Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Hi! My name is Benny Lewis, and I've been travelling the world for ten years,

  • wandering from place to place every few months,

  • without a fixed home anywhere.

  • Everything I own in the world weighs 23 kilograms, or 50 pounds.

  • In this time I've tried to speak the local language of each country that I go to,

  • and have made many friends from vastly different cultures.

  • In doing so, I've learned many life lessons,

  • a few of which I'd like to share with you today.

  • I hope you'll enjoy it!

  • Happiness has no price tag

  • One of the first things people say when they hear that I've been travelling for so long

  • is that I must be rich.

  • Well, not quite!

  • ! haven't inherited any fortune and in fact,

  • I've earned less than $1000 a month at many stages in my travels

  • but have had very rich experiences despite this.

  • I've found that some lateral thinking can get you a lot for very little money!

  • You can Couchsurf for free instead of paying for accommodation,

  • you can hitchhike very safely in many countries,

  • or fly across the planet for just a couple of hundred dollars if you're flexible,

  • or free if you know how to "hack" the system by earning miles

  • you can even cook at home much cheaper instead of eating out all the time,

  • and it will be a lot better if you give up expensive habits that don't enrich your life

  • and stop buying crap you don't need.

  • The best experiences do not have any price tag.

  • Money is necessary to have a basic standard of living,

  • but many of us, especially in the west,

  • already have more than enough of it to be able to have many incredible experiences,

  • if only we'd realize it.

  • At the end of the day, time with good friends is free;

  • but can make you feel like the richest person alive.

  • Be an imperfectionist

  • Perfectionism is usually thought of as a good quality.

  • but I've found, though, that when -

  • whatever you're passionate about can't be appreciated until it's 100% perfect

  • you'll never appreciate it.

  • Generally, outside of mathematics, perfection is impossible.

  • There's always something missing, some improvement left, or someone who does it better.

  • Accepting that I'm not going to be "the best" is the most freeing thought I've ever had.

  • In fact, I go out of my way to make at least 200 mistakes a day

  • Making no mistakes is playing it safe, but great things were never achieved by playing it safe.

  • Every single failure is a stepping stone to a success

  • and a chance to learn something important.

  • The magic happens outside of your comfort zone

  • I once saw this image online and it's so true.

  • Our comfort zones are tiny,

  • but it's not where we learn or grow as people,

  • and have those incredible adventures that we can look back on proudly for the rest of our lives.

  • In trying to learn multiple languages,

  • meeting fascinating people,

  • travelling by myself, speaking on stage,

  • and many other things that I've done and seen others do,

  • I've found that rather than being naturally good at tthese things,

  • each one of us can push our boundaries to learn how to be good at them.

  • Your true limitations can often be how willing you are to leave your comfort zone.

  • where the chance of failure or embarrassment is much higher..

  • So you fail, you get embarrassed a bit - what's the big deal?

  • Dust yourself off, try again,

  • and this time you'll do a lot better.

  • until you soon realize that you have achieved something great!

  • The world owes you nothing

  • Too many of us feel this incredible sense of entitlement,

  • like the world owes us something.

  • I mean, you're a good person, right?

  • You deserve to meet the man or woman of your dreams,

  • get that book deal or have great success.

  • Well... not exactly.

  • The world doesn't owe you any of that.

  • Personally, I don't believe in karma, or some invisible force

  • that will give me what I want because I'm generally a nice guy.

  • I need to work for it beyond wishful thinking.

  • You have to do something tangible to get real results in this world.

  • From a certain perspective, the world is certainly an unfair place,

  • but rather than be an eternal pessimist about it,

  • why not find out why things are the way they are,

  • so that maybe you can follow t these rules, adapt to them

  • and even bend them at times.

  • Get busy living

  • We only have one life, but many of us squander it

  • We waste time watching TV shows, or -

  • doing passive things that don't enrich our lives

  • or we kill time alone.

  • The time is going to pass anyway, why kill it?

  • Get busy living, and do so with your own life .

  • Not vicariously through others,

  • Spend time with others,

  • and you can effectively live something as good as many lifetimes in one.

  • Every single person is fascinating and can teach you something

  • The reason I travel so much

  • is because I like to meet so many interesting and varied people.

  • Across the planet, we share so many things in common

  • from your guide in the Sahara desert,

  • to those taking a train in the middle of China,

  • to the deaf community in America,

  • to dancers in South America.

  • We can relate to all these people because at their core,

  • they share a lot of the same values and hopes and dreams you do.

  • Despite this though, when you have the chance to really get to know someone,

  • you'll see that our vastly different experiences can help us learn from one another.

  • Each person can give you something to aspire to, to emulate,

  • or something that they do that you can learn from

  • Even the bad people can show us parts of ourselves that we don't like

  • and make sure it don't take over.

  • It's OK to say "I was wrong"

  • These three words are so hard to utter,

  • but they can help you make peace with people.

  • Even make it four, "maybe I was wrong."

  • Give other points of view a chance. Let people have their say!

  • Really listen to these alternative points of view,

  • especially those that are vastly different to yours.

  • Even if they don't change your mind,

  • maybe they will help you appreciate their point of view more.

  • The present is what really matters

  • Don't defer your happiness so much.

  • Too many people look at life as if it was all about getting to the destination,

  • rather than about the journey.

  • Finishing school, getting that job, buying that thing you want....

  • The problem is when you finally do, you won't even appreciate it,

  • because you'll feel a huge anticlimax just after it happens,

  • and you'll just set your sights on the next distant target.

  • How about appreciating the current moment?

  • Spending time with those around you,

  • not taking the wonderful advantages you have in life right now for granted,

  • stopping what you are doing to just go for a walk and breathe and appreciate nature,

  • or spending time with people important to you.

  • Don't be in such a hurry. Life is happening NOW.

  • Be generous and kind to others

  • Give, without expecting something in return.

  • And compliment people regularly.

  • Show genuine gratitude.

  • Look a friend or loved one in the eye

  • and tell them they are important to you or that you love them.

  • Ultimately the true legacy that we can leave behind

  • is the interactions with the people who cross our paths.

  • The difference we can really make in this world is not some thing that we build or work on,

  • but the relationships that we help flourish.

  • It feels good to pay it forward..

  • You may just make someone's day, and get kindness back precisely when you need it.

  • We're all making it up as we go

  • This may negate a lot of what I've just said, but I have no idea what I'm talking about.

  • I'm just some guy with a YouTube channel

  • sharing some things that I think -

  • are the most important lessons I've learned while traveling.

  • But I'm just making this up as I go.

  • In fact, I've found that many people who run huge businesses,

  • or politicians, or famous actors,

  • or the most successful and popular people I've met...

  • they're just going with the flow.

  • You can call them an expert or look up to them,

  • or think they have the key to some secret,

  • or are blessed by some unknown force,

  • but they're just a normal person who's had a bit of luck to find an interesting path in life.

  • With slightly different circumstances

  • that amazing person you think is so great, could've been looking up to you.

  • Don't worry if you're not the cool kid right now.

  • If you really talked to that person that you aspire to be,

  • you'd find they have the same hang-ups and worries in life as you do,

  • and that they also aspire after others.

  • Just try to be the best you that you can be,

  • amd remember that the rest of us are, like you,

  • attempting to find their way

  • on this pale blue dot spinning through a vast universe,

  • in our own tiny fraction of history.

  • We can only try our best to make it counts.

  • Thanks a lot for watching this video,

  • and I'd appreciate it if you shared it with your friends if you liked it.

  • Also, two years ago I wrote an article with 29 entire life lessons,

  • that you might like to check out,

  • as it's been read by almost two million people since I wrote it.

  • And one thing that's really helped me discover me this vast and wonderful world

  • is