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So, something wonderful happened during my holidays.

It was the first holiday in a year, and I’d decided to backpack on my own, which I’d never really done.

And a sign of change… For the first time in years, I didn’t take my computer with me – which was scary (How did I put myself in a situation where going away for 10 days without a computer is scary?!?)

So I left, computer- & travel-mate-free.

I wanted to get away from everything, change sceneries, forget about my life and recharge…

Cambodia is a wonderful country, with both a grandiose and terrible past. Much to learn, much to see, combined with incredible islands to relax and enjoy life (and let’s not get started about the food…) I couldn’t have chosen a better country.

But I was nervous.

When I’m alone, I love it for a day: Yay! I’m free! Now it’s all about me!!

Then my mind starts going round in circles and I can feel really sad, depressed.

I’d done a lot of introspection in 2017, and I didn’t want that anymore. Bring on the Fun, please…

At first, though, it dangerously verged on being a disaster…

On the first two days, running around to try and find accommodation (Note for self, next time you travel for New Year’s Eve, pre-book…), feeling lonely and “off” – it takes time to go from Stressful London Life to Relaxed Holiday Flow…

… and I kept thinking about the time I spent in Asia 10 years ago, idealizing it as a time of friendship and possibilities.

About all the opportunities I’d missed, the things I hadn’t done, the promises I hadn’t kept.

I was on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and I could feel myself sink deeper and deeper into sadness.

But then something switched.

I changed islands – as you do – and got energized by the trip. I relaxed into the holiday flow and started meeting loads of people. Like… Loads.

Young, Old, Families, Solo-travellers, groups of friends, Brazilians, Kiwis…

Everyone with a story, and everyone willing to share a bit of their trip with me.

My mind stopped being so self-centered and turned towards the outside world again. Drinking, Travelling, visiting together… I had fun.

And when the time would come to move, grabbing my backpack and hopping into a boat or bus, saying bye to my new friends and getting ready to meet the people who’d come next into my life, I felt so strong. I could do this.

My heart was telling me – See?! Told you we’d be ok.

Finding Joy When Your Art Feels Like A Drag