Parenthood is one of the most difficult jobs in the world, with no days off. Let’s be honest, everything changes. Those who love to travel and immerse themselves in new cultures may not know how to navigate it with children, especially when they are young. There are others who are unable to travel, but desire to expose their children to the world. Lakshmi Natarajan has proven all this to be possible by creating Travel Plus Them.
Most people dream of having an opportunity to travel, to see famous sights, meet new people, even to be inspired by the culture they are in, especially those who are in their 20s. Some may see parenthood as the end of this dream, but Lakshmi begs to differ. Born in India, she moved to the US as a young girl and grew up in New Jersey. She is currently living in Miami with Kailash, her wonderful husband, and their two lovely children, Shyla, their five-year-old daughter, and Shriya, their four-year-old daughter, with family across the US and India.
As an Indian-American immigrant, Lakshmi’s desire to learn about others stemmed from a young age being “the different one” in her surroundings, while striving to share her Indian culture as well. Based on her involvement in the community, her annual trips to India, and her global travel, she learned to appreciate the differences the world had to offer which reinforced the passion to teach her girls the value of diversity, inclusivity, and appreciation for others. So instead of letting go of her desire to experience the world, she realigned them to fit for her whole family. This approach has proven beneficial, as they have traveled to 30 countries across six continents in the last few years.
The nature of Lakshmi’s extensive career highly influenced her perspective on cultural immersions. Lakshmi recently transitioned from a corporate executive to an entrepreneur. For two decades, she worked for global corporations in various leadership positions across marketing, sales, strategy, management, coaching, and consulting, including international roles in Europe and Australia. Lakshmi also wanted to impart deeper understanding and valuable lessons she acquired when traveling to over 60 countries, through professional and personal opportunities, which she feels positively impacted her mindset about the world, its history, and the people within. Travel Plus Them is one of the two businesses she launched as her life’s mission. The other one is Excelador, a business consulting firm, which she established aligned to her innate strengths for collaborating with clients to lead high performing teams and in turn, optimizing growth.
Travel Plus Them is the product of Lakshmi’s realizations about how she wants her life as a mother to be, and to inspire other parents on their journey. Shaping the minds of children is one of the major opportunities in parenthood. There is no manual on how to do it. Lakshmi created Travel Plus Them to guide families who want to raise their kids as global citizens packed with appreciation and an open mind to diversity from different world corners. The company optimizes the digital world to create a space for progressive parents who want to expose their children to the values of inclusivity at a young age. Through guides, videos, workbooks, and other resources, Lakshmi educates parents on how to expose children to diversity and culture from home. Based on her extensive global family travel experiences, she also shares best practices and provides coaching on how families can travel safely during the pandemic. As Lakshmi said, “We are living in a time where our future generation needs to learn about the world and all its people. Global knowledge builds self-confidence and reinforces respect and appreciation for others. Those experiences and education start at home.”It is never too late to start working on travel goals, even during parenthood. And it’s never too early to start exploring different ways to introduce the world to your children now. Learn more with Travel Plus Them by visiting their official website.