The more you travel to new destinations in your life, the more you broaden your mind and spiritual horizons. Whether you’re watching the sunset from the cliffs of Dover, taking in the view of the majestic Taj Mahal with your mate, or even lounging on the black-sanded beach of Punaluu in Hawaii, both mind and instinct tell you that travel enlivens your very being.
Truly, it’s critical to get away from your home headquarters, where you’re linked to so many burdensome responsibilities, chores and the chains of a full-time job. You know this. But you need persuasive facts to motivate you to finally break the work bonds and set yourself free and a-roaming’ for a healthy period of time.
Consider the following facts that explain how traveling significantly boosts your mental health — followed by tips on how to get the most out of your vacation:
1. You Experience a Mood-Boosting High
A Journal of Travel Research study found that vacationing considerably boosts mood and well-being, making travelers happier and more relaxed. A similar study by American Psychological Association also found that taking a leisure trip dampens the effects of burnout and fortifies the mind and spirit against energy-draining tasks at work once you’re back in the office.
Scientists have also confirmed improved physical effects among recently returned vacationers, such as deeper sleep, less insomnia, and a more relaxed state. Experts recommend taking frequent mini-trips throughout the year to prolong the effects of a restorative vacation.
Tip: Find out the restorative physical effects of a vacation by keeping a Fitbit on your wrist. It measures your sleeping hours and keeps tabs on any sleep interruptions, while monitoring your heart and generating exercise data.
2. Your Relationships Deepen
Researchers further say that travel strengthens the bonds with accompanying friends and family while encouraging new connections among the locals. It often happens that vacationers in new surroundings will gather the gumption to approach, engage, and meet with new people during their travels. At home, the willingness to do this isn’t as likely since people already feel incorporated into their local social community.
Taking such a chance with strangers can lead to fascinating and meaningful experiences that make a vacation more fun and enjoyable. Some vacationers, avid pet lovers to the bone, even take their pets with them to a leisure destination, where their four-legged companions often attract new people for vacationers to chat with and befriend.
Other pet-owning vacationers turn to technology to forge a connection with the locals. Some professional pet sitting services continually send pet owners videos and images of their precious cat or pooch, which give the locals a lot to smile at and coo over.
Trips taken with a romantic partner or family members also deepen the familial bonds. You form a ton of fun memories and adventures with your loved ones during travels — the kind that you will be talking about for years to come.
3. You Become More Grateful
You become a more grateful person when you travel to completely different and new vistas and environments. You lovingly take in all the kind gestures of the locals in making you feel welcome. Plus, if you’re witnessing poverty, you become more grateful of your own station in life and the privileges that come with it. Additionally, because you engage with people from variant linguistic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, you become more compassionate and more tolerant of the diversity of people in general.
If work had been giving you the blues, the joys of your vacation would perk you up for a long time coming. But in the end, your mindset will importantly determine how much fun you will actually have on your vacation. Exercising mindfulness, living in the present and being open-minded will ground your experiences of new and exciting adventures – both big and small — in your mind during your restorative vacation. The end result? A more relaxed, more mirthful you.
About The Author
Catherine Workman believes we should all leave our comfort zones once in awhile. She travels to boost her physical and mental health. Ms. Workman is part of a great team at WellnessVoyager and enjoys sharing her thoughts on travel and wellness.