If you had told the nervous, perfectionistic, panic attack ridden girl I once was that I would one day love traveling alone, I would have told you that you were downright delusional. Nowadays, it’s the reverse. I’m leaving for Paris in a few days, and when I mention to some people that I’ll be on my own for a weeks, they look at me and call me crazy. What’s hard to believe is learning how to let go of the fear and travel alone has helped me deal with anxiety in my everyday life. Don’t believe me? Here's how:
You can slow down.
In a success-driven world that is often focused on being busy 24/7, it’s very easy to forget about living. One of my favorite things about Paris is turning off my phone and wandering with no destination in mind. My senses are heightened, I notice the little details in the environment around me, and I don’t feel the need to see the latest updates on Instagram.
You become attentive.
When you slow down enough to fully live, you find that you begin to notice things that easily go unnoticed in your rushed everyday routine. Morning coffee is sweeter, smiles at strangers on market streets are remembered, and sunrises seem insanely beautiful. With mindfulness heightened, you find yourself at ease. There’s less judgment, more appreciation, and more gratitude.
You realize you can do more than you think.
The first time I let go of anxiety and got on my transatlantic flight was a success on its own. My advice? Just go. Slowing down and enjoying the small moments of traveling alone has brought my life so much purpose and fulfillment. You realize the world is so much bigger than your daily surroundings. Your eyes are opened to new dreams and new possibilities. Let life give you the adventure you're craving.