Five big dumb myths about travel

travel myths

One of my 2018 goals is to be more active in the blogging world, part of which is spending more time reading and commenting on other blogs. I love seeing people’s adventures as well as their struggles. It makes me feel normal and part of a community. But also, it’s been an opportunity to roll my eyes about a million times a day because the internet is a petri dish of opinions.

After scrolling through post after post, I’m wondering how all of this comes across to those who aren’t dying to travel. From a different perspective, those wanderlust-y memes can send passive-aggressive messages that if you don’t drop everything to travel, you must not care about having an open mind or understanding the world. Some blogs are more blatant with their “this is the only way to live” snobbery or worse, perpetuate ideas about travel that are exclusive and elitist.

Newsflash: babies and “roots” don’t mean you can’t travel, as shown by the millions of blogs written by traveling families.

I’ve always been vocal about how much I love living abroad and now that I think about it, if I swap life abroad for travel, I’m certain I’ve stepped on toes in the past. If that’s the case I need to say I’m sorry, full stop. Because whether it’s wandering the globe for a year or camping close to home, there’s room for everyone to do as they please.

I love traveling but today, after being crazy frustrated with every blog saying how great travel is and the million reasons why we all have to do it, I want to talk about the ridiculousness of some of these travel myths.

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Expat advice: The key to a happy expat life

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Just because your body is here, doesn’t mean your mind is…

The two years I’ve spent living abroad have been a crash course in the emotional ups and downs that come with uprooting your life and starting again somewhere new, all with the lurking expectation of doing it again in a couple of years. This week I was compiling all my little tips about how to have a happy life as an expat no matter what your circumstance when I realized my advice was rooted in the same practice: mindfulness.

Though originally a tenet of Buddhism, the practice of mindfulness—much like yoga—has become much more mainstream. In its essence mindfulness is focusing your attention on the present, which allows you to observe your thoughts and feelings without judging them as good or bad. If new age-y terms freak you out, just think of it as being in the moment or living in the here and now. If you’ve read articles about disconnecting from technology, staying in the moment with your kids, or listening to your body to avoid over-eating, then you’re familiar with mindfulness.

Because life abroad doesn’t come with a built-in support system, expats can benefit from using this tool to refocus their thoughts. Keep reading to see four particular areas where mindfulness has helped me manage expat life.

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The truth behind an expat’s social media.

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So you’re at work, tapping away at your keyboard and—taking a minute to let your mind wander—you innocently scroll through Instagram or FaceBook.

Ugh, again? There’s so-and-so, hiking some far-flung mountain, cheers-ing in front of a tropical sunset, or arms akimbo with some group of laughing weirdos. Cue rolling eyeballs and a silent promise to unfriend/unfollow/un-whatever at the next gratuitous display of glorious life-abroad fun.

Well, thank goodness you stumbled upon this article because there are so many myths to dispel when it comes to the ‘glamourous’ life we expats lead. You can make anything look good from the outside and when it comes down to it, expats are just as good as everyone else at curating a perfect life on social media.

Of course, white sand beaches look amazing from a cubicle, but let’s take a moment and pull back the curtain on a lifestyle that is so often idealized, to see that the grass isn’t always greener. Below are a few ideas at what’s happening behind the scenes of those perfectly cropped and captioned photos.

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