Why It’s Important to Take Time to Discover
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Why It’s Important to Take Time to Discover

“I want to make it to 80 [years old] and be exhausted because I have been alive and awake every day.”

That is exactly how I want to live my life.

I love this video and I wholeheartedly agree with everything Jedidiah says in it.

As human beings, we’re wired for discovery. We’re innately curious about the world around us, and about ourselves. Hard science backs this up; the desire to discover new things is vital to our survival as a species. It’s instinctual.

As children, we consciously discover something new every day. Everything is astonishing. Everything is fascinating. But as we learn how the world around us works — how to go to school, how to graduate school, how to get a job, how to work — we stop discovering. We stop even taking the time to discover, and before we know it, days and years go by and we’ve forgotten to take time to actually live.

The very essence of travel — taking yourself out of your routine and doing something that’s scary or uncomfortable — changes your brain chemistry.

Traveling turns my mind back on. When I get too used to places, activities, and people, it’s hard for me to discover something new, to find fascination and alertness the every day of going to work, rehearsing for an upcoming show, or meeting a good friend for a cup of coffee. But when I travel, even for just a week or two, I’m taken out of everything that I know, smacked into a place that often times makes me feel a little uncomfortable and unsure of myself, and whoa, suddenly my brain is awake again.

That feeling, that perspective of looking at the world, lasts way after I’ve returned home.

Traveling is the reminder I often need to make sure I live every day awake, alert, and fascinated. It’s easy to lose the magic in everyday life — to get lost in the routine of school, sports, homework, and other obligatory activities. When I feel like my days control me, that’s how I know it’s time to get back out there. It’s time to break through the routine, and start planning my next adventure.

About the Author

Scott Ingram

Scott is the Director of Admissions at Rustic Pathways. He has spent the last 15 years in the student travel and experiential education world. Before helping families find the perfect Rustic Pathways program, he led gap year programs that took students around the world and spent three years teaching English in Japan.