Go On A Vacation: Self-Introspection And Self Discovery Trip
Think of a time when you travelled somewhere without any plans and you dedicated time to just focus on yourself. Just you, your notebook, and your pen in a quiet and beautiful environment. Nothing to distract you or remind you of your everyday hurdles.
Wasn’t it just before the time when big changes happened in your life?
It’s not a coincidence. Stepping away from the hustle bustle, your current reality is essential for you to zoom out on your life and look at the big picture. To understand where you’re standing right now and where you’re heading to. And to make decisions to shift gears or pick another route in order to get into the fast lane towards your most desired dreams.
But the thing is, we rarely ever take time for ourselves to even just be alone and reflect on our life for a few hours. In this article, we’ll explore why going on an introspection trip is so key for our personal growth, why we should do it more often, and what are some questions you can answer during this me-time with yourself.
The Power of Solitude
Finding meaning or a sense of purpose can often come out of new found experiences like travel. Several of us have also watched or read works like Eat, Pray, Love that promotes traveling as a way of self-discovery. However, shutting the world out to find yourself is easier said than done. That is why, perhaps, going to a secluded location to work on yourself is the best option.
Solo travel is not something most people consider and it also is not for everyone. However, it is one of those bucket-list type of experiences that everyone should attempt. When traveling for a self-introspective journey, you want to do it alone or perhaps take someone on a similar mission along with you. Most importantly, you also want to unplug on this trip which is something that sounds preposterous for this digital age.
Solitude means withdrawing from the world to figure out who you are or work on certain aspects of yourself. It is an untapped freedom that lets you entertain nothing but your own personal thoughts with the goal of discovering your deepest emotions and passions.
In such seclusion, like inventor Nikola Tesla rightly said, you find that your mind is keener and sharper. However, a lot of people assume that solitude translates to loneliness which is not the case. To the contrary, it is a positive and desirable state that allows you to engage with yourself in ways you have’t before.
It is in isolation that you can find balance within yourself and you can reach an even deeper level of understanding through travel, meditation, or getting lost for hours in putting down your thoughts on paper. Journaling is a process of deep reflection that has helped many people work through some deep-seated issues. Combining it with a self-discovery trip can help you on your way to truly understand who you are and what you want out of life.
The first step towards self-development and success is to introspect about who you really are, what your positive traits are, what your weaknesses are, and what your personality type is like (introvert, extrovert, or ambivert). Now, let’s first look at these personality types:
Introverts are the kind of people who think before they speak, which is why they often come across as silent or shy. In reality, they are simply more engaged with their inner world and a noisy environment scares them away. They do like to socialize but they prefer a quiet dinner rather than a loud party.
Extroverts thrive by being around people and they are usually very direct and talkative. They enjoy bouncing around ideas and spend the majority of their time in social settings. Being alone often makes them uncomfortable and they always need some kind of buzz going on around them.
Ambiverts have a balanced personality combining the traits of both introversion and extroversion. They might be one in certain situations and environments and the other in a different setting. This is also because introversion and extroversion lie on a scale and they are not binary, so you might have characteristics from both personalities with a bigger inclination towards one of them.
The process of knowing yourself also involves understanding your personality type. Identifying yourself with something which you are not will only bring delusion to your life.
So the first step towards self-development is to know who you really are and learning about the circumstances and the environment in which you really work well. The kind of environment you need in order to be your best self.
You can figure all this out by making a list of things you like and things you do not like. It helps you have an internal dialogue with yourself to try and figure out the possible ways to do more of the things you like.
Warren Buffett studied himself and figured out the best possible ways to live his life. After examining himself with a bit of self-introspection, he decided to return back to Omaha, Nebraska and designed his home and office accordingly. So did Oprah Winfrey in her own ways.
It is 100 % absolutely necessary in life to know yourself and have a better clarity about every aspect of your being.
Know the Purpose of Your Life
With a better understanding of your personality traits and how it makes you who you are, you become better placed to figure out your purpose in life. Ask yourself the following questions:
● What is the purpose of your life? Why are you here?
● What do you really want in life? What makes you feel alive?
● What things do you want to achieve before you die?
Make sure that what you want in life is aligned perfectly or matches with your own personality type — so that you stay true to yourself on the journey. If you are an extreme introvert and you want to become a sales guy; it’s likely that it will not be a wise decision to go against your nature. Refer back to your personality type when figuring out what you really want in life. That is the only way to make sure that what you achieve in life, in the end, truly makes you happy.
What you want out of life has to do less with the outer world and more with who you really are.
It is second nature for us to think critically throughout almost all aspects of our lives. That includes trying to decode a confusing text message from a significant other or going through a complex work document. If we invest so much time into trying to understand others — why not invest that time and effort to get to know ourselves? Self-introspection aims to examine your own feelings, thoughts, and sensations to gain a better insight about yourself.
In our fast-paced society, it is often difficult to sit down and do some much-needed self-reflection — simply because we are distracted all the time. Even when we get a few quiet minutes to ourselves, we pick up our phone and start scrolling. That is why we all need to make it a habit to try and get away for a self-introspection journey and unplug ourselves from the noise of the world, quite literally. Ask yourself these two questions when carrying out a self-examination.
Figuring out these two elements about yourself helps you leverage your strengths better and work on your weaknesses to improve overall.
1. What Are Your Strengths?
Your strengths essentially sum up what you are naturally good at or your unique abilities. These are things that you can do effortlessly and even lose track of time when doing them. The best way to have a clear picture of what you are good at and focus on building them up is to reflect and write them down.
It can also prove a challenging process because the possibilities are endless. The way about it is to think of the things that you enjoy doing the most regardless of time or even if money is not involved. Also, ask friends and family members to give you their opinions about what they believe you are good at, and it might just open your eyes more.
Just send this question to 10 people who know you well: What is my unique ability or superpower? What can I do better than anyone else?
Once you get your answers, you might start to see patterns in them and discover parts of yourself that you’ve been blind to. We often don’t notice our biggest strengths because they are such innate part of ourselves and inseparable from our being. This simple exercise will help you uncover them so that you know how to present yourself and know what you can build on.
2. What Are Your Weaknesses?
The first thing to understand about weaknesses is that they are not limitations or shortcomings. They are areas in your life that need improvement and if you are not aware of them they can hold you back from achieving your full potential.
Now, most of us have an equally tough time identifying our weaknesses. Reflecting and writing them down gives you a better perspective about how you need to improve. Weaknesses could range from social skills to professional elements.
Likewise, you could ask friends and family about their opinions on what weaknesses you have. However, ask them questions based on how you handled challenging situations and for suggestions about how you could have done better. This makes sure that the answer you get in constructive criticism that you can act on to become a better version of yourself.
Having a clear understanding of your strengths and weaknesses helps you approach life differently. As Warren Buffett encourages, it makes sense to focus on your strengths and play them up because they essentially define your abilities to reach your full potential. Do your best to work on your weaknesses but always remember that they do not mean that you are any less capable.
What Do You Really Want In Life?
We all have goals that we hope to achieve in our lifetime, and for the better part, most of them often seem too far to reach. Now, one of the beliefs that we also have is that our environment directly impacts who we are. When traveling for self-discovery, the new experiences allow you to gain a lot of clarity about what you want out of your life.
More often than not, we want four things out of life including:
- Good health for both ourselves and those who are closest to us. A healthy body significantly helps in maintaining a healthy mind.
- To accumulate a decent amount of wealth allowing us to comfortably make ends meet, and also possibly leave our dependants with a decent inheritance.
- We all want to form lasting relationships that go beyond familial ties. Interpersonal relationships are important for our physical and emotional wellbeing.
- Maintaining a sense of spirituality feeds into having an optimistic outlook on life, forging positive relationships, and finding meaning and purpose in life.
Getting a better understanding of why these elements are important to you also helps you work on what is happening within. Define your personal goals in each of these four areas and create a vision for each of them for the next three years. Allow yourself to dream big.
Once you have your 3-year vision, think about what can you achieve from that in the next one year. And then the next month. If you break down your goals into smaller chunks, it will instantly seem easier to achieve them and it will allow you to focus on only the next step without feeling overwhelmed. Create a plan for yourself in each area of your life with this framework and make sure you’re not asking too much or too little of yourself.
Read About Personal Growth
On your journey to self-discovery, there are several works of literature that can give you better insights about the process. Who better to turn to other than the man credited for introducing the self-help and personal development genre? We are talking about Napoleon Hill and some of his publications worth diving into including The Laws of Success or the later condensed version in collaboration with Andrew Carnegie, Think and Grow Rich.
Both publications aim at teaching ordinary people the tools they need to become successful. Most importantly, they outline the process of breaking down psychological barriers preventing you from attaining success. Hill himself promotes the process of specialized knowledge which essentially entails continued learning and gained experiences.
Putting It Into Practice
Introspection and self-discovery can create powerful change in your life — but only if you act on your reflections afterwards. Now, with a better understanding of who you are, you can work on figuring out where you are currently and where you want to go in life. The self-introspection process can significantly help with this because it will change how you see yourself which, in turn, changes your response to certain situations. It all comes down to how you act and eventually other people’s perception about you.
If anything, you want to figure out your internal roadblocks and actively work on removing them to reach your desired outcomes. Through the self-introspection journey, you also want to note down the following things:
- Not that you’ve gained this self-awareness, what’s the first thing you will change in your life?
- What are 3 things you’re going to commit to every day?
- What things have you identified as internal roadblocks and how can you overcome them?
- What are some of the positive things that you have been doing already for your growth and should continue?
This will give you a better understanding of the tools you need to work on yourself, the habits you want to create, and also how to implement your insights into your everyday life in order to strike change.
The purpose of going on a self-reflection journey and journaling is to analyze yourself without judgment or criticism. The aim is to start understanding your actions in different situations, work on your values, and also become more aware of yourself as a whole.
To reach this point, you must disconnect from the world by possibly traveling alone to a destination where you love to spend time. A beautiful environment will make you more inspired and help you dream bigger when it comes to goal setting, and give you the calmth you need to face some of the more difficult questions about your life.
It will give you a better understanding of who you are and where you want to head to in life. It’s one of the best personal investments you could ever make.