Summer is finally here. It’s the time to relax, refresh and feel rejuvenated with vacations to tropical places and days spent at cookouts. And while summer is a time to let loose and create unforgettable memories, it can also be a time of personal growth. Here is how to use your summer trip to self-reflect, step outside of your comfort zone and reinvent yourself.
Take time to self-reflect
If you already have your trip itinerary, try penciling in some time for self-reflection. Self-reflection is the process of thinking critically about who you are and the decisions you’ve made in your life. This is an important process that allows you to better understand who you are. It’s a tool to re-assess your goals, re-align yourself with your dreams, and set yourself on a clear path for your future. To find time and space to self reflect, try going to a quiet and somewhat secluded place. For example, taking an intentional walk on the beach. You can also try taking a yoga class at your vacation spot. Even having a quiet breakfast alone can be a great moment to sit with yourself and mindfully look back and inward. If self-reflection is new to you, or you want to go a little deeper, try asking yourself the following questions:
• For the first half of the year, what is something you are proud of?
• What matters most to you in life, and have you been putting those things first?
• When have you experienced joy and how can you experience more joy in the second half of the year?
• What are you grateful for?
Step outside your comfort zone
With warmer weather and much-needed time off, summer is a great time to try something you’ve never done before. This can happen in a variety of ways. Instead of going to your usual vacation destination, try going somewhere new. Ask your friends for recommendations of places they’ve been to.
Traveling also opens opportunities to try a new summer hobby. Yes, relaxing at the beach or hanging poolside ordering consecutive margaritas is tempting. Yet there is so much to explore while traveling. Try going on an excursion or hiking up a volcano. Take a surf lesson or go snorkeling. If there is something that excites you but scares you at the same time, it’s worth a try. During these experiences, you’ll learn more about yourself and what you’re capable of.
And if you aren’t feeling super adventurous, you can still stretch the boundaries of your comfort with something light. Start by going to a restaurant you’ve never been to before and try something out of your typical taste pallet. While visiting the hotel bar, try starting up a conversation with a stranger. Anytime you get a little uncomfortable it allows you to grow.
A great way to use travel to reinvent yourself is to ask yourself, who do you want to be when the trip is over? Who is the person you want to come back as? Do you want to be the person who played it safe and colored within the lines? Or do you want to be the person who went after their dreams? Crafting a newer version of yourself isn’t always simple but here is how to get started on your next trip:
• Throughout your trip ask yourself what’s something you’ve learned?
• Follow your curiosity. It can be easy to get stuck in the routine of tours, sightseeing, and typical tourist events. Take some time to go off the beaten path. Ask questions, try new flavors, and dance in the street. What is something the old version of you would never do?
Traveling is an experience. And when you embrace the adventure and thrill of being in a new place, you can grow into the highest version of yourself.