Just having returned from a vacation, I think it fitting to write about their benefits. Vacations aren't just fun, but they also provide benefits for the mind and spirit. Below are the top 5 benefits of vacations:
- Something to look forward to. Time spent, planning, thinking about, and anticipating a vacation can be just as beneficial to our minds and spirit as the vacation itself. I notice higher resiliency at work, brighter moods, and a more positive outlook when I have an upcoming vacation scheduled.
- Exposure to new cultures, environments, and people. Traveling, exposes you to new ideas, ways of living, and diverse groups of people, which is not only a learning experience in and of itself, but also fosters compassion and open-mindedness.
- Break from Stressors. Vacations take us literally away from work and life stress, allowing time to recharge. Stress is toxic, and getting a little break from thinking, about and dealing with our everyday stress can be a nice little reset button.
- Change in stimuli and routine. Life can get mundane if we don't switch things up every once in a while. Vacations provide you with all new stimuli (e.g. environment, smells, culture, activities) thus shifting our minds out of autopilot, and have been shown to stimulate creativity and productivity.
- Time to connect with loved ones. Everyday life is full of distractions that take us away from connecting with those we love. The break from stressors, and change in stimuli and routine (see points 3 & 4) provide an optimal context to truly connect with family, friends, children, and/or your significant other. Bonus points if your travel location doesn't have cell service or WiFi.
If you haven't had a vacation in a while, schedule something soon. Even a weekend away provides the above benefits. Below are a few pics from my recent trip to Southern California with my husband.