Refresh your outlook by travelling out of your comfort zone
<The voyage of discovery is not in seeking new lands but in having new eyes > said the moustached French gent – Marcel Proust. Fresh eyes change how you view your world, helps us get along better and thrive. Travel is a sweet tool to get new eyes. Bonnie Scotland is my native home despite being born and raised in different countries – Europe – Middle East – Far East. I was exposed to so many different people, cultures, languages, nature, fashion, music, food – radically different from country to country. I love that! I learnt a lot growing up in different communities – despite all the differences there was at least one thing in common – the common desire to get along with each other and thrive.
Given the blue eyes and blonde curls I was clearly not a local in the places that I grew up yet I felt like I belonged – I was home. As we moved around I adapted and I continued to get along and belong. I didn’t know any different and all I soaked up was kindness. Maybe the 70’s and 80’s were just calmer and kinder but it was never on my radar as we moved around that our differences might divide us. On moving to Scotland at 16 my eyes were opened. Glasgow – what a majestic city – full of culture, fashion, art, music, food not least the people and the banter. Banter is right up my street. Bec loves the Glesga banter. I quickly discovered however that all was not rosy in the global garden of diversity with a river of prejudice running through it. I soon had new eyes.
It was a tough transition – for a time I couldn’t keep up – so diverse were the prejudices and so openly displayed. Anything it seemed could be viciously judged or untolerated – skin colour – football team – country of origin – hair colour – religion – English…. it was all so new to me….all just a bit hatey for my liking. There I was, technically home but in a way reluctant to belong. All the same, I adapted and grew to recognise the value of our diverse melting pot and the kindness that gels us together.
I think it’s important to keep the discovery muscle active – it keeps our outlook fresh – it keeps us growing – it keeps us open to discover new things – it helps us tolerate our differences respectfully – it helps us get along better and thrive. So stay en voyage keep discovering – the little things – stop and look around more – explore – embrace change – say yes! – play – be more adventurous – be open to our melting pot. Given the opportunity – get out of town – go travel anywhere and notice all the similarities and all the differences. Drink it all in sans critique – the people you meet – the sounds and smells and tastes – talk to people – learn from locals – whether city or immersed in nature – whether near or far. The practical knowledge and understanding gained from experiences outside our comfort zone is invaluable! And the technology revolution has only made the world feel smaller expanding further our horizons. Never has it been easier to keep your mind free from nonsense prejudice and just be nice to each other – because life’s too short .