Small disclaimer: I’m writing this post just after I’ve returned from my trip and my brain isn’t completely online yet. So my apologies in advance for any spelling mistakes
Hello again! I am back in the country after my travel adventure in Copenhagen, where I was trying to turn my dreams back into reality. But first off, I’m very pleased to say that my energy-saving experiment has worked!!
For the first time in a year and a half, my holiday didn’t feature a rather depressing and self-confidence-sucking start. And I didn’t break down crying on the street due to an overloaded brain. Victory!
The lesson I’ve learnt? If you plan something big, three days of rest beforehand isn’t enough. Two weeks of careful planning and conserving strength and energy however, do pay off. Now I’m guessing that there is a sweet spot somewhere between three days and two weeks. That magical number of days needed to recharge your battery for big events. Which is why I’ll try to find this sweet spot in my future endeavours.
I also realized that I need to find three things in a new city to keep my stress levels low:
- The locations of free (and reasonably clean) public toilets
- The coffee chain with the least intrusive background music and lighting
- The nearest park with benches that gives you a feeling of escaping the city
If I happen to need a break, I don’t have to look for these places any more. I know where to go if I want to have a cuppa and warm up or where to go to breathe in some clean air in a green surrounding. All that remains to do is listening to your body and to stop when you feel you need to rest.
That’s why I prefer to travel alone. I don’t have to compromise, explain or talk if I don’t want to. I can do whatever feels good. Now I know that this doesn’t apply to everyone. If you have a partner you probably know each other well and they (hopefully) don’t cost much energy to be around.
I set out on this adventure in the hope of being that girl again, that acts on her dreams. To really go on an adventure, travel and meet new people. So did I achieve my goals?
I most certainly did! I felt like the old me again and didn’t feel ‘disabled’. In normal day-to-day life, I always feel that my brain has had enough around 3 pm. I then desperately need to sleep than for an hour. Also going with friends for drinks or things like that, just cost me too much energy. So I don’t. However, when I’m travelling I can go for a tea with someone and even make it through the day. I think it’s because when on holiday, I –naturally– don’t work. Therefore my brain doesn’t have to work as hard as it normally has to do and I have more energy to spare.
Which leads to a totally different discussion. How much is too much, in terms of work costing more energy. If you feel more disabled while you go on with your normal life, do you just learn to live with that or try to find a solution? After all, everyone feels better while they are on holiday. How do you compare the difference between how you feel during a normal week and a week on holiday? Well this is a whole different topic. I’m sure I will get to discuss this more at some later point. In case you already have some insights to share, let me know in the comments below.
Going with a night bus definitely made me feel adventurous. First of all you’ll meet people from all over the world and of all ages. Also a passport control in the middle of the night and sleeping in a full and moving bus, definitely felt adventurous.
Discovering the city, ticked all my travel experiences. I went on a walking tour, visited different museums (in all honesty I fast-walked through them as 45 minutes turned out to be my limit for each visit) and tried various local delicacies. I -of course- had to try all the cake shops and bakeries that the guide book recommended, travelling is such a hardship 😉
And I’ve had many interesting conversations. Talking over the day in the dorm room, discussing the value of travel in a coffee bar and learning about life in Denmark from a shopkeeper.
In other words, mission accomplished. Next on the agenda: three days of resting and sleeping to prepare for normal life again.
Which kind of travel experiences do you like to tick on your holiday? Have you found your sweet spot yet; the number of days you need to rest before doing something big?