You’ll realize that on the road, away from home, things can go wrong sometime, but this will turn you into a confident problem-solver. Nothing will faze you after your time abroad.
38. It will also turn you into an expert decision-maker as you learn to deal with challenges on the fly.
39. You’ll become better at knowing what the right move is and at spotting new opportunities.
40. Nothing will help you learn how to budget better than the objective of exploring more.
41. And these new adventures will make you love life like never before.
42. It will help you realize what’s important to you and set priorities for the years ahead.
43. And probably make sure you catch the travel bug for life.
44. Doing nothing will annoy you when you return. Being proactive becomes your default setting, as will near-constant travel-planning.
45. Connecting with communities from all corners of the world will ensure that you get to really embrace diversity.
46. And taste it too. Yes, those taste buds will get a good work-out in your new culinary homes.
47. You’ll learn to thrive by trying new things with new people.
48. You’ll become more independent and open-minded.
49. The world will start feeling like your home.
50. And you’ll realize just how awesome you’ve become.