Travelling and building your confidence

Me Today ~ A poem about self-confidence
November 20, 2010
Confidence Coaching Success with Maureen Nolan
March 25, 2011

I’ve just returned home from a spectacular six week holiday around South East Asia. It had been a goal of mine for years to see that part of the world, and let me tell you, it was even more incredible than I thought it would be! I can’t wait to go back again soon! I love Vancouver, but this super cold weather is tough to adjust to. I miss the hot sun and white sandy beaches!

I LOVE travelling for many reasons…it’s such a fantastic way to learn about other parts of the world and their cultures, while meeting SO many people from all over the world. Travelling is also a really great way to learn about yourself and build your confidence, especially if you travel alone.

For half of my trip I travelled with a friend and the other half I travelled by myself. Which is an incredibly empowering, rewarding and fulfilling way to travel.

Being a female and travelling alone to many people sounds scary and dangerous, but I really enjoy it and there are tons of advantages…

– you get to experience genuine independence and freedom
– you can take as little or as much time to do what YOU want to do
– you meet way more people
– you can pick up and leave, or stay longer at any destination…it’s totally up to you!

I absolutely love having the freedom to plan my itinerary around the places and sights that I am most interested in. But even when I was travelling alone, I wasn’t really alone. I was constantly meeting so many people. Other travellers or locals that were more than happy to show me around their town or city.

I started my holidays in Bangkok and did a full day temple tour and was blown away by the beautiful temples there. The Grand Palace was my favourite. It is an enormous and breath-taking place that everyone must see while in Thailand.

Then my friend and I travelled through Vietnam for 10 days. It was crazy busy, and there were literally millions of scooters everywhere, especially in Hanoi and Ho Chi Min City. I also learned how to surf in Nha Trang which was super cool, and I also did my first “Discovery Scuba Dive” there.

Then we headed over to the southern islands of Thailand (Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao) for a couple weeks of adventure and beach time. I did several fire dancing performances with the local performers at the beach bars. I also went kayaking, rock climbing, repelling, scuba diving. While in Koh Tao I got my PADI Scuba Diving Certification at Seas Shell Divers. I love being in the water so much that I knew I would love diving, but WOW… I really had no idea how exhilarating and surreal it is. I felt like I was in a beautiful dream the entire time. Another hobby to add to the list!!!

(I’ll write more about my diving experience later!)

Then I went off on my own to Krabi. I learned how to rock climb and repel off the lime stone rock formations. Then I went over to Phi Phi, which was such a beautiful (but very busy) little island.

Then over to Phuket, and up to northern Thailand, Chiang Mai, for some more adventure activities:

  • I rode an elephant through the jungle
  • I hung out with and pet a few tigers
  • I visited a beautiful waterfall
  • I went on a bamboo raft down a river
  • I went to an orchid and butterfly farm
  • I visited the “Long Neck Karen” Tribe

Then I flew over to Cambodia to check out Phnom Penh and the spectacular temples in Angkor, Siem Reap. The temples were insane! It felt like I was in an ancient civilization.

My three favourites were: Bayon (with the faces), Phnom Bakheng (to watch the sunset up on the hill top) and Ta Prom (where the movie “Lara Croft Tomb Raider” was filmed)

Before I flew back home I flew back down to Bangkok for a few days of shopping in Siam Square where there is five enormous, multi-level shopping malls that are all within walking distance from one another.

While sitting in the Beijing airport on my 12 hour layover back to Vancouver, I had a lot of time to reflect on my spectacular trip. I was (and still am) so grateful to have realized my travelling goals and experience the most amazing 6 weeks of my life. The most empowering and gratifying experiences took place when I was on my own, just following my intuition, and had no definite plans.

When you travel alone you are forced to face the unknown, make decisions for yourself, and overcome challenges by yourself, which naturally builds your confidence and courage and as a result, makes you a much stronger and wiser person.

So when you have some free time to take your holidays, I hope you will consider embarking on an adventure on your own. I promise you it will help you discover your inner strength and open your eyes to the world of possibilities that are out there!

P.S. I’m so proud of one of my clients…she is my youngest client, 22, and she is leaving in a few weeks to go travel around Thailand and India alone. She is going to have the time of her life!


“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
– Mark Twain


“Knowledge breeds confidence and confidence breeds success.”


Here’s some of my pics from my travels…

3 Comments

  1. Amazing Pictures of your trip Suzanne!

  2. Srinam says:

    Hi Suzanne,

    You should have travelled into Penang, Malaysia. You would have loved it.

  3. Suzanne says:

    Thanks Niki!

    Srinam, I ran out of time! I am going to go back to Malaysia, Indonesia and The Philippines 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *