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4 Ways Traveling Around the World Will Make You More Confident

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If it wasn’t for your lack of confidence, you would’ve gotten that job that you wanted, the relationship that you dreamed about, and the investors you needed to grow your business.

Instead of being completely sure of who you are and what you bring to the table, you walk into the room with your head down, palms sweating, and inner thoughts colliding. You wish you didn’t look like a nervous wreck, but you can’t help but be intimidated when it comes to being in a large room full of influential people.

If I would have known that traveling around the world for an extended period of time would silence my doubts and insecurities, I would have done it before I turned 28; but I’m grateful that I had mentors who motivated me to take a six month tour around the world with an international organization called Up with People in order to tap into more of my potential.

If you want to shake off the goose bumps, you have to start making moves–unknown moves. Unfamiliar moves. Uncomfortable moves; this is when you really find out what you are made of. It’s time to say goodbye to your fears and book an extended vacation to a place you have never been before.

Here are four ways traveling around the world will make you more confident:

1. You gain more courage than some people gain in a lifetime

This is confidence in its finest flavor; when you take yourself from everything you have known and consistently venture into foreign territory, you gain the courage to make heart throbbing decisions that you were always too afraid to make in your personal life. If you’ve ever wanted to have the courage to follow an untraditional path as an entrepreneur or take a career-pause from the corporate casino in order to tap into your greatest potential, traveling will give you the courage you need to strip yourself of the things that have kept you in your safe zone.

Traveling around the world is one of those courageous acts that allows you to beat all odds and thoughts that say what you can’t, shouldn’t, and wouldn’t do. It exposes you to different types of people who’ve pursued different paths and are happy, giving you the courage to not fall into the temptation of doing what everyone else is doing.

“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.” – Muhammad Ali

2. Your cultural intelligence is higher than the average human

The more you are exposed to life, the more you learn about the different shades of people who occupy the world. The best way to get to know a culture is to immerse yourself in the culture. Cultural intelligence requires that you unlearn what you think you’re certain about and put yourself in the shoes of someone else. You’ll ask the questions that you really want to know, eat the foods that the people in the community eat, and get involved in the activities that don’t exist in your own country.

While visiting Sweden, I learned about the importance of “FIKA.” It’s a concept in Swedish culture that means “to have coffee” and implies “taking a break from work.” I was excited to tell my friends in the USA about this new idea and how it impacts the work/life in Sweden.

Awareness increases confidence. When you add more cultural experiences to your mental resume, you feel more confident connecting with people from all over the world.

 

3. You worry less about what others think about you  

There will be times that you completely screw up a word or phrase in another language, order a foreign dish that looks nothing like what you expected, or forgot your new address when you decided to go for a three-block walk. Yes–you may look silly or want to melt in embarrassment, but you’ll realize it’s not the end of the world. It’s a great story that you can laugh about later.

When you travel the world, you begin to see the world differently, view yourself in new ways, and understand what really matters in life. You stop trying to constantly fit into an idea of perfection that someone else has created and you start making progress towards what makes your heart full. Traveling allows you to free yourself of all of the insecurities and live a life on your terms.

“Life is too short to worry about anything. You had better enjoy it because the next day promises nothing.” – Eric Davis

4. You gain more clarity about who you really are

The sad truth is that most people have no idea who they are or what they want. They haven’t done the internal work necessary to gain that clarity. They also haven’t stepped outside of everything they know in order to tap into potential that they never knew existed. When you travel the world, you learn more about yourself than you intended to learn.

From experimenting with different cultural activities and learning what really excites your taste buds, you discover more about what you like and find strengths you never really paid attention to. This gives you the power to make decisions that are core to who you really are. Clarity is key to advancing in life and will give you the confidence to make those heart-throbbing decisions that can change your life.

What do you hope to gain from traveling around the world? Share it with us and leave a comment below.

After 7 years of working in Corporate America as a Certified Public Accountant, Charlene left her job in April 2015 and decided to travel around the world with a non-profit international education organization called Up with People. She has traveled around the world with 100 individuals from 20 different countries. You can visit her www.careergoddessacademy.com or connect with her through Twitter.

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Shubham

    Sep 22, 2016 at 1:26 am

    I also love to travel but I know only english, is this enough?

    • Charlene Rhinehart

      Sep 22, 2016 at 10:45 pm

      Hi Shubham,

      You can always start with what you know and figure the rest out as you go. That’s the beauty of life! I am in the same boat as you. English is the only language that I speak fluently. My willingness to experiment with other languages, pronounce words incorrectly multiple times, and ask for guidance allowed me to learn how to be comfortable being uncomfortable. The moment when you don’t allow communication mistakes to stop your progress is when you really have the chance to boost your confidence. Great question!

  2. Francisco A. Fierros III

    Sep 21, 2016 at 2:05 am

    I whole-heartedly concur! I am an AMCIT living in China. I help my wife with her business…helping families and children. In my previous career I was able to travel the world…but, could only stay in the host country for a short while. It gave me the taste for adventure. After one year here in China and traveling in East Asia I am so thankful for all these experiences I’ve had and look forward to having many more. It has taught me that each day is a glorious gift and that each day is what you make of it…so why not make it the best it can be!

    • Charlene Rhinehart

      Sep 25, 2016 at 7:30 am

      Hi Francisco, Thanks for sharing your experience! Traveling has a way of showing you what’s important in life and challenges you to grow a deeper appreciation for everything – even the “small” moments that seem insignificant. I would love to read about your experience in China! What a great learning experience to be completely immersed in another culture.

  3. Charlene Rhinehart

    Sep 20, 2016 at 4:38 am

    Thanks for reading and sharing!

  4. Eric

    Sep 20, 2016 at 3:55 am

    I love number 2. Your versatility increases exponentially from having that experience. Still, I’m so uncomfortable being in a place where I don’t speak the language! 8 trips to france and I can say “merci”. Maybe that feeling of discomfort is a good thing.

    • Charlene Rhinehart

      Sep 25, 2016 at 7:35 am

      Thanks for sharing, Eric! Cultural intelligence is a skill that is needed to thrive in business . It explains why diversity and inclusion is such a hot topic right now.

      It’s completely normal to be uncomfortable in a place where you can’t connect with others because of language barriers. The best advice for learning another language is to stay in a location for an extended period of time. This forces you to add more words to your vocabulary in order to navigate the foreign place. Finding a language buddy also helps. It’s all about practice. If you don’t use it, you quickly lose it.

  5. Glenn Mace

    Sep 18, 2016 at 11:13 pm

    Great read ?

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Life

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We all have a God-given destiny to fulfill that we were each born with. I personally believe it is buried deep down within us. The number one secret to success is to let it emerge out of you and release it to the world. What is my destiny you may ask? It is the thing you would regret not doing before leaving Planet Earth. (more…)

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Don’t Want To Feel Like A Failure Anymore? Stop Doing These 6 Things

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It’s pretty annoying isn’t it? All those great and accomplished people telling you that FAILURE is a necessity on your way to success. Yeah, that’s easy for them to say; they’re already ‘on the other side’! You on the other hand, are still struggling all day everyday to get your business lifted off the ground and are really not that sure if you’re indeed going to make it.

There’s that little voice in your head that keeps telling you that you don’t have the stuff to make it all happen. Not now and not ever. You feel like a failure…it’s holding you back and you don’t know how to deal with it. Well you could do yourself a favor and start dealing with it by doing the following things:

1. Stop Denying You Feel Like A Failure

Telling yourself things are going great when they’re not is one of the biggest, though most useless, coping mechanisms human beings deploy in rough times. Common denial signals among entrepreneurs: trying to regain more control by working even more hours and on the other side compensating this by letting go of all this control by partying and drinking way too hard.

What you’re doing is denying yourself the opportunity to actually feel what’s going on and acknowledge the problem; that both you and your business are in a bad place. Without acknowledging it, it’ll be pretty difficult to actually STOP feeling it. And remember, just because you feel like a failure, this does not mean that you indeed ARE a failure!

2. Stop Making It Bigger Than it Really Is

This is one of those other ‘fun’ things human beings do; we blow things way out of proportion in our heads! In business, when you lose that big client you’ve been working on for weeks, it feels like it’s the end of the world. You start doubting yourself, your strategy, your entire business model right up to the point where you barely sleep because you’re working on pivoting the whole thing.

But what if that customer simply didn’t have the money to go for your service anyway? Or what if they just decided to go for someone who is cheaper but who offers less quality? Does that mean there’s something wrong with YOU? Or that this was the ONLY customer out there and that you’re now doomed forever?

Of course not, it simply means that THIS CUSTOMER wasn’t a match. It’s a bit like dating actually…So if you take this into consideration, could it be that you just feel like a failure instead of really not succeeding in that what you want to at this point in time?

3. Stop Thinking You’re The Only One Who Feels Like This

You’re not! With the possible exception of the true sociopaths, that feeling you’re feeling is very normal to EVERYONE. It might not seem like it on the outside – because people don’t like to acknowledge this remember – but I can guarantee you that it’s true. But unlike 99% of the world’s population, YOU’RE not going to let this feeling stop you in your tracks. Are you?

4. Stop Thinking You’re Supposed To Be Superhuman

In fact, it’s very likely that you’re already doing, learning and succeeding at WAY more than most other people are. But for entrepreneurs, somehow, that never seems to be enough. You don’t just want to be successful after a few years of hard work (which is normal). You want to be successful after only a few months. Because you’re special…or at least you think you are…

Well, here’s the truth: you ARE special! But…it’s just not very likely that you’re one of those – very very rare – entrepreneurial superstars that – seemingly – just added some hot water and got instant business success as a result.

5. Stop Being So Incredibly Stubborn

Entrepreneurs are stubborn…almost by default. It’s what makes them push forward in the hardest of times. But…if you’re not doing the right things right you might just be hammering a square peg through a round hole. Which will only add to that frustrated feeling you’re already having. So why not stop being so stubborn for a moment, stop hammering away on that what obviously is not working and ask for help?

No matter who you ask – a business mentor or coach, a befriended entrepreneur – someone with a neutral perspective on you and our business will be very likely to see what’s going on with a lot more clarity than you can and can guide you to a place that will feel a whole lot more comfortable.

6. Stop Being Afraid Of Failure

I know, I know, you’ve heard this a million times before and you wouldn’t be in this pickle if you could do this. Right? I’m right there with ya!

But, if you get really rational about it, what’s the worst that could happen?

  • You might have to get a ‘real’ job for a while and start over on the side;
  • You might not be able to afford your rent anymore…but with Airbnb on the 1 hand and couchsurfing on the other, you should be able to work it out somehow;
  • You’ll have all the more experience to start over a whole lot faster;
  • You’ll be no less respected by anyone because it’s clear you gave it your all;
  • In a few years, when you’re an established and supersuccessful entrepreneur you’ll also have a cool failure story to tell;
  • None of your limbs will fall off;

Now that’s not too bad for a plan B is it? Failure is such a negative word. And the associated feeling is terrible and numbing. But really…how is giving it your all and not succeeding really the same as failing? Shouldn’t the definition of failure not be along the lines of ‘not even trying’ or ‘giving up when it gets hard’?

In other words: stop beating yourself up over this!

There’s really no need to feel like a failure at all because you’re sticking your neck out, you’re trying to make a difference and you’re still moving upward on that treacherous entrepreneurial mountain.

And that…is what success REALLY is.

Those Who Failed Their Way To Success

Quotes To Live By:

“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” – Robert F. Kennedy

“If you don’t try at anything, you can’t fail… it takes back bone to lead the life you want” – Richard Yates

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas A. Edison

“We are all failures – at least the best of us are.” – J.M. Barrie

“Success is stumbling form failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm” – Winston Churchill

“Don’t let success go to your head and failure to your heart” – Will Smith

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