10 Ways You'll Grow By Traveling Solo
If you’ve ever been tempted by the thought of traveling alone, it’s time to give the idea a little more consideration. Planning a solo trip can be slightly terrifying, but if you’re willing to push yourself and get out of your comfort zone, you may be amazed to see how much you get out of the experience.
There are tons of benefits that come with traveling solo. I know because I did it back in 2015 when I was on the verge of a mental breakdown. It totally helped me regain my sanity, know what it was like to be blissfully happy, and start on the journey to getting my life back!
Here are a handful of my favorite reasons to stop hesitating and plan your next solo trip ASAP:
You’ll build your confidence.
Traveling to a new and unfamiliar place can be scary. It can be tough to find your way around when you don’t know anything or anyone, but if you’re able to master your new environment and figure it out for yourself, you’ll feel ready to conquer absolutely anything that comes your way.
You’ll conquer your bucket list.
Chances are, you’ve got a few travel-related items on your personal bucket list. Don’t let others hold you back in chasing your dreams. If you’ve always wanted to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef but can’t find a friend or family member willing to take the plunge with you, book the trip alone and make it happen.
You’ll increase your self-awareness.
When you vacation with loved ones, your focus often stays on them - the people you’re traveling with. You’re so busy making sure everyone has a great time, you don’t have any time to spend on yourself, and sometimes, you fail to truly enjoy your adventures. Traveling solo removes the distractions that others create. Instead of focusing on the people you’re with, you’ll focus on the place you’re in and the things happening around you. In doing so, you’ll gain a new perspective as you realize how you fit into this vast, strange, beautiful world.
You’ll gain a greater appreciation for other cultures.
Traveling with friends and family can be a great way to keep yourself trapped in your own bubble. You can peer out and see other cultures and places, but you don’t actually have to step too far out of your comfort zone to enjoy your time away from home. Traveling with others gives you comfort, an inherent support system, a degree of separation between yourself and your environment.
If you travel alone, you don’t have that layer of separation between you and your new surroundings. It’s just you and wherever you are. If you want to interact or engage, there’s nothing from home to fall back on - you’re forced to get out there and immerse yourself. Because of this, solo travel can be a beautiful way to really learn to appreciate another culture.
You’ll get to know yourself a little better.
This may sound a little dramatic, but it’s true. Traveling alone means you won’t have anyone else to lean on if times get tough or you find yourself in a stressful situation. You may be forced to make decisions or do things you didn’t think you were capable of, and in the process, you’ll learn something about yourself you hadn’t known before.
You’ll become a better problem-solver.
Whether you travel alone or with friends, you’re always faced with the potential for something to go wrong when you travel. Your flight could get cancelled. You might find bed bugs in your hotel room. Your week at the beach could perfectly overlap with a week of endless rain showers.
When you’re traveling solo, it’s up to you to find solutions to your problems when things don’t go as planned. You can’t just rely on others to take the wheel and solve things for you. It can be a little scary, but you’ll quickly learn you’re capable of finding an answer to any problem that comes your way.
You’ll have time to relax.
Traveling with others can be an amazing shared experience, but it can also be absolutely exhausting. If you’re in serious need of some down time to chill out, a solo vacation may be exactly what you need. Without having to worry about what everyone else wants to do, you’ll be in a position to do whatever your heart desires - and nothing else. If you can’t remember the last time you had a chance to sit back and close your eyes without any distractions, a solo vacation may be just what you need to combat burnout and restore your soul. Book a stay for one at an all-inclusive resort and spend a few days recharging.
You’ll grow stronger.
Things don’t always go as planned when you’re travelling. At times, it can get downright tough. As a solo traveler, you might face homesickness, nostalgia, imposter syndrome, self-doubt, and a whole host of other negative emotions that drag you down and wear you out. In some cases, these negative feelings can grow so strong it can be tempting to cut your trip short and head back to the safety and comfort of home. By facing these challenges alone, however, you’ll emerge from your trip that much stronger. You’ll know you’re capable of facing anything that comes your way, and you’ll be that much stronger - emotionally, spiritually, and in some cases, physically - for it.
You’ll learn to love yourself.
When’s the last time you really had to spend time with yourself? We’re usually surrounded by distractions - our kids, the television, or our problems at work - that keep us from really being alone with our thoughts and ourselves.
When you’re left alone with yourself and your thoughts, you might be surprise to see what comes out. Traveling solo for longer than a weekend can be a good way to dig deep and see who you really are. You’ll be able to recognize your strengths and capabilities, and you’ll have a greater appreciation for them than you did before.
You’ll take more risks.
When you travel with others, it can be easy to defer to their decision and go with the flow. Traveling alone, however, gives you a new level of freedom not possible when you’re with a group. Knowing your decisions won’t have any impact on others, you’ll be more open to taking risks and pushing your limits. When nobody else is around to see you fail, you might be surprised to see how far you’re willing to stretch your wings.
Have you traveled solo? How has it changed your life? Comment below!