A few years ago, I happened to be traveling when my heart was broken unexpectedly. The man I was supposed to join in Mexico the next week had met someone else, I learned over the phone in my Portland, Oregon, hotel room.
I’m not sure if I would have chosen to travel immediately after being dumped. But having to do so by default of already being on the road worked in my favor. The excitement of Portland kept me afloat when all I wanted to do was sink deeper into my sadness. Doing things outside of my norm distracted me from the very raw pain pulsing within.
It turns out my “breakcation” – a post-breakup vacation – may have been just what the doctor ordered.
“Breakups are usually a time where a person looks to self-reflect and do some self-exploration . . . so that they don’t repeat the same mistake in the future,” says Colleen Mullen, a licensed marriage and family therapist and host of the podcast Coaching Through Chaos. “Traveling becomes the romanticised way of jump-starting that for them.”
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