How to Overcome Loneliness on the Road

Posted May 28, 2013 by Jamie Bowlby-Whiting in Travel Tips

The Road is Long

Humans are social animals and quite often, we are not used to spending extended periods of time alone. When you’re on the road, you’re likely to be around strangers and in places where you know nobody. How can you overcome this? How can you still have a good time when there is no-one there to share it with you? Quite Easily.

Embrace the Freedom

You are the boss, you call the shots. You can do what you want, where you want, for as long as you want. You don’t have to take anyone else’s opinions into account and you don’t have to think twice. If you feel like doing something, you can do it. Take a moment to take a long walk, sit quietly enjoying the world around you, or even going for a drink. There is a calming solace in not having to talk to anyone. I personally, quite enjoy going to the cinema by myself but rarely get the opportunity.

Challenge Yourself

If you want to meet people, push yourself to do it. Day one challenge; start conversations about anything with five strangers. Even if they respond with one word, it doesn’t matter. Day two challenge; engage in conversations for more than two minutes with five strangers. Once again, use any opening in the world. Carry a prop if you need it. I have been invited for dinner and to sleep by complete strangers simply by wearing some funky trousers and met some very close friends by starting conversations with strangers. Push yourself in this way and you never know who you might find.

Stay Away From Cities

Cities are the loneliest places in the world because there are people around you, but you don’t know any of them. When you are out in nature, you can enjoy the world and not feel left out from the world of communication and people. People in cities are also very closed and don’t have time for others. When you walk in the country or in a small village, people often stop and say hello or start conversation and are generally less wary of being approached.

Magic Waterfall Blue

Knowing nothing about photography, I took time to experiment with my camera and see what I could do

Start a Project

Everybody loves something, be it drawing, watching people, writing, or spotting unusual things. Whatever it is doesn’t matter. Choose something that you love and do it to your heart’s content. Rather than passing days in idle conversation, you might notice something about the world or make something worth holding on to. Follow your passion.

Floating Over a Lake in Poland

A hover project I started when travelling alone

Learn Who You Are

If you feel sad when you are alone, that’s OK. Learn how you feel, learn how to overcome it, and learn to become stronger because of it. Only by addressing our weaknesses in life can we ever hope to become stronger, so facing our problems is a great way to experience self-improvement.

I Did This

When I was sixteen years old, I was terrified of people and even when surrounded by others, I felt quite alone. I made a conscious effort to overcome that by addressing my problems and pushing myself to interact with people. Wherever I go, I both meet people and take time to enjoy being alone. One cannot exist without the other because if we never interacted with anyone, we would go crazy in our own little worlds. Equally, if we never spent time alone, we would forget who we were.

About the Author

Jamie Bowlby-Whiting

Jamie is the creator of GreatBigScaryWorld where he shares his stories about his search for adventure and true happiness around the world. He recently wrote The Avant-Garde Life which helps others to do the same.

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