Adjusting to Home after Travel

Travelling is always an amazing experience. You can gain a lot from travelling around the world that can change your whole perspective in life. Anyone who is planning to go on a trip is always excited. You have the chance to discover new places, meet interesting people, explore their cultures and embrace a new way of living. But what happens when it is time to return back home? Travelling, as all good things, comes to an end. This is something that most travelers don’t usually talk about or think much because for most of them this is the most difficult part of the trip: having to leave the amazing scenery, places and people and go back and adjust to your daily routine after you have lived all these amazing experiences. You will probably think “Now what?” or feel you don’t want to return to your old, boring life or be afraid of the return to the reality and everyday struggles. You may even not feel in the mood to tell everyone back home how your trip was, just because it will remind you of all these experiences that are now memories. But you shouldn’t worry for anything. Returning back home and adjusting to it can now be a whole different experience for you because here you can find some tips that can help you adjust to home after travelling, as smoothly as possible!

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Before Your Return

Before Your Return

You are near the end of your trip and you suddenly start to realize it. Before you panic because you have to take the road back home, take a look at these tips we have gathered for you to make the idea of returning back home easier to you.

  Prepare yourself mentally for the return. It is very important to just take some time to relax and reflect on your trip before you head back home. Have some quiet time for yourself, on a beach or on a mountain, wherever you want and can, maybe meditate and think of what you will find back home. You can plan what you want to do when you arrive back home, decide what you want to talk about with others concerning your trip, set your priorities for the first days. Organize your time and consider your responsibilities and be sure to have enough time after your return to settle before you go back to work or start studying. It will be easier for you when you arrive home, if you have already thought of what to expect. Returning back home can be quite a reverse culture shock after some time traveling. After you have spent some time abroad, experiencing the different lifestyle coming back home can be quite a shock that you have to be prepared for. You just have to accept that things are going to be different and that you will need some time to adjust. And this is not bad. But you can also think of the positives that you will enjoy once you are at home; you will meet with your friends and family, have the comfort of your own house and bed again, you won’t get lost, you will get to speak your own language again, you will feel safer, have clean clothes, you will eat your favorite local food and many more. Everyday struggles that you had to deal with in your trip will get easier once you reach your home.

  Prepare others for your return. Friends and family are a huge part of your life back home. They will be the ones that will ask you every question imaginable about your trip: “how was your trip?”, “did you have fun?”, “did you meet many people?”, “what were you eating?”, etc. You can make a list beforehand of your favorite places you visited or food you tasted or adventures you had, so you can be prepared to answer all of their questions. If you are not in the mood for that you can always keep them posted during your trip through social media (read: How Has Social Media Changed Traveling). Send them pictures and videos, post photos with your new friends or from amazing places you visit. This way they will be able to see every exciting thing you have experienced during your trip and you won’t be bombarded with questions as soon as you cross the threshold. And they will also feel that you haven’t forgotten them!


After Your Return

  After Your Return

And now it is time to go back. You have finally returned back home and maybe you already feel a little blue and nostalgic. It may take some time to settle in and adjust. This adjusting period can be easier if you consider the following tips:

   Keep in contact with your travel friends. Just because you are back home doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to talk with them again and therefore lose contact. Nowadays, thanks to the internet and social media you can always keep in touch easily with everyone you met during your trip and grow your friendships. This increases the chances that you will meet them again; they may visit you or you may visit them and therefore have free accommodation for your next trip! You can also bring up memories by sharing photos and videos, arrange meetings or organize new trips together in the near future.

  Get busy, get active, get involved. Don’t stay idle and passive because it won’t help you adjust well to your old life. You can create a new routine or make some changes to your old one, so it becomes more interesting. Be productive and take advantage of your time. You can set a new goal! You traveled in Spain and you wished you could speak Spanish? Now that you are back home you can learn a new language, one that you always wanted to learn or one that will be useful for your next trip. You can learn about other countries, read books, find an organization you like and be part of it as a volunteer. You can also help travelers in your area by showing them around amazing local places and sites that they can’t find in guide books. Getting busy and involved when you get back home will help you maintain the feeling of exploring that you have while traveling and also avoid any post-travel depression or boredom. Of course, you should always take some time off for yourself, to relax and rest, just like you would do on a trip. Balance is important in everything in life!

  Be patient. You have just returned, and you may want to tell everything to your friends and family. Be careful, though, not to be annoying to others by bombarding them with your stories and enthusiasm. There will be plenty of time to tell them your life-changing experiences, but you have to keep in mind that maybe not everyone wants to talk about your trip. Also, you have to be patient with the ones that haven’t had similar experiences and therefore can’t appreciate them. It is common to feel superior to them but you just have to remind yourself to be patient and think that your experiences may have changed your way of thinking in life but that is not the case for everyone else. Don’t forget that you are not the only person who is different after traveling. But that does not mean that those waiting for you back home will be able to accept or spot these differences and the change in the perspective on life immediately. Most of all, you should be patient with yourself. Give yourself some time to relax and get used to the new routine. Not everything may be going smoothly when you come back home but this is fine. You shouldn’t be hard on yourself because it is perfectly okay if you feel a little bit out of place. It takes time to feel comfortable again.

  Your city can be your new travel destination. Try walking around your city and observing the architecture, discovering new places and shops, visiting museums and art exhibitions, learning about upcoming events. You can look at your city from a different perspective, that of a tourist. Find out more about the local cuisine or traditions, meet new people. Offer your help to your community and neighborhood by volunteering. Find new hobbies, join in groups, go hiking or surfing, whatever is possible in your city and the area you are living in general. There is always something new to learn about or discover, even in the place you’ve been living all your life. You may have underestimated how cool and amazing your home city can be!

  Of course, you can always start planning your next trip. Because it is easier to adjust to home when you know you can always make plans for a future trip (read: How to Plan a Road Trip). Be always ready and willing for a new adventure. Seek a new challenge, not only by traveling abroad. You can always go for short trips around your home city and explore the hidden beauties that are close to home. You can visit towns and villages near your city every weekend or once a month, depending on your schedule, your budget, etc. and discover their uniqueness. Small trips can be the perfect solution for those of you that can’t stand without the traveling thrill. So, hit the road and make the best of it!

Returning back home can be a quite difficult transitional period for any traveler. You return back to reality in the blink of an eye and it is very common to feel a little sad or nostalgic. But adjusting to home after traveling can be an easier process, if you are patient and take some time to think and plan your return, find new things to do while at home, focus on what you have gained from traveling rather on what you have lost and take advantage of your time and the opportunities that your home city has to offer. Remember that coming back to home gets easier in time, and that being home can be as adventurous as traveling, as long as you are willing to start treating your home city like an adventure.

 


Edited  by Sophia Gkoutziomitrou

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