What is travel burnout?
When traveling is your lifestyle and you visit a huge amount of different cities every month ( like, if you, for example, work on cruise ship, like me) there is a day when instead of a feeling of excitement about a new journey you suddenly wake up with a sense of melancholy exhaustion. You do not get up early in the morning full of desire to discover new places, meet interesting people and put some suspicious local food into your mouth. Little by little you start preferring staying where you are, watch TV and just relax. You do not even care what country is on the other side of the window. Is it hot Spain or cold Norway? This kind of apathy and indifference is called travel burnout.
My first combat with the sense of travel burnout
I was 22 years old when I first got the feeling of travel burnout. To tell the truth, I was scared of this change of my mood. I started to ask myself: « Why do I travel if I do not experience the feeling of wonder and excitement anymore? Does it make sense to stay 11 months per year away from home, if I prefer to be cooped up inside my cabin? The more questions I asked, the more I became ashamed of myself. The life wants to show me such amazing places like white-sand beaches, breathtaking undersea world of the oceans, mysteriously abandoned villages, enormous mountains and much more. However, I was just indifferent to everything and could not get rid of this sense. No, I still liked to travel, but I did not say “Wow” to what I saw anymore.
Change of activity is the best way to sort yourself out and manage travel fatigue
The feeling of tiredness from traveling pushed me to change my job. I decided that I do not deserve to travel as I do not fully appreciate all the wonders of the planet I see. Therefore, I resigned and moved to my hometown, where there are no tourists and everything is familiar to me. Finally, after a few weeks, I got the job in a small office and worked 9 to 5.
In the beginning, I really enjoyed my routine days. No more surprises, everything is predictable, you know exactly what to expect. During my second month in the office, I started unknowingly open browsers and search for interesting destinations and travel stories. One month later I realized that although physically I am in the office, I am mentally far away in other cities. I thought more about what would I do if I was on this beach or in this village. I started to dream to visit certain places and drink a cup of coffee with local people there. At the end of the third month, I started to hate my office job and admitted to myself that I can not live without moving from one city to another. Traveling is already inside me. It is like a small virus and you can not easily remove it. But actually, why should I?
I was brave to change my life again and connect it with traveling. How amazing I felt when after 3 months of work in the office, I finally again sat on the airplane and flew to Norway. During my first weeks abroad I was like a child. Everything I did, everything I saw was exciting and wondrous to me. So, I got over travel fatigue.
What did I learn from my first travel burnout experience?
First of all, traveling is like any other job, can become routine one day. It is just inevitable. Secondly, when you have hesitation if traveling is your area of activity, just take a break. Stop traveling for a moment, settle down in a place and redeploy yourself to other activities. Believe me, very soon you will realize whether life out of the suitcase suitable for you. Your heart will give you the right answer. Just listen to your heart and never be afraid to change your life again. Even if you have the feeling that these months of the break were just a waste of time because you anyway returned to your previous job, it is entirely not true. Now you will be 100% sure that you are on the right way and there will not be any more questions like “What if…?”.
5 Effective ways how to deal with travel burnout
Although now I am definitely sure that traveling is what I love and what makes me happy, I still from time to time experience tiredness from traveling. Of course, changing of job can not be always a practical solution, and it does not make any sense if you really love your job. For this reason, it is very important to learn how to deal with this problem and improve your attitude to what are you doing. Below are the recommendations, which I follow when I face to travel fatigue. These ideas really help me to stay always positive and full of energy, and I hope they will be useful for you as well.
1. Take a child with you.
If new sights do not wonder you anymore, take a child with you. Children always see the world differently. Maybe, you would never visit a museum of chocolate alone because it is not interesting for you or maybe you even do not eat chocolate. However, a child will force you to go inside and most likely you will suddenly start loving this museum too. You will be the witness of his happiness and joy, and you will become affected by his positive emotions. You will start seeing the world differently, through the eyes of a child.
2. Search for a new experience.
When a new destination does not look special in your eyes, try to find some unique opportunities in this city. Go diving or safari, visit painting classes or sculpting and sewing lessons. Just do something you have never done before. You will get new emotions and will remember this place for a long time.
3. Read travel blogs.
Do not only google for the top 10 attractions but also read travel blogs of people who were there before. There you can find some secrets places in the city, which are very often much more interesting than those promoted for tourists.
4. Be a guide for other people.
If you know already a lot about a particular town or sight, share your knowledge with your family, friends or just do a voluntary job. People are always happy to have a professional guide for free. You, in return, will see that your job is not only interesting for you but can also be very helpful for others. With your professionalism and good knowledge about countries, you can help people to learn more and make their stay abroad more enlightening and memorable.
5. Love yourself.
Wherever you are, try to find something you liked to do in your childhood or home country. Do you like sport? Go to a local fitness studio. Do you miss Russian soup “Borsh”? Try to find a Russian restaurant nearby. Thus, you will not only deal with homesickness and travel burnout, but it is also an excellent opportunity to compare the same activities in different countries.
6. Spend more time with people, from whom you can learn something more.
Thus, you will enrich your knowledge not only in the travel sphere but in other areas as well. During planning your travel, during your trip or after always try to spend time with people who have similar interests and can contribute you somehow. It will make your travel much more useful.
In conclusion, I would like to say that there is nothing wrong with getting tired of traveling. Travel burnout is a more positive feeling that actually can benefit you a lot. It helps you to find out the best time to take a rest and make some changes in your life. It is a sign that your life became a routine and that you need to change your attitude to work and bring some new dose of impression. Just treat travel fatigue as a good teacher in your life.