When you hear the word “yoga”, probably the first thing that comes in your mind is an old man, sitting crossed legs with closed eyes, playing with his breath. Am I right? Actually, this was my perception of yoga some years ago. I thought that it is an old age thing to calm their mind. But when accidentally I came into this practice, I realized that I was totally wrong. It is a physical as well as mental exercise to improve concentration or a tool for a total transformation. One school of thought defines yoga as “an approach to training your mind, body, and soul”.
The meaning of yoga for different people could be different, but one thing that is certain is – the benefits of yoga. Some of the benefits include a reduction in anxiety and depression, better health, flexibility, self-discipline, more control over thoughts, especially the negative ones amongst a host of other benefits.
And quite similar to yoga, solo traveling, too, has a positive impact on our lives. Building our perspective, improved mental health, the much needed ‘Me’ time, and greater self-reliance are some of the benefits of traveling with oneself.
Both Solo Travel And Yoga Are ‘A Journey Within’
Solo travelers take two journeys simultaneously – one to the destination where they are heading and one, inside themselves. When we do not have a constant companion with us in our journey, our focus shifts to the destination and our own selves. The intricacies of where we are, the people we meet, conversations with them, culture exchange, etc. whatever we get during the journey, stays with us for longer.
Solo travelers, thus, create that personal connection with the destination and with themselves. This personal connection leads to self-reflection and a better understanding of how we perceive things as an individual.
Yoga is similar in many ways. It’s an experience that we have, with ourselves. The responses to our body, thoughts, our breath, our consciousness is unfiltered and organic – without the third party between our mind and our surroundings. And this makes us understand ourselves in a better way. The journey of self-discovery through traveling and yoga, is thus, quite similar in nature.
Appreciation & Patience – Teachings of Solo Travel And Yoga
Imagine taking a journey all by yourself to an unknown and unfamiliar land not knowing what’s in store for you, maybe it’s good or bad or a mix of both. Traveling solo prepares us to deal with the different social situations, people, lifestyles, circumstances, and natural calamities that we encounter – it teaches us to become more patient towards those uncertainties and to appreciate the beauty of the journey we are experiencing.
In the same way, yoga also teaches us to become more patience in our practice and to appreciate our daily achievements which lead the calmness and stability.
Solo Travel And Yoga Offers The Much Needed ‘Me Time’
As we already know now, solo traveling is more about ‘Me’ than a group of friends or a couple or a family. The experiences we get, the conversations we have, the problems we face, the solutions we find, the new places we discover, the souvenirs we buy, the pictures we take – each of it reflects a little of our own selves. It is not an escape, it is time to revitalize ourselves.
Rita Golden Gelman, in Tales of Female Nomad, states
“My spirit gets nourished in faraway places. Sometimes I wonder if it’s a biological need, perhaps a biological flaw, that compels me to seek the excitement and challenge that comes of being in a place where nobody knows me.”
In the same spirit, yoga is the time away from the outside and time for the ‘inside’. Time with your breaths – let them flow and not get absorbed with the usual everyday drudgeries but a higher purpose – of inner peace, something that is impossible without the ‘Me Time’.
Solo Traveling & Yoga Helps Address Stress and Anxiety
It’s not wrong to say that increasing Mental Health problems have become more like an epidemic in the present times. Rising use of digital media, an overdose of information, high levels of phone usage are some of the major factors triggering stress and anxiety. In this world of stress, you should take some time to explore yourself.
The concept of solo traveling and yoga are parallelly emerging as the solutions of that digital stress.
Solo Travel And Yoga Guide Us Away From Rampant Materialism
Traveling solo is more about experiences and less about ‘things’. It is also about saving up, cutting off unnecessary expenditure for perfumes and purses, and take a short weekend trip to just end up talking to strangers for personal diary worthy conversations.
Similarly, with yoga, as one achieves more control over one’s thoughts and builds mindfulness, the realization that accumulation of ‘stuff’ is not the answer happens.
Solo Travel And Yoga Make Us More “Creative”
You must be wondering how does traveling solo leads us to be more creative? Well, there is an especially interesting connection. When we are outside our comfort zone and in an unfamiliar surrounding, our mind naturally works harder to get us into a comfortable position and we learn to accommodate and solve problems. Similarly, when we move from one posture to another, blood circulations get faster through our veins and it helps our mind to function better than before. A kind of chemical change happens that makes us, well, more creative amongst a lot of other things!
Yoga, likewise, cleanses our mind of the adverse thoughts, letting us be more happy and positive, and eventually nurtures our creative skills.
In today’s date, when everyone is running after achieving success and wealth, how about being a little different and concentrate on our own well being? Who knows, we might just end up inspiring others to travel solo and practice yoga.
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