1. You become a better listener.
One of the first things you discover during travel is that everyone has a story to tell. Your seatmate on the bus in Santiago was a Mormon missionary from Kansas who loved Chile so much he decided to stay past his two-year term. The woman who asks you for directions in Florence teaches neuropsychology in Finland, but decided to take a six-month sabbatical in Italy. Your Airbnb hosts in Montpellier are botanists who spent 11 years in Mali studying the indigenous plants.
When you are constantly surrounded by a wide variety of fascinating people, you learn how to become a better listener. You ask more insightful questions. You express genuine interest in what others have to say. You absorb and remember what they tell you. You receive more joy from listening to someone else’s description of the world than you do from sharing your own.