It was almost a year ago when I decided one morning I was going to pack a bag and go to Europe. I was ready to set out, and experience the world; ready to inverse myself into different cultures. So, I did my research, found a program for college aged students, signed up without hesitation, and the next thing I knew, in nine months I was going to be jetting off to Europe. It was going to be an experience of a lifetime. I didn’t realize it then, but I was going to embark on a journey that was eye opening and memorable. A week later after my trip, I am now back in the states, and just overjoyed with the recollections I’ve made. As I sit here and reminisce, I can’t help but note reasons why everyone at some point of their life needs to travel abroad alone.
Here’s why you should experience solo traveling at least once in your lifetime.
1. You Will Learn To Live Life To The Fullest
No one can discover the world for you. You can read about places, cultures, and people all you want, but you’re simply just reading facts. Not experiencing it for what it truly is. Truly experiencing life requires taking the journey yourself, firsthand. No one can live your life for you. As well as, no else is to be blamed if you die unfulfilled.
2. You Will Make Life Long Friends
Going into this trip, I knew no one. It was me, myself, and I. But coming out of this adventure I have made some of the best friends. They are the funniest, warm-hearted, and laid back people in my life. The European adventure wouldn’t have been what it was, if I hadn’t met these wonderful people, I now call friends. I know these girls I will forever be friends with. It's a bonus that we only live an hour away too!
3. You'll Learn To Thrive Outside Your Comfort Zone
Most of our daily experiences are confined to a finite, predictable pattern. Patterns of people, places, and things. Traveling alone forces you to be pushed outside our normal comfort zone, and reveal a world is far more wonderful and unexpected than we realize. Being pushed out of your comfort zone isn’t just about embracing yourself in a new city. It’s the people, food, transportation. It’s everything around you.Life begins with edging out of your comfort zone.
4. You Will Find Freedom
We live in a culture that deems what is “normal” or “successful”. Most people live the life they think is expected of them.
Traveling alone reminds you that you have a say in the decisions being made. That the prison of expectations you may be trapped in is locked from the inside…and the key just so happens to be in your pocket. You’re given this amazing opportunity to live how you want. To live with no expectations for a week, a month, or however many days, weeks, months, you may be gone.
When you’re traveling, you’re open to change and you’ll welcome it with open arms.
5. You're Finally Given The Time To Leave Everything Else Behind
You’re given the opportunity to disconnect from the world. To disconnect from back home. Turn off your phone, “forget” to check social media for a few days… Don’t think about the problems that have been left at home. Leave the drama where it belongs, at home. Sometimes our brains need to get rid of old thoughts in order to take in new experiences around you. In order to create space for new ones, better ones. This is the time to disconnect yourself from everything and you might be amazed by how fresh you’ll feel once you get back home.