Remind Me, When Was I Supposed To Get Lonely Again?
I've been traveling for well over 6 months now. When I finally head home it will have been nearly 1 year!
With all this time on the road and so much of it spent working (sometimes I even needed to avoid human contact in hostels) you might ask...
"Did you ever get lonely?"
I vaguely remember a few days (maybe when I was broke in Laos) when I was just tired and wanted to come home. That said, my answer after traveling for the greater portion of 2015 is a resounding 'No!'
Where Was My Loneliness?
I'd heard from so many people that after you're away for a little while, you're going to desperately want to return home. Maybe 9 months isn't long enough to become really lonely, but I've felt pretty good most of the time. 🙂
Before I left I was a little worried that I would really get homesick after about six months. I've done a good deal of traveling before, but not for this long.
I didn't know what to expect, but I guess I anticipated that every few weeks a cloud of despair would sweep over me that could only be cured by calling with all of my friends from back home.
Luckily, these clouds of despair never showed up!
There are so many stories about how we'll get homesick after we're away for more than a few months. Maybe it's just me, but for this year-long trip the pain never got that bad.
How CAN You Get Lonely Today?
Is it really possible to get lonely when you're traveling the world today?
Of course, the answer is yes. Some people do get very lonely as they travel.
But really, you're never that far from home, even when you travel to the far side of the world!
1. Skype, Facebook, Email
Since I left home I was never really 'alone'.
Just earlier this week I spoke with a good friend who used to be my roommate in Boston.
My parents have randomly called my Skype account ever since I was in my apartment in Chiang Mai. Just like when I used to stay out too late at the movies, they still 'check in' on me!
I've stayed in contact with pretty much everyone via Facebook. It's so easy to just message an old friend and everyone is on Facebook at 2AM anyway, so time zone differences aren't super important either. 😉
With all this technology, I feel almost as close to people now as I did when I was at home. It's really incredible!
2. Friends Came To Visit
A friend of mine, Ryan, who worked for a startup in Boston came out to visit me when I was in Chiang Mai. It was awesome to see him for a few days (his Spring break) and it blew me away that he flew to the far side of the world for a week-long vacation!
Another pal of mine, Lars, decided to take classes in Hong Kong. As he was in the neighborhood (South East Asia) he told me I could kick it with him for a few months while he was here. We were roommates in college, and now we're roommates again on the far side of the planet!
3. I Met New Friends
I'm working to build my own business to help fuel my world travel. There were entrepreneurs everywhere for me to meet! I even got to practice BMX with one of them.
I made great friends with locals as well. I met some of the nicest people after asking for a bed for the night.
I got an internship in the Philippines! It was a marketing position for a resort out there (Check out BADLADZ for awesome SCUBA diving) and it came with room and board.
I didn't even frequent hostels that much, but that would have been another awesome way to meet tons of travelers really quickly!
4. Travel Is Awesome!
I don't know if you've been following my Twitter feed @Nico_Jannasch, but I've been updating it regularly since I left on this journey. It's full of cool pictures and stories about what I've been up to.
For almost a year now, I've put up something really unique and different every single day. A lot of the pictures are of food, others are about Chinese theme parks, and even others document my motorcycle journeys.
When you're traveling alone, knowing that you will have some amazing stories to tell when you get back to your friends makes loneliness much easier to bear.
Since I've been traveling, I really haven't felt much loneliness.
I'm a little sad because it seems to me like a lot of people don't jump on a plane to Asia, or South America, or wherever, simply because they're so afraid that the loneliness will be more than they can take.
Are you letting a fear of loneliness keep you from traveling the world?
Crush that fear! It's not helping you.
If you want to travel, just do it. If the travel bug is nagging at you now, it will only get worse in the future!