10 Oct Traveling Alone. A reminder of who we really are.
I hadn’t traveled alone until I was thirty seven years old. What?! Yes, it’s true. I guess I was always either in a long relationship, or single, traveling with groups of friends, or with family. I just never thought about it. And no one ever told me it would be good for me.
So here I am, to tell you, that traveling alone has become one of the most precious, transformative things in my life. Specially when one is searching for clarity, self discovery and energy, to go through some transition phases in their life.
When we travel alone, it’s all about what “I” want to do, where I want to go, how long I want to stay, who “I” want to talk to and so forth. It seems basic, right? But for someone who never does it, it’s important to ask those questions and remind yourself of what your answers are, when it’s just you. Knowing who you are, makes you stronger.
Traveling around Thailand, for example, renting a scooter for 5 dollars a day and just riding anywhere I wanted in those beautiful islands, all by myself, feeling safe. The wind on my face, chosing which beach I wanted to explore, where I wanted to stop and work for a few hours, which food I wanted to eat, without having to negociate with anyone else was so important and liberating for me.
But be careful. As everything else in life that makes us feel good, it can be addictive. And sharing decisions with others is as important and precious. Once you get used to being alone and free, it can take more energy and patience to travel or be with others. Even if it’s “others” you love. So make sure you find some balance and appreciation for both things, cause traveling and sharing time with those you love and admire can be as important, to get to know yourself. The “others” can be our strongest “mirror”.
Now, after almost five years traveling alone around the world, I feel like I’ve never known myself as much as I do. And I’ve never felt so cured and ready to interact with others, because I am more conscious of the minimum I need to be me.
I’m about to start my own family and be a single mom, so all this individual freedom will be a good memory, for a while. Some close friends tell me they are worried about me, because I will suffer a lot going from one extreme to the other. But it feels great to know I enjoyed the most of it, while I could. And when I can travel again, with my child or friends or family, I will still try to find that balance to respect each other’s time out.
The power and magic of some time alone should always be included in our future plans. So we can be frequently reminded of who we really are.
If you haven’t traveled alone yet, please, do yourself and the ones around you a favor, just go! Even if all you can take is a weekend.
And let me know how it felt?