How travelling can help you fight depression
‘We travel not to escape life but for life not to escape us’.
In the movie, ‘wild’ Reese Witherspoon’s character Cheryl undergoes deep depression after her mom’s death. She tries to pacify herself with heroin and anonymous sex but fails. She then decides a solo self-discovery trip to redeem herself which turns out to be successful.
Most passionate travelers will agree that depression has led them to travel around the world.
The remedy for your woes, doesn’t exist at the bottom of that pill bottle! Travel means a schedule, a list of sites to see and explore the deepest, the longest, the most mysterious. Travel doesn’t include time for a breakdown.
There are a hell lot of times when we literally feel lost ( after a debt fiasco or relationship disaster, we often feel like losers). Here are some reasons why you should opt for travel plan:
1) Bizarre Travel plans are dancing lessons from God!
Travel planning gives you something to focus on. You are happily busy and on a mission! You are a bag of mixed emotions (nervousness, little fear and loads of excitement). There is a sense of self-satisfaction when the entire plan is designed solely by you.
2) Being philosophical and spiritual: Mostly if you are traveling alone, there comes a point in your journey when your perspective isn’t based on what is happening to you any longer, and you begin to remember what happiness is. You realize happiness is an illusion created by you that you can actually change and control.
“You feel like you are the master of your own destiny.”
3) Being alone will feel right: You will definitely feel lonely at times, but it will make you incredibly thankful for the family and friends you have! Stripped of your everyday culture, you might gain a new sense of gratitude for the people, food, and customs that make you who you are. You realize that though scars are pretty badass, they show that you’ve survived something and have been a warrior. Take the time to get to know the “you” you’ve never met- the one who never gets the spotlight because your negativity always shuts them down. You will know how to embrace your solitude.
4) Outside of your comfort zone is where the magic happens!
So while leaving your comfort zone and traveling will leave you exposed and vulnerable. Believe it or not, vulnerability is often what we need most to deal with melancholy. You can finally achieve closure on various unsolved questions of your life. You accept your strengths and weaknesses. You might start loving yourself yet again! You might even turn out to be a good writer as ‘traveling leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller!’
5) Adapting ability: My traveling adventures have made me much more of an adaptable person than I used to be, which is necessary while dealing with the emotional rollercoaster of grief and mood swings!
6) You realize you are a social animal like every other man:
While on a journey alone, you are bound to make small talk with strangers. You stand a chance of making good travel companions. You learn how to share your similarities and celebrate your differences. Sometimes you feel much more relaxed in the company of strangers as they don’t know your demons and you know you are not answerable to them. You have to learn from the people you meet, listen to their stories. It’s the best way of understanding that life can contain suffering, but that doesn’t mean it has to contain despair.
7) Freedom is synonym for ‘nothing left to lose’: You get to taste your new found freedom. You become carefree and learn how to let go.
8) Self-control: ‘If it is to be, it is up to me’-I love this quote. There won’t be anyone doing damage control for you. If your feelings take over, you’ll have to confront them on your own. It’s both the most terrifying and most empowering thing you could possibly do for yourself.
9) Making peace with yourself: Forgive – Forgive yourself, and everyone else. Easier said than done, I know, but it’s not as tricky. Keep your forgiveness private, for the moment. It doesn’t have to be for anyone but you. Scream and cry all you want and your tears will detoxify your soul.
Some of the top places to travel solo are the Islands of Indonesia, Nepal, Cuba, Guatemala, South Island of NZ, Barcelona(Spain), Ireland, Hokkaido (Japan), Jordan and Southwest USA.
All been said traveling doesn’t require a splendid place, it just requires a place and a mind to sync in unanimity to find eternal peace
So, nothing is better than traveling alone because you go faster and further when you travel alone.