The Six Stages of Wanderlust

Photo by Andrew Fraieli

Article originally published on, March 2017

Have you ever felt a seed of doubt about your everyday life? A seed that grows into a burning desire to ditch the mundane and familiar, drop whatever you are doing and go where you’ve never been before?

This feeling? It’s wanderlust: the want to explore language and culture, find hidden places in famous cities and discover something new to you beyond the ordinary.

What leads up to a person’s breaking point? How do they get pushed over the edge of curiosity and into a feverous jump to adventure? These are the stages of wanderlust:

1. You’re Content

2. A Seed is Planted

3. You Look at Yourself

But now, with those stories of fantastic places, or photos in a magazine or whatever it may be dancing in your head, you’re no longer content with comfortable.

4. A Passion Starts to Burn

5. Breaking Point

You buy that ticket, that backpack and sleeping bag or that motorcycle and satchels. You get what you need and you go anywhere, everywhere — except for here.

6. Back to Reality

This is the final stage. You may be back from your trip, but you will never feel such a desire for that tension inside you, so compulsive a lust to run away down a road without caring where it goes, then when you return, like a rubber band, back to the mundanity you left behind.

A journalist, photographer, designer and traveler, Andrew has hitchhiked over 2,500 miles and written on extreme budget travelling, homelessness, and more.