There is one social theory that argues we only shape our own identities when they become challenged or threatened. This means that we understand who we are by looking outwards and realizing who we are not.
The best example of this is travel. Did you know that in Asia it is normal to drink out of a bag when you're on the go? To them it is completely normal. For the average westerner this method obviously evokes quizzical looks.
The point is that we take plastic cups as the norm and the only logical way to drink something on the go. However creativity tells us otherwise, there are always multiple ways to go about doing things - never assume you have the best answer.
Travel helps us figure out those assumptions that we take for granted and opens our eyes to new experiences, effectively heightening our creative ability. We learn more about ourselves when we see that others are different from us in ways we couldn't imagine.
Take A Creative Risk
Seeing that travel is the great eye-opener, it makes sense that so many travelers plan creative projects to document or encapsulate their voyages. I would argue that such travel projects are at risk of being extremely creative and dangerously fun. Next time you go on a trip besides planning your flight and housing try planning a creative project - photos, painting, drawings, audio, video - however you wish to capture it. You may find the experience very refreshing and a great source of inspiration even after it's completion.
In a couple days I will be leaving on a trip to Amsterdam, Fribourg, Munich and Madrid and I have decided to plan #projectglob(o). For now, my creative project is going to be a surprise to all of you guys - you will have to wait till I publish it in the coming weeks! Stay tuned!
PART II - The Results
I enjoyed my travels so much - so many countries - so many languages. As with most things, my project made some changes along the way - but I am happy with the results. Every time I come back from traveling I am both a little depressed and also more self-assured. I definitely learned about myself and enjoyed spending times in other cultures and languages. Anyways - here are the results of my travel project. I hope that you will consider trying a creative project on your next trip abroad! Safe travels!