Last year I was lucky enough to travel to Europe for two months with some close friends of mine. A decision that wasn’t made lightly due to my hesitant nature and tendency to overthink.

I have big dreams & many inspirations, happily describing myself a dreamer, so when I actually followed through with an idea, it left me feeling exhilarated and scared out of my mind!

Luckily for me, Europe become the most amazing experience of my life and I look forward to the day that an experience can top that one. Below are some realisations I made whilst travelling and how these few small factors changed my way of life.

 
 

Live in the moment

I am the first to admit I am somewhat of a control freak. The idea of throwing caution to the wind scares the crap out of me, but if there was any time to do just that, it was now.

 

I ate foods I would normally scowl at, danced on tabletops and drank bucket-loads of daiquiris. I visited some of the most exquisite churches and viewed the world from the Eiffel tower. I slept at bus stations and rocked up in cities without any pre-planned accommodation.

 

Perhaps it was because I was away from the worries of my normal life, or perhaps I simply knew this was a once in a lifetime experience, but for those two months I did not question, analyse or over think anything. I just lived.

 

There is no more exhilarating feeling than just being.

 
 

The importance of friendship

You would think spending two months in the pockets of my friends would be enough to drive a girl crazy. We all certainly had our moments, but going on that European adventure with those girls was the best decision I have ever made.

You will never treasure a friendship more than when you get to experience those amazing moments of travel with them.

Like when you first lay your eyes on the Eiffel Tower, or when you're watching sunsets on the Greek Islands, or when you go on picnics in Florence.

I had grown up with these girls, with one from as early as kindergarten, and I loved being able to create the ultimate girls trip. It was an amazing experience that would bind us all for the rest of our lives.

 
 
 
 

3 Life Lessons I Learned from Travelling with My Best Friends

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Independence

This one was huge for me. I am from a small town in Tasmania. I have a wonderful relationship with my family, a secure relationship with my boyfriend, at the time a great job and, most of all, a cushy life living at home. There was no greater test than having to learn a little independence.

At first I was uncertain - foreign countries and all. There were many moments in the trip where I relied on my friends to navigate us around, but I soon learned there was a certain empowerment I felt in being away from them for a while. A sense that I could really come into my own and learn to be okay without their constant presence.

This was perhaps one of the greatest lessons I learnt, that I am enough as I am, that I don’t need my family or boyfriend by my side every moment & that I am a strong individual who can take care of herself.

 
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If I can recommend anything, it is to take those opportunities that come your way. The ones that scare the hell out of you and feel too big to handle. It doesn’t have to be travel, it could be a job promotion or moving cities, countries or even continents! But take the leap!

“All you need is 20 seconds of insane courage and I promise you something great will come of it”
– Benjamin Mee, We Brought a Zoo
 
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That 20 seconds of courage for me was booking the Contiki tour of the Greek Islands that day. For you, those 20 seconds could be for anything. Maybe it will lead to great things or maybe it won't, but at the end of the day at least you can say you gave it a go. At least you can say you lived.

 
 

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3 Life Lessons I Learned From Travelling With My Best Friends -- Breathe Travel

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This article first appeared on One Gypsy Soul and has been republished with permission.