We are total believers that traveling can teach you more than a classroom or textbook ever could. Add in traveling with kids and you will sure learn even more than you bargained for. There are many lessons that both you and your kids will learn while traveling.
Here are 7 Lessons We Have Learned From Traveling With Kids:
To be more patient
Before having kids, we thought we had developed patience through travel. Then we started adding kids into the travel mix and realized that we had to find a whole new level of patience. Coming from a busy life in Vancouver, BC, we are used to life happening at a fast pace and so any lag time or mishaps in between can be a lot harder to handle when you have impatient little kids along for the ride. But, if anything, learning to deal with a myriad of scenarios that happen does build character, in both you and your kids. After all, it won’t always be this way, so find a way to embrace the crazy and go with it. Plus, without the mishaps, where would all the family adventure be?
To be more curious
If there’s one thing kids are really good at, it is being extremely curious about the world around them. If we have hit a day where we just aren’t feeling the travel, for whatever reason, the kids always push us to keep moving and it has given us some incredible memories. Interacting with those you meet on your path helps to give a better understanding of what is happening around you, why, and can turn your curiosity into amazing discoveries. And for a kid, every little discovery is worthwhile and it helps to leave us wanting more.
To appreciate the simple things
When we travel without the kids, we notice that it can be so easy to overlook the small details. The details kids find with little to no effort, details that make the world the beautiful place that it is. And then, it extends further to when you come home. You start to see beauty in the things around you in your everyday life, beauty that you started to take for granted. You learn that your day to day “problems” are not really problems at all. Being able to see how the rest of the world lives can really show you how lucky you are to have the life that you lead. Stay humble and don’t sweat the small stuff.
Kids are like sponges
Since we started traveling, even without kids, we immediately realized how it really increases your thirst for more world-wide knowledge. We are able to show our kids history, instead of just telling them something that would go in one ear and out the other. They can see things first-hand, which we believe is a better way to learn. On the flip side, we also find that we have a thirst to read and learn about more destinations and cultures. We’re positive that all this knowledge will only help the kids as the grow and continue to make us better people that make wiser decisions.
It is great for confidence building
Both of our girls are pretty outgoing and don’t play shy in too many situations. We feel that this can be in part to continually opening them up to new experiences and being around new people as we travel. When you let them have a say in activities, or pay for their own souvenir, those are things that are telling them they can do it.
To Slow Down and be present
We are always so busy running from activity to activity for the girls, and trying to fit in the rest of our lives after work hours. It is exhausting. Mentally and physically draining. Sometimes we can feel that we need to pack in as many sights as we can into the itinerary, but we have realized that if we just slow down a little, we can really enjoy each activity and the company of having our kids with us that much more.
When we are travelling with or without the girls, in today’s world, it is important to put down the electronics and just be in the moment. Fiddling on your phone or having the kids on an iPad can be really distracting and then we all end up missing a lot of what the experience should have been, if we weren’t plugged in all that time. We like to really focus on being present and taking in everything around us.
It isn’t always easy
We have pretty happy, easy going kids. Sometimes, however, something just doesn’t feel right to them. They don’t want to be confined on an airplane, or they are tired and have had enough and need a break. Those are definitely trying moments that regardless of stupid comments and stares from strangers, you just have to learn to laugh and shrug it off. Learning that it is part of travel and that it is okay and that it will happen, will make your travel experience a lot less stressful.
I wouldn’t be the person I am today if I never traveled. And our kids would definitely end up being different people than they will become if they aren’t continually given the opportunity to explore the world.
What has travelling taught you?