We travel to find respite, experience new cultures, and unplug from our unending to-do lists. But it's so much more than that. We travel because a bigger part of us craves expansion. It seeks a continuous redefinition of self. So when we dream of romantic destinations and fantasize about trips overseas, it's not just travel we're longing for — it's personal growth.
If we allow it, travel can become the quickest route to communicating with the soul, accelerating personal expansion, and tapping into intuition. Here are three ways to travel for meaningful personal development.
1. Tap into the soul of a city.
Have you ever felt at home in a place you've never been? We're all drawn to different places on this big, beautiful, expansive planet. We all have distinctive magnetic pulls to cultures and countries that stir our hearts and curiosity. Tapping into how we feel in a place is a great way to communicate with our soul and access our inner being.
Before I learned how to home in on my psychic abilities, I never understood why I could cry uncontrollably walking down a random street in a European city, or why it seemed like the universe kept bringing me back to certain places. I didn't know it at the time, but it was my soul saying, "Hey, I've got a story to tell!" This is how souls talk: through our hearts, desires, and emotions. If you feel a magnetic pull toward a place in the world, I can assure you it's your soul trying to drag you there, offering a sneak peek into a past life or a potential lesson.
We have relationships with places the same way we do with people. They teach us about ourselves, activating us in different ways. Just notice how you feel in a place, look at the lessons and gifts the particular axis point can offer you. Actively consider the places you're drawn to in the world. What could these places inspire in you? What lessons can they teach you?
2. Make the most of your "inner GPS."
Our inner GPS communicates with us through emotions and energy. It's in our gut and our heart; we just don't usually have it turned on all the way. But the most incredible thing about this GPS is that it's connected to everyone else's GPS in an incredible synchronicity. When we switch up our routines, we get the chance to use our inner GPS and navigate the world beyond our five senses. We get to tap into the energy that connects all things because we have to surrender and open ourselves up to, let's face it, magic.
You can use your inner GPS at all times, but travel helps us break out of the patterns that usually dull it down. It expands the pathways that create a more unifying and expansive energy.
Another way to tell if you've allowed your soul to take the wheel and guide you is if things are going smoothly. Maybe it's meeting the right people at the right time or happening upon the perfect little spot when you turned that one corner. Our souls always give us the direct route — the quickest path to expansion and joy.
3. Expand through exploration.
Have you ever felt really alive while you were traveling? I'm not talking about vacation mode; I'm talking about straight-up, unadulterated bliss. Travel ignites something special within us. When we immerse ourselves in new cultures, our senses are heightened and we are planted in the present moment (aka the space that every spiritual guru says is the key to happiness). This hyper-awareness allows us to see things as they actually are: incredibly beautiful, magical, and inextricably connected.
By continually responding to the same stimuli and unconsciously identifying ourselves with the way people expect to see us, we limit ourselves. We subconsciously yearn for the permission to feel free from these obligations, and this is the vacation we're actually looking for.
We can break ourselves out of this subconscious jail; we can set our infinite selves free by challenging the ways we experience the world around us. The next time you take a trip, dare yourself to take the roads less traveled. Escape down quiet streets, talk to locals more, ask questions, and see what parts of the culture you can "try on" to create more mobility and freedom from within.
If you can't take a trip just yet, how might you recognize the beauty around you? What if you were seeing it for the first time?