Posted: 04/29/11 | April 29th, 2011
Have you ever felt burned out from travel? It happens often if you’re on the road for a while or traveling too quickly. It something most long-term travelers deal with from time to time — myself included.
In my experience, personal time is the best solution. This is a guest post by Elise, one half of Positive World Travel. She shares her thoughts on travel burn out and the importance of making time for yourself.
I’m going to be selfish for this post. I’m going to write about me. Don’t worry, I’m not going to bore you with the details of my favorite food, hobbies, or shoe size.
Instead, I’m going to talk about why taking some time out from being a couple can be a good thing when you travel.
Yes, I’m talking about that popular catchphrase, “Me time.”
Last month, when Anthony wrote about traveling as a couple, he spoke from the heart and really hit the nail on the head as to what couples travel is all about.
It’s about the experiences and memories that you create together, and it’s about being a unit and sharing your adventures.
While all that is true, I thought it was important to mention that while having a successful relationship on the road does stem from compromise, communication, and understanding, another important factor is taking the time to do things that are just for you.
Without trying to sound too much like a TV talk show host and shouting, “Go on, girl! You deserve it! Let it be all about YOU! Do it for yourself!” I do believe it’s true that doing things for yourself can lead to twice as many benefits for a couple. Being selfish every once in a while can be a good thing.
Why Is “Me Time” Important for My Relationship?
Life on the road is different from life back home. Regular routines or structure are things of the past. You have to work, communicate, and solve problems together while navigating new surroundings frequently.
While Ant and I do most things together, we have days when we need our own space. Sometimes we just need to do our own thing, whether sitting on the beach with our iPod or off doing a hike alone.
Ant got the chance to go spearfishing the other day, which left me alone all day to do as I pleased.
Was I bored? Did I get lonely? No, I spent the day pampering myself! I washed my hair, gave myself a nice mani and pedi, and then lost myself in a good novel. I even went out to a local store and stocked up on chocolate.
Taking time away from your partner and doing what you want for yourself gives you time to relax and recharge, which only helps your relationship. You’ve done your own thing, so now you can be ready to listen, compromise, and be a loving partner with even more confidence.
I think some arguments that Ant and I have had simply happened because we didn’t have enough separate space. Everyone needs their own personal space. Taking some time to go off exploring on your own, reading a book, or doing an activity can really solve some problems before they even begin to bubble to the surface.
Furthermore, “me time” doesn’t necessarily have to mean “alone time.” It can quite often mean hanging out with fellow travelers, and it can be a great chance to let you and your partner interact in different environments.
While Ant and I really do love each other’s company, we also enjoy meeting other people from all over the world. Quite often we will have a few drinks with other travelers and barely speak to each other the whole night. We get lost in other people’s stories.
Taking time for yourself is such a good thing, but what makes “me time” even more enjoyable is being able to recount your day. The day after Ant returned from spearfishing, it felt like we hadn’t seen each other in ages! We were so excited to chat about what we had done! We chatted and laughed about our adventures that night over a bottle of wine and some freshly grilled fish that Ant had caught.
It was just as exciting as when we go out and do something together, and it helped keep the energy and excitement in our relationship going.
Don’t be afraid to ask your partner if you can do your own thing for a while. Chances are they will want to too!
Want More Relationship Content?
For more relationship and travel tips, check out these posts:
- The Joy of Traveling as a Couple
- Keeping the Relationship Spark Alive
- Diving Up Travel Responsibilities
- Coping with Fights on the Road
Book Your Trip: Logistical Tips and Tricks
Book Your Flight
Find a cheap flight by using Skyscanner or Momondo. They are my two favorite search engines because they search websites and airlines around the globe so you always know no stone is left unturned.
Book Your Accommodation
You can book your hostel with Hostelworld. If you want to stay somewhere other than a hostel, use Booking.com as they consistently return the cheapest rates for guesthouses and cheap hotels.
Don’t Forget Travel Insurance
Travel insurance will protect you against illness, injury, theft, and cancellations. It’s comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong. I never go on a trip without it as I’ve had to use it many times in the past. I’ve been using World Nomads for ten years. My favorite companies that offer the best service and value are:
- World Nomads (for everyone below 70)
- Insure My Trip (for those over 70)
- Medjet (for additional repatriation coverage)
Need to book your trip?
Check out my resource page for the best companies to use when you travel. I list all the ones I use when I travel. The are the best in class and you can’t go wrong using them on your trip.