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Written by Alice from For Travelista
We always hear stories how travelling is one of the best things in the world. While home is surely where the heart is, exploring new places to experience things we don’t normally deal with in our comfort zone is an important part of expanding your life experience and broadening your mindset to unfamiliar cultures. However, doing this means leaving our loved ones and many things we care about.
Most people who travel for a period of time experience homesickness from time to time, particularly those who travel on long term basis. Many times I wish it was easier or not so expensive to go home to see and catch up with the things I miss especially during important holidays or milestones my love ones achieve while I am away. The common times I feel homesick is during anyone of my family members’ birthday and my birthday, however, the saddest times is during Christmas holidays.
I remember the first time I spent Christmas travelling abroad. I was in Thailand when I realised that for some countries, Christmas is just another day in the calendar. I found myself crying because I miss being home and I felt so lonely.
Spending special days away from your families, loved ones, and traditions throughout the most joyful time of the year can sometimes be slightly of a downer. Though winter holidays are being celebrated in various ways all over the globe, this additional unfamiliarity, together with distance, can generate homesickness on a very high level.
Call me shallow, it was one of the hardest parts of travelling for me. So, in order for that not to happen again, I tried to figure out the best ways how to avoid holiday sadness while travelling. I asked several hardcore travellers about how they get through the same situation. Here are the five best pieces of advice I got:
Feel the Sadness and Spill It Out
The first thing I learned is that there is totally no shame in feeling lonely and sad that you are not with your family during special days of the year. Being sad or crying doesn’t mean you are weak.
If you’re sad about for not being home during Christmas or New Year’s Day, then feel sad! Cry as much as you want and tell a friend or two how you feel. It is true that absence makes the heart grow fonder and perhaps travelling offers you a new, deeper appreciation for your family and friends back home.
Eat Food That Reminds You of Home
Cook your mum favourite recipes for Christmas dinner or buy your sister’s favourite dessert. Eating foods that are special to you is going help you feel exultant and happy. The smells and tastes can bring back our most comprehensive memories of a joyful Christmas holidays with your family back home.
Surrounds Yourself with People on the Same Boat
When travelling – especially when you are alone – it’s very easy to find temporary family in the form of other travellers. It is essential not to isolate yourself when you feel this way as this will only make things worse. Have dinner with your new found friends or spend the night having fun by experiencing the nightlife of the place where you at. You’ll see that many travellers who cannot be home during this time of the year are probably feeling the same and this alone will make you feel not alone. Have each other.
It does not really matter that you’re travelling to a country that doesn’t celebrate Halloween, Thanksgiving, or Christmas, if it’s important to you, celebrate it! Wear Halloween costume or Santa hat; it doesn’t matter what your age is, what important is you are having fun, and it makes you less sad being away from home. Done let being in a different location stop you from performing a tradition that makes you happy and joyful.
Embrace the Difference in Traditions
Although you are travelling to a country with the same holidays in your home country, it is possible that the country you are travelling to doesn’t have the same way of celebrating the holiday – embrace the experience! I will not forget when I spent Christmas in Australia. They had this tradition in the weeks before the Christmas comes, many people join Christmas picnics organised by different church organisations and sing Christmas songs on the beach. Since Australia is a location on the southern hemisphere, they don’t get winter like it is back home and so, it’s pretty understandable why that during Christmas season, people normally go to the beach and celebrate. Instead of fighting the culture that seems strange to you, try to find ways how you can appreciate it and before you know it, these traditions are the ones you will miss when you have to move to another place.
Make a Call
This is the simplest yet most effective way to beat sadness caused by homesickness – call people back home. If you really want to get rid of the sadness, you feel during the special times of your life, reaching out to the people you miss would be the best thing to do. Actually, this works anytime you feel homesick. Keep regular contact with your family and friends through phone, Facebook, e-mail, Ievaphone or Skype. Call them and tell them that you miss them and that you are fine, but you wish you were home. I am pretty sure that they feel the same way for not having you on the special days, so getting some comfort also gives them peace of mind at the same time.
No matter which holidays make you sad, these traditions grew in you, and they’re intensely rooted in your mind. A lot of people look forward to these holidays, eagerly anticipating the activities, sights, and smells that yield delightful holiday memories.
This why being on the road during holiday seasons can feel strange and creates sadness and homesickness. Some people booking their flights to go abroad during the holidays thinking that it won’t matter; however, when you’re actually in a faraway land, you will suddenly find yourself homesick and wanting to be home. Hopefully, this article helps you survive your next holiday abroad.
If you like this article, make sure to check out www.fortravelista.com for more useful tips and smart advice to make your travel easier and hassle-free all the time.
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