Val is a junior at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania, studying Marketing and Management. Val is the recipient of the Jessica Burns scholarship and will be detailing her journey to Dublin.
One of my favorite traditions is creating New Year's resolutions! Making goals for yourself is such an exhilarating feeling. If traveling is something that you want more of for yourself then make your new year's resolutions achievable goals to get yourself abroad. I know that because of the goals I made in 2015 and the goals I have set for this year 2016 is going to be filled with travel and new experiences. A study from David Wolfe says that “People who spend money on experiences instead of things are much happier.” Which is even more of a reason to get yourself abroad and traveling.
Because of the goals I made in 2015... I figured out early that traveling is something I’m passionate about and I wanted more of it my life. I made goals in 2015 to travel more, to seek out any opportunity I could possibly find. In 2015 I was in a plane for the first time, I traveled to Minnesota for a conference. I really enjoyed it, Minneapolis is a great city if you ever have the chance to go! 2015 was the year I got my passport, I visited Canada for Spring Break [please note that Canada's Spring Break is still Winter.] Despite the chilly weather I still had such an incredible time site seeing through Montreal and Ottawa. I knew that I wanted more, I wanted to travel even further, and stay in places longer than just a few days. So I looked for opportunities to travel more places. My school takes a business trip to Europe every year so I started saving all my money for that trip. I also knew I wanted to study/ Intern abroad in some capacity so I found Global Experiences and started planning my journey to Intern abroad in Dublin. And those goals dated back to 2013 when I started college and realized it was possible to go abroad during my undergrad.
The purpose of sharing the goals I made is to share with you that if you want to go abroad you can make it happen. Channeling your time into making it happen, making small goals like spending time each day looking into your options to go abroad, looking into which city would be best for you, and saving $20 from each week to start on this adventure. Then making larger more long term goals like get into a program to study abroad by February or intern abroad in the Fall of 2016 in Australia.
Global Experiences also emphasizes the importance of making SMART goals; Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely goals. Making sure your goals fit this criteria will be an important part of ensuring you achieve them. Three additional tips that helped me achieve my goals..
1. Write your goals down
Write them somewhere you look at often for me like many- I’m on my phone a lot. I made my goal my wallpaper for awhile. But it’s okay if you don't want to change that cat picture, or the picture of you and your friends on your phone. You can put them on the front page of a planner or on your laptop. Somewhere that you know you’ll be reminded of them everyday.
2. Visualize yourself achieving those goals
Picturing my goals, like interning abroad actually happening really motivated me to make it a reality. Take some time to reflect yourself in the place of achieving the goals you have written down. Once you make this a habit you’re more likely to affect your decision making and make your dreams a reality.
3. Tell People
Share your goals, tell your friends and family. I found that talking about my travel goals was a great way to make sure I actually stuck to these goals. Talking about my dreams to see Ireland really made me accountable to make sure it happened.
I am excited to start 2016 knowing that I have so much traveling to look forward to. I encourage you to start thinking about your own goals. Make 2016 a year of travel experiencing new places and opportunities for yourself!