Anxiety before leaving

Travel Forums General Talk Anxiety before leaving

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1. Posted by kevin86 (Budding Member 6 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

So I'm leaving on a 9 month trip next thursday, and I am getting insanely nervous right now. I've travelled before, one 2 month trip, so this whole thing isn't new to me, but this seems so different.
Two summers ago I spent about 9 weeks with a Eurail pass bouncing around europe, but this time I'm doing a RTW trip with S Africa, SE Asia, Australia, and NZ. I think its mainly fear of the unknown and the big difference between these two routes.

Was so excited when planning/booking this trip I could barely sleep at night but lately as it has gotten closer, I keep wondering what the hell I'm doing leaving home for so long and just having a lot of nerves.
I know once I leave and get in to the new routine I'll be fine again, but the anticipation is killing me right now. Still a lot to do and get ready before leaving and the anxiety about it is definitely not helping right now.

Should I just be keeping busy the next 10 days, not dwelling on it all and what could/will happen? I just wish I was leaving tomorrow and could get back into it all instead of just waiting around for it to happen.

2. Posted by flo jo (Respected Member 414 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hi Kevin,

More than the anxiety, i think you just cant wait to go. Dont think about the 9 months you will be away. Only one day at the time. You can trust me before you could realised it the 9 months will be over. Your pregnancy will go well and you will give birth to a big travelling bug. The worse of all, it´s after 18 years hanging around the travelling bug never go away.

Good luck and take care

3. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 5413 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

I think what you are feeling is totally normal - I would think virtually everyone who embarks on a big travelling trip experiences these emotions to some degree. I certainly did before I went on my big trip - I remember sitting on my bed thinking 'what the hell have I just done - I have given up my flat, job and am leaving my friends and family' - I texted a friend and he said 'embrace the fear of change' or words to that effect. I barely slept that night, but from then on I had the best time ever and never regretted it for a second. now I am back home after 21 months away I wish I could go back to that night and do it all again!

just try and keep busy and think about the positives; once you actually set off I think the nerves will disappear and just the excitement will remain. the next 10 days will fly by as you will be packing, saying bye to friends and family etc.


4. Posted by Mel. (Travel Guru 4567 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hello Kevin:)

U are not the first to go on a round the world trip.
Others enjoyed it and came back with cool stories to tell.
U will too.


5. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru 5353 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hi Kevin

First of all, let me say, I ENVY you right now Looking back, that feeling of anticipation is priceless. It's a fantastic feeling. :)

You've done the Europe thing and sound like you had a great time, so all that's really different this time I suppose is that you are going to countries that you perceive to be more "foreign", if you know what I mean.

I know South America isn't listed on your itinerary there, but I can relate to that fear of the unknown that you have before I travelled there. I remember being on the overnight flight from NYC to Lima, feeling EXTREMELY nervous about what lay ahead. But it just fell into place, as things do.

You'll be absolutely fine. You'll have an amazing time and collect a wealth of memories from your travels in these places. Even if minor mishaps do befall you, such as a pocket-picking or whatnot , even then you'll be just fine. This is what travel's all about right? Testing yourself, learning new things, experiencing it ALL!

Embraces the nerves Kevin!

6. Posted by kombizz (Full Member 1416 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Always meditate and be positive

7. Posted by paul j (Respected Member 217 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Christ , i`d give my right testicle to be in your shoes right now
Your only human Anxiety is only natural for such a long trip. Your gonna have a blast !

8. Posted by Eleniki (Full Member 125 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hey Kevin

I can really identify with you - as I write, I am in a state of anxiety about leaving home in mid-September for 8 or 9 months. I´m taking a year off work, putting my life on hold, to volunteer and travel in Sth America and Nepal and China. I´m very busy with preparations, but the nerves hit me in the dead of night- if I wake up I start to have the terrors... I´ve been around a lot longer than you, and have travelled before, but never for as long as this, and never so faaar away from my European comfort zone (in fact I´m in spain as I write, in Tarragona, and it´s like a home from home, so familiar is everything). The one thing that I have found to be helpful at times like this, be it travel worry or work anxiety, is the sure knowledge that you can only live one moment at a time, and that you will get through each moment step by step, until you realise you are coasting along, and the bigger picture starts to unfold. Also, don´t forget, you will meet SO many people, some just like you, some very different, but almost all very friendly and communicative. This will be a huge support. Have the trip of a lifetime! Helen

9. Posted by opospa (Respected Member 1837 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hi Kevin,

Enjoy your trip!!!
See you again in 9 months time!!!
I'll check out your blog yea!!!

Good Luck!!


10. Posted by kevin86 (Budding Member 6 posts) 16y Star this if you like it!

Hey thanks a lot guys, I really appreciate it.
I've been getting a lot of the last minute things in the mail that I ordered recently, and have started to plan out my packing list in more detail. This is definitely getting me ready and just tying up loose ends that I no longer have to worry about.

Probably the main reason I have been more nervous this time than 2 years ago before I left is because everyone I tell is so shocked by my plans. The Europe trip was a shock to most people but they atleast had heard of/knew someone who did that, but so few people (all of us provincial Americans obviously) are familiar with a 21 yr old backpacking around the world for 9 months that they just make ME more nervous when they do a double-take and ask me again what I'm doing for the next year.

I know it's gonna all work out and even small problems along the way will just make it more interesting, so I have NEVER had any thoughts of canceling/postponing my trip, thats just not gonna happen. I am feeling better now though, and I think it just all hit me at once a few days ago as I had been busy during the summer up til now and really it was all just in the back of my mind. Definitely appreciate the replies here and the anxiety is turning into more excitement as it gets closer.