Self-Confidence is a trait many of us feel like we lack, but self-confidence is a critical trait that helps you remain resilient even when the world kicks you down.
Have you been in a situation where you are stuck thinking about why you couldn’t express yourself in the way you were supposed to, or why you weren’t the one who made that everlasting impression on your boss?
Some self-confidence building can help you combat insecurities in many facets of your life.
This quality helps you keep going on rough days, helps you love yourself, gives you the ability to accept yourself and helps establish some sense of control over your life. Self-confidence also helps you give yourself a break, remember that you’re only human, and helps you set realistic expectations.
While there are many things that can help develop or strengthen your sense of self-confidence, one way you may not have thought about is through travel. Specifically, solo travel or traveling to unfamiliar parts of the world is a great way to step outside your comfort zone and build some great skills while also increasing your confidence.
Pack a bag, buckle up, and read on to learn how to boost your self-confidence with travel.
10 Ways to Boost Self-Confidence with Travel
1. Travel Teaches You to Speak Up
When you travel alone, it forces you to communicate with people around you, whether for information or just to strike up a conversation. Especially for people who are shy and timid, being forced to advocate for yourself is a great way to boost self-confidence with travel. It may be difficult to get past the initial hesitation, but it becomes liberating once you pass it.
That liberation helps you build self-confidence by improving your ability to interact with new people and people in general. Better communication skills produce better relationships and help you more efficiently get the things you need and want to be happy and successful.
Increased communication skills and self-confidence built through travel will then hopefully transfer to other areas of your life.
2. Travel Makes You Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone
Choosing to travel alone or to a place with a completely different culture is already a considerable step you would take towards moving out of your comfort zone. As nerve-wracking as the thought of that experience might be in your head, you’ll find the reality is far less scary.
Travel is all about experiences, fun activities, finding yourself, stepping out of your comfort zone, and upping your self-confidence. The point here is you are doing something for yourself and pushing yourself to embrace the feelings of risk that come with stepping outside your comfort zone.
It will be scary at first, but as with anything, the more you travel and the more you experience the more comfortable you’ll become. Through your experience of gaining confidence with travel, you’ll prove to yourself that you can conquer things that might make you uncomfortable.
3. Travel Makes You More Responsible
Most people want to travel, explore the world, and see all there is to see with our own two eyes. Whether traveling alone or simply abroad, you must take care of yourself, your health, and your well-being. You must also plan your trip and all the critical pieces like researching flights and accommodations, booking transportation and activities, and buying tickets.
This independence boosts your self-confidence because you demonstrate that you can effectively plan the complexities of a trip on your own or in conjunction with a friend. You must be responsible and make sure you have all your ducks in a row, and if something goes wrong or there’s a problem, you need to be the one to solve it.
4. Travel Can Change Your Mindset
Everyone is shaped by their background and experiences. The more you experience and the more you experience that is different from your background, the more you grow as a person.
Travel, even within your own country, has the power to expose you to different places, people, and ways of life. We tend to think our way is the best way, but the more you experience, the more your point of view may change. You begin to realize that other ways of living aren’t necessarily bad, just different. The more you travel, the more your mindset may shift toward one of more acceptance and you may even find yourself changing yourself as well.
These shifts in mindset also help build self-confidence. As you experience different things, you become more aware of the world and the differences in it. You have been exposed to different ways of doing things, and may even have adopted some of them. You’ve been there, done that, and have the confidence to go through life no matter where you are.
In short, you feel confident to work and interact with people from all walks of life.
5. Travel Let’s You Be Yourself
Another reason why you can boost your self-confidence with travel is that travel gives you a chance to be yourself.
We must often be very controlled in our lives, whether that be at work or with family. Maybe you’re afraid people won’t accept you for who you truly are. Or, maybe you simply love to get out there and let your personality shine and your everyday life gives you little opportunity to do that.
Whatever the constraints at home, the side of you that you must hold back is free to come out when you are in a place filled with strangers. With travel, you can be who you want to be without the fear of being judged. You may even try out some new things you were afraid to at home, and thus build the confidence to bring back a new you.
6. Travel Frees You from the Feeling of Unfamiliarity
Navigating your way through a foreign land and finding the right way to any place is a trait every traveler has or must quickly develop. You must develop the skills to be able to figure things out or ask for help.
This fear of unfamiliarity or getting accustomed to new things is challenging for most people and often holds people back. But, once you’ve ventured out and made the unfamiliar more familiar, you’ll build the confidence you need to begin exploring more and more unfamiliar places. Start out small and as your confidence grows, branch out to places completely different from your home.
The confidence to tackle things unfamiliar to you can then spill over into other areas of life.
7. Travel Helps You Own Your Strengths
Everyone has abilities that are their core competencies, and that sets them apart from the lot. Whether developed over time or seemingly natural skills, those things you are good at are your strengths.
If you weren’t sure of your strengths before, there is no better way to identify them than with travel. When you are planning and executing the travel, what things come easy to you? Recognize your strengths, nurture them, and at the same time, you build your self-confidence knowing that you are good at these certain things.
Traveling allows you to acknowledge strengths; it makes you realize you are good at something. It could be a skill that you possess like cooking or making drinks, or it could be a qualitative thing like bargaining. Once you know your strengths, see how you can use them in your everyday life to better yourself.
Who knows, identifying things you didn’t realize you were good at may lead to a change in life for the better.
8. Travel Helps You Work on Weaknesses
The flip side of strengths is weaknesses, and everyone has them. But, like with identifying strengths, travel can also help you identify and improve weaknesses.
Was planning and booking your travel difficult for you? Did you have trouble getting around? What other things did you find challenging? Now you have a new set of experiences to reflect on and learn from. Make sure to adopt a growth mindset and keep working on things you find difficult so that you continue to build those skills.
The more you practice what is difficult, the easier it will become and you’ll be able to continue to boost your self-confidence with travel and other difficult things in your life.
9. Travel Forces You to Listen
Most of the time we are more focused on formulating a response and impatiently waiting for our next turn to talk than really listening to what others are saying. Active listening is a skill most of us could work on and travel helps you do just that.
Especially in a place where you don’t know or have limited ability with the language, it’s more important than ever to focus all your effort on listening. You may need to communicate through speech, gestures, and other means to effectively communicate.
Even when you are communicating in your native tongue, it’s important to really listen and comprehend what people are telling you. Tours, directions, and even dinner recommendations are all opportunities to practice really listening.
The ability to actively listen, understand, and proceed based on your listening is a great way to boost self-confidence with travel.
10. Travel Forces You to Pay Attention to Detail
The ability to pay attention to detail is a highly sought after skill. It is the ability to be through and accurate when accomplishing tasks of any size.
Now, suppose you are in a situation while traveling for which you need a solution. In that case, the best thing to do is consider all the facts and then react to them. Especially in an unfamiliar place, you’ll want to pay attention to all aspects and thoroughly think through your options before deciding. You’ll also want to pay attention to detail when planning your trip and fully think through your options before booking.
As you experience more travel, you’ll learn from your mistakes and learn what details are most important.
Are you looking to boost your self-confidence? Do you love to travel. Whether you realize it or not, you are actively boosting your self-confidence when you travel.
Travel opens our hearts and minds to much more than what can be found in books, movies, and on social media. It helps us build experiences firsthand and let go of preconceived notions about a particular place or culture. Travel helps us appreciate our privileges, and encourages us to make ourselves and every place we visit better than it was.
With all that being said, traveling is not easy. It involves challenging ourselves, and the courage to seek knowledge over comfort and channel inner self-confidence.
If you have a desire to see the world but hesitate for any reason, take that leap outside your comfort zone and boost your self-confidence with travel.
Where will you go next?
Tawnya is an elementary special education teacher by day and co-blogger at Money Saved is Money Earned by night.
She holds an Honors BS in Psychology from Oregon State University and an MS in Special Education from Portland State University. She has had a pretty successful writing career, first as a writing tutor at the Oregon State University Writing Center, and in recent years, as a freelance writer.
Tawnya and co-blogger Sebastian have a wealth of knowledge and information about personal finance, retirement, student loans, credit cards, and many other financial topics. They teach people how to save money, make money, and understand money.