Dear women of the world,
I beg you to travel.
Please don’t stress about the money — you’ll make it work. Don’t worry about your schedule, you’ll find the time. Don’t stress about the details, it will all come together. But for the love of God, whatever the excuse, please don’t say you’re not ready.
Women — I urge you to travel the world– not for the picturesque Instagram photos or bragging rights, but for the unparalleled feeling of liberation that has to do with being detached from your familiar surroundings into a new, less comfortable, more foreign environment. Figuring out a foreign metro system, translating local street signs,always planning your next move or adventure — these trials of travel that you think you’re not ready for? They are what make the experience all the more rewarding — and you’re ready for it, more so than you probably think you are.
We as woman are constantly doubting ourselves or failing to realize the strengths in our own abilities — leading to insecurities and poor-self esteem, but there is nothing more rewarding than jumping out of your comfort zone and watching yourself thrive. Straying from convenience to venture off to some unbeknownst part of the world is admittedly daunting at first, but seldom do I feel more empowered than when I’m holding a boarding pass in one hand and a carry-on in another, ready to take on my next adventure.
As a female traveler, I am often disconcerted by some of the comments or stigma associated with traveling as a woman or with other women. I am met with both valid concerns like “is it safe?” Or “you’re very pretty, be careful” And less amiable ones such as “where is your father?” or “I would never let my daughter come here alone.”
When addressing these concerns, I can’t help to think how detrimental this mindset is to women who want to pursue not only travel, but anything in life. When telling a woman she cannot do something alone, or is too “pretty” to go somewhere or do something — we are halting women from fully pursuing their passions — something that should rewarded and uplifted rather than stigmatized.
The reality is that a woman who travels is seen as intimidating to many — and why wouldn’t it be. Patriarchal society fails to see women as risk takers, as spontaneous and bold. Travelling is undoubtedly a lifestyle that forces an individual to break out of their comfort zone and take the initiative to engage in new experiences — all life choices not typically associated with women.
The female traveler tells the world that women can be risky, bold and spontaneous too — we can be feminine and courageous, ladylike and fearless at the same time.
When a woman travels, she shows the world that she refuses to be associated with the stereotype of women as fragile and insecure. When she travels, she shows the world that women don’t need material things to be happy. She
shows the world that not only is she not afraid of taking risks, of tackling on new situations, of breaking stigmas — but it shows the world she can.
You can too.