Getting away from your familiar routine and location, and hitting the open road, can be one of the most uplifting and life-affirming ways of spending time, in general.
But whether you are jetting off to Europe and then backpacking from location to location, or whether you are doing a road trip across the continental USA, there will always be moments when you are “in transit” – or in a hotel – and have some time to kill.
Instead of just staring at your smartphone, or peering out the window during these moments, it could be worthwhile trying out a few more engaging ways of staying entertained on the road.
Here are a few suggestions.
Play board games
Alright, so this isn’t exactly a cutting-edge, original suggestion – but board games have been enjoying something of a renaissance in recent times, and for good reason, too.
In the age of constant digital entertainment, there’s something about a board game that just helps to reset the balance, allows you to get back in touch with the pleasures of the imagination, and reconnects you with the people around you in a direct and (hopefully) positive way.
Whether you are interested in playing a new “boardgame” such as Exploding Kittens, or a classic like Scrabble – maybe with a modern unscramble words tool for a bit of practice before the game itself kicks in – playing board games on the road can help you and anyone you’re travelling with to have a good time while also reminding you how fun a “low-tech” pastime can be.
Read good books (or try to write your own)
It’s easy to find bookshops everywhere, but for all that, it’s only a relatively small proportion of people who actually read on anything even like a regular basis.
Books are great for all sorts of different reasons: they work to engage your imagination, they help to develop your ability to focus, they give you deep insights into topics, on a level and to an extent that you just can’t replicate by skimming websites, and more.
Books – the “analogue” variety, anyway – also don’t need batteries or chargers, they can be taken anywhere with you, and they can help make hours pass by like minutes.
On top of reading, why not bring your own journal or empty notebook, and have a go at doing some writing of your own?
Reflect on life, and make plans for the future
Trips away from home serve as a perfect opportunity to reflect on your life, and make meaningful plans for the future. That’s because, when you’re away from your familiar context and environment, you get to see things from a whole new angle and perspective.
Trips also seem, in and of themselves, like natural “bookmarks” for your life – significant periods which can mark a point of transition.
So, when you’re next travelling, take a notebook and pen with you and give some real thought to where you are in life, where you are heading, and where you want to be. Brainstorm, pace around and think, and visualise different scenarios.
By the end of the trip, you may be ready to transform your life and take the world by storm.