Notes From the Home Front: I Need A Kick in the Pants

I have a confession.

I’ve been procrastinating.

Just a few months ago I was so excited about planning this trip! I had spreadsheets, word documents and a pile of highlighted guidebooks. I had information compiled, opinions stockpiled and a calendar with a big red X on it. I was gung ho and ready to go!

work-todo-list-july-6
Creative Commons License photo credit: purpleslog

Lately though, it has been much harder to get motivated. I’ve been busy with other things; stressed about work and the blog. Trip
planning has fallen low on my list of priorities. I haven’t cracked a guidebook in weeks. Or done any of the things on my growing monster to do list (I’m actually afraid to look at it). I haven’t sold a single thing like I promised to two months ago. I haven’t talked to my doctor about shots.

This is not a good thing, especially now that I’m finally within spitting range of this trip. With just a little over four months to go I’m finally at the point where concrete plans need to be made, tickets need to be bough and equipment picked out. But for some reason I’m just… not.

I’ve always been better at planning things in the abstract than at actually getting them done. It’s a lot easier to make lists and plans than to make actual decisions. I wrote my pre-departure to-do list months ago. I’ve been planning this trip in one way or another for almost two years now. I think part of me got so used to the habit of telling myself to wait until later, that now that later is here I’m not sure how to get myself moving.

So maybe I’m not so much unmotivated as overwhelmed. I’m so excited about actually TRAVELING, but there’s still a lot that needs to be done to put a trip this large into motion It’s hard to even know where to start. My countdown clock-which has pulled me through some rough times in the past few months, now fills me with anxiety.

What are some things you do to keep motivated?

38 thoughts on “Notes From the Home Front: I Need A Kick in the Pants”

  1. It’s good to take a break sometimes from planning. I found myself getting a bit burnt out with the whole planning process, but after a bit of a break I was ready to dive back in!

  2. Ah, I was definitely like this for our 5-week trip to Australia/New Zealand. I was excited, but the planning seemed overwhelming. The biggest help was the fact that my husband and I shared the work, but aside from that, I found that telling myself I “only have to work on it for 10 minutes” was a good motivator. Of course, some days I only got 10 minutes worth of work done, but other days were much better. Once I actually opened the guidebook / spreadsheet / whatever, some enthusiasm came back and it was easier to tackle the stuff on my to-do list.

    Good luck! Sounds like an awesome trip!
    .-= Melanie´s last blog .. =-.

  3. I know you’re setting off on a different trip than I’m currently on, but I often find that the less plans I have, the better. Sure you need an approximate idea for where you’ll go and what you’ll see – but my favorite part of traveling is experiencing the unexpected: that museum you didn’t know existed, the cafe on the corner, or the hostel you found only because there were no more beds in town.

    My advice: focus on the big transportation specifics, and let the rest just fall into place.

    Oh, and for gear, I’d go for the Gregory Baltoro. Excellent pack – I snagged mine out on Wisconsin Ave at Hudson Trail. I’ve found it out now especially since my campervan blew up!

    Good luck! Cheers!
    .-= Matt´s last blog ..A Day Trip on New Zealand’s West Coast (Photo Essay) =-.

    1. Yeah I definitely tend to over think these things. Thanks for the tip on the pack- I will have to go check out Hudson Trail!

  4. That’s how I was with our Rome honeymoon. We marked all the places we wanted to see and do, but I was writing out an itinerary on the plane to our layover. That last minute “oh crap” is really the only thing that truly gets me going whether it’s paper writing, art making, trip planning, etc. I had that bug wedding planning, too. Lifelong member of the procrastination club right here.

    Try setting Google calendar reminders to get certain things done. When you have the big window saying shots 8 weeks out, it’s easier to tackle.

    Take me with you 🙂
    .-= ehalvey´s last blog ..We Are Nashville =-.

  5. mmm…cookies.

    But seriously, you can do everything you need to do in 30-45 days. It’d be a bit rushed, but I use to tell myself all I need is money in the bank, a debit card, and my passport. Of course I took more stuff, but it usually helped to calm me down.

    Enjoy the anxiety – I think in some ways the pre-trip anticipation is more exciting then the actual travel. So many possibilities lie ahead, yet you’re not having to deal with squat toilets and mosquitoes yet.
    .-= Dave´s last blog ..Video – Surviving Bolivia’s Death Road =-.

    1. I agree the anticipation is a large part of the fun! I will do my best to enjoy these days and not stress too much.

  6. I have a different theory.

    If you’re like me (and you appear to be in a number of ways in this respect), then you’re an adrenaline junkie. Not saying you need to jump off bridges, but you plan & plan & plan, but there’s no excitement in actually executing the plan.

    So, you wait until the last minute when it’s virtually impossible to get everything done. And then you kick into overdrive to do it all.

    My advice? Take care of the things you have to and then roll with the energy wave when it comes. 🙂

    1. You’re right, planning can be much more interesting than doing all the chores that need to get done. I need to focus on the big things and let the rest get sorted later.

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