Single This Summer?
Why You Should Consider A Solo Vacation
My favorite place in the world is Cape Cod, Massachusetts. I’ve been vacationing there since I was a child, and as an adult I’ve shared my favorite spots with my romantic partners (there’ve been a few over the decades).\
In 2011, I endured the end of a relationship with someone who loved The Cape as much as I did. And in 2012, I went there alone, to leave my own solo footprints in places we’d previously treaded together.
As much as I looked forward to the trip, I dreaded it at the same time. And yet, despite the discomfort, I knew in my soul that going back there by myself was something I had to do.
You know what? I loved it. And I’ve gone back, alone, every year since.
Trekking over old memories was indeed a bittersweet process, but that wasn’t all I did. With only myself to please, I had new adventures, discovered new spaces, and found peace in what I’ve come to call “soulitude.”
These days, I highly recommend everyone take a solo vacation, especially after a breakup or divorce. Here’s why:
You get to know yourself. Being present in a different place opens the door for new experiences, opportunities, and growth. Being alone in a different space means that it’s all about you: you get to choose your adventure, and marinate in your own responses without consideration or compromise with others. For instance, you might realize you personally hate the beach if you’re not watching your children splash in the water.
It’s empowering. Taking yourself out of town is a big accomplishment. Especially if you travel somewhere exotic or you have to navigate figurative bumps in the road along the way. It feels good to complete a long drive or find your gate in gigantic airport all by yourself.
It’s rejuvenating. This might be slightly more applicable to introverts, but there’s nothing stopping extroverts from socializing on a solo vacation. My point is that when you immerse yourself in whatever you (and you alone) want or need, you nurture your own healing and you’ll come back a stronger version of yourself.
Ultimate freedom. Do what you want and sleep when you want. Make plans, or don’t. It’s all up to you. And unlike your “me time” at home, being on vacation gives you even more freedom due to the distance from your everyday life and responsibilities.
Despite this list of benefits, I know the idea of traveling alone might still seem overwhelming. In that case, here are a few tips:
Start small. You don’t have to send yourself to Japan for a month. Your first venture might be to drive 90 minutes and spend three nights in a hotel. That’s OK too. You’ll still experience the benefits I mentioned above.
Apps are your friend. It’s easier to find things to do, or meet up with new people in an unfamiliar place, when you have more information. So go ahead and download the apps that will help you find worthwhile restaurants, museums, hiking trails, or whatever it is you’ll be looking for.
Take a book For this, I suggest you use the kind that isn’t downloadable. Having a book handy will give you something to do when you’re dining alone, or lounging beside a pool. And an old-fashioned page-turner means you won’t have to worry about sun, sand, and water contact. Plus, the cover can be a conversation-starter.
With the summer season before us, I hope you’ll treat yourself to a solo vacation. Nothing beats a little rest and rejuvenation on your own terms.