The Modern Man: Traveling Solo
Modern times call for modern men. We seem to be glued to barstools, game chairs, couches, and our office-desks. Could we have lost our bearings on what truly matters in life? We believe that when we explore the world we are effectively exploring ourselves. Simply put: Men don’t travel nearly enough. One of the reasons why we don’t travel enough or at all might be a fear or insecurity of traveling solo. And that comes with a whole package of factors but two of the biggest reasons are: We are distracted by modern society. And we don’t truly/fully enjoy our own company.
If either or both of those factors are the case for you deep down, that needs to change NOW!
There is nothing worse than not truly and deeply loving yourself and everything that comes with it. Yes, you can go to a spiritual retreat, a hike, or a stroll at the beach by yourself but there is something special about traveling solo. There are so much substance and beauty in leaving our comfort zone.
After all, Challenge = Change.
Letting Go of the Fear of Traveling Solo
There might be a few factors coming into play of why we tend to avoid traveling solo: Not enjoying our own company, modern-day distractions, or simply getting to in our heads about the bad things we hear in the news or other people. The reality and truth of it all are that none of it should be a reason for you not to travel.
Learning to Enjoy Our Company
We’ve all been there. Especially recent generations that tend to think that to be out and about you must be accompanied. And if that buddy is not up to it, we simply stay at home. This is such a sad reality. Learning to enjoy our own company stems from self-love. Feeling, embracing, and more importantly, appreciating your presence is a fundamental piece for becoming a wholesome and modern man. Men also tend to give too much relevance on how others might view us. In reality, it is all in your head.
We see people hanging out in groups and we crave that. Within itself is not necessarily a bad thing. We are social beings after all. But there is such a beauty being in all our presence of yourself. Embracing your emotions, thoughts, and senses. The silence and eventually stillness of those moments before your eyes.
Modern distractions are certainly engineered and thought out carefully. Technology, for instance, is probably the biggest and most noticeable. We are always surrounded by it. It has become ingrained in our lives to the point that we highly depend on it. Think about it for a second, how many times have you looked at your phone today? Now count how many times you absolutely needed to look at it vs just being a reflex of modern compulsive behavior.
We live in an era of humanity where we let technology dictate our lives. Quick disclaimer: Modern Man Advice is not against technology, quite the contrary. We believe in the power of technology when used properly. But we also advocate against the dependency and isolation that it currently brings. It often blinds us as men from seeing and experiencing the amazing reality in from of your eyes. The beauty and power of a moment surrounded by nature. The awakening and significance of exploring the world around you. And finally, the realization that you are in fact exploring the world within you.
The World Beyond Media, News, and History
Yes, the world can be a cruel place. It can be intense and right down cold. But it can also be amazing and mesmerizing. Danger, if you haven’t noticed, lives at every turn when you drive. Or at every bar, you hit up at night with your friends. It will always be there. Letting fear and, to be completely frank, alarmist media with an agenda dictate how far you can go is outrageous. We are not here to say explore the world recklessly and be gullible. Trust your instincts and judge each moment. Just don’t miss our on life based on fear.
Benefits of Traveling Solo for The Modern Man
We briefly mentioned a few. To us, there is one that stands out the most and one which we have covered in our “The World is Yours: Travel & Explore Yourself” article. One that acts as an umbrella and stems out into so many other benefits and positive impacts for the modern man. As such, one that can only be discovered and recognized when you begin traveling solo. And that is, exploring your inner world.
You see, I have learned over years of actually going through this myself that my thirst and curiosity towards the world beyond my eyes was a direct reflection of that spark within me. A spark that so passionately wanted to discover who I was, what I could achieve, what reality and life could mean, and lastly who I was as a man.
Every single person on this planet, past, present, and future holds a piece of the puzzle. You do not hold the bigger picture of life, only a piece. It is only when you gather as many pieces from an old lady in Zimbabwe, or a street food vendor in Thailand, or even a teenager that helps his family by selling empanadas on the beaches of Acapulco, that you start understanding life.
In that process, you give yourself up and eventually become whole. Humility can make you surrender your superficialities and stereotypes. Respect will make you stronger.
How To Travel Solo
One of the best things about traveling by yourself, which we didn’t mention above, is that you basically walk your own path at your own pace. The only itinerary that you should have is what your heart desires. Although that sounds selfish, and before you get all dramatic about your significant other (if you have one, good for you), it is good to sometimes follow your emotions and instincts without inevitably imposing yourself over someone.
Awesome Tips And Mistakes To Avoid
Here is the best tip we can offer: Don’t think about for more than 5 seconds (which is when your default mode kicks in) and simply book the flight.
It is really that easy. We let these scripts and narratives run in our head like a monkey banging on drums. Men get caught up in all the IF’s and the BUT’s, and all the nonsense reasons why you should not travel solo. Finding these excuses is easy. Finding reasons to travel solo is for those with an intense flame within their being.
But of course, we won’t leave you with just motivation. Here are some useful tips and mistakes to avoid:
Bring Your Passport:
Do we really need to explain this one? You’ll be surprised how many men forget this essential item for traveling. Without it, well, you simply are not going anywhere.
Traveling solo often involves adventures, following what each moment dictates, trusting the universe and of course your instinct. Being hold down to a large suitcase or even carry on, can be an ankle chain of sorts. Plus if you are like us, we prefer to invest in adventures and food over unnecessary commodities. That usually involves staying at hostels, or capsule hotels (if you are in Japan), and a suitcase will get in the way. Not to mention, waiting in lines, check-in, fees, yadda, yadda. Don’t do that to yourself.
We often recommend only taking 2 items of each clothing piece, except underwear and socks. Underwear and socks are essential for hygiene. And in our experience, there is always a coin laundry at the place you will be staying or near it. Wear, reuse, wash and repeat. Basically, pre-plan your outfits.
As for grooming and personal care, take the essentials like toothbrush/toothpaste, deodorant, and small cologne sample. There is always a store where you can find a small bottle of shaving cream/razor, nail clipper, and other stuff as needed. The idea is to have the essentials and leave the usual commodities at home.
Simply let go.
User your phone as your boarding pass. Avoid lines and wasting paper. This is a good example of using technology.
We know you want to look cool but there is absolutely no need for dress shoes or flat shoes with no support when you know you are going to walk most of the day. Bring a pair of athletic shoes, they can also be fashionable in case you didn’t know. Your feet will thank you.
Not all countries will have accessible ATM’s and if you happen to find one, currency exchange and other fees for ATMs will take away from you eating that delicious treat on the street. Don’t give away your money, you worked hard for it.
Do Some Research But Don’t Overplan
If you read our “Night Out: Best Tips For An Awesome Time” then you know we avoid over planning. Life happens. And when things do not go as planned, especially if every single detail is planned, everything else just falls like a domino effect. Effectively hindering the whole experience and day ahead of you. Why do that to yourself when one often meets his destiny on the road we tried to avoid in the first place? When you truly trust yourself and the universe, you will be surprised at the things waiting for you ahead.
Having said that, it is ideal to do at least do some research. See what the area offers, avoid the tourist traps, what calls your name? Different countries offer such a spectrum of experiences. Each unique, each powerful. Some you will want to chase, while others will present themselves to you.
Get a Pocket WiFi or a SIM card, If Possible
There will most likely be WiFi in cafe’s, restaurants, airports, etc but renting a pocket WiFi device usually goes for less than $50USD for 10 Days. It is definitely worth it.
Download Google Maps
Google does know everything. This includes maps and navigation. You can even download certain maps and use them offline! It will come in handy for getting to pre-planned places or simply navigating your way through a place if you are wondering about.
Get a Universal Charger
You will, of course, travel with your smartphone. Rarely anybody doesn’t have a smartphone glued to their hands these days. But like we mentioned above, it does come in handy when you are traveling. From navigation to language translation, to photos, and of course communication, having a smartphone will come in handy. No pun intended. However, it won’t do you any good if it’s dead and the country you are in has a different outlet system. For our recommendation for a good universal charger, click here.
Explore The World. Explore Yourself.
The world is truly yours to explore. It awaits you. It holds a new perspective on life and who you are.
Let us know what are your best tips for traveling solo in the comments section below.
Modern Man Advice