How Travel Changed My Perspective

Sometimes, travel changes your life. This traveler proves it.

Plenty of people start their first job shortly after graduation, but one traveler, Kylie, knew right away that wasn’t her path. Instead, she traveled to Australia and ended up staying more than a year! 

She found plenty to appreciate–from prime surfing to music festivals–but one of the best things was how traveling changed her perspective. We caught up with Kylie to discuss why it was a life changing experience and how to change your mindset through traveling:

Young friends with surfboard running into the ocean
Travel can get you into hobbies that last a lifetime.

What made you want to travel to Australia?

When I graduated from the University of Oregon, most people were stressing out about immediately starting 9-to-5 jobs. My take was “what’s the rush? I’m going to work my whole life!”

I’d been fortunate enough to travel often before and knew I love to meet new people and learn about different cultures—but language had sometimes been a barrier for me.

So Australia was perfect. I bought a one-way ticket and thought I’d figure it out as I go. It ended up being awesome.

Amazing. What did you end up doing for work once you got there?

I’d always worked in hospitality, so after traveling around a bit and meeting friends, I started working at a seafood restaurant on the beach in Sydney.

red and white wine with glasses at a vineyard
Kylie learned about Australian wines while working as well.

​​From there I got into wines, and actually helped put on events for a wine company which taught me a ton and was a very cool experience. Also the money wasn’t bad either and it allowed me to stay there even longer and make a trip to New Zealand too!   

How did spending so much time in a foreign country change your perspective?

It pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to meet new people, make new friends, and figure out a way for myself. Everyone you talk to can teach you something, and you’re bound to make some real connections too.

A guanaco near a lake in Patagonia
Kylie’s Chilean friends plan to be her guide on their next trip together to Patagonia.

I met three women from Chile there and we’ve stayed close and just met up in Costa Rica! We’re planning to go to Patagonia soon too—none of that would have happened without my trip. I also met someone on a long bus ride to a concert that is still one of my best friends today! 

The whole experience helped me realize how I want to spend my time with other open-minded travelers. And I actually work for an employee recognition company now that helps people take trips around the U.S. and Mexico–so in a way my time in Australia even helped me realize my career path! 

How do you think this new perspective has changed your day to day life? 

I felt like there was tremendous support from everyone I met traveling, no matter what was happening, and I try to always keep that mentality with me. In my job, I’m always sure to be present and try to connect on a personal level and not only focus on work. 

And it made me realize how it’s always worth it to seek out the people that support me and my love of adventures.  

Any last advice for people looking to plan their next trip? 

It’s so easy to fall into a little bubble in your world, but traveling lets you broaden your perspective wherever you go as long as you’re pushing past your comfort zone, keeping an open mind, and talking to everyone you meet!