Have wanderlust, will travel

earth from spaceHave you got that urge to just get up and go and experience a new part of the country? Or even the world? How about that far end of the local mall that you’ve never been before? It’s not uncommon for one to seek out the unknown, leave your comfort zone, and see what’s out there.

For many the journey stops almost as quick as it begins, staying in a fancy hotel room, ordering room service, and watching TV. For others, it’s getting your hands dirty and feeling what it’s like to not just see the culture that surrounds you, but experience it.

Wanderlust (Middle High German: wandern, to wander, and Lust, desire) is a German loanword. It is commonly defined as a strong desire to travel, or, of having a strong desire to explore the world.

Think you’ve got it? Most immigrants do. There’s a “push and pull factor” that affects the human population.

Push and Pull factors are those factors which either forcefully push someone into migration or attract them. A push factor is a forceful factor, and a factor which relates to the country the person is migrating from. It is generally a problem which the results in people wanting to migrate. The idea of a push/pull factor is relatively simple. It is generally a good thing that attracts people to a certain place. Push and Pull factors are usually considered as north and south poles on a magnet. The idea is to have the attraction in the middle, i.e the place.

Push Factors

  • Not enough jobs
  • Few opportunities
  • Primitive Conditions
  • Political fear
  • Poor Medical Care
  • Not being able to practice religion
  • Loss of wealth
  • Natural Disasters

Pull Factors

  • Job Opportunities
  • Better Living Conditions
  • Political and/or religious freedom
  • Enjoyment
  • Education
  • Better Medical Care
  • Security
  • Family Links

Certain laws of social science have been proposed to describe human migration. The following was a standard list after Ravenstein‘s proposals during the time frame of 1834 to 1913. The laws are as follows:

  1. Most migrants travel short distances and with increasing distance the numbers of migrants decrease. This law is based upon the assumptions that the higher travel costs and a lack of knowledge of more distant places acts against large volumes of migration.
  2. Migration occurs in stages and with a wave-like motion. Based on his observations in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries that migration occurred in steps with people gradually moving up the settlement hierarchy – from rural areas to villages, to towns, to cities and finally the capital city.
  3. Migration increases in volume as industries and commerce develop and transport improves, and the major direction of movement is from agricultural areas to centres of industry and commerce.
  4. Most Migrants are adult. Families rarely migrate out of their country of birth.
  5. Women are more migratory than men within their country of birth but men more frequently venture beyond it.
  6. Urban dwellers are less likely to move than their rural counterparts.

Whatever it is that makes you travel, to see the world, and to shed you inhibitions, it’s a good trait to have. It opens you up to the world, to understand that where you’re from, what you’re used to, what has made you who you are, isn’t necessarily the norm. The world is a fantastically diverse place, and it’s time to discover it.

Jump on it, the water’s warm.

About Stefan
Stefan is the regular writer for Megan & Stefan, and hails originally from San Diego, California. A resident of Australia since 2007, he write about his experiences living abroad, his love of photography, and documenting the process of building a house here in this sunburnt country he calls home. Feel free to drop him a line - he's always up for a chat.

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