By Courtney Humes
Whether it’s a hot all-inclusive destination with all of the sun, drinks, and samba music you can handle, or more of an off-the-beaten-path road trip style you prefer, if it means being away, you’d likely take either.
On the other hand, is the idea of travel still making you feel hesitant and nervous? Thinking about all of the restrictions, unknowns, extra measures, and precautions needed to even just to get on the plane, or worse, return home.
It begs the question, is it really time to start planning your next trip?
I say yes. Studies have shown, even just having a trip to look forward to can help reduce stress and increase the excitement for life.
The thought of the warm sun, ocean waves, and exploration of a new place create positive images in your head, resulting in happy emotions. I think we all need this right about now.
But how can we get back that true excitement for travel? Here are 5 ways to get excited about travel again:
1. Create a Top 5 Destinations Bucket List
How many times have you said, “I would love to go there” or “That place sounds amazing,” then daydream about actually doing it?
If you’re like me, the list of places to visit grows bigger and bigger almost every day. As I work with people to plan their trips, read articles about gorgeous and unique destinations, scroll through Instagram, or watch the National Geographic Travel channel, I add another destination to my bucket list.
Get excited about travel again by writing down the top 5 destinations you would love to visit. By doing so, you are one step closer to making it a reality and taking the next steps to research and plan the trip.
2. Write Down Your Travel Stories
Travel creates and provides so many amazing life experiences, stories, and special memories. Some experiences and memories are shared with others, while some are strictly your own. Either way, write them down.
Whether you want to keep them to yourself or share them with loves ones, documenting the sights, sounds, feelings, and meanings behind your travels is a great way to ensure they are never forgotten.
Even if the trip took place years ago, it is not too late to write them down now and relive the experience.
3. Read Your Old Travel Journals
Journaling during your travels is an amazing way to capture each day of your journey and special moments while they’re fresh in your mind. Finding that journal 15 years later and reading through it is even better!
If you took the time to create travel journals in the past, I encourage you to find and read them. I came across my travel journal as I was looking for some old pictures.
Reading through my words as a young adult travelling through Europe, Canada, and Australia pulled at my heartstrings. It brought me back to the emotions I felt at the time.
If travel journaling is not something you normally do, I suggest you start. Taking even 5 minutes each morning or evening while you’re away to write can create meaningful moments of reflection later in life.
4. Take a Course, Learn a New Skill or Language
Ready to take your travel experiences to the next level? Now is the time to learn new skills that will enhance your trips and vacations later on.
Learn how to fly a drone to take spectacular photos; discover how to edit those pictures to make them pop; take a travel writing course, or learn to scuba dive. The possibilities and opportunities are endless and can open up new doors and activities when you travel.
You can also learn a new language. Picture yourself in Paris, ordering a cafe and macaron, en francais. What about relaxing in a vineyard in Italy, a big glass of red wine in hand, whispering sweet nothings in Italian to Enrico (the handsome waiter).
With today’s technology and phones always in the palm of our hands, now is easier than ever to learn a new language. With apps like Babble and Duolingo, learning can be easy and fun and take you one step closer to wine with Enrico.
5. Research Way to Support Local Communities
The pandemic, as well as environmental catastrophes over the past few years, has taken a financial toll on many countries, especially those in which tourism is the main source of income.
As travel starts to open again, it is important to remember that local communities and less fortunate countries need our help and support.
That support can come in various ways, such as visiting during non-peak season, supporting local producers, markets, and farms, contributing to non-profit organizations and local groups, and using local tour operators and suppliers who use sustainable practices in their operations.
No matter how you spend your time getting comfortable and excited to travel again, just know you will!
Then, start planning your next trip (like a reading retreat!), download that vacation countdown app back on your phone, and dream about the sand in your toes and destinations to explore.
Courtney Humes is an Ontario-based Wellness Travel Advisor, Certified Travel Coach, and founder of Follow Your Shine, Inc., a coaching and consulting company.
She is also a Human Resources Professional, mother of four, and lover of hiking, yoga, photography, and all things nature. Courtney’s goal is to motivate and inspire others who may be overworked and overstressed to find wellness, healing, and purpose through Wellness Travel.
Connect with Courtney on Instagram.
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