In December, I went on an amazing, restorative vacation to Miami. Even though it was just for a few days, I was astounded by the mental and emotional benefits I received from it: I felt my stress levels go way, way down, felt true mental clarity, and best of all, felt at peace with myself. I hadn’t taken a true vacation, with no work or responsibilities, in over three years. I forgot how much a vacation can rejuvenate your state of being and have now vowed to take at least two trips each year, even if they’re small, to recreate this balance and harmony.
If you're one of those people who has 100,000 excuses as to why you can't take a vacation, I'm here to tell you why and how to make it happen — even on a budget and with no time!
1. For Your Health
There are actually health benefits to taking a vacation, including lowering levels of stress, increased motivation, and a decreased risk of heart disease. Since going on vacation actually can improve your health, how could you not go on one?
2. To Become More Cultured
Traveling can help to expand your mind and sense of self, as being exposed to new cultures and ways of living has been found in research to help broaden your perspective. Of course, the best experience of this you’ll get while actually living abroad for extended periods of time, but you can create this same experience by taking a mindful vacation, choosing to follow local customs and immerse yourself into the ways of life in that place, instead of staying behind the gates of a swanky resort.
3. To Boost Your Productivity
It might sound counterintuitive, but taking a vacation can actually help to boost your level of productivity. If you find yourself in a funk, or want to avoid burnout, plan a trip after you have an important evaluation or come to the end of a huge project. That way, you can celebrate your victories and reward yourself with a much-needed break after all of your hard work.
4. To Create Lasting Memories
There’s probably more opportunities to take vacations than you think, since there are many times when your best friends or a group of family members are going on a trip and it wouldn’t be weird for you to join in. You can also start a new tradition by planning a trip for all of the cousins in your family, or start an annual girls' weekend trip to Vegas. Vacations allow for you to bond with people in a unique way, since you spend a few days together instead of just a couple of hours for happy hour or brunch. Plus, group trips are a great way to cut down on cost, since you can split the price of a hotel room and can often qualify for group packages with discounted rates at hotels.
5. To Become A Better Person
Vacations can not only give you perspective on your own life, but can also be a way to give back. There are many trips you can take that are philanthropic in nature, where you spend your time giving back. Just make sure that you've thoroughly researched the organizations with which you will work to make sure that the work you're doing will actually benefit people who need it.
6. To Center Yourself
Just as you can take vacations that are focused on giving back, you can take vacations that are based on connecting to your spirituality or working through your emotional baggage. Check out holistic spas or wellness retreats for this kind of getaway.
7. Because You Deserve It
I find that most people fall into one of two vacation philosophies: They understand their importance and take them regularly, or they feel guilty for taking time for themselves and never do. But, no matter your life circumstance, you deserve to go on vacation!