Here’s how to battle with the feeling of awkwardness in being alone so you can enjoy the incredibly rewarding experience that traveling solo can be!
For many people, the biggest factor holding them back from traveling is that they don’t want to do it alone. If this is you, maybe you’re afraid of solo travel because you’re afraid of feeling lonely, and because you’re afraid of feeling awkward. Maybe you get an image of couples lounging on the beaches of koh phangan hand in hand, or groups of friends out at the party together, and you off to the side, all by yourself. Maybe you don’t like the thought of sitting at a table alone in a restaurant because you worry that people look at you and think “oh how sad, look at that girl sitting there by herself with no friends”. Well, forget about all this nonsense because in reality, nobody is thinking about you (98% of the time) they are only thinking about themselves! And those friends having fun at the party would love a nice new friendly addition to their pack...the more the merrier!
Still not convinced? The following tips are ways in which you can feel less awkward while out and about on your own...as well as reasons why traveling by yourself is so amazing!
Bring a book, sketchbook, or journal (or tablet)
One of the most relaxing things you can do is sit anywhere with a book in hand either reading, drawing, or writing with nobody around to bother you.If you’re at a restaurant waiting for your food to come out, get the book out; if you’re on the beach suntanning, get your book out! Or just enjoy the scenery and people watching of course.
Change your perspective
You know the saying, “when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”? Well, when you change the way you think people see you as, the way they see you as changes too. You are not a sad and pathetic person that nobody loves, you are a fun wild and free, confident, independent individual that doesn’t need anyone to help them enjoy life!
Make friends along the way
Just because you’re traveling alone doesn’t mean you have to stay by yourself the whole time. A lot of the time, when people out on vacation see someone sitting by themselves they invite them to join their group because everyone likes more people at their party! Many times, someone may ask to join you at your table too. You could also just join them yourself, shed the shyness bubble and introduce yourself to some friendly looking people.
Let It GO!
Embrace the freedom of how amazing it is that nobody is there to influence where you eat, walk, or who you talk to!
Almost everyone you come across you’ll never see again
If for any reason you start to feel uneasy...just remember that you’ll probably never see these people again. Therefore, there’s nothing to worry about. And for those that you will see again, it means you have become friends!
Don’t focus on being alone
Experience every moment “in the now”. Take advantage of the beautiful opportunity you have to be where you are, soak it all in, enjoy it even more fully without any distractions! Soon the moment will be gone forever.
Enjoy the towns and the beaches and the food and the music walking from place to place.
Stay at a hostel
THere are plenty of solo travelers at a hostel! It is the easiest place to meet people.