Categories: Advice and TipsConfessions

A Little Advice…Regain Your Sanity When Things Go Wrong on the Road

Basket of Street Fruit

These past four months in Central America have been four of the hardest “travel” months of my life. I’ve been on the road for just under 18 months at this point and Central America has thoroughly exhausted me and essentially kicked my traveling ass.

I didn’t make a secret of that fact two weeks ago when I was frustrated beyond belief, sad, overwhelmed and just bone-tired of it all. It seemed like the Universe was conspiring against me, the gods of travel were just telling me to go home.

How Could I Not Miss these Matching Cheesy Grins from my niece and nephew?!

And then you all offered up advice. Heaps of advice. And it made the entire situation more consumable – I wasn’t the only one.

So in honor of that feeling that hits all long-term travelers, I’d like to share some of the best tips that helped me get out of my funk, or at least regain some humor about the trying things that happen on the road.

Travel Advice for Weary Travelers

  • Eat Your Fruits and Veggies: “It’s really important to be sure you’re still eating healthy foods that give you energy, because a lack of certain nutrients (such as B vitamins) can effect both our mood (mind) and stamina (body)…” —Trisha from Travel Writer’s Exchange
  • Assess Your Current Country & Consider Moving On: “Although  we loved Guatemala, I have to say that traveling there was emotionally difficult at times. Each time we would tell people our plans, the response would be “peligroso” and we’d have to figure out whether we would be faced with armed robbery or just standard pickpocketing. It also seemed like a national pastime for people (locals and expats) is to tell you the latest busjacking or kidnapping incidence in the country.” —Audrey from Uncornered Market
  • Pick a Place and Stay There: “Every time I feel similarly to how you’re feeling, I’ve realized that the constant movement from place to place was the culprit. And so I would just stop or I would move to some ideal place for 3 or more months in order to regroup” —Wandering Earl
  • Avoid Guilt, It Happens to Everyone:We found India to be difficult and we had quite a hard time with travel fatigue. To top it off we felt guilty having travel fatigue. It eventually went away after we decided to relax on the beach in Sri Lanka for 10 days.” —Deb from The Planet D
  • Chat with Family, Unplug, Meditate, & Exercise: “Problems don’t go away on the road, they are amplified in many ways so  eat well & take it easy. Skype friends & chat, unplug other wise. When you get shaken & feel more vulnerable, you need to fill up your cup, so you can enjoy the travel. Daily meditation and time in nature also helps us a lot & we are lucky to be surrounded by good hugabuddies. ;)” —Jeannie from Soul Travelers 3
  • It’s All Impermanent, It Will Get Better at Some Point: “I’ll chalk it up to my 10 days in Vipassana Meditation, but the Buddhist notion of impermanence applies here as well. It seems so bad at the time, but it’s a fleeting moment, circumstances are going to change.” —Me, this one’s what I kept telling myself.  :-)

A big thank you to all of the comments and support when I was feeling blue – there were a lot of other great tips within the comments of the travel fatigue piece, so check them out as well if you’re looking for a way to come back to level after experiencing travel fatigue!

This post was last modified on May 20, 2010, 8:35 am