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MIndset Decisions to make while travelling

It came to me early morning, misty Naples, sliding around the back of taxi that was driving around corners at break-neck speed. He quoted me the price that was more than what I had seen on the app. To argue or not argue? How much did the additional 5 euros really matter? And maybe he was right, maybe there was an additional airport tax, or some other legitimate reason that he had to charge me that amount? Or maybe he was just ripping me off?? The realisation was, when it all boils down to it solo travel is really a series of psychological decisions*.

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Another decision to make while solo travelling is when to argue and when to just 'play along'. You'll need to decide throughout your time solo travelling where that line is. What are going to be the things that are 'ok' and what's 'not ok' (then there are the things that are definitely 'NOT ok" - but that would need a whole other blog). And, if you're like me, that line will shift (sometimes by the minute) and can be influenced by completely irrational factors - being hungry and tired spring to mind. Sometimes solo travel can be a lot easier if you let some of the small things slide. Sure the extra 5 euros is annoying but it really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

Another decision to make while solo travelling is when to argue and when to just 'play along'. You'll need to decide throughout your time solo travelling where that line is. What are going to be the things that are 'ok' and what's 'not ok' (then there are the things that are definitely 'NOT ok" - but that would need a whole other blog). And, if you're like me, that line will shift (sometimes by the minute) and can be influenced by completely irrational factors - being hungry and tired spring to mind. Sometimes solo travel can be a lot easier if you let some of the small things slide. Sure the extra 5 euros is annoying but it really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

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Decide when to connect and when to disconnect with people. I'm not going to lie, sometimes solo travel can get lonely. And sometimes the best remedy is to put your big-girl-brave-pants*** on, go out the hostel/ hotel door and get amongst it. Sure it might be really uncomfortable to start and you might feel like the odd (wo)man out, but usually our fears are much louder than the actual risk itself. Worst thing that happens - you have a drink and some food by yourself (if you don't happen to find anyone to chat to) which is what would have happened anyway if you'd hidden yourself away. But best case, you may just find some freakin cool people to chat to, and that feeling of lonely will very quickly evaporate.

Travel (and solo travel in particular) comes down to a set of psychological decisions around what kind of adventure you want. You can have tough days (we all do) but if you get your mindset right and get out there, it can transform your trip (and your life)!

*I am no expert in psychology! ** I totally made this up ;) *** Yup this is a thing (am sure there is some guy equivalent?!)

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The pros and cons of work travel

I've been lucky enough to have had a whole range of adventures with travel for work. Here's some things to think about the pros and cons of travel with work....


Pros of travel with work

  • You get to have very different conversations in the location. When you are travelling with work you are usually meeting the locals and talking about specific things of interest to your job. So you get a far more indepth perspective than when you are just on holiday.

  • Another pro to travel with work is you can try out different cities as a local would experience it. How is it living in this place? What is it like commuting to work in the mornings? Going for a runs in the local park with the locals? Is this a city I would like to live in, in the future?

  • Obviously there's the money side of things. Work will usually be paying for your flights and accommodation and some kind of food allowance. This is handy!


Cons of travel with work

  • Travel with work can be really tiring. Those mornings you just want to snooze and have another few hours of sleep - it's not happening. Get up, get dressed, look sharp and if you need it - put that game face on!

  • You'll also often have limited time to actually see the destination. When your travelling with work you can often be heading in and out of the place with no time to spare.

  • Often you end up being the 'mule' to carry around brochures and collateral around the world, which can make your travelling light goals a bit challenging


So given all that here are my top 3 solo travel with work tips:

  1. Try to add the weekend before or after to your trip, so you can get to the destination and have a good look around. You'll probably need to pay for the logistics yourself during these days but what an opportunity to see somewhere new!

  2. Try to eat and drink well - ok so I'm terrible at this - but if you can eat healthily and hold back on the networking drinks and canapes, you're going to feel a whole lot better at the end of your trip.

  3. Chat to your local colleagues around what they do in their city - places to go out, things to see and how their lives are in this place - so fascinating!

Enjoy travelling with work if you can get it. The world really is our oyster and if we can do great work and explore, it's all good!

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