I wrote a book several years back that discussed, among other things, that solo adventure travel offered a list of very enticing benefits even for highly social individuals who are less likely to travel alone. In the book, I commented that traveling to distant locales affords each of us the opportunity to discover ourselves and in the process come to realize we needed not to travel beyond our ‘self’ to find our truth.
I have spent some time adventure traveling alone. Not a lot, but some. I have also spent a great deal of time hiking remote canyons of the Southwest United States alone. On those journeys, I was often awarded a connection to the natural world unlike I had ever experienced before. There just is no better way to contemplate our existence than to sit alone in a quiet peaceful canyon alone. The vibration of the place begins to flow through you until there seems to be no distinct division.
At first, traveling alone takes a bit of getting used to. Once in a groove of day to day processes, we can start to see beyond the surface activities and into what truly moves, inspires, and motivates each of us. When this happens, we start moving toward “finding our mojo”.
I tend to think that in our day to day societal lives, with the technology, with social media, etc, we often tend to naturally fall into collective societal patterns. We watch what others are doing on the Facebook news feed, we browse Instagram watching what others are up to. If we are lucky, we follow feeds that are at least inspiring enough to ponder “What if I were to do that?”. Other than that, though, many of us sit back and wish we were doing something more exciting with our lives and simply become armchair tourists letting someone who is out there entertain our desires.
In a way, we come out of our societal closets and open ourselves up to who we truly are.
However, when we actually get out there alone traversing the countryside for an extended period, we start to come out from under our collective cloak and start to do and act more like ourselves. We start to shine. We meet new people who invite us into their homes to sit at their dinner tables to share our stories, we start to communicate with wildlife in a new way, we start to see our reflection in the natural world more often.
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In a way, we come out of our societal closets and open ourselves up to who we truly are. I have found myself contemplating a great deal about life, the world, and my existence at times where I’ve been sitting alone somewhere remote. I have discovered what it is that makes me tick and when I arrive back into the societal world I’ve created, I am more “me” than ever before. I can even go so far as to say that the book I once wrote was started in my head while sitting alone on a mountain peak overlooking a vast valley below. When I returned, I was inspired enough to write and publish that book for others to read.
Go it alone at least once. Trust in yourself to be able to make your own decisions. Trust that you will ensure your own safety in the event you have fear about solo travel. Know that you are an interesting person and others along the way will find you to be, also. Even if you embark on a group expedition with people you don’t know, this is a great start. Just make it happen. It is all there, waiting for you to experience and while doing so you will discover more about yourself.