Lonely Planet describes post-vacation blues as feeling sluggish, cranky, frustrated and/or weepy after returning home from a trip or a break. You booked a beach holiday to relax and unwind from all the stress, but you come home feeling a bit irritated. You endured being out of your comfort zone in a strange new country for weeks, but when you come back to the comfort of your home, you suddenly feel displaced and melancholic.
According to a study by Radboud University, the stress of a trip can potentially leave you feeling worse than if you didn’t take one in the first place. Whether you’ve returned from a long backpacking trip abroad or just a weekend out of town, you can suffer from a bout of the post-travel blues. To make your reentry into your regular routines easier to bear, then heed this tips, CGs!
1. Don’t overdo your itinerary.
Because the average Filipino employee counts on those limited holidays and vacation leaves, it’s typical to have a mindset of “make my vacations count.” When you have so little paid time off, you tend to put pressure on filling your itinerary with multiple activities. Forcing too many activities into a tight vacation schedule will give you the opposite of serenity. Instead, leave at least an hour a day for mindless pursuits, whether it’s just lounging by the pool or hanging out at the neighborhood coffee shop. Don’t run a strict, unbreakable schedule. Jot down multiple options for the day, depending on your level of energy, budget, weather, and other contingencies.
2. Return smoothly.
Ever heard of the statement, “I need a vacation from my vacation?” Give yourself at least one free day after your vacation before returning to school or work. It gives you time to unpack, resettle into your home, and slowly ease into your regular routines.
3. Share memories.
Start organizing those hundreds of photos and keepsakes you collected during your travel. Create a scrapbook, update your blog, upload albums on your Facebook, and create fun hashtags on your Instagram posts to reminisce the fun times you had with your travel buddies. Display your new printed photos and souvenirs on your work desk or around your house. Prolong that high you got from your vacay for as long as you can despite returning to hundreds of work emails and meetings.
4. Keep dreaming.
Instead of sulking because you’re no longer sipping a piña colada while digging your toes into white sand, start planning for your next trip. The average employee needs a break every three to six months [via: Radboud University], so it’s normal to feel the itch to ditch your office just weeks after your last vacation. Plot out your next few escapades by browsing through travel blogs, keeping tabs on airline and hotel promos, and researching on different destinations. It keeps you misty-eyed and excited.
5. Start saving.
Once you’ve started planning for your next trip, it’s time to start mapping out your budget. Make a travel piggy bank or plot other ways to fund your next trip.
6. Explore your own hood.
Just because you’re no longer strolling the streets of New York or snorkeling in Palawan, it doesn’t mean there’s nothing exciting to see in your neighborhood. We often take for granted our hometown because we’re too preoccupied dreaming about other tourist spots zip codes away. Explore your vicinity for quaint coffee shops, bookstores, hole-in-wall food joints, and new events that could open your eyes to the unique charm of your neighborhood. Wanderlust doesn’t always have to cover faraway destinations.
7. Connect with other travelers.
Share your newfound knowledge and passion for travel. If a relative or friend is booking a trip to a place you just visited, tell them about that secret spot you discovered there. Join online communities where like-minded travelers can connect and share tidbits. Reply to Facebook posts and online threads asking for travel tips and stories.