Graduate from college, secure a good paying job, accumulate assets, climb the career ladder, and give back to your community: check, check, check, check, and check.
You look up five years later and can’t help but ask yourself, “What’s next?”
You’ve followed all of the rules of success, which has given you a professional resume that could land you a six-figure job at any of the most reputable companies in the world, but there is something missing. You realize that you’ve spent the majority of life living someone else’s definition of success, without taking into consideration what success means to you.
In order for you to obtain professional fulfillment, you have to discover what sets your soul on fire and makes you come alive. It’s time to remove yourself from the chains of your comfort zone. Tap into unlimited possibilities that can transform your professional future. Start drafting your six-month action plan and book a one-way flight to another country.
I know this may sound ludicrous and perhaps appears disastrous for your career, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Traveling will give your career an instant makeover, providing you with the clarity and confidence you need to accelerate your career progress and increase your professional satisfaction.
Here is why traveling the world should be the next personal and professional development activity that you consider:
1. Traveling Elevates Your Career Confidence
Let’s face it—most people are stuck in dead-end jobs, because they don’t have the confidence to leave. But, if you are trying to get a promotion or start your own business, even more confidence is needed to convey your value and competence without stumbling over your words.
Confidence is key in the world of business. You can’t seal the deal without it, and you can’t move past rejection if your self-esteem has been shattered to pieces.
Nothing boosts your confidence faster than traveling to a foreign place, navigating in an environment where your looks and language clearly make you stand out as a tourist. These unfamiliar situations can all leave you with unflappable confidence, which will make you unstoppable and more comfortable when you return home. If you can climb steep mountains, eat foreign foods, and immerse yourself in an environment where you can speak the language, what can’t you do?
So, the next time you are asked to take the lead on that stretch assignment, you won’t be shy about saying yes, because you’ll realize that it’s not as life altering as navigating a foreign country alone.
2. Traveling Increases Your Income Potential
Education equates to financial power, if you know how to use what you’ve learned to get what you desire. Take every chance that you have to learn as much as you can, because that will determine your worth when articulating your value to a potential employer or client. The more you learn, the more you earn.
Traveling around the world gives you a chance to teach another native language, give consulting advice based on your area of expertise, deliver better business practices, enhance your social media strategies, and speak or write about leading news topics. These are all in-demand skills that people will pay you for, and when you can diversify your skill-set, you create more sources of income, which can increase your wealth potential.
Your collection of knowledge won’t help you advance unless you publicize, promote, and practice what you know. In order to get paid for what you know, you have to make sure that you market your skills and validate your credibility. LinkedIn is a great online resume that can be used to publish your skills and experience. Use your professional headline, summary, and work experience as a chance to publicize your skills. If you have the chance to deliver speeches or workshops, these are perfect opportunities to practice what you know and obtain feedback.
3. Traveling Globalizes Your Professional Tribe
How many people in your network speak a different language or are from different countries? Stop whatever you are doing to take a mental inventory of your network, as this is crucial to your future success.
Why? Renowned business leader Jim Rohn once said, “You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” The people around you provide you with a glimpse of your professional future.
Start networking around the world—now. Your education may get you in the door, but your network will give you the extra clout that you need to soar. The best networking opportunities come when you travel. Traveling can give you access to a universe of professionals that you would have never met if you had stayed in your home country.
Every person that you meet can expose you to new ideas and ways of doing business, which will allow you to think outside the constraints of your social bubble. Think about the value of your social equity, if you are able to say that you are connected with people from all over the world. The world is a cauldron of rich and interesting cultures, and your ability to take advantage of that will determine your global impact.