I’ve Gotta Get Outta Here! Will it Hurt Your Career to Go Traveling for a While?

Perhaps you dream of renting a tiny cheap apartment in the Marais district of Paris and spending your days strolling along the Seine, sippingParis France Eiffel Tower coffee in quaint cafes, and reading poetry in the Jardin de Luxembourg?

Or maybe you have always wanted to go hiking in Peru, and watch the sunrise over the holy ancient ruins of Macchu Picu?

Do you fancy the idea of living for a season in a small beachside town on Australia’s Gold Coast, learning to surf and staying up to watch the stars? Or perhaps you want to trace the genealogy of your ancestors back to a tiny village in England?

However, whenever you think of taking a month or two or several to pursue one of these experiences, you ultimately freeze up with dread at the thought of quitting your job and having to find another one when you return.

Ultimately, many people will give up their dreams of traveling the earth and discovering its many wonders because they are afraid that taking six months or a year off from work will permanently damage their career prospects.

They fear that if they wander off the career path for too long, their goals will not be achievable when they return. They are terrified that the empty gap of unemployment or unrelated work abroad will stain their resume and banish them from future jobs forever.

The answer is: It won’t.

If you are good at what you do and have a good work ethic, you will always be able to find work in the career field you choose once you return from your worldly adventures. In fact, traveling will actually be an asset to your resume for many reasons!

Why Travelling Looks Great on a Resume

  • Going abroad requires planning, organization, and confidence, and the fact that you have been on an adventure of your own overseas will demonstrate this to a potential employer.
  • Doing something interesting with your travels, such as volunteering, working abroad, or visiting somewhere out of the ordinary, will make you stand out from the other applicants and provide an interesting conversation starter in an interview.
  • Experience interacting with other cultures can be a huge advantage in many jobs, especially when you are dealing with the public.
  • If you go on a working holiday or international internship, you can demonstrate that you have experience working in your field in another country, demonstrating adaptability.

The truth is that if traveling is your true dream and passion, it is absolutely worth it to go for it! You don’t need to worry about your career, because you can always pick up where you left off when you return, with a whole new set of skills and experiences from your travels to draw on that will make you better at what you do. Don’t let your job get in the way of following your dreams!

What about you?  Have you ever taken an extended trip?  How did it impact your career and your life?