It’s not cool to get homesick as a proper functioning grown-up.
You’re supposed to be sassy and independent and go-getting all the time because hey, you’re basically Beyonce, but the reality is that traveling can be lonely, overwhelming and well, just completely different to the reality and normality of your every day life.
(As well as amazing and liberating and exciting and full of adrenaline and happy emotions, obvs).
It can be especially daunting if you’re traveling alone, or y’know, for work or something that means you’re not surrounded by the people who know you best.
The first time I ever felt home sick was when I was eight, and at my first ever Brownie camp. They made me eat copious amounts of Angel Delight and stole all the Ribena cartons my mum had hidden in my suitcase and oh god, never again.
But it sucks, it really sucks, because it drains all the OMG ADVENTURE AND NEW PLACES AND EXPLORING AND I LOVE THE WORLD out of traveling.
So here’s my top tips to making you feel just that little bit better, that little bit sparklier, and that little bit more you, wherever you are in the world.
1. I’ve made no secret of my dramatic over-the-top love for sleep sprays, and I take them away with me whenever I travel solo. I take a miniature spray for my hotel room, and a teeny roll-on one for my pulse points on long haul flights (Neom do a great miniatures set…).
Scent is a super clever thing – it’s one of the things that can take us back to a memory or an emotion within a second. Whilst sleep sprays make me think of being at home in fresh sheets, I’ve trained myself to only use my Jo Malone While Lilac & Rhubarb perfume when I need comforting – like a big comfort blanket. So now, whenever I spray it, it instantly eases me and reminds me I’ll be OK.
So yeah, maybe saunter round The Body Shop or a perfume department and track down a scent that instantly feels soothing, and then use it for those moments only. Best thing ever.
2. One of my greatest fears in life is burglars (them and slugs and glasses of milk, vom), which means I can sometimes feel pretty anxious when I’m trying to fall asleep on my own in a new place. Mostly because I freak out over every little teeny noise which is DEFINITELY 102% someone climbing in through a window.
I’ve started putting the hotel TV on a low volume before I sleep, ideally on a kid’s channel. It means that I tune out other noises, but also that my thoughts just before sleep are pretty light-hearted. Disney channel, you da best.
3. Being part of INTERNET <3<3<3 generation means that we’ve become way too reliant on communicating via text, rather than y’know, actual voices and eye contact.
When I’m away I try to FaceTime Chris and the cats at least every other day, even if just for a few minutes. It makes me feel more connected to home and makes all the good stuff surge through my veins. Mostly because Rudey purring and rubbing herself against the phone is the cutest thing ever.
It’s def worth paying a small WIFI fee if it’s not free for that social boost and feel good vibes that flood your bloodstream afterwards. Your sim social bar will be luminous green, promise.
4. Sometimes the easiest way to escape feelings all being alone in an alien country is to, y’know, just escape your own brain.
I swear by downloading Harry Potter audio books on audible, because they allow me to fall, face first, into a magical world so removed from the reality of where I am. They allow me to forget whatever it is that’s stressing me out or making me feel anxious.
The same can be said for reading a good book, y’know, as opposed to listening to one. I have a secret soft spot for Jill Mansell novels, the perfect pop of cheesy chick lit to get entirely addicted to so that you completely switch off.
5. When I went to France last month I took a LUSH bath bomb with me. Basic bitch AND proud. But that twenty minutes, where I was able to relax exactly the same as I would at home, made me feel like a sassy new woman. And I’d definitely do it again.
Try packing at least one comforting pamper product to use when you’ve got even just half an hour to yourself, whether that’s a sweet af bubble bath or a favourite face mask. It’ll make the world of difference.
What do you do to make yourself feel better when traveling?