How many times has fear held you back from doing something you really want to do? Are you over 40 and realize that you want to take a vacation in a far off land (or maybe just the next state) and you don’t know how to go about it? Fear can paralyze us into not living our dream lives. Of course not everyone can act on every little whim we have, like quitting a less than fulfilling job when we have a family to support, but with careful planning we can take steps to make our dreams into reality.
Take for instance traveling. My dream of going to Paris began many years ago when I was in High School. I love fashion and it was always a far off dream to visit the fashion capitol of the world. I never thought I would actually go at that time since dreams like that for me were just that-dreams that could never be reality. Then I turned 40 and for the first time I realized I will not live forever. I set up a separate savings account and started putting away about $15 dollars a week into that account. It was my “Paris Account” and I did not touch that account. I found that I did not miss that $15 every week and although we could have used that money for daily expenses, that was the only way I was ever going to make my Paris dream a reality. If you think you can’t afford to take a big trip, you can. A little research can go a long way. Think you are too old to stay in a Hostel? No way. There are Hostels around the world that specialize in catering to the older traveler. I recommend opening up your own little savings account. Put $5, 10, 15 dollars a week aside. It may take a long time to save up enough, but it will be worth it.
For the next seven years I kept building up that account until I had saved $3500. Mind you my hubby had no desire to share my dream with me and being that I was determined to go I started researching going by myself. I started searching for info on traveling to Paris solo and found that there is a whole lot of people my age that go it alone. There are lots of bloggers and other websites out there just geared to solo travel. You also can search for cheap vacations and cheap flights. They are out there and there are plenty of resources to make travel fit within you budget. I also did a lot of reading on the Paris forums on the Foder’s website for about every bit of information geared toward Paris travel. The more I researched the more obsessed I became.
I had resorted to the fact that I would have to go it alone until my hubby saw a TV spot featuring a week long tour of Paris with a local tour company hosted by a local news celebrity. Maybe this was my ticket!! Why I never thought of this before I will never know. I was afraid to go it totally by myself. After all going to a foreign country where you don’t speak the language is a little intimidating, but I was desperate to go and had the money all saved up! Could this be the answer?
I ended up going to an informational meeting about this trip and I had found my answer. That night I paid my deposit and made my Paris dream a reality. In the end I went on that vacation not knowing a single soul and ended up having the time of my life. Going on a vacation with a group tour is the perfect way to see a place you dream about. Going on a vacation tour is not always the “budget friendly” way of going, but it was a start for me. It turned out I was not the only solo person on that trip and in the end I made a few friends too.
I’m here to tell you that you should not let your fears stand in your way. Life is too short for having any regrets. Just because you have no one in your circle that shares your dream, does not mean that you can’t go for it on your own. Check out the tour companies in your area. I’m from Wisconsin and this trip was trough Holiday Vacations. There is a ton of info out there on solo travel. One of the best blogs for solo travel is the Solo Traveler blog. Here you can find all kinds of tips for the solo traveler like hostels, best times to book cheap flights, the best places to travel solo, or just do a Google search for solo travel and go from there.
Don’t let fear hold you back from fulfilling your dreams. my whole life I was too afraid to do things on my own. After I turned 40, that fear turned into determination. One way or another you can find a way to get there. You just need to believe you can do it and you have to want it bad enough. Please drop me an comment or better yet, sign up for my newsletter and receive my free Ebook How Travel Enhances Your Life