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Travel: Why, Where and How?

Vicki Weiss
A dam in Eastern Oklahoma as traffic rolls by.
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YUKON, Okla.- Travel: Why, Where and How?

Are you reading this article at your cubicle at your nine-to-five job? Do you find yourself looking out the window of your daily commute to work and day-dreaming about what could lie beyond the rut you’ve made for yourself?

If this is you, don’t feel as though you’re alone. A report from the Huffington Post showed that more than 80 percent of Americans live their lives this way. To quote Henry David Thoreau, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and die with their song still inside them.”

Many people go to jobs in order to fulfill some financial obligation (i.e. bills, student debt, the $20 you owe your neighbor etc.). While this happens, those same people will go onto any one of their various social media apps and become jealous of their friend who is on their second or third vacation of the year.

It’s okay, you can admit. We’ve all been there.

We remember the vacations we’ve taken either with our families or on our own accord. A spontaneous road trip or flying overseas to see the world beyond the pond are memories that’ll never die.

So what’s stopping you from taking a chance and leaving on a vacation?

When people are asked this question, often they are quick to support their side of the story. After all, nobody wants to admit when they’ve felt trapped.

We work to live; not the other way around.

The amount of the excuses when asked this question stacked up more than the reasons to experience the world around you. With 195 countries and endless stories to learn, where does one start?

Let’s dive into the top two reason not to travel and pair it with the counterargument. By the end of the article, you’ll decide if I’m full of it or not.

I Don’t Have The Time:

This is easily one of my favorite excuses. To be fair, I’ve used this excuse more than once.

Life gets in the way in many different ways. Work obligations which pair with the need to pay bills, family gatherings that you’d feel guilty for missing or friends which ask why you never go out with them anymore.

With each day, the stress rises to levels that would make even Mr. Rogers go on a binger that would tear the town a new one. It’s not as though you could be in five different places at once yet people expect you to.

You’re a working adult with responsibilities galvanizing any sense of free time that comes up.

“I don’t have the time to just take off,” people will say.

This reason is a steep fall. A medical research program done by SciElo in 2015 observed in a study of 550 men and women between ages of 18 and 35 the amount of stress elevations in one sitting.

The majority of the people ranked their stress as a four or five upon arrival. When questions discussing the absence of free time, lifestyle and socioeconomic data were asked, men’s blood pressure rose by 21.5 percent and women’s rose by 22.5 percent.

An elevated blood pressure can be the first sign of an unhealthy life.

If this condition is prolonged, a person can be at an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

A study was conducted by matadornetwork.com regarding the reduced stress level of travelers before and after a vacation. It reads, “A study found that three days after vacation, travelers felt well-rested, less anxious, and in a better mood. And these improvements didn’t disappear when they returned home, they lasted for weeks afterward.”

You’re probably asking, “Well Brandon, that’s all well and good but my job won’t let me take the time off and I have so many things left to do here.” I get this completely.

That being said, what is more important, your job security or your health?

Most jobs value the efficiency of their workers and their workforce. If their primary source of work begins to fail due to their health and stress, doesn’t everyone lose?

Majority of jobs offer vacation time. Use it wisely.

More importantly, it’s nice to feel wanted by those who need you. Your family and your friends will always need your help or want your company but it’s too often that people live by the expectation of others.

Psychology Today reported in 2016 that majority of self-esteem issues stem from, “a self-representation which is often skewed by the perception of others.”

Pair this with the elevated stress and blood pressure, you’re sure to lead a life of little experience in what lies beyond your rut.

I Don’t Have The Money:

Money will always be the great divider.

To quote singer Faith Evans, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby”.

When all your money goes to bills and the mountain of student debt, money is a fleeting fancy. Hell, even a trip to your backyard is the only appealing trip. At least it’s free, right?

A vacation is often considered to be something you need to save for. Expensive has become synonymous with the idea of a vacation

Let me explain, you do not need to be as rich as President Trump to take a damn vacation.

Don’t believe me? Start out small and take a small road trip across the state to Tulsa or southern Oklahoma and see what’s out there. Little by little, travel to different surrounding states and see how the other side of the street lives.

While traveling, eat and plan accordingly.

That doesn’t mean you should eat at high-end restaurants and go to places that require a huge payment. Go to small hole-in-the-wall joints and test the boundaries of the things you’d never try before. After all, how did you know you liked what you do without trying it in the first place?

For those with the bug to travel beyond the United States, Dolores Shuscter, a six-year Expedia agent, has your interest at heart.

“People are so scared to spend their entire income on a vacation that they don’t take it in the first place,” she said. “What I always suggest to people is to budget how much you’re willing to spend and don’t go over it.”

She added: “Almost every flight offers deals to fly for free at times and add promotional deals for inexperienced fliers saving people hundreds of dollars. Not to mention the abilities to gain money while you’re on a longer vacation by working small odd jobs.”

Schuscter suggests to live with local people and ask travel places in any state or country you visit. Often times, workers there will suggest places to stay and eat depending on your budget.

With no money and no time, one could be stranded by obligations and no freedom. Vacations are something that is earned by planning and hard-work. What people often forget is the reward from their work.

For the sake of your health and lifestyle, close your laptop and begin planning your vacation soon. Truly, there’s no time like the present.

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About the Author

Brandon King

Brandon King is a journalism student at OCCC, working towards becoming a professional writer....

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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