Top 10 Life Lessons Learned in Travelling the World for 10 Years


Hi! My name is Benny Lewis, and
I’ve been travelling the world for ten years, wandering from place to place
every few months, without a fixed home anywhere. Everything I own in the world
weighs 23 kilograms, or 50 pounds. In this time I’ve tried to speak the local
language of each country that I go to, and have made many friends from
vastly different cultures. In doing so, I’ve learned many
life lessons, a few of which I’d like to share
with you today. I hope you’ll enjoy it! Happiness has no price tag One of the first things people say when they
hear that I’ve been travelling for so long is that I must be rich. Well, not quite! ! haven’t inherited any fortune
and in fact, I’ve earned less than $1000 a month
at many stages in my travels but have had very rich experiences
despite this. I’ve found that some lateral thinking
can get you a lot for very little money! You can Couchsurf for free
instead of paying for accommodation, you can hitchhike very safely
in many countries, or fly across the planet for just a couple
of hundred dollars if you’re flexible, or free if you know how to
“hack” the system by earning miles you can even cook at home much
cheaper instead of eating out all the time, and it will be a lot better if you give up
expensive habits that don’t enrich your life and stop buying crap you don’t need. The best experiences do not have
any price tag. Money is necessary to have a basic
standard of living, but many of us, especially in the west, already have more than enough of it to
be able to have many incredible experiences, if only we’d realize it. At the end of the day,
time with good friends is free; but can make you feel like
the richest person alive. Be an imperfectionist Perfectionism is usually thought
of as a good quality. but I’ve found, though, that when – whatever you’re passionate about
can’t be appreciated until it’s 100% perfect you’ll never appreciate it. Generally, outside of mathematics,
perfection is impossible. There’s always something missing, some
improvement left, or someone who does it better. Accepting that I’m not going to be “the best”
is the most freeing thought I’ve ever had. In fact, I go out of my way to make
at least 200 mistakes a day Making no mistakes is playing it safe, but great
things were never achieved by playing it safe. Every single failure is a stepping
stone to a success and a chance to learn
something important. The magic happens outside
of your comfort zone I once saw this image online
and it’s so true. Our comfort zones are tiny, but it’s not where we learn
or grow as people, and have those incredible adventures that we
can look back on proudly for the rest of our lives. In trying to learn multiple languages, meeting fascinating people, travelling by myself, speaking on stage, and many other things that I’ve
done and seen others do, I’ve found that rather than being
naturally good at tthese things, each one of us can push our boundaries
to learn how to be good at them. Your true limitations can often be
how willing you are to leave your comfort zone. where the chance of failure
or embarrassment is much higher.. So you fail, you get embarrassed
a bit – what’s the big deal? Dust yourself off, try again, and this time you’ll do a lot better. until you soon realize that you have
achieved something great! The world owes you nothing Too many of us feel this incredible
sense of entitlement, like the world owes us something. I mean, you’re a good person, right? You deserve to meet the man
or woman of your dreams, get that book deal or have
great success. Well… not exactly. The world doesn’t owe you any of that. Personally, I don’t believe in karma,
or some invisible force that will give me what I want because
I’m generally a nice guy. I need to work for it
beyond wishful thinking. You have to do something tangible
to get real results in this world. From a certain perspective,
the world is certainly an unfair place, but rather than be an eternal
pessimist about it, why not find out why things are the
way they are, so that maybe you can follow t
these rules, adapt to them and even bend them at times. Get busy living We only have one life, but many of
us squander it We waste time watching
TV shows, or – doing passive things that don’t
enrich our lives or we kill time alone. The time is going to pass anyway,
why kill it? Get busy living, and do so
with your own life . Not vicariously through others, Spend time with others, and you can effectively live something
as good as many lifetimes in one. Every single person is fascinating
and can teach you something The reason I travel so much is because I like to meet so many
interesting and varied people. Across the planet, we share
so many things in common from your guide in the Sahara desert, to those taking a train in the
middle of China, to the deaf community in America, to dancers in South America. We can relate to all these people
because at their core, they share a lot of the same values
and hopes and dreams you do. Despite this though, when you have
the chance to really get to know someone, you’ll see that our vastly different
experiences can help us learn from one another. Each person can give you something
to aspire to, to emulate, or something that they do that you
can learn from Even the bad people can show us
parts of ourselves that we don’t like and make sure it don’t take over. It’s OK to say “I was wrong” These three words are so
hard to utter, but they can help you make
peace with people. Even make it four,
“maybe I was wrong.” Give other points of view a chance.
Let people have their say! Really listen to these alternative
points of view, especially those that are vastly
different to yours. Even if they don’t change your mind, maybe they will help you appreciate
their point of view more. The present is what really matters Don’t defer your happiness so much. Too many people look at life as if it
was all about getting to the destination, rather than about the journey. Finishing school, getting that job,
buying that thing you want…. The problem is when you finally do,
you won’t even appreciate it, because you’ll feel a huge anticlimax
just after it happens, and you’ll just set your sights
on the next distant target. How about appreciating
the current moment? Spending time with those
around you, not taking the wonderful advantages
you have in life right now for granted, stopping what you are doing to just go for
a walk and breathe and appreciate nature, or spending time with people
important to you. Don’t be in such a hurry.
Life is happening NOW. Be generous and kind to others Give, without expecting
something in return. And compliment people regularly. Show genuine gratitude. Look a friend or loved one in the eye and tell them they are important
to you or that you love them. Ultimately the true legacy that
we can leave behind is the interactions with the people
who cross our paths. The difference we can really make in this
world is not some thing that we build or work on, but the relationships that
we help flourish. It feels good to pay it forward.. You may just make someone’s day, and
get kindness back precisely when you need it. We’re all making it up as we go This may negate a lot of what I’ve just said,
but I have no idea what I’m talking about. I’m just some guy with
a YouTube channel sharing some things that I think – are the most important lessons
I’ve learned while traveling. But I’m just making this up as I go. In fact, I’ve found that many people
who run huge businesses, or politicians, or famous actors, or the most successful and
popular people I’ve met… they’re just going with the flow. You can call them an expert
or look up to them, or think they have the key
to some secret, or are blessed by some
unknown force, but they’re just a normal person who’s had
a bit of luck to find an interesting path in life. With slightly different circumstances that amazing person you think is so great,
could’ve been looking up to you. Don’t worry if you’re not
the cool kid right now. If you really talked to that person
that you aspire to be, you’d find they have the same hang-ups
and worries in life as you do, and that they also aspire after others. Just try to be the best you
that you can be, amd remember that the rest
of us are, like you, attempting to find their way on this pale blue dot
spinning through a vast universe, in our own tiny fraction of history. We can only try our best
to make it counts. Thanks a lot for watching this video, and I’d appreciate it if you shared it
with your friends if you liked it. Also, two years ago I wrote an article
with 29 entire life lessons, that you might like to check out, as it’s been read by almost two million
people since I wrote it. And one thing that’s really helped me
discover me this vast and wonderful world is learning other languages. I could only speak English
when I was 21, but I decided to change my destiny. So, watch my TEDx talk to get some
language learning inspiration. And finally, don’t forget to subscribe or check out these other
interesting videos I’ve made. Thanks, and good luck!

100 Replies to “Top 10 Life Lessons Learned in Travelling the World for 10 Years

  1. Good video. Kinda going through the stage of rediscovering myself. I'm hoping I will learn to not be such a perfectionist.

  2. Thanks Benny. Just starting my career as a long term traveler and suitcase entrepreneur. These lessons will be helpful.

  3. dude very inspirational video! havent saved up enough yet for any trip , but i have swuashed through every blog and video i can find, and i can even see you met Nomadic matt on your trip haha thats cool! stay true Peace!

  4. You are cool person but the next time that you travel the world remember that people do that because they want to discover it by themselves and learn it by their own experience. If you are teaching me the "lessons" for travel the world, what's the point of doing it then?
    You don't travel the world just because later on you can upload a super cool instructions video and earn shitload of views. And, by the way, you gotta delete your "i'm better than you because i speak more languages" attitude.
    I'm sorry bro. Just being honest. Lesson n° 11…

  5. Hi mr.benny lewis! 🙂 it was an inspiring video! i've already traveled in most asian countries! Im just 21 and I love to see and experience more! and thank you for inspiring me!! More power and God bless you! 😀

  6. Cara, essas lições parecem ser universais, para todas as pessoas. Muito legal ter viajado por tantos lugares e chegar à conclusão de que a maior riqueza não foi o dinheiro, mas toda essa experiência.

  7. Great lessons – all common sense, which, isn't all that common. Thank you for sharing. Helpful and inspiring. I'll share this with my friends.

  8. Benny, I am inspirated by your passion of learning languages, and I think that maybe I can make time to concentrate on my language learning everyday. But I have a question:How could I do to keep learning everyday when I go to travel? Ps: The people of my destination no speak the language that I am learning.

  9. What an inspiring video. Well done. I do travel videos too, but from a much more conservative vantage point. This is great.

  10. hello , I am from Iraq ,I want to learn English language by talking together via Skype 
    can you help me , also i will teach you arabic language
    thank you
    skype name : mohammed.talib44

  11. Thanks man for sharing with us what you've learned. It just gives me more inspiraton to travel (and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one feeling that). Can't wait to go to Southeast Asia this summer. Keep having heaps of fun bro. 😀

  12. Truly inspirational! My love of travel have so far made me live in Norway and England for 9 and 6 months. I'm now in Wales for a year….Unfotunately i'm also homesick…so i'm not sure i could do what you do..travelling constantly..but i sure wan't to travel as much as possible….have always wanted to learn Italian…maybe i should go there:)

  13. It is so inspiring but yet so risky. I also want to travel the world, but dont have the guts to do it 24/7. Wow, I really understand now, what a great person you are, and yes I am buttering you up so badly it isnt funny anymore. 😀 But its true tho… Yet I dont really understand 1:24 and I am curious, what do you mean by that? 😀

  14. You are so lucky…i wish am like u…free…and out going..i like adventures like u…am young,,healthy,,,and athletic….with money and sence of humor.but i have just married…and burried my dreams,,And madness…my husband is so strict…would not accept adventure….

  15. awesome benny …one day i would also like to travel the world like a free bird ……i thoroughly enjoyed watching your video ……do come by whenever u r there in INDIA (MUMBAI)

  16. Great video, I like you, You make me happy.

    Having said that, let me be that one person who ruins the party for everyone: 

    Needing to travel the world for 10 years to learn human…Human, something you apparently need to learn.

  17. Do you think travelling as a woman would be different? I mean, a man travels, he's brave and courageous, a woman travels, she's mostly in danger half of the time.

  18. I've been to Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Venezuela, Grand Caymen, Haiti, Dominican, Jamaica, Spain, Argentina, Panama, Bahamas, England.

  19. You're acting like everyone has the luxury to just travel and don't think about retirement and all that crap.
    Well with inflation coming like mofo, you've gotta think about the future.
    You also said why watch tv shows, maybe cos I enjoy it?
    And spending time alone is actually better for me than spending it with most other people, cos they're likely to piss me off with their odd manners and behaviour.

  20. you have an amazing outlook on life man! spread that ultimate message to everyone that true happiness and peace comes from within

  21. When you are a English native speaker the world is in some way at your close hand cause everyone wants to learn English. People used to have the necessary patience to talk to you so you can exchange experiences with them. For those who speak a language other than English things are a bit different. That s the true.

  22. I'm gonna need a list of all those cool T-shirts you wear in this video and where to get them! Esp. the "cunning linguist" one. lol +1 for La Camisa Negra!

  23. Well done Benny. This was a great vid, and I've just watched of a few of Nomadic Matt's videos. I'm off to Chiang Mai, Chiang rAI, AND Siem Reap in May, and have never been there, so looking forward to that. Have just subscribed to your channel.
    s

  24. I myself am preparing for the road now, and looking for others' experiences to help me on the way. Most of the things you say
    are things I already thought, and it is so motivating to see that a person of your experience talks about that same stuff.
    I won't lie, I'm still scared shitless, but watching this video really made me think I'll do it anyway.

    Cheers

  25. Traveling has been my dream for years, but my parents haven't been supportive, they want me to stay in the U.S. and go to college and get a degree. They believe traveling is dangerous and can't be done without money. Any advice with this? Thanks so much, very inspiring video.

  26. 'Confucius.
    Hey Benny
    u r definitely today's philosopher. Your next task could be writing a book. I may not have the same opportunity learn in fun like you. But I learn from great people's life of the past and why people do the things they are doing. And as long as u r alive, the party isn't over because truth is always waiting around the corner.
    Thanks for the inspiration.

  27. Great video…
    Great psychological prep talk.
    I'll copy the the link and post it when I see the next person ask "how can I see the world, I don't have money"….

  28. Dude, that was awesome! Very bold of you to go through with traveling the world! Did you travel alone? Was your journey fulfilling? Was it worth it? Would you recommend any certain spots or places to go? Like do you have an absolute must go to location? haha I hope I can make the journey some day myself!!!

  29. `Well you've learned a lot of important stuff ! The most exciting thing of all is, one could live a hundred lifetimes and never run out of new things to learn and do. When the french say, "Je m' ennui", ''I bore myself" , they have that right! Wishing you much joy……………

  30. I would love to travel the world, but unfortunately not all of us are physically able to. Despite that fact, I still truly enjoyed this video and agree with the life lessons. I'm very thankful that people share their experiences from around the world so that people like me can experience them too.

  31. I liked your video👍🏻
    It was very interesting and edifyingly!
    I liked all life lessons, but i want to mention some of them.
    First thing i really liked it's 5th lesson " Get busy living". It's really true, and I agree with you. We shouldn't spend our gold time sitting next to TV , and just lie every day! It's first unhealthy, second you never won't develop, both spiritually and physically, third you won't have good outlook. And also i advise never be coach potato!😄
    Second life lessons which I liked it's 3rd lesson "The magic happens outside of your comfort zone" .
    Yes, i fully agree👌🏻
    Because nowadays we afraid of everything, especially of new thing, which is unusual for us. But , if we want to have happy life we should get out of our comfort zone, we should try new , interesting things. Even you will feel yourself bad, but after 1 hour you will like it, and you will want to try something else. So if we will live like it, we will have great memories, and will something to tell your grandchildren 😄
    And the last lesson , and in my opinion the really nice life lesson it's 9th lesson " Be generous and kind to others ".
    Yes, nowadays people are getting nervous and stressed. But, if we will start be kind with ourselves, and give smile to other people , our life will be better. I believe to it. We should always be generous to others, even if you have bad mood, don't show it to other. Because you shouldn't spoil others' mood.
    So, it's just my thoughts, I think everyone who watched this video took something he or she heeded, and learned something .
    And if to tell the truth, it's my first time when I comment videos on YouTube. It's turns out to be very interesting. I always just read others comments, and sometimes I agree with them, but sometimes not. But if you have read my comment , I hope you liked it😉
    If you liked I want to know it, can you leave comment or just put like, i will be very happy 😊
    P.S. I'm not a native speaker, I'm Kazakh🤗
    And don't pay attention if i have mistakes😘

  32. Thank you for advice Benni😊. Your lessons help us to have a good traveling. If I travel around the world I will take myself good things as you. Because you teach us to see good things from each person. I will have many friends If I know more languages. So,thank you from Kazakhstan

  33. 🤗Thank you for letting us know that travel is necessary for all of us, it develops our imagination, gives us movement, and movement, as we all know, is life. One of the purposes of travel is to go in search of natural beauty. beautiful places on earth as magnets, which attract tourists from year to year. But even more valuable for the traveler is the knowledge that he receives, walking among people of different characters and different ways of life .

  34. Thanks for your great and useful video and thank you for sharing your experience and life lessons with us. we really appreciate, and I'll stick to these tips when I travel.

  35. muchas gracias por el video realmente espero cumplir mi sueño d viajar por todo el mundo te agradezco me inspiras.

  36. happiness has no price tag.
    Be an imperfectionist.
    The magic happens outside of your comfort zone.
    The world owes you nothing.
    Get busy living.
    Every single person is fascinating and can teach you something.
    It's ok to say "I was wrong"
    The present is what really matters.
    Be generous and kind to others.
    We're all making it up as we go.

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