Let’s play a game. Imagine we’re not in a Pandemic and you’re able to travel anywhere you want. Doesn’t that freedom feel good? Now imagine you’re planning a trip: money is no object and you can go anywhere by any means of transportation you choose. Where would you be going and how would you get there? If you have a piece of paper and pen handy, write down what you would do.

Here’s what I’m up to: I’m boarding a plane with my husband, to take us to Hawaii, where we’ll spend a few days on the island of Kauai before boarding a cruise ship to sail to Australia, where we’ll spend a few weeks; then we’ll hop over to New Zealand before returning to Canada. Perhaps you’re heading to Europe, the Middle East, the Yukon or Newfoundland. Maybe your trip is across town, to hug your parents, your children or your grandchildren.

Thankfully, there are no limitations on our imagination because we sure need it now. Those of us who love to travel are feeling the deficit but it won’t be forever; in the meantime we can dream, travel virtually and comfort ourselves with memories of our past experiences. All the photos you saved from your trips are important reminders of your freedom so enjoy them; share them too, so others can dream along with you. I mean nobody’s going anywhere any time soon, so a fun zoom call might be to share photos with other people who were with you on a travel adventure or do a presentation of one of your trips for your friends.

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world” – Albert Einstein

Imagination is a powerful force in our lives. We use it all the time when we think about future events or when we remember past experiences. It’s all happening in our imagination. When the Wright brothers, Orville and Wilber invented, built and then flew the first motorized airplane, all of it happened in their imagination before it happened in real life. I know that as they were inventing the motorized plane, they were already flying it in their imagination. It doesn’t always turn out the way we imagine and that’s okay too but it’s important to have a dream or two and to plan for that dream because plans can be altered but without dreams we can feel downhearted.

It’s important for our mental wellness to keep expanding with our imagination, seeing things before they’re physically in front of us. This helps keep us curious and optimistic as well as giving us something to talk about with other people. I bet if you asked your family and friends where in the world they would like to go, the conversation would be thought-provoking and exhilarating; that’s what travel does for us, even when we can’t actually travel. Your beautiful brain doesn’t know the difference between virtual travel and real travel, so save yourself some time and save your money, so that when the time comes, you’ve got a plan.

There are many ways to connect with travel virtually right now, such as reading travel blogs, joining online travel communities, why not watch a movie or read a book set in a place you’ve wanted to visit or learn the language of a country you want to spend time in. Our lives are in a holding pattern right now but our imagination is free to take us wherever we dream of going, no passport required. Bon voyage!

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