Every deals with a break-up differently. Some bonk other people. Others eat their way through the ice cream fridge at the supermarket. Your strategy may be to hole up at home, wearing your duvet like a coat and watching Deadwood re-runs 24/7. But, there’s one strategy that I think can be a shortcut to feeling better. What is this incredible cure, you ask? The one tactic guaranteed to help you reshape your life around the ex-shaped hole in your heart? Well, it’s this: travel.
Don’t yell at me and tell me to go away and leave you to your boxset marathon. I’m serious. Sure, it may take a little effort on your part (you can’t take your duvet on a plane, so you may need to do some packing), but here’s why it’s the best idea since Boyfriend In A Box was invented.
It’s all new, new, new. New places. New people. New faces. A looooong way from your current sad, tear-stained, memory-filled environment. Don’t tell me you actually want to hang around in your sad, tear-stained, memory-filled environment? Of course you don’t. You need to get out of there, stat.
You can’t cry on a bus in Tibet. Well, okay, you can, but it’s hard to stay devoted to your round-the-clock weeping routine when you’re in the presence of curious locals. Or looking at a beautiful sunset in Cambodia. Or sharing a train with chickens and farmers who think nothing of hoiking out the windows.
Travel is the best kind of therapy. A totally different kind of therapy from sitting on a psychologist’s couch. It teaches you things about yourself – even when you don’t expect it – and it’s a great distraction. You can’t help but be amazed by the beautiful places you’re seeing, the people you’re meeting. You feel inspired to try stuff you might not have previously. Or do things that scare you, be it bunji jumping in New Zealand or kissing that cute blogger with the dreadlocks staying in your hostel in Bolivia.
It’s a guaranteed reboot. Away from home, you can’t help but get a new perspective (especially if you’re seeing how the other half live, and it’s nothing like how you live). You’re also sure to have some fun. Even if you’re convinced that you’ll never have fun again, fun is out there to be had in our big wide world.
Anything goes. Think outside the box and do something that’s really out of your comfort zone. Saddle up on a horseback adventure. Book in for a long weekend at a day spa. Grab a cheap Air B’n’B room in a busy nearby city and play tourist for a weekend. Join a singles group for a ski trip. Book a shark dive. Go wine tasting. Google the best hostels in your area and have a budget getaway. If you’ve got kids, take them for a weekend at a fun park or a water park where the only goal is to go on every single attraction.
Have you used to travel to heal a broken heart? Where did you go?