Dealing With Anxiety While Travelling
On my Instagram (@paigepetrovsky – shameless self-promo) I have been pretty vocal over the last two years about my mental health. I believe I mentioned this in a previous blog post, but I have been very fortunate for having gone through most of my life without experiencing any mental health issues. However, in 2018 this changed. I won’t go into all the nitty-gritty details, but I had graduated college in June and for the first time in my life furthering my education wasn’t my next step forward. I didn’t know what was and this terrified me. Despite having many incredible career opportunities, and eventually going back to college, I (for the first time ever) started to feel very anxious. One of the main things that was impacted as a result of my anxiety was my eating habits. Suddenly, eating seemed to become a chore for me and the mere thought of it sometimes made me sick to my stomach. It got to a point that I could barely eat breakfast in my own house let alone eat at restaurants with friends. (Full disclaimer: This is what I went through when my anxiety was at its full peak, and I am doing much better now than I ever have been and I am feeling like my normal self again.)
Fast forward to February of this year. I was doing much much better, occasionally the idea of eating would make me nervous (mainly just because I was scared anxiety would make me feel sick again) but for the most part, I was back to my normal self. Which was a good thing because my family (and a group of our friends) were going to Costa Rica and I didn’t want my anxiety to ruin the trip. Although, there was something inside of me that was questioning if it would.
Travelling (particularly flying) has always made me a little bit nervous so when I felt a little nervous on the day of our departure I knew it was nothing to be too worried about. I spent the whole entire plane ride reading, listening to music, and writing down my thoughts and worries in my journal. Journaling is one of the main methods I use to ease my anxiety, so when we landed I wasn’t feeling nearly as worried as I thought I would. Luckily, this lasted for the entire trip (there were some periods where I had little spouts of anxiety but for the most part they were easy to control). I ate delicious food, spoke without feeling nervous, and completely abandoned my comfort zone in some cases (hello ziplining through the rainforest and singing karaoke to a room full of strangers.
I thought my anxiety would come back and ruin the trip I had been so looking forward to for months. In fact, the complete opposite happened. I was able to overcome the anxiety I had been struggling on-and-off with for the past two years, have a great vacation, and even feel great when I returned back to Canada.
If anyone is interested in reading a full ‘Costa Rica’ travel experience blog, let me know.
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