When you’re an introvert travelling alone or with others can be a rewarding yet draining experience. You have no time to reflect, recharge and reassess. ”Some popular psychologists have characterized introverts as people whose energy tends to expand through reflection” – Wikipedia
I’ve come to accept that I’m more of an introvert that I would like to be. I love the comforting feel of my own home and being around my own things. I need that time to have a break from the world. It can be difficult to want to travel the world whilst also having these tendencies. However I know I’m not alone so I’ve written this guide to help others who also have these conflicting desires.
Prepare Your Travels
Pre-book holidays (and little experiences) at least 2 months in advance. By the time the date rolls around, you’ve booked your days off from work, you’ve written out your packing list (and double checked it) and you’re not daunted. I would love to be one of these people that jaunts off when they feel like it but it’s not in my blood. If I don’t do it my way, I wouldn’t do it.
Visit Where Suits You
Do some research into where you think will suit your needs. If you’re an extreme introvert then consider going to countrysides, islands and other relaxing places. If you feel okay with them then work your way up to big cities. You don’t have to go somewhere just because it’s popular!
Get a Schedule
I feel much more at ease when I have a rough outline of each day. It probably makes me a boring travel partner but I like knowing how the day will be structured. It makes me feel less daunted along the way as I’m not constantly exposed to new experiences and fighting back that anxiety. Be a big part of the planning process and make sure that even if no-one else does, you know what’s planned for each day.
Don’t Push Yourself
Take your holiday slow. There is no reason to rush around doing 5 experiences a day if its going to put too much pressure on you. Sure you’ll have great stories but the memories will be of when you just couldn’t handle another thing and had to sit down and chill.
Plan Moments Alone
Ideally you’ll have a really understanding travel partner who will understand that you just need to spend some time every now and then doing something else. However if not, schedule some solo tasks and say ‘I know you have no interested in this museum so why don’t I do that and we can meet back for dinner?’. To make it easier you could pre-arrange something for them that you know you have no interest for and ‘honourably’ treat them and take yourself elsewhere for a bit.
This is against the grain of the post but finally you must sometimes accept that you’re not going to get that alone time and to drink water, take deep breaths and power through. Schedule a rest day for the day after you’re back where you can recharge before going back to work.