The hustle and bustle of life can really start to weigh down on our mental health. And yet, with the pressures of work and family taking priority, it can seem impossible to escape. But leaving it all behind for a well-deserved vacation has the power to refocus your mind and help transform your mental health.
At first glance, it may seem like taking a vacation may only make a small difference to how you’re feeling. But gaining a little distance from your everyday problems can help to break old patterns, provide a mental makeover, and create beneficial space for self-care. With some forward planning, a little bit of excitement and anticipation, and a chance to finally be free from the same-old same-old, you can reignite the spark of satisfaction and re-energize your mindset.
Firstly, the planning process of a vacation brings its own benefits. Being able to research and create an itinerary, and search out suitable accommodation, can help to stimulate our minds. With the constant onslaught of good news stories, experts demonstrating tips and tricks, and weather updates all playing out on our devices, the idea of enjoying a unique vacation in a foreign land can help to boost mood and outlook.
Stepping into a new environment can also provide people with a brand new perspective on life. Opening up to fresh experiences can really sweep away old habits, thoughts and perspectives. Taking in new sights, food, language, cultures and customs can realign stress levels and put the world into a new and different perspective.
For introverts, having plenty of “alone time” on vacation can be the ideal mental health booster. It can offer a chance to fully reset and renew without being tied down by any obligations or expectations. This sacred opportunity can provide a much-needed blanket of peace and quiet that regular daily life can’t give. A sense of freedom and calm can be gained by opting out of any social events and instead creating comforting routines, like yoga on the beach or beginning each day with a healthy breakfast.
But for extroverts, there can be a sense of thrill and challenge of doing something different and enjoying the conversations that come from interacting with new people. And whilst booking the requisite tours and experiences can make for daylong companions, chances are you’ll come across some people on the street looking for the same places to eat and explore as you.
After a pleasant break away from the pressures of everyday life, a sense of calm and contentment can take over, as well as an anchor of renewed stability. What’s more, another positive knock-on effect is the ability to look differently at your “real” life when you return.
In essence, the benefits of taking a vacation and holidays come down to one thing: the ability to hit the refresh button. Life, after all, is all about balance. And if taking some time away helps you to maintain it, then it’s well worth investing both the time and money that a vacation requires.
Whether it’s at home or abroad, taking time out is essential to staying mentally well. So why not go ahead and book that long-awaited vacation – you know it’ll be worth it.