After quitting her corporate job, this woman jump started her creativity by travelling solo through the Middle East

Desert 2Courtesy Natasha SalmanNatasha Salman of Whimsical and Existing.

The INSIDER Summary:

• Natasha Salman spent two months travelling through Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates.
• Going solo jump started her creativity and helped her practice mindfulness.
• She hopes to show the beauty of Lebanon that many don’t see or know about.

After her corporate job left her drained and unfulfilled, Natasha Salman decided to travel through Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates by herself.

On her two-month trip to the Middle East, the 26-year-old incorporated her yoga training for a centered, mindful journey that rejuvenated her.

She didn’t think about the corporate job she left behind, or what she would do when she returned home to Florida. By focusing on the present, she reawakened her creativity and felt a sense of direction despite not knowing where it might lead.

Salman blogs about her travels on Whimsical and Existing, and spoke to INSIDER about the importance of feeling grounded when flying across the world.

Natasha Salman had been to Lebanon before to visit family, and interned with a couture designer there last year.

'I came back and was feeling pretty lost, unsure of what path I should take,' she said.

She got her master's degree in fashion design and merchandising, but was unsure if she wanted to continue in that field.

She went to Costa Rica and earned her yoga certification, then started a corporate job at a clothing company when she returned home to Florida.

'I was working there for a few months and was really unhappy and unmotivated, and felt my creativity slowly leaving me,' she said.

That's when she decided it was time for some solo adventures -- two months travelling alone through Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates.

While she stayed with family members and friends to save money, going to Lebanon on her own was a 'completely different' experience.

'I went alone and I'm newly single, so it was the best opportunity for me to fully immerse myself,' she said. 'I didn't need to contact anyone to let anybody know where I'm at or what I'm doing, so instead of being on my phone I could fully be there.'

She went all over the country, from small villages to large cities.

'I've never seen people that have experienced such travesty build themselves up and continue each day,' she said of the locals she encountered.

'They're always dancing, they're constantly eating, and I feel like people have a misconception of what Lebanese people are like. They're a lot more beautiful than people give them credit for, and they're so full of love.'

She was especially taken by Lebanon's cedar forests.

'It was the most breathtaking experience,' she said. 'These cedars are over centuries old. It's up in the mountains, it's just the freshest air, and all you can hear is the birds.'

Her time in the United Arab Emirates was more extravagant.

'Everything is really over-the-top, which is really different from Lebanon, because Lebanon is a very poor country and has no government,' she said.

She enjoyed views from the top of the world's tallest building and wandered through the country's largest mall.

She also went dune bashing in the Dubai desert.

'It was so much fun and so exciting, but also terrifying because I thought we were going to flip over at any moment,' she said.

Salman journaled and meditated to find stillness in the chaos that travel can bring.

She focused on the present, not worrying about what she was going to do when she returned home.

'I feel like I enjoyed my travels more,' she said of travelling solo.

The trip reinvigorated her creativity.

'While on my trip I did a lot of art, and my art has improved, and I've created the best art that I've ever created,' said Salman, who sketches and paints with watercolors.

While she's not sure what her next step will be, Salman feels that life works out the way it's supposed to.

'I feel like my creativity has expanded more than ever, and I'm still not sure what my path is next, but I feel like I'm being guided in the right direction,' she said.

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