Dealing with Travel Discouragement
Updated: Feb 12, 2018
Travel discouragement. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve personally dealt with it, or have read about others dealing with it. Whether it be family, friends, or random people on the street, there always seems to be one person (or several) who wants to be a Debbie Downer and offer their negative opinions about your travel plans or goals. Now while its true that some of those people may have the best intentions and are only looking out for your well-being, there are others who want to discourage you simply because you are on the road to accomplishing something that they have been too afraid to do themselves. So how do you deal with travel discouragement without letting it get to you? Here are a few ways to deal with those who try to steer you away from your travel dreams:
Be mindful of who you engage in conversations with.
Have you noticed that most people who are doing the discouraging are the ones that have very little if ANY travel experience at all? If you know that you’re dealing with a Negative Nancy or otherwise someone who tends to offer their two cents about all the reasons you should NOT travel somewhere without valid reasons why, then it is best to avoid sharing your travel plans with that person. When you consider the logistics and planning that are put into travel, you already have enough on your plate as-is. There’s no point in adding more stress to the situation by engaging in conversation with someone who doesn’t have anything helpful or positive to say.
Do your own research.
If we booked our trips solely based on other’s opinions and/or what we see on the news, we probably wouldn’t leave the house. After all, everywhere is sooo dangerous, right? Wrong. My advice? Turn off the news. Keep scrolling past that neverending Facebook thread with conflicting thoughts and opinions. Instead, do your own research. Pick up a travel guide, visit your destination’s tourism website or log into TripAdvisor.com to read the reviews and forums from those who have recently been or who currently live there. You’ll likely find that the truth is the complete opposite of what many think it is.
Provide the facts.
I find that the best way to combat negative opinions is with facts. If they claim that an area is “not safe”, provide them with the actual statistics. If they claim that a place is “dirty” or “scary” (sadly both things I’ve heard about some of the most beautiful places I’ve visited), then show them photos and videos of all of the beautiful, positive things about that area. If they claim that they’ve heard about the negative experiences that a friend of a friend of their cousin’s sister has had, show them the positive travel stories from others who have already been there and done that. In other words, prove them wrong.
Invite them to go with you.
As mentioned earlier, many times people will hate and show their negativity about an idea because they are afraid or have not been successful of doing so themselves. When it comes to travel negativity, give them a hand and invite them to go with you. By doing so, you are not only helping them to accomplish what may actually be a goal for them, but you are also giving them them a firsthand experience and therefore the opportunity to change their negative mindset.
Think about how you will feel if you DON’T go.
You’ve heard it before: You only regret the things that you didn’t do when you had the chance. You can’t have past moments back, so never allow someone’s negative opinions to take you away from what could be a trip of a lifetime. Life is short, and situations can change overnight...so if you have the opportunity to take a trip, do it. Let the naysayers stay behind and regret that they didn’t join you.
Accept the fact that not everyone has the same passions.
I can’t tell you how much time I’ve spent trying to convince someone of why they should try travel or love a certain destination as much as I do. Sometimes it’s enough to encourage someone to go and see for themselves, and other times it’s just like I’m talking to a wall. The truth of the matter is, not everyone is made the same. Not everyone is going to see the world the way that you do, or have the desire to travel the way that you do. And that leads me to my last and final piece of advice...
Learn to march to the beat of your own drum.
At the end of the day, you have to remember that you are the only one who is responsible for you. You are the only one who has the final say, and you are the only one capable of turning your dreams into reality. No matter what it is that we do in life, there is always going to be someone to challenge you, and to make you question whether you are making the right choice. However, if you feel deep down in your heart that you are doing the right thing, go for it...and don’t let anyone stop you.
How do you deal with those who try to discourage you from traveling? Share in the comments below!
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