Travel Burnout: I’m Sick Of Travelling

You read that right. I didn’t believe it at first but here I am, getting sick of the world. I heard a lot of stories from long-term travellers saying they’re really tired of travelling. This usually happens when you hit your first year mark and I am already at my 14th month. After all the fun during the World Cup, I just felt that I needed to slow down and at least do something productive.
I first started feeling weary when I consistently see photos of my friends and family on Facebook — birthdays, important life events, parties, together. That made me feel I was missing a lot in their lives. Believe me, I almost booked a flight back home but then I realized, “those get togethers are momentary. The people you love are also busy with their lives — jobs, families, college, children, etc. You should be busy with yours too.”

I was longing for too many things: my mother’s cooking, endless conversations with my siblings, sleepover with friends, dealing with my crazy aunts. You might all be thinking, “you’re crazy! You’re in Brasil and living your life!” For a time, I thought I needed a break but what I didn’t know is that I am allowed to feel this way and I just need to recharge, take it slow and then carry on.
How did I come to this point?
The truth is, after Brasil, I didn’t know where to go. I was having visa problems with Argentina and that sucked the life out of me. Imagine, I was going to the Embassy everyday (almost) and they kept asking and asking for ‘additional documents.’ Well, I don’t want to rant about it now but this will be discussed in another post.
Going back to burnout, that’s just one of the reasons. Another thing is, I never volunteered here in Brasil. I have done it all over the continent but not Brasil. Why? During the World Cup, there were no opportunities available and if I really wanted to participate to the cup, I had to spend the money that I don’t have. Well, I did and eventually survived. But not doing volunteer work is not my thing anymore. I craved for it. I was very thirsty for it. I needed to do something. I feel like all my learnings about the world are all from volunteering
How I battled travel burnout
I concluded I just needed a change of environment; that I had to stop getting up in the afternoon; that I had to slow down with parties all night. With the parties, #sorrymom but that is what Rio de Janeiro is all about. I just needed to defend myself on this part. HAHAHA!
B&B Hotel in Santa Teresa, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil
Today, I am happy to tell you that I am back and energized! After a gruelling search, I found a new volunteering job in Rio de Janeiro which will allow me to stay until the end of August! I will be working in a Bed and Breakfast Hotel in Santa Teresa and will be doing a lot of things — reception, teaching English, cooking, etc. I think this will be fun!
By the end of August, I will be announcing where I will be going next via my newsletter (as always). If you haven’t subscribed, now is the time to do so! I always send unpublished posts there every month! No spam. Never. 🙂 
Are you a long-term traveller? If travel burnout hit you, here’s a few things to remember:
  • It’s okay to feel that way. It’s perfectly normal. Breathe. Think.
  • Tell someone. It really helped when I told my travelling friends/friends back home because they will give you the best words of advice! I was surprised to receive a lot of encouragements: instead of saying “come back here. We miss you,” my friends told me “Stay. You will learn more and enjoy life over there compared to here.” They will also mention that they’re jealous of your life and none of them can just ‘up and leave’ so that should give you a jumpstart.
  • I know you might feel that you’ve already done everything in a particular country or continent but look for more! Maybe you didn’t take samba classes? Or passed on an outrageous gastronomic activity before? Think of something! There will always be an item that we didn’t tick.
  • Write. If you’re not comfortable talking to someone about it because you think they will not support your long-term travel endeavour, talk to your notebook. It will help a lot.
Here’s a letter I received from a blog reader in Perth, Australia. This is something that really helped me get my energy and strength back. 
Lastly, never ever stop travelling. You are already on your way and you’ve battled a lot more hardships on the road before getting here. I’d like to leave you with a poem by Edgar A. Guest that always helps me whenever I am about to quit. This is something that I’ve lived by growing up and I hope it’ll help you too. Enjoy the ride!

When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all up hill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh, 
When care is pressing you down a bit, 
Rest if you must, but don’t you quit. 
Life is queer with its twists and turns, 
As every one of us sometimes learns, 
And many a failure turns about 
When he might have won had he stuck it out; 
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow– 
You may succeed with another blow, 
Success is failure turned inside out– 
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt, 
And you never can tell how close you are, 
It may be near when it seems so far; 
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit– 
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.

Trisha is one of those people who left their comfortable life to travel the world and learn about life. Her style is to stay in one place she likes for 3 months (or more) to know what it feels like to eat, cook, speak, and sleep in another culture that isn’t hers. She'd like to believe she's not traditionally traveling but she just chooses to be somewhere else all the time. In no particular order, her favorite cities in the world are Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Mexico City, and Tel Aviv.

Comments

  • August 10, 2014

    I am so glad you managed to deal with the burnout! Just like everything else, when we feel that way, you just have to take a break. Travel can be, in a way, quite draining. So, you just have to rest, take it easy, recharge your batteries. Then you’re ready to go again, all energised! Here’s to the next 14 months, Trisha. 🙂

    reply
    • August 10, 2014

      Hey Stephen,

      I almost gave up but I weighed the pros and cons of going back. I do still know where home is and where I am from, it’s very hard to leave when you’re already there and that’s my fear. Thanks for your thoughts!

      reply
  • August 10, 2014

    wow! what a lovely letter. great post trish, thanks for sharing!

    reply
    • August 10, 2014

      I know, right! You see, even a stranger helped me get through! Almost cried when I read this letter. Thanks for reading Andrew!

      reply
  • August 10, 2014

    yes trish, you are allowed to feel that way…your friends are right to advise you to keep on travelling. not many people and girls your age for that matter have such kind of privilege and bravery to do what you are doing…make the most out of it. learn as much as you can and enjoy your adventures! (p.s. always take care, ok? )-tita judy

    reply
    • August 10, 2014

      I should’ve called you tita! Thank you so much for always guiding me!

      reply
  • August 10, 2014

    Always remember that you have a great and strong support system back home. Continue to inspire all of us, Trish! ♥

    reply

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P.S. I'm On My Way is a blog by Trisha Velarmino. She didn't
quit her job to travel the world. She made a job out of traveling and you can do it, too.

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