I can still remember well the self-discoveries I had and still have from my solo trips. And every time I travel solo these 10 things remain true to themselves.

I encourage everyone to solo travel if not many times, at least once in this lifetime.  And you’ll ask me why? Because…

1. You will unlock a part of yourself that you never knew existed

Solo traveling is like spending quality time with your friends and the people you love, except you are spending quality time with yourself. You discover a lot of things that you never imagined before. You realised that you are actually braver than how you thought you are, you discover that being alone is not that miserable at all. Traveling solo is pushing yourself to go outside your comfort zone and that being outside that zone is not going to kill you, contrary, it will teach you how to live more meaningful. I always believe that when you realised something while you are out of your comfort zone are the strongest realisations and has the biggest impact on you, not to mention you never forget them.

2. You’ll be wiser in making decisions and you’ll figure out what really matters to you.

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Nha Trang, Vietnam 2012

 

Solo traveling gives you time to think more deeply, you’re suddenly able to make your messy-priority-list into a very clean bullet points. And you realise that you can summarise the things that matter to you with your 10 fingers, and because of this, the next time you make decisions you always consider if the decision you are about to make is heading towards those tidy bullet points you have realised while you were spending travel time with yourself.

3. You can make/have a lifelong friendship with a single act.

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Chinese friends I met in Jiuzhaigou, China – 2013

That hostel owner that made some magic to accommodate you on your walk-in check-in in the middle of the night (because you took that late timing to get cheaper flights), that traveler who offered to change your money to the local currency because you still haven’t had your’s change, that other backpacker that shared his travel tip that ended up saving you lots of time, money and planning (they are heaven sent). These kinds of people you are most likely to meet, a single act that you or the other party will always be grateful for, grateful enough to exchange contact details and hope to see each other again when you visit each other’s home country.

4. You become more resourceful.

When you know that your family and friends are not one stone-throw away from you anymore and that it’s just “me, myself and I” kind of situation, it is as if your brain goes to “guess I have to make it on my own this time” mode and you will be amazed on how the every so dependent you suddenly becomes “all-knowing you” or should I say ‘I have no choice but to know what to do you”. Be thankful, you will it’s a skill you will never regret developing.

Singapore 2011 (1st time before moving in at 2012)
Singapore 2011 (1st time before moving in at 2012)

5. You become more accepting to the facts that sometimes things never go the way you plan them.

Vietnam Airport - 2012
Vietnam Airport – 2012

That delayed flight that made you missed your other flight, that food poison you had that made you stay in bed for 2 days instead of exploring the city, that sunset you’ve been dying for ages to take a good photograph but didn’t because it rained the day when you planned to do so. You never planned for this things, but they happened! But so what?! Life is too short to get stuck being disappointed in things that never worked out the way you envisioned them. This learning  I had when I was solo traveling played a very important role in my life, I became more accepting and positive. Why positive? Well hey, Plan A didn’t work that means I still have plan B-Z.

6. You will hate being completely alone but you will love it too

Great Wall of China - 2013
Great Wall of China – 2013

The freedom of being alone doing the things you want to do without the fear that you’ll be judged, breaking free from the routine and just letting the day pass on your on pace, doing things that you actually want to do rather than what you’re supposed to do. Yes, this is one of the joys that solo traveling can bring. However, be prepared to miss the people in your life, even that neighbour you  really don’t like because of his dog’s barking in the morning that wakes you up earlier than you wanted to.

7. You’ll have more time to people-watch and witness humanity in it’s bad and good form.

Since you are not rushing on that project deadline and not answering relentless em-mail from your boss, the situation will force you to spend sometime watching your surrounding and be amazed of the human kindness and be sad of human deceit as well (my least favourite )

8. You can be whoever you want to be.

Always wanted to use that pick-up line that you invented in your head over a girl but scared that it won’t work and that your friends will laugh at you? Well, solo traveling (for the guys at least) is a good chance to find out if indeed you have invented an effective one. No friends who will laugh at you if it won’t work, the secret is self with yourself and of course with that girl whom you tried to use the pick-up line with. 😉

 

9) You stop looking for your place in this world, instead, you decide to make it.

Jiuzhaigou, China - 2013
Jiuzhaigou, China – 2013

Alone with your thoughts, you managed to determine the things that you are strong and weak at, the things that make you more confident and less insecure, then you plan and decide, that once should not look for his place on earth, it was never to be found but it is to be created.

Lastly, you are now sure, you can do it!

Kampot, Cambodia - 2014
Kampot, Cambodia – 2014

Perhaps not until you’re back to your home country or waiting for that return flight to take off that it will hit you, that you managed to solo travel, your first one, without your family and friends. It could either make you decide you will never do it again or that you will yearn for more.

But I bet, if you’ve reach this part of this entry, I can only think of 3 things; 1)  you are still thinking to solo travel 2) you’re nodding your head agreeing to this post or 3) You find this crap and you just wasted 15 minutes of your time.

 

“I am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.”

Mary Anne Radmacher

xxx

– meandmychucks – 

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