The unknown can manifest itself in one of two ways: uncertainty or opportunity.
Uncertainty has a negative connotation, where we lack assurance and confidence. We tend to steer clear of uncertainty in our lives.
Opportunity, on the other hand, sounds so appealing. Opportunity is an opening for possibility. Opportunity means there's a chance something good can happen. We welcome opportunity into our lives.
Traveling alone for the first time, especially as a female, can feel scary...but maybe scary isn't the right emotion. What about excited? Anxious? Nervous? All these emotions we feel on a first date, with a new job, playing Catch Phrase even! The first step is destigmatizing solo travel as "scary" and embracing the possibilities that come with the opportunity.
Once you've convinced yourself, you may need to convince a few others. Just to get their blessing. My first trip I took alone was to Costa Rica for 10 weeks. And I left without my parents' blessing. But I, myself, was whole-heartedly committed, confident, and assured. That gut feeling and intuition led me to the best 10 weeks of my entire life. Although my parents' guidance came from a good place, they had projected their own fears into my life. What I saw as an opportunity, they saw as uncertainty. And if I had let their fears guide me, rather than my own soul, I would never have met the people I did, surfed the waves I did, or learned the lessons I did. Today, with each new trip, my parents are far more supportive because I proved to them that my intuition is my greatest compass. I am cautious and responsible, but I am a free spirit. And all of those qualities make me whole. They've come to appreciate this. Now our conversations start with, "Where to next?"
But part of being cautious and responsible is listening to the wise words of our parents: "Don't talk to strangers." "Don't walk home alone in the dark." "Don't get into a car with someone you don't know." Etc. And of course we have to bend the rules a little bit - everyone's a stranger when you travel! That's where your intuition comes into play. When you tune in to not only your surroundings but your gut, heart, and mind, you can avoid sticky situations. People in the world aren't usually out to get you like television makes it seem. There are so many kind and helpful people. But it's up to you to discern between the trustworthy and the creepers. When you can do that, and do that well, you'll feel confident enough to plan your first trip. "Sometimes you gotta leap and grow your wings on the way down."
Con amor y alegría,