Being worldly and sophisticated is something many people want to become. But did you know some relatively common life experiences have already made you more worldly than you realize?
In this article, find out about the 14 life experiences that broaden your worldview and make you more worldly without you even knowing.
1) Attending formal events
Attending formal or high-society events is one of the life experiences that make you more worldly than you realize.
You rub shoulders with local, national, and even international business leaders, politicians, and celebrities.
If you’re into these sorts of events, there’s no better place to network and form bonds in many different types of industries.
Attending international conferences or seminars is one step above. These events attract a diverse audience and offer a great chance to interact with people from different backgrounds and understand their perspectives.
2) Fine dining experiences
Exploring fine dining experiences is like going on a fascinating adventure that goes beyond simply eating delicious food.
By participating, you expand your knowledge and understanding of the world in unexpected ways.
You see, fine dining isn’t just about the taste; it’s about the art of cooking, cultural traditions, and social customs.
When you enter this world, you must appreciate different cuisines and understand how to behave at fancy restaurants.
But above all, you need to be open to trying new and exciting dishes.
3) Trekking or backpacking in remote areas
The complete opposite of the two life experiences above is trekking or backpacking in remote areas.
If you never tried this, you’re definitely missing out.
It’s hands down the best way to encounter different ecosystems, indigenous communities, and alternative ways of living.
You’ll appreciate nature’s diversity even more and admire the interdependence between humans and environments.
4) Participating in humanitarian or peacekeeping missions
No experience promotes a sense of global citizenship like participating in humanitarian or peacekeeping missions abroad.
Engaging in this kind of work exposes you to the harsh realities of human suffering and resilience. Especially if you’re on a mission in conflict zones or regions affected by natural disasters.
You not only experience firsthand how some people have wildly different lives than ours, but you also get a perspective on global challenges like wars and climate change.
If you’ve ever done this, I salute you. You’re also more worldly than you realize!
5) Working in different fields
If you worked in vastly different professional fields in your lifetime, you also have a more well-rounded perspective that we associate with being worldly.
Working in different fields not only diversifies your skillset but also shapes your understanding of the world. You get to see how various elements of society interplay and influence each other.
For instance, if you worked as a sales assistant, you learned how to communicate with customers and colleagues. You also dealt with many issues that boosted your problem-solving skills. Not to mention patience and empathy.
Switching to a corporate environment in, say, finance or tech introduced another set of values and expectations. These fields place a higher emphasis on analytical skills, strategic thinking, and professionalism.
On the other hand, a stint in the non-profit sector emphasized social impact, empathy, and grassroots action. Here, success isn’t primarily measured in profit but in the positive change enacted in communities.
6) Learning history and current affairs
One of the things that makes you the most worldly has to be learning about history and staying informed about current (international) affairs.
And I don’t mean celebrity affairs here. I’m talking about political and global issues, of course. Staying updated with current affairs is like watching history unfold in real time.
On the other side, when you delve into history, you explore the events, cultures, ideas, and people that shaped the world we live in today.
History has many valuable lessons about human nature, societal progress, conflicts, innovations, and revolutions.
You learn about patterns, cycles, and trends that have emerged over time. You also get insights into why certain societies developed the way they did.
Understanding both history and current affairs allows you to see the bigger picture.
7) Participating in extreme sports or adventure activities
Okay, let’s switch gears again. You might not realize that participating in extreme sports is another thing that makes you worldly.
Pushing your limits through activities like skydiving, rock climbing, mountain biking, or deep-sea diving offers a unique perspective on personal growth, risk-taking, and conquering fears.
Beyond these physical and mental challenges, extreme sports and adventure activities offer glimpses into different cultures and communities.
You see, many of these activities take place in remote or untouched regions. There, you interact with local inhabitants or even indigenous communities.
You witness alternative ways of life, learn about traditional knowledge, and gain a deep connection between people and their environments.
8) Wine or whiskey tasting classes
Knowledge about fine wines and spirits, and the ability to appreciate them, is considered a sign of sophistication.
By attending tasting classes, you get an appreciation for the rich heritage, craftsmanship, and cultural significance of these drinks. You learn about nuances of aromas, flavors, and the art of pairing.
But not only that. When I visited whiskey museums and wineries, I learned about the processes involved in winemaking or whiskey production. I also discovered everything about the cultivation of grapes and the aging techniques that lend distinct characteristics to each bottle.
By learning about different wine-producing regions like Bordeaux, Tuscany, or Napa Valley or exploring the distinct styles of Irish, Japanese, and Scotch whisky and American Bourbon, you gain a deeper understanding of the cultural heritage and geographic influences that shape these beverages.
9) Reading widely
Reading a wide variety of books is yet another thing that makes you low-key worldly. It also improves your vocabulary and comprehension skills and helps you think critically.
Of course, you can read more than just books.
Online articles and publications, and newspapers also expose us to the experiences, perspectives, and realities of people across the globe, significantly broadening our understanding of the world.
So does this next thing.
10) Learning to cook different cuisines
If you thought cooking was just about preparing food, you were wrong. It’s also a way to understand a culture. Every cuisine tells a story of its people, history, and tradition.
Of course, you have to make an effort to learn about ingredients and where they come from, about the different flavors, and about cooking techniques and traditions.
By learning to cook different cuisines, you learn about the cultural practices, preferences, and lifestyles of the people from that culture.
For example, I love Japanese cuisine, and we enjoy making sushi from scratch at home. It just emphasizes simplicity and natural flavors, which is reflective of their cultural values of minimalism and harmony with nature.
Something I’m trying to adhere to as much as I can.
11) Attending alternative or unconventional schools
If you were enrolled in alternative educational institutions, such as Montessori schools, Waldorf schools, or democratic schools, you’re one of the very few people that ever lived that did so.
Even this fact alone makes you incredibly worldly. These schools take a different approach to learning and personal development. They emphasize experiential learning, individuality, and holistic education, offering a distinct worldview and educational philosophy.
For instance, Waldorf schools. They’re known for Waldorf education, which was inspired by the philosophy of Rudolf Steiner.
It focuses on nurturing the whole child – intellectually, socially, emotionally, and artistically. It also integrates artistic activities, such as music, drama, and movement, into academic learning.
12) Sailing or crewing
Is there anything more classy than sailing? But you don’t have to sail to be worldly. You can also be part of a sailing crew.
This exposes you to the vastness of the ocean and the challenges of life at sea. It promotes a deep appreciation for the power of nature and the resilience required for extended periods of isolation and self-sufficiency.
13) Participating in an archaeological dig
Perhaps the most opposite thing to sailing is digging for fossils, isn’t it? However, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t make you more worldly than you realize.
Joining an archaeological excavation lets you uncover ancient civilizations, artifacts, and historical sites.
It’s a hands-on experience uncovering the past, understanding different cultures, and gaining wisdom in human history and development.
14) Living in a big city and in a rural area
And lastly, if you lived in both rural areas and big cities, you’re also more cosmopolitan than you know.
It’s a unique lens through which you view life, and the contrasting experiences offer insights into the scope of human experience.
When you live in a bustling city, you become part of a dynamic, fast-paced lifestyle that’s full of diversity.
On the other hand, living in a rural area is characterized by close-knit communities, slower-paced lifestyles, and a close connection with nature.
Tell me, how many of these life experiences have you, well, experienced? Do you think you’re more worldly now that I opened your eyes to these facts?