I’m leaving soon for my first solo trip abroad. I’ve traveled abroad numerous times and traveled alone plenty, as well. But this will be my first time combining the two and I feel compelled to share some thoughts…
I love traveling alone because it teaches you to trust others, and more importantly, yourself and your intuition.
For me, doing it in a foreign country is exciting and just outside of my comfort zone. That’s how we grow and change. Not by doing outright risky things, but by knowing our limits and striving to stretch them, ever so gently.
Everyone has different boundaries, comfort zones, and accompanying beliefs. Here are mine (as they pertain to this trip):
I believe in living outside of your comfort zone.
I believe in the kindness of strangers.
I believe that experience is our greatest teacher.
I believe that when we act with boldness, mighty forces come to our aid.
And most of all, I believe in the God of angel’s armies (who has never once left my side:)
To be continued…
Consider our most common fears. Almost always they revolve around an imagined future projection of our reality.
The problem is, as we create this imaginary scenario and ponder the bad things that could happen, we forget to include God. Not only is this troublesome for us and hurtful to Him, but it’s also unrealistic. As our future stretches into eternity, there is not even one second of it in which God will be absent. Already, our fears are unfounded.
Fear doesn’t exist in the present moment, because that’s where God is. And with God, there is no fear. Therefore, we must do all we can to stay present and not be afraid.
When our mind begins to creep ahead of us, we must make the conscious effort to include God in our imagery of the future; helping us, strengthening us, encouraging us in all things. So that rather than being intimidated by tough times ahead of us, we will see them as the wondrous adventures that they are- times that God and us will get through together.
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8
To love other people, you must encourage them. To encourage them, you must BELIEVE in them. Here is an acronym taken from John C. Maxwell in his book Relationships 101.
Believe in them before they succeed.
Emphasize their strengths.
List their past successes.
Instill confidence when they fail.
Experience some wins together.
Visualize their future success.
Expect a new level of living.
You don’t have to be good at being good for God to love you. It’s not about trying, but trusting. It’s not about your success in doing, but your faith in what has been done.
“When people show you who they are, believe them…the first time.” -Maya Angelou
Most of us are our own worst critics. When often, we need to be our own best cheerleader. Sometimes you just need to stop, look back at all you’ve been through, and thank yourself for all that you’ve done.
We’re constantly pushing ourselves forward, while forgetting to look back and reflect. Ironically, if you push yourself too hard for too long, you freeze.
The easiest way to unfreeze yourself is to stop focusing on all you have yet to accomplish and instead focus on all that you already have. Thank yourself. Be proud of yourself. Eventually, self belief will return and your motivation will soon follow.
If no one thinks you can, then you have to.
Just because I liked something at one point in time, doesn’t mean that I’ll always like it, nor that I have to go on liking it at all points in time as an unthinking act of loyalty to who I am as a person. To be loyal to myself is to allow myself to grow and change; to consistently challenge who I am and what I believe. The only thing of which I am certain, is uncertainty. And this is a good thing because it means I’m growing, and not stagnant or shrinking.