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At UGO we combine life changing volunteer experiences with life coaching for people who want to find clarity, more meaning, or a sense of purpose. This is anything but a traditional volunteer abroad trip. With pre trip, on trip and post trip programming, we zero in on what makes you tick or what is getting in your way, so you can get more from your life, all while connecting with and helping others.
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UGO Impact / UGO blog  / What is Transformational Travel?

What is Transformational Travel?

Have you ever gone on a trip that changed your life? Perhaps it pushed you out of your comfort zone and you grew, or something happened to profoundly shift your perspective or values.

Travel has an incredible innate power to transform us and transformational travel is intentionally harnessing that power for personal growth, expansion, and change. 

A decade ago I left my familiar life to head to Uganda.

I left behind routine and certainty.

I left behind the expectations of others.

I left behind North American perspectives.

I left behind norms and values that had pervaded my life.

I left behind a world obsessed with financial success and consumerism. 

I entered a world where I felt the freedom and space to explore and just be.

I put an ocean between me and my old life and got to see it as if through a camera where I finally zoomed it into focus.

I immersed myself in a novel environment with new sounds, sights and smells.

I embraced a new culture with a different approach to life and relationships.

I dove into new perspectives, ideas, values, and approaches. 

I spent time being of service and really engaging and learning from the local community.

Being so removed from my usual life I was able to allow myself to just be me and do what my heart called for me to – with much less constraints or concerns than ever before.

Being away brought out my creativity and curiosity.

It led me on adventures that pushed me out of my comfort zone.

It challenged and stretched me.

It opened my eyes and my heart.

A decade ago was the start of a journey to a new me (though I didn’t realize it at the time). Jill 2.0 (the current me) is a deeply happy, much more confident Jill who has an incredible community of nourishing relationships, a business that fuels me, and a vision for the future that sets my heart on fire.  

I am so far from the insecure, unhappy, unfulfilled Jill I was before and my time in Uganda helped transform my life (and the life coaching that followed).

It has been hard this past year and a bit in terms of travel but I am so excited for when the world fully opens up again and we can all head abroad. 

If you are feeling stuck or uncertain about your life, or feel a need for some serious reflection and rejuvenation, I cannot recommend leveraging the naturally transformative power of travel, to help you gain some clarity and courage.  Especially volunteering abroad in a new culture and unknown place or adventuring in a way that totally pushes you out of your comfort zone.

When you can, travel with intention, process your experiences, reflect upon who you are and your life.

Whether it’s a week, a month or a year abroad, travel can and will change your life.

Jill Valentine
Co-Founder & Impact Coach - UGO Impact and UGO Impactmakers

[email protected]

Jill harnesses the innate power of travel and service to create, inspire and connect impactmakers around the globe. She's the creator of the ‘UGO Triple Change Effect’. An Educational and Emotional Framework that provides clarity, courage and community to individuals and organizations who want to create global impact. Jill connects people and resources from the power centers of the world to communities in need.

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