In recent years, there has begun to be an influx of students taking a year off before college to travel. There are also many professionals who are now choosing to take “gap” years from their careers to refocus and regenerate. This time spent away from the daily grind can be fulfilling and enriching for a number of reasons. Included here are a few reasons why you should take a gap year, whether you are a young student or a settled professional.
Prepare for College
After finishing high school, many grads are understandably uninspired about diving into another four years of school. You may be lacking motivation to pursue a certain major or have no general direction laid out yet. Taking a gap year can give you time to expand your worldview, better relationships, and refocus you on your future. You may be more successful in college because you have had time to appreciate your life and have discovered a passion to pursue.
Gain Appreciation for Your Life
As an adult professional, it can be easy to get muddled down in the daily grind. You went to school, you worked hard and now you are appropriately settled in a professional level job. One option many professionals are choosing is to save for a long period of time and take a year off from work. Take this year to re-evaluate your life, recognize successes and failures and re-establish where you are versus where you want to be.
Refocus in the Workplace
You may have begun taking your comfortable, civilized life for granted. By taking time to travel and see the world from other perspectives you may gain appreciation for your life and workplace. This can allow you to dive into work with renewed vigor or even change career paths and start your own business.
Alter Your Worldview
This applies to both students and older professionals travelling. Your worldview can be stunted when you remain in one place for too long. You may harbor certain prejudices or opinions about the world without ever seeing locations first hand. If all you are seeing of the outside world are the areas other people choose to point a camera at your worldview could have significant holes. Having a greater understanding of the world outside yourself can be successful in all aspects of life.
Renew Your Purpose
You may find your current life unfulfilling or find that options for majors at school are unappealing. Taking time out to see the world and bask in possibility may allow you to change direction entirely. You may see a great need for certain careers in your area, and you may become invigorated to help people in your own community. It is possible to become so incensed you want to become a permanent resident elsewhere to help a community. All of these are wonderful, as long as you are pursuing what is fulfilling and enriching to you.