Why Should You Travel? Maybe not for the Reasons You Think.
By: Anna Bek
Calling all Wanderers and Future Travelers!
When was the last time you took an afternoon to go out exploring, dancing, and discovering new found inspiration through meandering down foreign alleyways and hiking to ancient ruins?
Travel isn’t just about bucket lists, tourist sites, or Instagram bragging. It is about finding more expansion in yourself, opening up your perspective to new ways of thinking, and gaining new levels of empathy. Finding yourself lost on a boat down the Mekong, on a scooter scouting out beachside locations in Formentera, or inside a traditional Temezcal in the Yucatán can be the very medicine that brings you back to your nomadic spirit, to your creative side, to the person who sees the world as a citizen instead of a by-passer who is merely checking off their “to-do list” for must-see attractions in Rome.
For many of us busy urbanites or those super focused on our careers, relationships, and families, it’s often hard to prioritize ourselves and the artist within. It seems to me that we often overlook the joy and the expansion that comes from stepping out of our comfort zones, picking up new skills, and being a part of another culture. If you are anything like me, you'd be curious to know more.
So… Here are five ways to get immersed in a culture and discover new sides of yourself along the way:
1. Go on a Culinary Adventure.
Learn from the six different tastes of salty, sour, pungent, sweet, bitter and astringent through experiencing and tasting different cuisines! Try new fruits and vegetables, spices and herbs and be a student in all things local. Also notice the difference between how food is grown and prepared, and the taste of farm-to-table vs. a restaurant or street food.
2. Learn new Languages.
Be willing to pick up on the common phrases spoken by the locals. We can create deeper and more respectable interactions with those of a different culture when we are speaking their language (or at least attempt to!) Most people appreciate the effort and you will be able to connect with local people from this region.
3. Participate in Ancient Traditions and Learn from Elders.
Get in contact with the elders of a community, and have them perform some rituals and ceremonies from their culture. It can make you appreciate the land you are on, the people who have inhabited the land, as well as connect you back to your ancestors and roots. Exploring a culture on a deeper level can make us realize the oneness of humanity and allow us to appreciate the elements and the earth in a new way.
4. Gain Creative Inspiration through Local Artists and Artisans.
Visit local art galleries, attend festivals, and workshops or even take a yoga class in another language! For me, I like to find local artisans who are hand-crafting traditional fabrics, shoes and bags. I get so inspired by artistry in architecture as I enjoying discovering interesting places to stay in that are unique to the location. I find Airbnb as well as rentals found through local Facebook groups to be the best ways to get a more local experience in general.
5. Experience a Whole New Way of Living.
When you experience different cultures that value family, relationships, free time and live at a slower pace of life, it can shake you and wake you up to your own reality and what is of value to you. You may take a second glance at the rat race that we’ve been programmed to accept as our way of life - and give you the perspective you need to make some shifts in your lifestyle to encourage more happiness, health and wellbeing into your days.
So I encourage you to explore your Nomad Spirit - and this can be as simple as signing up for my upcoming retreat to MOROCCO from Nov 2-9, 2019 where we will explore Marrakechi life through excursions, spa rituals, souk shopping, rooftop dining, farm visits, hiking and more - all within the holistic container of 2x daily classes and workshops to complement the journey and dive you deeper into your practice.
Get out and explore a different way of life in order to develop and shift your mind, body and spirit to help you get more intimate with your highest Self.
Love & Light,
Anna Bek is a yogi, DJ, and storyteller with a nomadic spirit. She helps bring people back into their natural rhythms through sacred movement, ancient philosophies, self-care, and sound. By cultivating positive habits, she is empowering others to turn routine into ritual, finding creativity in the mundane. She enjoys crafting soundscapes to help motivate the movement and realign specific chakra points with live and prerecorded sounds. Each yoga session with her is tuned to a unique rhythm and intended to connect like-minded beings to elevate consciousness and inspire change. Check out Anna’s upcoming offering in Morocco!