About a month ago we arrived home after a 15 month trip through Asia and North-America. We had travelled continuously – moved from place to place – and felt it was time to visit home again: the Netherlands. Most of our friends and families didn’t know we were coming back and surprising them is the best (read it here)! It’s a rollercoaster: we are on a high in the first two weeks – seeing everyone again is so exciting! But then comes the ‘fall’ and our stomach starts to feel a bit weird…
Okay – that sounds awfully tragic – but the fact is: often travellers, who return home after travelling for a while, experience a dip. Nomadic Matt calls it a post-trip depression: it’s often emotionally harder to come home than go away. To us, it feels slightly different, as we know we will go travel again. But still, at home, we are confronted with the ‘norm’ and our different way of thinking.
Everyone and everything at home feels the same, yes there are new babies and some people moved or changed jobs but the way of living or their beliefs haven’t changed. And yet, everything feels different – because we’re different. We aren’t surrounded with like-minded people anymore. We get many questions like ‘Are you going to look for a real job now?’ ‘Are you going to start building pension now?’ ‘What are the plans, when will you leave again?’. Questions that fit in the ‘norm’ and traditional mindset of security first (go to school, get a job buy a house, get kids, retire and maybe travel then). Questions that aren’t important to us and people don’t understand – and we totally get it. But is difficult when you know you’re your happiest self away from that ‘security’. We’re happy with what we do, we’re happy together and that’s what’s important to us!
The Next Step
So where are we going next? It sounds weird but when you on the road for sixteen months, you don’t think about where to go to next. We go wherever the wind brings us. We visit places that excite us, where we meet interesting people or attend special events we want to experience. Before coming home the idea was to leave again the end of August/beginning of September. We bought a working holiday visa for New Zealand that expires mid-September.
But right now, we don’t feel like going there. I went there once and I know it’s a fantastic country that I obviously want to show to Maartje. Just not right now. Other trips like a castle trip through Europe and connecting with fellow-bloggers in Bali, visiting Sri Lanka, India and the Phillippines have been on our minds for a while. And more and more we feel those are the next steps. We haven’t booked anything yet, but slowly but surely a plan is formed!
Beating The Blues
Right now we are focusing on creating new content, connecting with people in the Netherlands and thinking about new things that we would like to do more in the future: photoshoots for example. We’re working on our relationship – the dynamics are changing again with all the external influences – as we try to grow our business. It’s a process and although we’re lucky to do this work with the two of us – it’s also difficult when you’re two people with different ideas!
What also really helps to beat the post-travel blues is to keep travelling! Being back home doesn’t mean you can’t be a traveller. We’re travelling all over the Netherlands and see places we haven’t seen before. It’s fun to experience your home country from a travellers mindset – go try and be a tourist in your own country, grab a Lonely Planet, look up blogs and see things through new eyes. Try out new restaurants, bars, clubs: it’s all so fun and exciting, just like travelling! Find like-minded people, meet up with travellers through Couchsurfing (hangouts) for example, or simply through Instagram.
We’re so amazed by how many amazing, like-minded people have already joined our journey and are so excited to grow every day! Thank you! And don’t forget: if you have dreams: go for it. Everyone deserves to make their dreams happen ♡ And if you’re struggling with post-trip depression: reach out to us, leave a comment below, email us, send us a DM or PM. We’re here for you!
Our true home is being surrounded by the unknown. The road is where we belong
– Nomadic Matt