My number one hobby and interest is traveling. That’s a difficult interest to have as your number one.
What’s great about hobbies and interests is that you can express yourself through those things and have an outlet to feel free from the mundane day-to-day. Travel is an interest where it’s hard to express yourself. We have jobs. We have careers. We have families. We can’t just get up and leave for a month because we feel that familiar, restless urge to go dust off our old suitcase that’s been sitting still for way too long.
The lucky ones get that one adventure a year. Some of us get more. Others don’t even get that.
Photographers have their pictures. Artists have their paintings. My husband, a musician, has his band. So, how do I express my interests without the actually traveling part? Most of us (me included) can’t adventure out for months on end. How do we travelers, find travel as an outlet year round, without actually going anywhere?
What are we adventurers supposed to do?
Here are some things I personally do, to keep myself in that traveling state of mind:
- Write a lot. Whenever I remember something random from a trip that I was on, even years ago, I write it down. Remembering all the little details really helps me remember that it all happened. If you do this, then later when you feel down and depressed because you haven’t been on a trip in a while, you can go back and reread your stories and remember what happened. You can remember that even though you haven’t been on a trip in a while, you are a real adventurer at heart and you have the stories to prove it. I also feel that it really helps to ignite that fire if it’s died down a little. Who knows? Looking back through those memories might inspire you all the way to airport.
- Display your souvenirs! Be proud of your accomplishments and show them off! Pick a wall in your house and dedicate it to your travel photos, or make a photo album of past adventures and use it as your coffee table book. Friends and family can then look at everything you’ve done and then may be open to swapping traveling stories. I collect postcards from every city that I go to and write on the day’s itinerary and what I love about the city on the back. My postcards are pinned around my big world map, that way my friends can get them off the wall and read them. Displaying your travel trinkets and memories are a great way to keep you inspired and express your travel side.
- Make friends who like to travel. I’m a big believer in friends who travel together, stay together. I met my best friend in the airport, waiting in line to board the plane that was heading to Fiji, and we’ve be best friends in several different countries ever since. (That’s us in Italy pictured above.) Having friends who like to travel as much as you do is really beneficial.You can share your travel stories without making it sound like bragging, because they love it and will share theirs as well. It is freeing to be able to talk about your love of travel with others who share your interests.
- Take short burst trips. Go out of town and stay in a different city every now and then. You don’t always have to go out of the country to have a different culture experience. Every city has their own vibe. If your are in the United States, go to the next state and adventure around there for the weekend. Or go to a different city in your own state. Bored of Dallas? Go see what all the hype is about Austin. Travelers need to travel. Mostly, we like to adventure out of our comfort zones and go to another continent. Obviously, this isn’t always possible, so these short burst trips can really be used as an outlet when one is feeling stagnate.
- My favorite, always have a trip in the works. Once you get back from one adventure, use a month to reflect and write. Have a real, “Did that really just happen to me?” experience. However, once you get back into the swing of your normal life, start planning the next trip out. Get with your travel friends. Do they have room for one more on that tour across China? Or make your focus more personal. Do you and your significant other need a Paris escape next summer? Having a trip in the works is amazing. You sit there are you desk job with no windows and you think, “This is horrible, BUT I’ll be touring Thailand this time two years from now.” It doesn’t matter how long you have to plan it out. Planning it is half the fun anyway! As long as you have that dream trip in the works, you have something to look forward to and that helps you focus on your interests and gives you an outlet through research and careful planning. You wouldn’t want to miss an important cultural event while you are there. So start making room on your travel wall and buy a new photo album. You are going to need it.
So even though this part of our personality is a bit more difficult to express and find outlets for, it’s not impossible. We can always find ways to express ourselves through travel, even when we have to go against our nature, and remain still.