Growing Your Business Through Travel

Last week I talked about how to use the internet to build relationships abroad to enrich your travel experience. In addition to the new friendships I’ve made through my extended stays in London, here's part two; a few other benefits I couldn’t stop gushing about when I came home.

Of course everyone loves to travel. But I feel as a business owner it is now more important than ever for my mental health & the growth of my business. I adore my company so much that days can go by where I hardly think of anything else. I know ultimately that's not healthy. And will eventually lead to burn out. Even more so, I know that I'm missing opportunities to get fresh inspiration for my readers & clients. The recharge that I get from new people & places is truly a win/win for me & everyone who's a part of Dean Street Society.

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{left to right: vintage shopping is one of my favorite past times yet I never find time for it at home; the valentino exhibit at somerset house gave me so many ideas for future style lessons; touring the harry potter studios was a magical, pun intended, day}

  1. Saying Yes: In Brooklyn it’s so easy for me to be busy or tired & pass off an opportunity to go out thinking, “I’ll go next time”. I realized, thrillingly, how often I said yes in London: Yes let’s meet-up, yes I’ll do late drinks after that, yes let’s go to another location to meet more friends. I never chose, “I should go home & get to bed”. Sometimes you are in a season of rest or work. But sometimes I can get so focused there that my default response becomes “no”. It felt really healthy to have a span of time where I said yes, & seriously everytime I had so much fun!
  1. Having More Confidence: I’m not the girl who shows up at a party not knowing anyone. I could, but why put myself in that uncomfortable position? If my friends bail at the last minute, I just stay home. But when abroad .. there I go! Moreover, you don’t feel as awkward because your accent is an automatic excuse, “I’m new, I don’t really know anyone in this town, so that’s why I showed up alone” (versus secret fear: "I’m lame & have no friends, so that’s why I showed up alone”). Furthermore, people adore you for it! You instantly seem cheeky & knowing that you’re the new foreigner they’re so happy to introduce you around. I have a group of New Zeland friends I met simply because I showed up somewhere alone, then forced myself to walk up & make conversation. Maybe a trip to New Zealand in 2014?
  1. Meeting New People: This is easy, because everyone’s new! I quickly realized how rare it is for me to meet someone new in Brooklyn. I have wonderful friends, who are friends with one another, & we all hang out together. On rare occasions I’ll end up at a larger birthday or house-warming with new folks, but very rarely. In London, every outing led to meeting new people, which felt healthy & refreshing. 
  1. Doing The Tourist Thing: I live in one of the most marvelous cities in the world. And yet could not tell you the last time I went to a Broadway show or New York Museum. When traveling, you’re just in tourist mode. I saw West End shows & caught 3 different fashion exhibits. In my normal life in NYC, I just wouldn’t take off work on a Wednesday afternoon to go to the museum. I should! But I don’t. Again, we can’t do everything in each 24 hours, so I think seasons are best & having a season where you take in the touristy things is good for your brain & your heart. Not to mention your business as I was frantically taking mental notes all over the place for future blog posts, tips & style lessons galore.
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{I never take daytrips at home & loved this one to Cambridge to see my friend Briony; so many strangers who became friends I've stayed in touch with; exploring new neighborhoods during a photo shoot}

Speaking of doing the tourist thing, I'm off to see "Once" on the West End tonight & have a date with a new friend to wander about the National Portrait Gallery this weekend. You up to anything that stretches you & falls into one of the categories above?

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P.S. In this week's IFB column I recommended 8 of my favorite books for entrepreneurship if you're looking for some spring reading.

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