What is it with Wanderlust? This “W” word, Wanderlust, is literally everywhere. I wish I was the marketing team that got the headstart targeting Millennial-girls-drinking-coffee-on-duvets-eating-macaroons-while-binging-Pinterest.
Because I would be raking in big bucks right now if I was on that marketing team….Mostly because I know that market all too well. I am that market.
So what is wanderlust and why is it so cool right now?
Why does the mere sight of the word make you want to buy any and all things it is emblazoned upon?
Journals. Coffee Mugs. Journals. T-shirts. Journals. Jewelry. Prints…also, journals.
My hypothesis? There’s a new demographic in town. One made up of Millennial women who are NOT settling down with husbands, and dogs, and mortgages (like perhaps their parents at their age). Rather, they’re inspired to go out and see the world they
read about in books pinned about on Pinterest… lez-be-honess.
The timeline to adulthood is shifting
Duh, anthropologists won’t shut up about it. Deadlines for buying a home and finding a husband have become more a suggestion rather than a rule. Being a brave, independent, adventurous woman is so in-style these days (let’s hope it’s not just a trend, but a permanent development) which I think adds to the appeal of “wanderlust.”
Wanderlust represents so much more than a desire to travel. It’s also a daily reminder that being brave and adventurous, and maybe a little crazy, is great. And there is a huge amount of people celebrating it with you.
I hope this wanderlust thing is here to stay (sans the flat-lays I can’t get away from). I hope this infatuation with seeing the world is getting people out of stuffy classrooms, learning on a new level. But also, I hope that wanderlust doesn’t keep everyone living out of their suitcase forever. Rather, I hope it teaches a kind of balance–a balance between a life of travel and living a life with a global view back “home.”
With all the “sharing” that goes on these days, sometimes I feel like we’re not really sharing.
We’ve got our travels up on social media while we continue globe hopping…but we’re not using the knowledge and understanding we glean from new cultures to make our home a better place. We selfishly keep to our news-feeds and our self-timer pics, but don’t take the time to teach, inspire, and bring the magic of diversity to those that really need it. To understand travel in all its complexities, I think you need to also do a certain amount of staying put. It’s not as glamorous as those cliff-side selfies, but it’s the kind of sharing that needs to be done…before we become blinded behind a lens, traveling only in search of pin-worthy pictures.
I hope this obsession with wanderlust results in more travel, of course. But I also hope it doesn’t get us accustomed to running from discomfort. Sometimes working through that discomfort can teach and inspire us too, just like travel.
I hope young travelers use their adventures to make their surrounds just a little more accepting, a little more open-minded, a little more selfless…And maybe that starts with a little less time on Pinterest and Instagram.
What does wanderlust mean to you? Let me know in the comments!