Cultural Experience | Resources

I Deserve the World and You Do, Too

If there’s one thing that traveling taught me, it’s that I deserve the world.

I deserve the magnificent highs that accompany cliff jumping in Italy and skydiving in Switzerland. I deserve the sense of awe one feels when standing beside the Sagrada Familia or seeing the Mona Lisa for the first time. I deserve the fleeting, yet steadfast desire for romance that overwhelms every hopeless romantic when viewing the Eiffel Tower at night. I deserve all of those things—all of those feelings—and you do, too.

Travel taught me that there’s a world beyond the world we live in. There are more mountains to climb, seas to swim, streets to walk. And there are people in far away cities, sipping lattes in trendy cafes, just waiting to be met by someone like you… like us.

So my question is, why do we let life slip by us?

The answer is pretty self-explanatory, and that is that living an ordinary, go-through-the-motions life is comfortable. It’s easy. It’s mindless. And it’s time to change that.

As the New Year approaches, it is time to dream of the feelings we’ve felt when traveling, and then make them reality. Dream of the magnificent highs, the sense of awe and wonder, the desire for romance and bliss. Then, find ways to incorporate those feelings into everyday life.

Do something you’d never do. Slip the attractive barista your number when ordering your daily Starbucks. Drive a little too fast on the freeway with the windows down in January. Go for a hike with no path to follow and no time to return. Be fearless and maybe a little crazy. Go out of your way to feel highs comparable to those felt paragliding, surfing, skiing.

Let your creative juices flow. Finger paint. Take an art class. Build a sculpture. Rearrange your room and then rearrange it again. Let your mind be graceful, wistful. Forget about those who bring you down, who don’t meet you half way, who bring out your negative energy. Find peace within yourself and do something meaningful, creative, independent, wise. Find a sense of awe in who you are.

Fall in love with the life you live and the world you live in. Climb a tree and read a book. Make a snow angel in your front yard. Spend a day visiting every single coffee shop in your hometown. Twice. Get your nails done. Treat yourself to a bubble bath. Be happy in your own skin and remember that there is only one you. Let there be romance in everything you do.

Because if there’s one thing that traveling taught me, it’s that I deserve the world—and you do, too. And even though there are lands you haven’t seen and many more you will never ever see, it’s up to you to make your town, your city, your suburbs into a world of enchantment, beauty and wonder. It’s up to you to create the feelings of awe, romance, excitement. Cheers to you finding just that this year. Oh, and me, too.

Brooke Stafford

Pennsylvania State University | 11 stories

Brooke is currently a senior studying public relations and psychology at Penn State University. She is a curious mind, a social media enthusiast and well-traveled daydreamer. When she isn't fantasizing about her next big adventure, she is drinking chai, napping, or scrolling through

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