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Heya chic, simple living folk, how have you been? I’m back from California all refreshed and reset – and you know what? I feel amazing. Sure, I would have loved to stay in Vitamin D land, but it’s back to chilly Toronto for this gal and getting back into blogging gear. I have so many new ideas I can’t get them all out of my head fast enough. And that is what I love about vacations. Whether across the world, a continent, or a few towns away from home, it allows you one important thing – a fresh perspective.
Think on that for a sec…when was the last time you got away and had a fresh perspective on life?
When’s the last time you did something totally different, out of your comfort zone, or simply for fun?
Been a while hasn’t it?
Unless you’re a travel blogger, you’ve probably been so involved in your crazy, busy day-to-day that you can’t answer that question. If you can, kudos to you! Fresh perspectives and new experiences are so important to personal growth.
There are so many valid reasons for slowing down and taking time for YOU. Let’s explore 5 of my faves.
5 Reasons Why You Need to Travel Or Simply Get Away
1. It opens you up to being more vulnerable.
Travel opens you up to new experiences, thoughts, emotions, and people. It turns you into a curious child again. It makes you vulnerable. You’re more willing to show your true self to a complete stranger because your brain thinks, “hey, I’ll never see this person again. Why not share a little and test the waters?” Strange how our brain works, eh?
Being vulnerable is something we don’t do in our day-to-day because we believe it makes us appear weak.
The truth is, being vulnerable opens you up to much-needed healing.
I’ll give you an example. Part of this trip was attending a small biz weekend for female entrepreneurs. On the last evening, we had a bravery experience. It was an opportunity for us to open up about anything that was bothering us or holding us back in our biz. They asked us to be vulnerable and share. We all shared dreams, goals, how we wanted to help the world and something we felt was holding us back.
Well, being my typical reserved introverted self, I naggled with what I was going to share in my brain. I went back and forth. Should I share what was really bothering me or would it be oversharing? Quick note: I haven’t shared many of the deep details of the past 5 years with many people, it’s only ever been surface level.
So I went for it. I bared my soul and shared a lot of deep stuff with this amazing group of ladies I had gotten to know over the course of three days.
And you know what? It was the most soul healing thing I’ve done.
I didn’t die. They didn’t laugh and they didn’t judge.
Instead, what happened was truly wonderful – they helped me heal. They shared their own stories, thoughts, and ideas. They told me I was worthy, that I was enough, and that my past is not who I am. And the most shocking thing? They told me to share it with the world. What if another woman was going through the same thing as I did? That’s one woman out there in the world that I could help.
So you see, travel opens you up to healing, to new ways of thinking, and most importantly, to being “in the world and of the world.”*
*my fave quote from Audrey Hepburn in Sabrina.
2. It’s a fear crusher and confidence builder.
Wanna know one really silly thing I did while on vacation? Like, super duper silly? Okay, you asked for it, here goes:
I said “sorry” for being me. Yep, I did.
I’m your typical super nice, step on no one’s toes, minimize conflict type of gal. And when you travel with another person, that last thing you want to do is have disagreements. That being said, traveling with a friend allows you a fresh perspective on how you’re presenting yourself to the world (and the fears you’re projecting). And boy, did I FAIL that test. My friend spotted, almost immediately, a few things I shouldn’t be doing.
Such as? Well, things like apologizing for who I am, things I loved to do, things I was super passionate about.
It went like this:
Me: “OMG! I love that car! That’s the car I’m going to own soon.” (side-note: I’m a total gearhead, racer, and have driven performance cars on road courses and know how to ride a motorbike). Of course, I went into a total passionate tangent about why the Mercedes C63S AMG will be my next car and how much fun I’m going to have driving it and how I’d love to take the Mercedes Driving Academy course.
“Oh gawd, I’m so so sorry! I’m blathering on about cars like an idiot. Ugh. So sorry.”
My friend: “That’s okay! Hmmm…WAIT A MINUTE!!! Did you just apologize for something you love doing? Something that you’re clearly passionate about??!!”
Me: “Oh gawd, I can’t believe I’ve been apologizing for me, for who I am!!! What is wrong with me. I need to stop that ASAP.”
I know, I know – who does that? Guess what? We all do.
It was all purely fear based. It was driven by my fear of being judged, not being accepted for who I really am (thank you years of bullying), and somewhere in there, my fears of failure and success.
At points in our lives, we feel less than, lacking in confidence, and maybe a little lost. It’s at those points we feel our very existence is encroaching on others. Somehow we believe we shouldn’t be happy, or allowed to love the things we do. Call it years of corporate programming and loathing that programmed my brain the wrong way.
So now I’m having to get back to being fearless, to saying YES vehemently to what I want and having the courage to step back out there.
3. It creates white space and give you room to grow and create.
Getting out of your normal day-to-day routine frees up valuable mind space. When you immerse yourself in a new place, the seeds of creativity start to grow again, leaving you free and clear to create new things.
4. It helps you be more honest and understanding with yourself.
What do I mean? Well, honesty with yourself and understanding of yourself. You see, before I had this reset vacation, I was overwhelming myself. I was searching too hard for the “how” instead of simply taking action. Well, I was taking action but I was being half-assed about it. I was doing a little bit of this and a little bit of that and then I’d get stuck on a step somewhere that would have me questioning the how again.
I was overwhelming myself with everyone else’s 7 step program to starting my biz, or creating content, or how to do social media, or how to plan my life. I was making myself crazy – have you ever done that? Have you ever been so desperate (er, excited) to start your biz or get it moving at a faster pace that you overindulge in everyone else’s tips, tricks, courses, and programs that you forget to do the most important thing?
That thing, of course, is TAKING ACTION AND CREATING.
I was dabbling with creativity and taking action, but I wasn’t full on, blinders on, racehorse charging to the finish line. I was meandering here and there, trying way too many things and not doing the one thing I should be doing – being me, documenting and sharing.
Travel helps you get real with yourself. It allows you to take a long, hard, and honest look at what you’ve been doing right and what could be changed.
5. It creates a hard reset.
Isn’t it just lovely to revel in a reset? There’s something wonderful about all the space in your brain that a reset creates. A vacation has your mind so involved in curiosity, discovering, exploring and I have to say it, eating all the amazing food – that it has no time to dwell on negative non-self serving thoughts, bad icky inner monologuing, self-doubtism, or any other garbagey gook that normally lurks in the far reaches of your subconscious.
Put simply – it creates space and new patterns. Old bad habits become a thing of the past, and honestly, why go back to them? Instead, grab all that freshness and clean slateness and run with it – see how far it will take you.
What To Do When You Get Back
So you’re back from your reset vacation/drive/weekend getaway and are rearing to get your ideas and thoughts out into the world. You’ve got all this creative energy.
So, what next? Fall back into old habits? HECK NO.
There are a few things you can do immediately:
- Figure out what’s overwhelming you and stop doing those things.
- Create something – anything. Even if it’s simply baking a batch of your fave cookies.
- Declutter one small space in your home. Tip: Pick the place that is bugging you the most.
- Delete, purge and/or burn (safely) every single course, ebook, webinar slideshow, podcast or other digital item that is not only taking up space but is also serving you no purpose for where you are now.
- Be vulnerable, be weird and be you at least once per day. Yep, I said it. Put yourself out there, stick your neck out a bit more than usual. You may help someone.
- Write it all down. Yep, journal like a maniac. Think Flashdance for writers and creatives.
We often neglect ourselves the most and put others far ahead of us. I learned that it’s okay to put myself first – I am worthy of self-love and me time.