Today I want to talk about something a little different. A topic that I feel isn’t shared enough and might be something that a lot of travelers can relate to. I like to call it the “Lonesome Traveler Syndrome.” It’s where you are surrounded by beautiful landscapes, people and culture, but yet you find that there is still something missing deep within you. I’ve asked myself so many times why I feel this way, and the only reason I can come up with is loneliness. But it’s different you see, I have a loving family who is always there for me and a wonderful boyfriend. My friends here are fantastic and so are those back home. However, sometimes when I’m sitting in my little apartment away from everyone and haven’t found myself lost in my writing or a book, I tend to drift off into a state of desolation.
I just want to be alone, but want someone here too. I pride myself on being a strong, independent woman yet I still find times of loneliness. Am I depressed? Am I an ungrateful millennial? Am I homesick? I’m not sure. I don’t think I’m any of those, but what I do know is this: sometimes I get really sad. And sometimes I cry. And I think that’s okay because when you’re in a foreign country and are out of your comfort zone, these feelings will come without any warning. I try to hide it, and I try to fight it, but the fact is that no matter how strong you may think you are… you have flaws and this is one of mine.
To those of you who have felt the same confusion that I have, you’re not alone. Even when traveling, you can feel lonely and lost. But a great takeaway from this is, I guess, is that you will get to know yourself better. When you travel you take on new challenges, those you wouldn’t experience while staying home, and you learn more about yourself along the way. This is one thing I’ve learned about myself amongst many others and I’m sure it won’t be the last. I’ve written about the lonely feeling I get while traveling, but I have to say that I’m a happy and vivacious 99.7% of the time. Traveling is a beautiful gift that I’ve been given and I try to take advantage of every opportunity that is presented to me. I’m so grateful and couldn’t be happier with where I am in my life. So, on a happier note, here are my five tips to beating the Lonesome Traveler Syndrome and getting back in the ring.
1. Indulge in your guilty pleasures – Yes, and I mean lots of chocolate! If you find yourself turning towards bad foods like pizza and macaroni and cheese (I wish), then enjoy this time and work off the calories later. You deserve it!
2. Express your feelings – If you’re anything like me, you like to talk to someone about what’s bothering you. I’m not always looking for advice, but sometimes it’s nice to get stuff off your chest and move forward.
3. Watch a funny video – Comedies and funny home videos always seem to cheer me up no matter what state I’m in.
4. Exercise – Even if it’s just going on a brisk walk. Get out of your house and do something. Push yourself to get up and move and I promise you’ll feel better!
5. Relax – The world is only here to tear you down but the best thing you can do is tell it to piss off and pick yourself back up. You’re strong and remember – life is a beautiful thing and you can’t have the sunshine without the rain!
I enjoy sharing my stories but LOVE hearing them, too! If you have a tip or story you’d like to share, please leave a comment or email me!