*EDITORIAL* Post-DX Adventure Depression

DEFINITION: “Depression – a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. It causes feelings of sadness and/or a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed…”

Post-dx adventure depression is a real thing, even if your non-travelling mates don’t believe it.

You’ve been living a dream, working loads of DX, seeing amazing things, and experiencing weird and wonderful cultures — so of course, it’s a little bit of a downer to return to the home QTH.

Here are seven signs you’re suffering from post-dx adventure depression, and, what you can do to clear the QRM from your mind…

1.  You no longer understand work

Get up in the morning, go to work, stay there for hours and hours doing repetitive, meaningless tasks, come home too late to get anything done, no time on the radio… why do we all work, exactly?

Since having the freedom of dx travel, you can no longer understand the desire to ever work again.

Instead, you should spend your lunch break planning a new dx adventure and learning interesting facts about other DXCC to reward yourself for even showing up.

Even if it can’t cure your post-dx adventure despair, it will take your mind off of work, and perhaps give you some new, exciting ideas about where to journey next.

2.  You can’t remember why you even wanted to come home

You spent at least some of your trip thinking about home and remembering how great everything is, but now you’re there again, you really can’t understand the appeal of normality.

How is this better than chopping through a pile up of frenzied European DX Hunters or sampling sushi on a tiny Oceania IOTA DXstination?  It’s not, is the answer.

Cheer yourself up with a short weekend dx adventure — TX somewhere close by like a mountain (SOTA), a lighthouse (LOTA) or island off the coast — so you don’t have to break the bank.

This can’t possibly match the DXhilaration of a genuine dxpedition juggernaut, but changing your immediate environment, even if only slightly, is bound to improve your mood.

3.  You start to think it was all a dream

Did you really go there? Did you really see that? Did you really work all those hungry IOTA Chasers?

With the reality of everyday life settling in around you, it can start to feel like you were only fantasizing about being somewhere DXotic and fun with your radio kit.

An amusing solution is to watch a film or TV show set in the locations you visited.

You’ll enjoy screaming “I’ve DXed there!” every five minutes, to the annoyance of your YL and family.

4.  You feel miserable you wasted your time when you were away

You had so much freedom on that little island in the Pacific, so much free time, with nothing to do but sit by the radio with a cold beer in hand or laze in a hammock between two coconut palms.

How could you have been so wasteful of DX time with things such as sleep?  Every moment spent in bed now feels like it was a stupid decision — even if the ham friendly accommodation crib was extra comfy.

To drive the post-dx adventure depression away, learn some new travel hacks to save you time when you next travel to get over this feeling.

5.  Your social media feed is nothing but travel, travel, travel

Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter – they all work on an algorithm that rarely gets it wrong.

That’s why, when your entire feed is full only of travel pictures and quotes, you know you’ve got dx holiday withdrawals.

When your best friend’s big announcement gets buried under a stranger’s travel photos, that’s when you know things have gone too far.

Maybe try to limit your obsession by setting up a different account for travel stuff — and banning it from your main account.

6.  You’re questioning your future

You had it all set out: go dx adventuring for a while, live the DA-RC dream, and then get back to work.  Strive for a promotion, a pay rise, etc.

But now you’ve been bitten by the dx adventure travel bug, you’re not sure whether it’s all worth it anymore.

Maybe it’s time to reconsider your future after all — could you make a living as a dxpedition blogger or find a way to travel without work?

That way, your future doesn’t have to clash with your dream of being a full time dx adventurer.

7.  You can’t stop looking at your photos

You’ve seen them probably a million times by now, but your hand just moves on its own and opens up those travel photos again; past dxpedition reports on the DA-RC website; video clips on YouTube and more.

You can’t stop dreaming and remembering how it was when you were ‘lost’ on the island. The only solution for your blues?  Get your next trip booked, ASAP.

Post-dx adventure depression doesn’t have to rule your life.  Get over it with these tips, and you’ll feel better — until next time you come home from a trip, that is!

73 de Darren