…the nostalgia after your big adventure!
You spent the first night in your own bed again, ate your favorite food and you are finally surrounded by your loved ones again – after this great travel adventure you have returned home. Everyone wants to hear your stories, see your pictures and hug you again – a good feeling. Once you have told your stories to everyone and want to know what your loved ones experienced in your absence, the first shock comes. Even tho you had the feeling abroad that you missed out on a lot at home, you soon realize that nothing happened at all during your absence. Maybe your family bought a new sofa or a couple broke up. Everything else is exactly as you left it.
Everyday life at home has taken its course. Work, weekend, birthdays and weekend trips. While you’ve been climbing through canyons in the last few weeks, discovering new animals and making friends from all over the world, at home, nothing has changed at all. The initial euphoria about your stories decreases and answering questions like: “How was your journey? feels useless. So, you answer with: “Yes, everything was great” and move on to everyday life. While you still start every sentence with “On my journey…”, the first people are annoyed – this is when the post-travel blues starts.
The feeling of being in the wrong reality, of having to squeeze into an old shell that no longer fits because of all the new experiences. Changed attitudes that question past thought patterns and the feeling that no one around you understands what you’re talking about. It feels like you’ve never been away. You start forcing yourself to remember everything again and again just to make sure it really happened. You’re thinking about booking your next plane ticket right away, but you feel guilty because of your friends and family who are happy to have you back.
People you spent all your life with suddenly feel like strangers to you. The personal growth you have experienced in the last few weeks can no longer be denied. But how do you behave during the post-travel blues without offending others?
The Post-Travel-Blues is a phenomenon that all long-time-traveler know
The Post-Travel-Blues is a phenomenon that all long-time-traveler know. There is even a Wikipedia entry. That means you are not alone with this feeling. Everyone that has taken a long journey will understand what you are talking about.
The only thing you can do about the post-travel-blues is to accept it. You have changed – and that’s why it’s so hard for you to be back in your old reality. But it doesn’t help to jump right into the next adventure. Acknowledge the good things at home. Reflect on your journey and what you have learned. Learn from your insights and ask yourself what you might want to change! Give your friends and family a chance to understand your feelings. Exchange ideas with like-minded people who are going through the same thing.
And be aware that the beauty of a journey is also that it has an expiration date!
“You will never be completely at home again because part of your heart always will be elsewhere. That is the price you pay for the richness of loving and knowing people in more than one place.”(Miriam Adeney)
The next trip will definitely come!