“Not all those who wander are lost”
What is Wanderlust?
The word wanderlust comes from the german language and it literally means “a strong desire to travel”. This romantic term is linked to aimless wandering, a wish to escape and even bipolar disorder; but is having wanderlust really that bad?
It’s true that the term wanderlust has been altered and abused with time. What once was a genuine desire has now become an indicator of people’s dissatisfaction towards their roots. We live in a world where reigns an unrestrained will to be anywhere but ‘here’. Not knowing how to be happy where we are, we are always waiting for the next great adventure to come along, forgetting that we are living one daily! “Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home”  wrote the poet Matsuo Basho.
Nowadays, most of us can afford travelling, so we use it as the perfect escape. However the baggage that we carry with us while away is more emotional than physical. Philosopher Ralph Emerson writes “Traveling is a fool’s paradise… My giant goes with me wherever I go” ; the problems of our daily life never leave us, no matter how far we go, and that’s okay.
Rilke wrote “The only journey is the one within” . When looking for a purpose, the best place to find it is within yourselves. Travelling won’t solve our personal issues and hiding behind a word won’t make the dissatisfaction for our lives go away.
However, let me clarify that I don’t have a problem with the concept of wanderlust, but with the distortion of it. If you feel good about yourself and you want to travel, do it!
Is having Wanderlust bad?
I strongly believe that having a true desire to travel is positive. It’s an expression of curiosity and exploring is both enriching and fulfilling. If it were for me, I would travel endlessly, but more than a strong desire to travel, I have a strong desire to learn. If I were to stay in the same place for the rest of my life I would miss out on so much knowledge that otherwise I couldn’t gather. Every journey I’ve ever been on has thought me something precious and important, that has shaped me into the person that I am today. Quoting J.R.R. Tolkien “Not all those who wander are lost”  and I couldn’t agree more.
 Matsuo Basho, Oku no Hosomichi
 Ralph Waldo Emerson
 Rainer Maria Rilke. Letters to a Young poet, 1903
 J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring, 1954