Flashpackers reveal the women who inspire them to adventure

The world is full of women travelling alone, in pursuit of game-changing adventure. And it’s a value that strikes right to the heart of Flash Pack.

“I am massively inspired by intrepid women, and the reason I set up Flash Pack was to empower others with the attitude that, regardless of age or gender, it is never too late to live an adventurous life,” says co-founder Radha Vyas.

“Many of us still feel the pressure to conform to limiting gender expectations, but you only have one life. No-one should have to compromise, or settle for less. The world is waiting – go explore!”

To celebrate International Women’s Day today, here six female Flashpackers reveal who and what inspires them to keep the journey going:

“I want to prove to myself that anything is possible”

Caroline, who travelled with Flash Pack to Bali:

My inspiration to chase down my life’s dreams is to defeat my life’s fears. I want to prove to myself that anything is possible, from climbing a volcano to meeting friends from around the world. But most importantly, that going out of my comfort zone is the first step to defeating those fears.

The woman that inspired me the most is my mother. She was (just recently retired) a working mother. She meticulously balanced life, her career, and motherhood, all with unmitigated class. She is inspiring me to be my best self as a woman and friend, and still work at my life goals, whatever they may be. She is beautiful, loving and accepting. I adore the living daylight out of her. And am just so proud to call her my mum. She inspires me to be a better person every day.

“I realised I shouldn’t wait around for others to propel me”

Phoebe, who travelled with Flash Pack to India:

In my early twenties, I thought I had to have all my ducks in a row before I could really do the things I wanted to do. At the time I felt unhappy and disgruntled. I decided to focus on factors within my control, such as going back to school. After finishing school, I was finally where I wanted to be financially and professionally.

Still, I felt sorry for myself and wasted summers because I thought I needed a significant other to travel with. Finally, I realised I shouldn’t wait around for friends who are busy or for a significant other to come around. That summer, I took my mum and went on a mother-daughter trip to Eastern Europe and made memories that we still talk about to this day.

Read more: Words of wisdom from fearless female pioneers

The following summer, I branched out of my comfort zone and went to Western Europe solo. That gave me the confidence to book a daunting solo trip to India with Flash Pack. Realising that I shouldn’t wait around for others propels me to the front seat, helps me gain control of my life, and chase down my dreams of travelling and achieving optimal work-life balance.

Safety, loneliness, and logistics made travelling alone seem both intimidating and even impossible at one point, but the online community of solo female travellers inspires me to embrace adventure. Their blogs and feeds show that they are capable yet pragmatic, and give me ideas when planning my next adventure! I’m thinking Sri Lanka…?

“I have been able to chase inspiration when it strikes, many times over”

Cortney, who travelled with Flash Pack to Vietnam and Cambodia:

The woman who inspires me to adventure is my best friend Jenny. When we were 10, we decided we wanted to go to France together someday – and we did when we were 16. She just took a big leap and moved to a different country, so she’s been inspiring me to embrace adventure since I was a kid.

And it’s also my mum – she travelled all over for work when I was a child and brought back amazing stories and artefacts from her trips. I’ve always wanted to have my own adventure stories to tell, just like she does! My parents always encouraged me to be bold and go after what I wanted, even if it felt like a big reach. Their support means that I have been able to chase inspiration when it strikes many times over.

“Travel is a huge part of my life”

Annie, who travelled with Flash Pack to Iceland:

I’ve lived on my own since I was 15 years old, so I’ve always been super-motivated to grow and develop whilst chasing my dreams. Travel is a huge part of my life and something that’s added more value to me than any material possession. Australia, Fiji and Japan were good intros for me and I’ve had itchy feet ever since. I’ve been fortunate enough in my career that I’m able to continue this passion.

Read more: What today’s single women really want

There isn’t one particular woman who I’ve been inspired by to embrace adventure; there are so many awesome ladies out there. The women I met on my recent Flash Pack adventure to Iceland were truly inspiring! All smashing their professional careers, never straying from their dreams of exploring and taking the leap to tick one incredible adventure off their bucket list at a time.

“Once, I waited to be rescued – but I am enough for me”

Laura, who travelled with Flash Pack to South Africa:

Too many times in my life, I waited around for someone else to “rescue” me. As I got older and more comfortable and confident in myself, I realised that if I waited around for someone to live with, help me get out of debt, travel with, go out to eat with (the list goes on) then I’d be waiting around forever. It took me 30+ years to realise that I’m enough for me. I have the courage and the guts inside myself to achieve anything I truly wanted, from opening my own salon, to travelling the world solo (and with Flash Pack). I am my own white knight.

The woman who inspires me most to embrace adventure is one of my best friends, Anna. At 25 years old she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Battling through that with her made me realise that life is so short and delicate, there’s no more room for “I’ll do it later” or “I’ll get to it eventually”. If you want it, go for it. If you don’t, then time to leave it behind.

“The pursuit of total freedom inspires me to reach for my goals”

Deb Ashby, who travelled with Flash Pack to Myanmar and Jordan

It may be cliché to say it but, you only get one life, there are no reruns. The realisation that we are here for such a short time, pushes me and inspires me to fit as much into my life as possible and have as many unique experiences as I can.

I made a decision a few years ago to really design my life and mould it into something I wouldn’t need a holiday from. For me that meant, starting my own business, buying a house, surrounding myself with people who lift me up, and indulging my passion for travel as often as possible. The pursuit of total freedom is what inspires me to reach for my goals, and trying to get as much out of life and see as much of this Earth as possible before I potter off this mortal coil.

Read more: Meet the woman who co-founded Flash Pack

Dian Fossey is the woman that inspires me to adventure. I remember watching Gorillas in the Mist when I was 11 years old and being completely fascinated by this lady who left a comfortable life in the US to go and live in a remote forest in Rwanda to study gorillas, totally alone. I thought she was so brave and I was so inspired by her passion for her work. The sacrifices she made to follow her own path in the face of opposition truly struck a chord with me, even at 11 years old. I told my mum that I was going to do that one day. I haven’t. But there’s still time.

Images: Flashpackers’ own

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