Solo travelling is something I have written about a lot in my blog. I wouldn’t say it’s for everyone, but I believe the only way to know whether you will enjoy it or not is to try it out for yourself.
When I set out to travel solo for the first time to Rishikesh, I had no clue that I would enjoy it so much and that it would go on to have a life-changing impact on me.
In this article, I’ll be talking about a few ways in which long-term solo travel will have a positive impact on you.
Note: (Long-term travel can have different definitions for different people. However, in this post, I refer to long-term travel as travelling for longer than a month)
You learn to trust in the goodness of people
If you follow the news, it’s almost natural to develop a negative world-view and a fear of strangers. The news constantly bombards us with the worst of what people are capable of doing.
Before leaving for my first solo trip, something I found common while reading about other solo travellers’ experiences was their high opinion of the people they met during their trip.
After having taken multiple solo trips and experienced the goodness of strangers on numerous occasions, I can now clearly see what they were talking about.
The vast majority of people in the world are fantastic, kind, and always willing to help. But unfortunately, what we hear in the news is usually the tiny percentage that doesn’t fall in this category.
You will get better at stepping outside your comfort zone
Travelling by yourself is guaranteed to put you in many uncomfortable situations — whether that’s being in unfamiliar places amongst unknown faces, having to deal with a lot of uncertainty, or having to manage everything by yourself.
I won’t lie, there might be times when you will feel lonely, times when you wish you had something to distract you from feeling unpleasant emotions. Times when you may even wonder “What the hell am I doing here in this strange place where I don’t know anyone?”
For most of my life I tended to do everything in my power to avoid doing uncomfortable things.
However, being repeatedly exposed to uncomfortable situations and emotions during a three-month solo trip helped me develop a higher tolerance for doing uncomfortable things and made me better at stepping outside my comfort zone.
Travelling, meeting new people, exploring different cultures and having all sorts of new and different experiences will help you discover aspects about yourself that you never knew.
It was only after I came back from a long-term solo trip that it finally struck me that the thing that I probably love and enjoy more than anything (even more than travelling) is talking and connecting with people.
Your social skills will Improve
Solo travelling has undoubtedly improved my social skills and considerably reduced my social anxiety.
When you stay in backpacker hostels, you get used to meeting lots of new people every day which helps you become more at ease and confident while meeting new faces.
Moreover, the discomfort of feeling lonely can help you get out of your comfort zone to put yourself out there more.
During my trips, I have developed close bonds with people more than double my age, and I believe my experiences during these trips have also helped me become more comfortable in interacting with people who are much older than me.
It will expand your mind
In our daily lives, we usually seek out and spend time with people who have a lot in common with us.
However, while solo travelling you will meet people from diverse cultures, age groups, social statuses and different walks of life.
These experiences will expand your perspective, help you become more open-minded, empathetic and enrich your life in ways far beyond than you can imagine.
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