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Why Going Home Doesn’t Mean You Failed


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Jane Scheer



Welcome to the world of travel, where adventure awaits around every corner and new experiences awaken your senses. For many, embarking on a journey means leaving behind the familiar and immersing oneself in the unknown. It’s an exhilarating feeling, but what happens when the adventure comes to an end? When the time comes to return home, there can be a sense of disappointment or even failure. However, going home doesn’t have to signify defeat. In fact, it can be an opportunity for growth, self-discovery, and redefining success.


Going home after a period of travel can often be perceived as a step backwards, as if you’ve somehow fallen short of the expectations that come with a nomadic lifestyle. The truth is, embracing change and being open to new experiences doesn’t mean you have to abandon your roots permanently. Going home can actually be a chance to rediscover your roots, reconnect with loved ones, and gain a fresh perspective on your life and aspirations.


In this article, we will explore the various reasons why going home doesn’t mean you failed. We will delve into the transformative power of returning to familiar surroundings and the opportunities it presents for personal growth. So, if you find yourself hesitant or uncertain about returning home after an incredible journey, read on and discover the positive aspects that await you.


Embracing Change

One of the key factors in the travel experience is the constant state of change. Every day presents new challenges, unfamiliar environments, and encounters with people from different cultures. It’s a thrilling and transformative experience that broadens our horizons and pushes us out of our comfort zones. Returning home shouldn’t be seen as a rejection of this change, but rather an opportunity to embrace it further.


By embracing change and incorporating the lessons learned from your travels, you can continue to grow and evolve even in familiar surroundings. You can bring back the open-mindedness, adaptability, and sense of adventure that you cultivated during your time away. Whether it’s trying new local activities, exploring hidden gems in your hometown, or seeking out opportunities for personal and professional development, there are countless ways to continue embracing change after returning home.


It’s also important to recognize that change is not limited to your physical surroundings. It encompasses personal growth and self-discovery as well. Travel often leads to profound introspection and a deeper understanding of oneself. By embracing this newfound self-awareness, you can make intentional choices to create a more fulfilling and meaningful life, regardless of your location.


Remember, change is a constant in life, and it can be embraced no matter where you are. Going home doesn’t mean you have to stagnate or lose the sense of adventure that travel instilled in you. Instead, view it as an opportunity to continue your personal journey of growth and discovery.


Redefining Success

One of the common misconceptions about travel is that success is measured by the number of countries visited or the length of time spent on the road. However, true success in travel, as well as in life, should be measured by the personal growth and experiences gained along the way. Returning home allows you to redefine what success means to you.


It’s easy to get caught up in the idea that success is solely defined by societal standards or external achievements. However, going home gives you the opportunity to reflect on what truly matters to you. Maybe success, for you, is cultivating meaningful relationships, pursuing a passion project, or finding contentment in the simplicity of everyday life.


Redefining success also means letting go of comparison. It’s tempting to compare your experiences and achievements with those of fellow travelers or social media influencers. But the truth is, everyone has their own unique journey, and what brings them fulfillment may not align with your own values and aspirations.


Returning home allows you to focus on your own path and redefine success based on your individual desires and values. This shift in mindset can lead to a greater sense of contentment and fulfillment, as you pursue goals that are truly meaningful to you.


Remember, success is not a one-size-fits-all concept. It is a deeply personal and subjective definition that should be based on your own aspirations and values. Take this opportunity to redefine success on your terms and create a life that aligns with your true passions and desires.


Rediscovering Your Roots

While travel takes us on incredible journeys to far-flung destinations, it’s important to remember that our roots hold a special place in our hearts. Going home allows you to reconnect with your hometown, childhood memories, and the people who have shaped your life. It’s a chance to rediscover and appreciate the familiar.


Returning home can give you a newfound appreciation for the place that shaped you into who you are today. Exploring familiar streets, visiting old haunts, and revisiting cherished spots can rekindle a sense of nostalgia and bring forth a flood of memories. It’s an opportunity to see your hometown through fresh eyes and gain a new perspective on the community and culture that shaped you.


Additionally, reconnecting with your roots means reconnecting with your support system. Family and friends provide a sense of belonging and stability, offering support and understanding that can be invaluable during times of transition. Coming home gives you the chance to strengthen these relationships, share stories of your adventures, and find comfort in the love and familiarity of your loved ones.


Moreover, returning home can also present opportunities to contribute to your community. Sharing your travel experiences, cultural knowledge, and newfound perspectives can enrich the lives of those around you. Consider getting involved in local organizations or volunteering your time to make a positive impact in your hometown.


In essence, rediscovering your roots allows you to create a harmonious balance between the experiences gained during your travels and the deep connections that lie within your hometown. It’s a chance to appreciate and celebrate both sides of your identity.


Reconnecting with Loved Ones

One of the most rewarding aspects of returning home after a period of travel is the opportunity to reconnect with loved ones. While technology has made it easier to stay connected with friends and family while on the road, there’s nothing quite like being physically present and sharing experiences face-to-face.


During your travels, you may have missed out on important moments in the lives of your loved ones, such as birthdays, anniversaries, or even major milestones. Going home allows you to make up for lost time and create new memories together. Whether it’s planning a family gathering, organizing a dinner with old friends, or simply spending quality time with your loved ones, these moments of connection and rekindling of relationships can be incredibly meaningful.


In addition to catching up on missed events, returning home also provides an opportunity to deepen your understanding of your loved ones. Share stories of your travels and listen attentively as they share their own experiences and challenges. These conversations can foster a deeper connection and a greater appreciation for the unique journeys that each person has been on.


Reconnecting with loved ones can also provide a sense of stability and belonging, especially after the whirlwind of constant movement and new faces that often come with travel. It’s a reminder that you are a part of a larger network of support and love, and that you have a place to call home.


Take the time to nurture these relationships and celebrate the bonds that have been strengthened over time. Cherish the moments of laughter, shared meals, and heartfelt conversations that can only happen when you are physically present with your loved ones.


Remember, the value of reconnecting with loved ones goes far beyond just catching up on missed events. It’s about the profound joy and sense of belonging that comes from nurturing and rekindling those relationships that mean so much to you.


Gaining Perspective

One of the greatest gifts that travel offers is the ability to gain a new perspective on life. Immersing yourself in different cultures, witnessing diverse ways of living, and experiencing the beauty and challenges of different regions broaden your worldview. Returning home allows you to integrate these newfound perspectives into your everyday life.


After being exposed to different customs, beliefs, and lifestyles, you may find that your mindset has shifted. You may have developed a deeper appreciation for the simple pleasures in life, a greater sense of gratitude, or a newfound understanding of the interconnectedness of humanity.


Bringing this perspective back home allows you to see your own culture and surroundings with fresh eyes. You may notice aspects of your hometown that you hadn’t appreciated before, or recognize areas where positive change can be made based on what you learned during your travels.


Gaining perspective also means being able to draw from your travel experiences when faced with challenges or decisions. The resilience you developed while navigating unfamiliar environments, the adaptability you cultivated in the face of unexpected situations, and the open-mindedness you embraced when encountering different viewpoints can all help you overcome obstacles and make informed choices in your everyday life.


Moreover, sharing your perspective with others can be impactful. Whether through storytelling, blog writing, or engaging in meaningful conversations, you have the opportunity to inspire others and encourage them to seek out their own experiences of growth and discovery.


Returning home doesn’t mean you have to leave behind the perspectives gained during your travels. Instead, use them to enrich your daily life, make a positive impact in your community, and continue learning and growing as an individual.


Overcoming Stigma

There can be a certain stigma associated with returning home after a period of travel. Society often romanticizes the idea of perpetual nomadism and views settling down as a sign of failure or complacency. However, it’s important to recognize that everyone’s journey is unique, and going home should never be seen as a step backward.


Overcoming the stigma surrounding returning home begins with shifting your own mindset. Understand that your decision to go home is a personal choice based on your own circumstances, aspirations, and goals. It’s not a reflection of your worth or level of achievement. Recognize that true success lies in following your own path and finding fulfillment in whatever direction that may take.


It’s also important to surround yourself with a supportive network of friends, family, and fellow travelers who understand and respect your decision. Seek out like-minded individuals who share a similar passion for personal growth and support each other’s choices, regardless of whether they involve constant travel or settling down.


Additionally, challenge the societal narratives that perpetuate the stigma. Share your experiences and insights with others, highlighting the value and growth that can come from both traveling and returning home. By sharing your authentic story, you can help shift the perspective and inspire others to embrace their own unique journeys.


Remember, your journey is yours alone, and it should never be defined by societal expectations or judgments. Overcome the stigma by embracing your own choices, cultivating a supportive community, and sharing the positive aspects of returning home with others.


Finding Support

Transitioning from the exhilarating world of travel back to the familiarity of home can sometimes feel daunting. However, it’s important to remember that you don’t have to go through this process alone. Finding support from various sources can help ease the challenges and provide you with the guidance and encouragement needed during this transition.


First and foremost, lean on your support system of family and friends. Share your experiences, thoughts, and feelings with them. Having loved ones who understand and empathize with your journey can provide a sense of comfort and validation. They can offer guidance, advice, and a listening ear as you navigate the post-travel phase of your life.


Additionally, seek out communities of fellow travelers or expats who have gone through similar experiences. Online forums, social media groups, or local meet-ups can be valuable sources of connection and understanding. Engage in conversations, ask questions, and share your own insights. Building connections with others who have lived through similar transitions can alleviate feelings of isolation and provide a sense of belonging.


Professional support can also be beneficial. Consider seeking out a career counselor or life coach who specializes in working with travelers or individuals in transition. They can help you explore new opportunities, discover your passions, and overcome any obstacles that arise during this period. Their expertise and guidance can provide clarity and direction as you navigate your next steps.


Don’t underestimate the power of self-care during this time. Reconnecting with yourself through practices such as meditation, journaling, or engaging in hobbies that bring you joy can provide solace and clarity. Take time to reflect on your experiences, set new goals, and envision the future you want to create.


Remember, finding support is not a sign of weakness, but an acknowledgment of the challenges and changes that come with returning home. Seek out the people and resources that can provide guidance, encouragement, and understanding as you embrace this new chapter of your journey.


Building a Stronger Future

Returning home after a period of travel opens the door to building a stronger future filled with opportunities for personal and professional growth. By combining the lessons learned from your travels with the familiarity and stability of your hometown, you can create a foundation for a fulfilling and purposeful life.


Take the time to reflect on the experiences and skills you gained during your time abroad. Consider how these unique experiences can be translated into valuable assets in the professional world. The adaptability, cultural awareness, and problem-solving abilities you developed can be highly sought after qualities in today’s globalized workplace.


Use this period of transition to reassess and realign your career goals. Consider how your travels have shaped your passions and interests. Are there new career paths that resonate with your experiences? Explore opportunities to work in fields that align with your values and allow you to continue to learn and grow.


But building a stronger future isn’t just about professional development. It’s also about personal growth. Take the time to set new goals and aspirations for yourself. Reflect on the values and life lessons you discovered during your travels and incorporate them into your daily life. Whether it’s prioritizing self-care, fostering meaningful relationships, or embracing a minimalist lifestyle, use this opportunity to create a life that aligns with your true desires and values.


Consider expanding your horizons even while at home. Engage in new hobbies, join local clubs or organizations, or volunteer in your community. Immerse yourself in new experiences and continue to nurture a sense of curiosity and exploration.


Lastly, maintain a sense of gratitude for the adventures and experiences you had during your travels, while also cultivating gratitude for the stability and support that your hometown provides. Recognize the unique opportunity you have to combine the best of both worlds and appreciate the privilege of having a home to return to.


Building a stronger future is an ongoing process that requires continuous self-reflection, adaptation, and growth. Embrace the lessons from your travels as you navigate this new chapter of your life, and seize the opportunities that lie ahead. With determination, passion, and a willingness to embrace change, you can create a future that is both fulfilling and meaningful.



Returning home after a period of travel is not a sign of failure or a step backward; it is an opportunity for growth, self-reflection, and redefining success. Embracing change, rediscovering your roots, reconnecting with loved ones, gaining perspective, overcoming stigma, finding support, and building a stronger future are all powerful ways to make the most of this transition.


By embracing change, you can continue to cultivate a sense of adventure and open-mindedness, regardless of your physical location. Returning home allows you to reconnect with your roots and gain a fresh perspective on the community and culture that shaped you. It also provides an opportunity to deepen relationships with loved ones and create new memories together.


Gaining perspective through travel expands your worldview and brings valuable insights that can be applied to your life back home. Overcoming the stigma associated with returning home requires shifting your own mindset and surrounding yourself with a supportive community.


Finding support from friends, family, fellow travelers, and professionals can help navigate the challenges and transitions that come with returning home. Lastly, building a stronger future involves aligning your career goals with your passions, setting new goals for personal growth, and appreciating the stability and support provided by your hometown.


In conclusion, going home after a period of travel is not a setback but a chance to embrace the richness of your experiences and apply them to create a fulfilling and purposeful life. It’s an opportunity to weave together the adventures of travel with the comforts of home, and to continue growing, learning, and exploring in new and meaningful ways. So, embrace the journey, cherish the memories, and look forward to the exciting possibilities that lie ahead.