So, if you’re not traveling AND looking inward- I feel like you are missing an opportunity to really get to know yourself and see something more. Along those lines, of being introspective, I was thinking the other day about my travels and was really feeling like “Solo Travel” is not for me. But then wait…
What IS “Solo Travel” anyway? See- that’s the thing… I say it’s not for me, but then what IS it anyway? For the past few months, I have been in a group traveling, but 95% of the time, I am still alone. We meet up for dinner/lunch once a week sometimes, and occasionally contact each other to grab a coffee or a drink, but other than the actual traveling between counties, I am living my life mostly like I do anywhere, by myself, working, exploring, etc. But would people call THAT “Solo Travel”? Often feels like it to me.
Or is “Solo Travel” only if you do everything on your own? You plan your own trips, you put on a backpack, and you head out without anyone with you? But, are you ever really alone? If you meet up with friends? Is it still “Solo Travel”?
After this travel program is over, I will be alone again. If “Solo Travel” is NOT for me, then what? Do I just pack up my stuff and go home? Uhm… No! LOL I have PLANS! And none of these plans involve really traveling with others. Some of them DO involve being in the same place as my friends for a period of time, does that disqualify me for “Solo Travel” Creds?
I will still follow through on my plans, even if no one is going with me. So- maybe “Solo Travel” IS for me… And if that is the case… why was I feeling so strongly that it wasn’t/isn’t? I even said it in a podcast interview (more details on when and where to hear that- will follow!) So what gives?
I DO think that traveling the way I have been, can be a little lonely. Sometimes it’s MORE lonely because in theory you ARE part of this group, but in reality, it’s not your real friends, or your tribe, the people of your heart. When you live in one place, when you have a “home” you can more easily surround yourself with those people; but when you are moving again every month, more or less, you can meet some amazing people, but then you leave. You can also go a whole month without meeting people, or with only brief encounters, or a few Tinder dates, or you might not remember anyone in that city, because you didn’t get to know anyone.
Also, I have been on the road since March. That’s a long time. I didn’t love Asia (China, Japan, Korea- another blog post to be written for more info on that…), Budapest was not my favorite place- so it was two months of feeling a little down and dragging a bit. When you’re tired and down, I think that’s when you feel more vulnerable.
AND… I was seeing all these travel posts with things like “Starting my solo travel trip! Can’t wait!” or “I’ve been solo traveling for six years and I cant wait to see my 89th country!” LOL and at the same time all I could think was, I JUST WANT MY FRIENDS!
Fortunately for me, while I am here in Chiang Mai, Thailand- I DO have my friends. Very good TRIBE friends from Costa Rica. This is our fifth country together! And I am thrilled that I can visit with them every couple of days and just breathe and know- I DO have some of my people right now.
This has renewed my “strength” I think. I am very much a people person. I am an extrovert, I get my energy from being with people. I need to remember that, and find ways to meet people as part of my travel plans. There are meet ups and events, and sometimes I will just have to put myself out there and maybe just meet people the old fashioned way, by talking to them while out and about… believe it or not- I am not aways very good at doing that!
I still worry a little- about how long I can do this without having times of seeing friends and being with loved ones, but the best part of life is that I get to choose. I can shape my plans. If I continue to look inside and know who I am at each stage of the journey, then I can course correct if and when I need to.
So, what do you think? Do I get to keep my “Solo Travel” credentials a little longer? 🙂