By Milda Urban, Summersalt Yoga founder
Visiting the land down under (yes, I said it) was one of the things I’ve ALWAYS wanted to do. It took a while for this particular dream to come true, but time has finally come and I was on my way.
How was it, everybody asks? Well, it was everything and at the same time nothing I thought it would be. Both from travellers and personal experience.
The journey has taught me a lot about how to clear my mind from preconceived expectations and to embrace whatever happens. It once again proved me that being open and going with the flow is so much better than feeling anxious with some hidden hope that this anxiety will bring some results. That letting go of the grip doesn’t mean letting go of your values, goals or beliefs
The biggest revelation, however, was something more specific. A chunk of my journey I have travelled on my own. Solo. For the first time EVER. And only after I left the sunburnt country I understood that those 2 weeks were the biggest meditation and mindfulness school I’ve ever had. Unexpected, yes. But completely true.
Some people go on Vipassana retreats to spend time in silence and by themselves. Travelling by yourself is an incredibly underrated alternative to that.
Baby, let’s cruise…
Unless you immediately find a travel buddy or spend a lot of time at the hostel common areas, pubs and the likes of it, there is a big chance that a large amount of your journey will be spent by yourself, not talking to anyone, silence is broken only by the basic “thank you” and “what’s the Wi-Fi password”.
And (Quelle surprise!), THE not talking turns you to THE thinking and THE reflecting. To turning inwards. To seeing the dustiest corners of your mind and soul. To lifting barriers and creating new pathways. All of that – in overdrive first, but then – into a pleasant cruising and flat out enjoying mode.
With so much time without letting your thoughts being pushed back or silenced by THE talking, at first the stream and intensity of it all may be confusing. Just like a captive set free, the mind goes – freedom!! Now what?!
Crazy(ish) dreams, unexpected, heightened emotions most likely will be your new squad for at least a few days. Some of them be okay to hang out with, some will simply be douchebags you can’t seem to shake.
If this emotion mojito is still not kicking in – blend in the new experiences, surroundings and being outside your comfort zone every day to the mix (all of these will follow while travelling!). In the end, you are left with a Zombie or a strong Long Island Ice tea if lucky.
However, once you pass the initial stage – everything will get better. You will love it!
A gift that keeps on giving
I am not saying that you won’t have a single negative or confusing thought in your head. No. But trust me, so many answers to long contemplated questions will seem clear as day. Some long-held struggles or dilemmas will be offered new solutions. The crippling anxieties or chronic stress s will easy up.
You will notice that just like that you become much more open to the new ideas, experiences, solutions and paths and will be able to look at various questions with a fresh mind.
You know, I feel like I’m either giving away some special long-kept secret here or maybe just boasting the obvious. Either way, going on the road on your own is one of a kind experience and the incredible gifts have gotten on the way will keep on giving long after you’re back home.