The unexpected transformations of a cycling holiday June 22, 2020 The unexpected transformations of a cycling holiday Guest travel writer Jo from 'You Choose the Way' shares some insight into what transformative travel looks like and how to make the most out of your holiday. You book your next adventure. You are eager to move slowly, so that you can see the country, meet the people and experience life in this foreign land. A cycling holiday seems like the perfect way to do it all. Besides the cultural, historical, community and culinary aspects that you’ll uncover, cycling holidays also provide an ideal context for change, within yourself and in communities you travel through.As you hop onto your bike each day and watch the exotic landscape roll by, there’s space for reflection. Within your bike helmet you have the time to think about life, and ask yourself what matters most. It’s an ideal context for inner exploration.Travel can be about better understanding the world, but it can also be about better understanding yourself. Let me explain why you would want to undergo any type of change during travel and what those transformations might be like. Why bother transforming as you travel As a travel coach, I’m always talking with travelers about how they can transform their lives. During travel, we are already outside of our comfort zones and the daily habits that make up our life. With distance from these elements than usually keep us on auto-pilot, it’s easier to create new habits, form different perceptions and understand ourselves in deeper ways.It can be hard to implement change or to pivot your life in a new direction. Our pre-programmed ways of being are rigidly set. Most of these are determined by beliefs and ideologies we were given as kids. Without having taken the time to explore these beliefs, they have stuck around and become deeply ingrained parts of our identity.Travel takes us out of our hamster wheel and drops us in a place with different norms. All of a sudden nothing is as it is supposed to be. We are eating strange food, sitting for meals at different times with new acquaintances. We’re filling our days with new activities that help us see life from a different vantage point. What we normally see as a set way of doing anything is shaken up.It’s the ideal moment for transformation as our external environment is already detoured from the status quo. Transforming your inner self Transformation starts with taking an honest look at what is and isn’t working in your life. Only from there can you explore ideas of how the situation can be improved. Being away from your usual life, like in travel, is the perfect place from where to make this type of analysis.As we can’t control many aspects that are outside of ourselves (we can’t control others, the weather, politicians’ behaviors, what will happen during the cycle trip, or most of what goes on in life), we focus our attention on what we can control, ourselves. We can choose everything about our inner context, like our perceptions, where we let our attention sit, the way we relate to our thoughts and feelings and how we co-exist with our ego. As we travel, we are given a beautiful opportunity to get better acquainted with these different elements of our inner self and transformations start to happen.To find greater joy, meaning and more fulfillment in life, we don’t have to radically change our lives, but instead, change the way we look at our lives and become more present with every moment we experience.On a bike trip that’s easier than in “regular life”. That’s why it’s such an ideal place to start.Be present with the drastic landscape you see, notice the smells and tastes with more depth and focus. Become aware of what you feel as you are brought to a local organization or as you visit a ancient sight. What thoughts appear as you hear them share their stories? What emotions arise from those thoughts? Tune into the conversations you are having with the other travelers on the trip. Focus in on what they say, be present with them.These small habits are what create life changing transformations. Bring them with you as you embark on your next trip. Transforming the world The same effort made to transform ourselves and our lives will also benefit the world and the communities we travel through. As we start living more consciously, we become more aware of the impact of every step we take. We consider the effects it has on the people around us, on the environment and on the world as a whole. This might even be what made you interested in traveling by bicycle. The slow pace, the opportunity for connection, the lack of environmental impact makes it an ideal way to travel sustainably and mindfully.I truly believe that we create a better world by becoming better people. Your next trip can be the start of your journey towards create a better life and a better world. You just have to be ready to create the change. Bio and Links Jo is the founder of You Choose the Way, a company determined to bring more mindfulness into the travel industry. As a Mindful Travel and Expat Coach, Jo helps travelers and expats have more transformative adventures by helping them connect with their mind, body and soul. From there, they can truly transform themselves and the world as they travel. You can find out more from her website, Facebook and Instagram. Share the journey Share on facebook Share on twitter Share on linkedin Share on whatsapp Share on email Feeling inspired? 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