Updated: Jul 8, 2020
The outbreak of the Bali video that broke the internet and raised questions on traveling v/s mindful ethical traveling became the talk of the town. It was sad that ethics and morals were compromised. The Bali incident is an eye-opener for us all. How we should carry only memories and not the hotel hairdryer. How we must adhere to the rules of a particular place and lastly, money cannot buy you any worthwhile memories. However, the basic ingredient for enjoying your travel is being respectful of the environment and being present in the moment.
The concept of mindful traveling has become so futile that it is now considered uncool to not post any pictures, not go live on social media and brag about how you captured the perfect sunset. It has become impossible to keep your memories and adventure treasure to yourself. Nothing wrong with sharing, but making your whole trip about it, when did we learn to travel like this? Who taught us this way of living your life?
Traveling should serve the purpose of introspection, learning, and retrospection. All this will only come with mindful traveling. The flapper life states a few cool tips to travel keeping your mind in mind.
Cool ways to travel mindfully!
1- Stop to live!
In the acronym STOP- S stand for seizing, T stands for taking a breath, O stands for observing and P stands for proceeding for more! This is the best brief for mindful travel. You travel to forget your woes, to pause your stress, to get over a heartbreak. In order to free yourself from your low spirits, you need to STOP.
2- Learn the basics of the place.
A solid traveler will always cover all his basics. That includes learning the basic language, currency, climatic changes, and cultural practice and also the basic law of the country.
For e.g. It is considered rude to count your money change back in Japan. Or leaving your food in China can get you heavily fined.
Respect the place, its habitats and their way of life. No one likes a guest who cannot be pally with the host. Remember, for you, visit that place may just be an adventure, but for the people who stay there, it is their living, their temple and you surely do not wish to face their wrath or worse, hurt them.
4- Keep your BAE aside.
This might be the most difficult thing to do on your trip. Keep your bae aside, BAE here stands for your smartphone and not your beloved company. We get so busy in clicking the sunrise, we forget to live it yourself. We get so engrossed in tagging and adding filters to our hot food, by the time we consume it, it is sans taste.
5- Simply sit and observe.
Trust me, it takes absolutely nothing to sit back and enjoy. To travel is to live and vice versa. To watch a beautiful sunset while the sky changes its colors. To watch the beautiful roads curving into something majestic. To watch the stars match the sparkle with our eyes. From enjoying street food to street music to street style, there is a simplicity in exclusiveness.
Mindful travel is a combination of living in the present, accepting the new, enjoying the scene while it lasts and most importantly, adapting to the change. When you live in the moment, there is nothing you will miss out. There is nothing you will forget. There is nothing you will regret. Lastly in the words of Sharon Salzberg, “ Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention in a way that creates space for insight.”