6 life lessons we’ve learned from traveling around the world for a year

Gezgin Cobanlar, a couple traveling around the world for a year

1. The world is vast! So hurry up!

When people ask us, “Haven’t you traveled enough? Aren’t you done, yet?” we don’t really get their point. We’ve visited 30 countries yet and there are still 170 countries to go. But that’s not even the point. Even for the 30 countries we’ve visited, we just saw the surface! 2 weeks for a country may just be an introduction, so we still need to visit these countries again to complete our itineraries.

Don’t look at the world map and imagine you can jump from one country to another and cover the continents like a computer game. To have a proper insight, you need at the least a month in India, a month in Australia, more than a month in Indonesia and the list goes like this. Average human life expectancy is 70-80 years. Do the math. And hurry up!

2. Good people outnumber the bad

When you live in an industrial world in crowded cities and obviously surrounded by mass media, you probably think the world is full of evil people, violence, hypocrisy, greed, and terror. This is your image of the world because this is what we’ve told by other people and the mass media. Just forget what you told by all. The world is full of good-hearted people, who are enthusiastic about helping others and just expecting for a warm smile as a return.

It doesn’t matter which country it is, every corner of the world is full of generous and kind people, who wants to share their bread with you, give you shelter and spent all their time to help you. People tell their stories that make you cry and tell their stories who’ll make you laugh as mad.

Don’t believe the stories about bad people in far away lands, who may harm you and you should be away. We are still the majority. Spread the love. It will come back to you.

3. We have more similarities than the differences

Every culture has a different language, a different cuisine, and a different social structure. They look different, they dress differently. Even the cultural distances sometimes may look vast, or the language barriers may leave you apart, we are quite the same about basics of life.

We all smile for the same things, we’re all worried about the future, we all love the same things, we all have the same fears, we’re all happy when we’re drunk!

All human being around the world have something common to talk and share. We’re all brothers and sisters that spread out to the different corners of the world.

4. Our lives are just tiny boring dramas. Don’t take life seriously. Just carry on…

You’re sitting on your desk at your office. Stressed or bored. Probably thinking, life treated very harsh on you? Stop thinking you’re the center of the world. There are billions like you. We’re all living the same life, with slightly different stories. We’re born, live this journey and die. When you travel the world, you’ll stop thinking your life is a drama. It’s not even close. If you can read this, probably you are part of the wealthy lucky minority of this planet. Life is full of beauties and surprises. Just live the moment… And carry on…

5. Mainstream media is a total lie and manipulation

We are at the peak ages of mass media and manipulation. We are living in the age of hyperreality. What you see on TV is considered more real than reality itself!

When you travel, you are isolated from mainstream media. You don’t watch tv, you don’t watch the news, commercials, reality shows. You don’t read newspapers or even social media trends most of the time.

You can’t even believe the difference! Your mind is free from all the fear, horror, terror what has been told about the world every day. Your mind is free from all the biases, hate, racism, desire of wealth and other superficial desires.

Mass media tells you: the world is a dangerous place, full of evil people and communities. They may hurt you or kill you… Don’t trust anyone. Stay your home to be safe. Keep watching TV and shop online.

But the streets tell the opposite. The world is a safe place, if you really think it is. There may be cultural boundaries. But if you try to be genuine and polite, people are ready to help you and share what they have. If you trust people, people will pay it forward. We are not the enemies as the mass media tell us every day. We’re brothers and sisters of a big diverse family.


6. Wild nature is more beautiful than anything that humans build on this world

If you think you’re living in a beautiful city, just pull your head out to wild nature and hold your breath. When we’re visiting the most beautiful cities on the world, they are scaled much lower after the infinite beauties of the wild nature.

No skyscraper can compete the snowy peaks of Himalayas, no aquarium can compete the coral beaches of Philippines, no city park can compete the wild rainforests of Indonesia.

The world is full of spectacular rivers, waterfalls, hidden lakes, tropical islands, mountains and so on. When you drink the poison of the wild nature, you’ll realize you spend much less time in cities.

Gezgin Çobanlar