The success of Hollywood blockbuster movies such as Under the Tuscan Sun, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, and (the infamous) Eat Pray Love, have given rise to a new breed of travelers - the soul-searchers.
Inspired by these movies, soul-searchers quickly dragged their haphazardly packed suitcases, hopped on the first plane out - leaving behind the rat race, their broken hearts, and their overprotective mothers - to find themselves in an exotic country halfway around the world.
But, how can you possibly find yourself if you don't even know where to find your toothbrush in your suitcase? These tried-and-tested organizing tips guarantee that those going on a soul-searching journey can focus on finding themselves.
Keep Your Baggage Light
And this advice applies to both the literal and metaphorical baggage you're carrying around with you.
Picture this. You pack your suitcase until you have to sit on it to close it. You now feel like you have everything you need, because, well, you indeed brought everything.
But now, you have this gargantuan suitcase that you have to lug around everywhere, take up flights of stairs, maneuver through the crowd, and get through TSA.
For your literal baggage, clear packing cubes like EzPacking's Starter Set help you sort through the clutter. The cubes have see-through material that allow you to instantly see what takes up a lot of space in your luggage, which items can go, and which items you truly need.
The same principle easily applies to your metaphorical baggage as well. You have to set clear boundaries on how much space you'll allow a person or situation to take up in your life.
As the old Chinese saying goes: "You cannot fill a cup that is already full." In other words, empty your cup. Because in doing so, you will you able to fill it up again. Also, you need extra room for all those sweet souvenirs you’ll buy along your soul-searching trip.
Plan Ahead. But Leave Some Room For Chance.
Planning before going overseas is good.
Planning before a soul-searching trip? Even better.
But planning what's supposed to be the most unforgettable, life-changing, magical experience you'll ever have down to the last microsecond? Down to the most trivial detail? Not so much.
If you followed the packing cubes method in Tip #1, trust, that even if you only have an Extra Small Packing Cube with your passport, swimsuit, that book you've always promised yourself to read (but never have), your toothbrush, and a bottle of sunscreen - you already have everything you need to enjoy your trip.
Besides, for a trip to be truly life-changing, it needs a good dose of uncertainty. After all, it's always the unexpected that changes us the most.
Always Be Open to Change.
For all soul-searchers out there, here's a little secret: The thing with change - it only happens if you let it.
By learning about a culture that's different from your own, meeting new people, and adapting to unfamiliar situations, travel gives you the opportunity to change. And all you have to do is be open it.
The same goes for how you pack. If your old way isn't cutting it, it's time to try something new. Open your suitcase to a Set of EzPacking Cubes (shown below) and feel at peace that you know where everything is. Let these clear cubes change the way you organize for good.
So if at the end of your soul-searching trip, you find that you want to start over by renovating a rundown Italian villa, re-awaken your inner goddess in the mystical island of Bali, or simply follow your heart, one thing's for sure - you're properly packed for it.
Now, It's Time to Leave It All Behind.
All, of course, this means, all the things you don't need, but think you might, but never really do.
Overpacking is the number one mistake soul-searchers make when preparing for their trip, so here are some practical tips on how to make sure you have only the things you really need.
✓ Stick to a smaller suitcase. The limited space will urge you to pack only the essentials.
→ Extra tip: Maximize your compact space by wearing all your bulkier items on the plane.
✓ Use clear packing cubes. Organizing your suitcase using EzPacking's Starter Set, gives you a clear mental image of what items you're bringing and where they are inside your bag. If it doesn't fit in the cube, leave it.
✓ Take cues from capsule wardrobe gurus. Pack like you’re creating a capsule wardrobe in your suitcase. Come up with stylish and practical outfits for the duration of your trip from mixing and matching just a few versatile pieces.
→ Extra tip: Take a photo of yourself wearing a complete look for each day of your trip. This way, you'll spend more time enjoying your trip and less time trying to decide what to wear.
✓ Don't pack in haste. You'll only end up bringing things you won't even use. Give yourself enough time to edit your choices. Sleep on it. Chances are, you'll come to admit that your workout outfit is just taking up valuable (souvenir) space in your luggage.
✓ Take more cash instead of more clothes. Unless the barter system is back, having cash is going to be more useful to you during the trip than the nine million pairs of pants you packed. Especially in countries where you don’t have ready access to banks or ATM machines.
If you're planning a soul-searching vacation, remember our given tips above. It will help you on your journey of finding yourself. Safe travels soul searcher!
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