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Taking a trip by yourself can provide a real opportunity to focus on what makes you tick and brings you happiness.

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Go for real-time recos

Stop poring over anonymous online reviews and tap a real-world expert. The bartender who mixed you a great cocktail? He can direct you to that insider-only speakeasy. The chef behind the dinner you just inhaled? She'll happily suggest a friend's hot new spot.

Talk to strangers

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Similarly, forget what your mother said (but do pay attention to social cues). Worst-case scenario, you get the brush off. Best case, you make a friend for life. Realistically, you get a great suggestion on something to see or do, which is still good return on investment.

Get uncomfortable

You don't have to do something that scares you – but it should make you a bit squirmy. Not only does this push you to try new experiences, it has the bonus of mentally preparing you for when a trip (inevitably) goes wrong and you're forced out of your comfort zone.

Take a trip by yourself

Fly solo, even for one night. (Work trips don't count.) If you're not used to this level of freedom, the benefits may shock you. Beyond the fun of getting to do whatever you want comes a real opportunity to focus on what makes you tick and brings you happiness.

Schedule a do-nothing day

Don't worry, it won't go to waste. It will fill up – with returning to that little boutique you rushed by or your new favourite lunch spot. Or maybe it won't. Maybe you'll spend an afternoon just reading in a park or cycling to nowhere in particular. Sounds nice, right?

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