Updated: Oct 19, 2019
I was looking over my old black and white photos from my trip to Europe and I realized not only did the photos put me right back in that adventure, but I forgot how much I loved taking them while I was there. I was wandering around with a purpose!
When I was about 24, I was having that "how do I learn to be a person?" crisis that we all face. I had learned how to master having a job, taxes, budgeting, and bills. I had no clue how to cook regularly (or very well for that matter!) develop a sense of indepence in the world, and my own problems felt unbearable no matter how big or small. I had the overwhelming urge to run away from my problems but I knew it would solve nothing. Well, I was right about both things! I decided to save up and place a few friendly bets (which I never dreamed I would win) and used all the money to travel to Europe!
Anxiety & Depression
How I deal with it:
Talk about it, remove the stigma with honesty
CBT or Cognitive behavioral therapy
Practice! Take baby steps. Take a walk in the evening with friends, or like I did (with the cops who walk your local streets on patrol.)
It's important to realize when you should ask for advice and help. More importantly, practice using it, after you marinate in it. While your experience it yours alone, that doesn't mean someone you know and trust has not already lived a similar situation.
What I learned
Traveling alone taught me to be more independent, trust my instincts, learn to be resourceful, read people better, my problems were not unique, and enjoy simple things. Talking with complete strangers allowed me to feel like I could be very genuine and open with them about my life and not worry about running into them again after they told the whole town. I trusted the signs, maps, and tools I was given to get from one country to another. I turned my phone off! I kept in touch to let people know I was alive, but I was no longer glued to my phone. I got very good at noticing how I reacted to strangers and there attention to me. I encountered gypsies trying to rob me on a train in Pairs, and people who were friendly and non threatening. That hair on your body, those goosebumps, THEY ARE A GREAT INDICATOR.
You are smarter than you give yourself credit. Trust yourself.
I came home in a euphoric state. Sad I left Europe but now, I had confidence. I knew I could survive alone, in strange place, where I did not speak the language. I recommend taking chances like this, but not risks. Be smart and safe but live your life.