Self-Reflection During Travel: 5 Things I Learned About Myself in BC
I didn’t travel much growing up. My first plane ride was when we moved from the Philippines to Canada when I was 19. I’m still debating whether I would count our layover in Taipei when people ask me if I’d been in another country. Ha!
Although I’m pretty much a homebody, I can’t deny that travel does wonders for me. It is an opportunity for self-reflection and to discover myself while* (*sometimes “more than”) I discover the world.
During my 4 day trip to BC with Glenny, I looked back at my Instagram (because what better way to reflect on your life? Lol) and realized how much I have grown since my birthday trip to Toronto. And how much I grew since the first time my parents took us to Banff. I am a whole different person.
Sometimes, the places I’ve been to become lamp posts I gauge myself in. It’s always different—not just the places and what they offer uniquely, but the version of myself in each of them.
I journal and self-reflect regularly but I can never really see my progress in a bigger scale the way I do when I am removed from the equation. When I am in a different place. The moment I was rid of my daily cycles, my “home" and I was given an itinerary and agenda of how I was to spend my time for a few days, transformation I went under the last few months were starting to come to surface.
I’m so excited to edit my video “Postcards from BC” where I will share little mundane moments from BC and the journal pages I wrote during travel. For now, I will share the things I learned about myself during mour trip to Abbotsford and Harrison in the beautiful British Columbia!!
1. Serial Imagine-r Alert!
I think if there’s a competition, I’d fall at least on one of the Top 3 in the Imagination category.
I’ve written about acting as if before, and I always talk about speaking things into existence, but boy, even I was surprised by how I took it aallll the waaayyy. Haha! I’m ashamed that I am not ashamed one bit about that.
The first evening while having our dinner, I kept on telling Glenny, “make yourself feel at home. I’ll make you some tea.” Haha! And then when we finished eating our takeout dinner, I told her to not worry about it and that I would take care of the trash because “I know where the trash is.. It’s my house..” LOOOL (the hotel we were at was owned by a husband+wife and it felt very home-y!! Can’t blame me!)
Whenever we would pass by a schmancy house, I’d be like, “welcome to Mi Casa!” And then when I saw my dream car parked somewhere.. I stopped, looked at Glenny who was confused at that point and I said, “hey Glenny, where are you going? Here’s my car.”
Her reactions are always so priceless. “Oh my God..” Haha! But she got used to it. I mean, she had to get used to it! 4 days of that. Haha!
I am planning to write more about this in a future blog post featuring the best hotel in the entire world. Yee! I hope you’re as excited as me!
2. My Inclination to Stories
During our 3rd full day in Abbotsford, we visited different local businesses downtown-- coffee shops (!!!!), a juicery, a flower shop, a market collective. We did them all in a span of a few hours. Now, I loved trying on different drinks and desserts, we barely even finished one before we had to walk to the next store.
But that wasn’t my favorite.
What I cherished the most was when the owners themselves welcomed us and talked to us. I loved the stories.
Glenny and I bombarded them with questions about their products, how they got started, where their company name came from, where they are heading in the future, what it was like, their biggest lessons. We asked them business questions and I had realized even more how business stories aren’t only business stories. They are stories of life and love and family and passion.
It ignited my fire for my podcast and gave me new ideas. I only got hungrier and more inspired. These stories are a big part of why I do what I do and what keeps me going and I am so excited for what lies ahead. All in their Divine timing :)
3. My Routines Are Intact!
We spent a total of 3 mornings in BC. In 3 different fancy pretty places.
Sounds dreamy, right?!
I only recently developed a new morning routine and it was never a challenge because I am always home. When I get invited to sleepovers, (wow I have friends haha!) I would always think about having to sacrifice my morning routine and if we’re in that level of friendship yet.. HAHA! You know it’s real if I give up my morning routine for you. HA!
But kidding aside, my morning routine was never challenged and I didn’t really think about it until a few days before our trip which then-- I was so busy being so excited flying again and visiting new places for me to even worry.
I didn’t know what to expect.
But ahh, I am so glad to say that I was able to get on with my morning routines while traveling! The first morning, I had a room to myself so I thought, yea this is easy! But I was proud of myself when I was able to do it the next two mornings when I shared a room with Glenny. Lucky for me, Glenny left me alone to do my morning worship. Haha! I love that girl.
It’s also the same with my night routines! I am so in love with my days. They differ from each other and can sometimes be at both ends of the spectrum but as long as I start and end the day doing the same thing, I think I’ll stay sane. Haha!
4. Is the Traveling Entrepreneur Life for me?
I see so many posts about the entrepreneur lifestyle, being a nomad, working from anywhere.. I mean, I love my coffeeshops! And bringing my laptop to the library! Or editing photos while on a long drive.
But this trip got me thinking-- would the nomad lifestyle be for me? I mean, I realize now that this isn’t the best experiment to base my final opinion on especially because we were on the go go go. And everything was quite new to me so I wanted to take the moments in as much as possible.
But if I learned something about it, it’s that I still have so much to learn! Haha!
Although I was able to get some work done, I wasn’t able to finish as much as I thought I would be able to. Not because of time restraints but because of my energy! At the end of the day, and on the little *free* moments that I get, I wanted to just write. And on the mornings, I had my routine.
I’d love the traveling lifestyle, however NOT on that pace! Haha! I’ll be good as long as I get my little pieces of *home* in it.
I think the ideal thing would be being able to stay at a place for longer periods of time, and then spending the first day or two exploring and taking pictures and then the rest hanging out at coffeeshops working!! Ahhh.
Like what we did on the 3rd day, we had several hours before our check in. They gave us suggestions where to go but Glenny was very very gracious to come to a coffeeshop with me to just stay still and get work done. Haha! I think she was also overwhelmed at that point as well that it just stopped being fun! Hahahaha so stopping by a coffeeshop was a blessing! My little home.
Also, I need a desk. The working by the beach sounds so nice now but we saw the ocean in BC and all I did (and wanted to do) was journal!!
Overall, though, I wouldn’t change anything. I wouldn’t have worked more or less. Everything felt perfect and aligned and this experience surely taught me something!
Here are some pictures tagged under #entrepreneurlife #workfromanywhere #laptoplifestyle ahahaha I’m such a troll!
5. How I Am With/Around Other People
This quite interested me. Lately I have been on a transition with myself and how I spend my days, how I think, how I spend my time/money/energy.
When I am with other people, there’s always something new to talk about or catch up on, or an agenda to follow, or a program, or we are at an event. My family are the only ones I spend literal hours with-- and even then, I’m always out at the library, a shoot, a coffee shop and when I am home they are gracious with my personal space.
Meaning, I spend so much time alone.
Being with Glenny, I was learning so much about myself. It was a new “co-living” experience haha!
I always always pray that God teaches me how to be integral. That I am able to be the same person in my business outfit or in my pajamas. When I am alone or with other people. At church or at a coffee shop. Although there would be different factors that would affect how I act, I want my character to be the same. I prayed for a steadfast heart.
Safe to say, I think God approves. Haha!
I think also I have Glenny to thank for it. She has given me a safe space to just be. I never felt like I had to be someone I wasn’t, or shrink myself. If anything, we just flowed. As we joke about being very clingy, we gave each other our time & spaces and respected each other.
The photo on the left, I spent the night journaling while she spent it on the patio looking at the stars drinking her wine. Haha! I was afraid I was gonna be overwhelmed being in the same space with someone for a long time (Omg pray for my future marriage LOL), but it wasn’t the case at all!
She’s such a kind soul. And I am so so grateful forever.
On our last night, I thought she was still working but then I heard her snore haha she fell asleep on the couch! I was editing photos on the bed while listening to Steven Furtick and she didn’t want to interrupt me IM CRYING!
I pray that she knows how much I appreciate her and I am very appreciative of her heart! She is for me as much as she is for myself and it has been that way since day 1. What an angel.
There we have it! I hope for more opportunities to learn about myself as I discover the world, to broaden my horizons and see new perspectives. This is indeed one of my favorite parts of traveling.
The next time you travel, take time to stop. Put your camera down and create moments that are just for you. Those moments of stillness, where the universe is speaking to you, those are what you will go back to in memories. :)
Photos of me by @glennymah of Confessions of A Scorpio