5 Ways To Recharge After Traveling

Within a weeks time span, Jared and I traveled through two states, a continent and innumerable time zones. Our total flight time was less than 24 hours, but when you include the driving time to airports, the shuttle rides to pick up and drop off the rental car, porting our luggage to and from, etc, you end up with some long days. I LOVE traveling, but find that most trips lead to temporary feelings of disorientation and fatigue.

At least that’s how I felt when we landed in Melbourne last Tuesday night at 11:30pm. My higher self told me to ease into the week and focus on finding my footing and self care. My ego told me to get after it. This post is titled “5 ways to unwind and recharge after traveling” and in fact, I didn’t start doing any of them until a few days ago. I knew what I needed to do to stay healthy, but I turned against my intuition and actually ended up getting a nasty head cold (which I’ve been fighting for the entire week!)

So finally, I’m listening to my instincts and following my own advice when it comes to taking care of myself post travel.

 5 Ways To Recharge After Traveling - view from the plane, Honolulu, Hawaii

1.) Yoga, Yoga, Yoga:

There are so many ways travel can wreck your body - like sitting cramped in an airplane for hours or sleeping on a mattress that’s a lot firmer or softer than the one you have at home. Do your muscles, ligaments and spine a favor and streeeeetch them out. You don’t even have to leave the house if you don’t want to! The online platform Yoga Glow allows you to take classes on the go and is great if you’re a persistant traveler.

  • You can register for a free 15 day trial here.

2.) Catch Up On Zzzz’s:

Even if you had the most relaxing vacation possible, your body needs to start prepping for your normal routine and reality. Plan your trip so you get back on a Friday or Saturday and have at least one or two days to get back on schedule. I’ve made the mistake of booking a flight back home on a Sunday night and turning around to be at work Monday morning and it wasn’t pretty. This will be especially important if you’re changing time zones.

  • Do you have trouble falling asleep? I’m a huge devotee of yoga nidra. This sleeptime practice by Elena Brower is my favorite. If you love podcasts, try listening to Sleep With Me (episodes are 1-2 hours long). The host takes a story and edits it, than goes on tangents to make it extra boring to help lure you to sleep.

3.) Simplify Your Diet:

Does your diet change when you travel? Mine does! I still stick to a (mostly) pescatarian diet but I do indulge in eating out and am much more relaxed about sugar (I love going to bakeries and just can’t say no to almond croissants and chocolate chip cookies!) My 98 year old grandmother says “everything in moderation” and I try follow that advice when it comes to food, but when I finally get home, it feels good to spend the first few days cooking at home and eating more simply.

4.) Diffuse Relaxing & Grounding Essential Oils:

After a few days or weeks of exciting, spontaneous travel adventures, I am so ready for calming and stabilizing energy. Diffusing essential oils can help you connect with the present, get your thoughts center and refocus back on routines. I use doTerra’s Balance blend which combines Spruce Leaf, Ho Wood Leaf, and Frankincense Resin for a sweet Earthy smell. Other great groudning oils include Sandalwood, Myrrh, and Ylang Ylang.

5.) Limit Digital Intake:

Travel often involves a lot of stimulation, especially if you’re going somewhere with a different language and culture to navigate. Just exploring a new city or neighborhood takes mental energy! I rely on the internet a lot when I’m traveling to research the best coffee shops, yoga studios and restaurants, not to mention Google Maps is perpetually on to help me find my way around. Once home, I do my best to stay clear of technology until 8am and power down after 5:30pm. It’s SO hard to do but I feel calmer and sleep better when I limit my screentime.

Give these a try after your next travel and tell me how if any of them work for you. If you have additional ideas on how to unwind and recharge after travel, leave them in the comments below. :)

We're Moving to Australia!

I was sitting on the couch, trying my best to tune into the book I was reading and tune out the conversation going on in our guest bedroom. But our home was constructed in 1926, and the paper thin walls meant I could hear each question and answer, the accents bouncing back and forth from American to Australian. Jared was in the middle of a two-hour interview for a job in Melbourne, and I could tell it was going well. Finally, the interview wrapped up and Jared walked out into the living room. “I think that went really well,” he said. I immediately burst into tears.

I wasn’t surprised that it went well, but I was surprised at my reaction. Jared and I had been talking about moving abroad for over a year. Just a few months prior (at the beginning of 2018), we spent a morning at our favorite coffee shop writing down our personal and professional goals.

One of Jared’s big ambitions was to receive an international job offer.

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I’ve always had faith that the Universe listens to our desires, more like waiting for us to give it some direction. The timing of all this only fuels my belief. A few months after writing down our intentions at the coffee shop, a job opening presented itself in Australia. In my early twenties, I spent 2.5 months backpacking around the country, so I immediately had warm feelings about the job location.

After weeks of not allowing myself to think too deeply about our potential future, my suppressed emotions erupted post-final interview. Maybe deep down I didn’t think we would need to choose between our dream of living abroad and the wonderful, comfortable life we’ve created in the Northwest.

We discussed it, started to daydream about what our life would look like, and agreed that Jared should go for it. To be honest, I didn’t invest too much energy into the “what ifs”. I had no idea how far along in the process we would get, so I just continued business as usual. But the meetings and interviews went much faster than I imagined. Every other day it seemed Jared was on the phone talking with a recruiter, his potential new manager, and would be colleagues about the job. Before we knew it he was prepping for the final interview with the big boss.

After weeks of not allowing myself to think too deeply about our potential future, my suppressed emotions erupted post-final interview. Maybe deep down I didn’t think we would need to choose between our dream of living abroad and the wonderful life we’ve created in the Northwest.

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I cried because in my heart, I knew that we would choose to leave.
I cried because I already felt the ache of saying goodbye to family and friends.
I cried because I had just hit a stride in my business, and didn’t want to give up what I worked so hard for (turns out I don’t have too.)
I cried because life as I knew it was going to change completely, and even though I was really excited, I mourned the loss of our current lifestyle.

And still, we debated about it EVERYDAY. It was agonizing the amount of times we went back and forth. We felt so torn. We found countless reasons to go, and the same amount of reasons to stay. We spent weeks untangling our emotions and talking through the options. At the end of the day, we knew that choosing to stay in Seattle was a fear-based decision. So we chose the unknown, the new opportunity, the adventure.

Which leads me to here and now, visas in hand and packing up parts of our life to move across the world. It still feels surreal, even though time is ticking seriously fast. Our departure is at the end of November, meaning we have less than 4 weeks to say goodbyes, try and get in a few more outdoor adventures, and sell or donate a lot of our belongings. Technically our work visas are for two years, with the opportunity to extend. A lot of people have asked how long we plan to be over there and it’s hard to say. While I’m confident we’ll love living in Australia (Melbourne was voted the most livable city in the world 7 times in a row), it’s hard to think about being away from our families and community for too long.

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I hope we’ll stay in touch while I’m away! I’ll be sharing our Australian adventures and how we’re adjusting to expat life here on the blog as well as through my newsletter. So if you haven’t signed up to receive that, head on over to the sign up page.

Lastly, if you know anyone in Melbourne, please let me know! Right after finding a place to live I need to find some good people to befriend! Also, I will be looking for individuals, organizations, and companies in the travel, outdoor and health and wellness space to work with and would be so appreciative of any introductions or connections. Thanks for following along on this journey and for your support.


All photos by the very talented and kind human Chad Cassidy.

Keep Reading!

4 Podcasts for Creatives & Aspiring Entrepreneurs

There was a time I had NO idea what to do with the podcast app on my iPhone. Fast forward five years, and my phone ran out of space at one point because I hit subscribe to too many. (I've since learned how to manage my downloads better and only subscribe to the few that I listen to faithfully.)  

I like to tune in when I'm getting ready for work, cooking, and sometimes even when I'm out running. It's easier to go further when you're enthralled in a story. The content I listen to varies but as a freelance creative, I'm attracted to shows that tackle self-development, creativity, and business. Podcasts have become a huge part of my free education, so today I'm passing along four that are always in my lineup. 

What's one podcast you always tune into?  Tell me which and why you love it in the comments below!

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1. The Marie Forleo Podcast:

Synopsis: Marie is my go-to gal. I LOVE her spunky personality, refreshing honesty and genuine desire to help others in their business. She interviews the best authors, entrepreneurs, creatives, and change-makers that tackle everything from business and marketing to philanthropy, failure, and fear. Each interview ends with actionable strategies for greater happiness, motivation, confidence creativity, and fulfillment. In short, she's a badass and I promise you'll love her witty and inspiring content. 

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Favorite Episodes:

 


2. How I Built This with Guy Raz

Synopsis:  Guy Raz dives into the stories behind some of the world's most successful companies and the idealists who built them. Each innovator has a completely different journey on their road to building their company, but one thing they all share is setbacks. Every story is an inspiring tale of trials and tribulations, and what can happen if you hang on and keep going. 

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Favorite Episodes:

 

 


3. Pursuit with Purpose with Melyssa Griffith 

Synopsis: Melyssa Griffin teaches online entrepreneurs and bloggers how to turn their passions intro profitable businesses.  Through online courses, free webinars, a Facebook community, and more, she's helped over 100,000 creative hustlers stand out online.This podcast is about her journey to finding happiness through work and creating a positive impact on the world. 

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Favorite Episodes:

  • Being Boss: How to Create a Life & Business On Your Own Terms with Emily Thompson
  • Everything is Figureoutable with Marie Forleo 
  • Body Image, Slef Love, Marriage and Business with Jenna Kutcher

4. The Goal Digger Podcast with Jenna Kutcher 

Synopsis: Jenna Kutcher is a marketing entrepreneur, photographer, and one of the most refreshingly honest voices in social media. Her live-workshop style business podcast is meant to help people redefine success, chase dreams, and teach how to make a living, doing what you love.  Her podcast episodes focus on marketing, social media, creative entrepreneurship, small business strategy and branding.

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Lessons Learned From my First Year as a Freelancer

 Photo by  Chad Cassidy

Photo by Chad Cassidy

One year ago, I emptied my desk and said a surprisingly tearful goodbye to colleagues and three years of work at a digital marketing agency. In between announcing my departure and my last day, I had become accustomed to the constant question "what's next?" I concocted a default answer, one that I felt good voicing.  In short, I would travel. That was the immediate future. Two months in Europe to shake off a few nightmare projects, a monotonous Monday-Friday schedule and burn through some money that I really should have been saving. (Oops)

In reality, post-Europe me wasn't exactly sure how I would fill my time, but I knew it included exploring both geographically and creatively. After I got home, it would be time to test options; production work, modeling, photography, writing, social media..... I had a mental list of all the things I enjoyed doing in my spare time. Quitting gave me the open schedule to give them all a fair try.

I laugh now, a year later, knowing that I stepped away from my job and into the unknown with a fair amount of naivety. Then again, had I known too much, it's possible I wouldn't have even tried. Most of my learned lessons have come from the latter half of the year after I determined more of a direction, gained some momentum and stopped letting perfection get in my way. (*Still working on that.) 

So what are the biggest takeaways from one year of working for myself? 


1. Be Your Biggest Cheerleader AND keep supportive friends by your side.

Believe in yourself. You are braver than you think, more talented than you know, and capable of more than you imagine.
— Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

For me, freelancing is a lot about continually facing fears. My fears are the voices that tell me I'm not experienced enough, not good enough, not (insert any adjective here) enough. Those types of thoughts are dangerously debilitating and crushing to confidence. But at the end of the day, I know nobody is going to believe in me if I don't first believe in myself. Confidence is something I have to actively work on, and when it's failing me, I turn to my friends. They shine the best of myself back to me and remind me of my talent and purpose. In the midst of an emotional day, I know I can call or meet up with them for moral support and empowerment.  

Recommended Reads to Amplify Courage & Confidence

  • You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
  • Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
  • The Places That Scare You by Pema Chodron
 Backpacking trip with my supportive gal pals - photo by  Miriam Subbiah  

Backpacking trip with my supportive gal pals - photo by Miriam Subbiah 

2. Voice Your Purpose and Goals Loud and Often. 

And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.
— Paulo Coelho

Setting specific goals and getting them in writing is important to me. It helps keep me aligned and accountable. I think it's equally important to share these goals with your trusted people, both for additional accountability and support, but also because I've noticed people want to help. This has come in the form of someone recommending me for a job, providing a stellar testimonial, meeting me for coffee to answer questions, showing me their editing process, letting me borrow a lens, or telling me about a free online class on creativity and entrepreneurship.  Once I've shared my intentions, I look for little signs and opportunities from the Universe, and trust that it's engaged in supporting my work. 

Mantra to Practice: "I let go of all resistance to prosperity and it comes to me naturally."

3. Community is Everything. 

Freelancing can be a lonely endeavor. I split my time working from home and a wonderful co-working space. If my task for the day is writing, I know home is my better option because I can work in silence.  But too much time at home can make me feel isolated,  and distractions are easy to succumb to. A change of scenery and the ability to ask questions/ bounce ideas off of other creatives is invaluable. My community came about organically, because so many of my friends are already freelancers/business owners. I found other ways to connect with creatives, specifically female creatives through social media, my work with She Explores and finding meet ups in my city for lady bosses. The resources are out there, you just have to look for them and find the right fit. 

 Community > Post Outdoor Retailer trip in Bonneville Flats, Utah  - Photo by  William Woodward

Community > Post Outdoor Retailer trip in Bonneville Flats, Utah  - Photo by William Woodward

4. Learn When to Say Yes and When to Say No.

This is still one of my biggest challenges. I identify as a 'go-getter', a self-starter who is hungry for work and purpose. I said yes a lot whether I really wanted the job or not, and whether it paid me enough or not.

In my conversations with other freelancers, that seems to be most people's experience, especially in the beginning. I think there's an assumption that freelancers get to leisurely pick and choose their jobs, and that all the grind work got left behind at the office job. I call BS. While all freelancer's situations vary, sometimes you can't turn down a job because you need a paycheck. Sometimes you work for trade (or free) because there's experience to gain. Some freelancers hold a side job in the service industry so they can work on their business during the day and still have a steady income. 

The cool part about working for yourself is that you get to set your terms and figure out what you believe your time is worth. The challenging thing about working for yourself is, you get to set your terms, and figure out what you believe your time is worth! 

5. Practice Persistance, Persistance and more Persistance. 

If it's not a NO, the possibility still exists. Even if a company or client did say no, that doesn't mean it can't be a yes in the future. Running my own business has meant becoming intimate with rejection. For me the best way to handle rejection is to not take it personally. There are a number of reasons I may not have been right for the job.  It may not have anything to do with me at all.  But I can't spin my wheels and waste my energy on dwelling on it. The best remedy is to keep moving forward and trust that something more fitting will come my way. 

To all of my freelancing comrades, what have been the most important lessons you've learned while running your business?

Lodged Out: An Outdoorsy Unplugged Retreat for Creatives

My pre-arthritic fingers needed a rest from the continuous typing, scrolling, and tapping. 
My mind desired clarity not tethered to a timeline and born out of a lack of distraction.  
My spirit craved the type of energy that occurs effortlessly from an authentic connection, refreshingly honest conversations, and pure untouched landscapes.

 Founder Bobbilee at Tall Timber - Photo by Retreat Photographer  Alycia Lovell Photography

Founder Bobbilee at Tall Timber - Photo by Retreat Photographer Alycia Lovell Photography

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Three days at Lodged Out provided all that and then some. 

I had been keeping an eye on the tech-free camp since my friend Haley attended their inaugural camp in Idaho. (She did a great feature about it on She Explores. You can read it here. ) It encapsulated so much of what I love and live for - connection and community, creativity, the outdoors, and the chance to really unplug. 

When I found out there was going to be a winter camp just over the pass from Seattle, all arrows were pointing to 'sign up'.  The decision was one of the best I've made for myself in the past six months. Now that I've been home and had time to process the experience, I can see that my participation was an important investment for both my personal wellbeing and professional growth. 


About Lodged Out

Lodged Out exists to bring like-minded people to the mountains for experiential learning so they can rid themselves of distraction and immerse themselves into an experience with inspiring people - because when you disconnect, you reconnect.
— Founder Bobbilee
 Founder Bobbilee at Tall Timber - Photo by Retreat Photographer  Alycia Lovell Photography

Founder Bobbilee at Tall Timber - Photo by Retreat Photographer Alycia Lovell Photography

Lodged Out - Tall Timber Style

It's hard to imagine a more picturesque place than Tall Timber Ranch for a retreat. We had the entire grounds to ourselves and bunked in cute A-frame and bunk-house style cabins. Situated about 30 miles Northwest of Leavenworth, Tall Timber borders the Glacier Peak Wilderness Area and is surrounded by alpine meadows and snow-capped mountains. The area became our playground every morning as we strapped on Nordic skis or snowshoes and tromped (or glided) around the camp.

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Nothing to do, Nowhere to go, No one to be
— Lodged Out Speaker, Tatiana Simonian

One morning we went searching for a waterfall, the next morning a group of us sat by a glacier river and talked about everything and nothing. The first 3-4 hours of the day were free to spend however we liked. And we liked to spend that time together. Distraction free. Cell phone free. Any type of screen free. My guess is that the lack of distraction led to a more immediate connection with one another. There was a presence in conversations - eye contact, intuitive body language, thoughtful questions - all of the signs that point to active listening. There was a distinct sense that not only did we all want to be there psychically, but we wanted to be there for each other emotionally. 

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Lodged Out - Workshops + Speakers


I was particularly excited for the outdoor stewardship workshop with Katie Boué and creative writing workshop with Erin Rose Belair. 

I spend a lot of time recreating and promoting an outdoor lifestyle, so I was eager to learn about how to be a better advocate for the outdoors. If you're interested in learning how to do that, give Katie a follow. She's a fantastic resource. 

I also spend a lot of time writing, both personal journaling and for client work. With anything you do often, it's easy to slip into a pattern or habitual way of doing it. My writing had started to sound all the same to me. I was hoping the workshop would rattle some dormant creativity in me and it did! Erin taught us about lyrical essays and gave us a framework for creating our own. I've shared the essay I came up with at the bottom of this post if you're interested in reading.  

After our workshops, it was whiskey and dinner time followed by speakers and fireside chats. Being the grandma that I am, I rarely made it past 10pm. I would feel a high from the day that would carry me to the edge of the night before crashing from emotional exhaustion. But it was the good kind of emotional exhaustion. The kind that emanates from giving people your full attention, talking and listening for hours, and trying new things. 

 Photo by Retreat Photographer  Alycia Lovell Photography

Photo by Retreat Photographer Alycia Lovell Photography

Bye Bye, Tall Timber

When the time came to leave, I experienced a range of emotions. I was creativity inspired, ready to start new projects and dive into work. I was somber about leaving new friends.  I was anxious to  depart the quiet of the mountains and enter back into the chaos of the city, the chaos of everyday technology. And I was motivated to be a better outdoor activist, a better ally to WOC, a smarter entrepreneur, a more vulnerable and present friend, daughter, sister and wife. All of this as a result of taking 3 days to unplug with 35 or so creative strangers in the woods. 

Follow Lodged Out to get updates on their retreats. 
Instagram @lodgedout

Untitled Lyrical Essay -

I’m thinking about cooking dinner with Jared
Do-si-do’ing around each other in our tiny kitchen,
working separately on the same recipe
trying not to choke on the smoke rising from the cast iron
this hundred-year-old home needs a fan

vegetables sizzling, oil crackling
the occasional ‘oh shit’
vibrates off the mint green walls we didn’t paint
The music floats in from the record player in the living room

we pause and reach for each other
one hand held and one hand resting
on a back
or a hip
we start to move, small steps
creating small circles as we spin around
our favorite room in this hundred-year-old home

I wonder how much longer we’ll live here?

live simply
simply live
city living sometimes feels like anything but
I daydream about a new place to plant intentional roots
but where?

We’ll take certain things with us
the Belgian linen sheets that shelter our bodies at night
furniture that’s been passed on from parents
the record player, boxes of well-loved books
and the cast iron that’s heard our laughter, our curses
and watched us dance circles in our tiny kitchen

I’ve heard the phrase
”you can always go back”
but whoever actually does?

You live in the past, or you live in the present.