What does the word “vacation” mean to you? Do you immediately think of sitting poolside with a cocktail on a remote island? Or maybe hiking through the mountains, completely unplugged from the rest of the world? What comes to mind when you hear this word?
Now think of how often you give yourself a vacation. Is it a lot? Is it never? Is it sometimes? (Vacation also does not need to be something extravagant, it could simply mean taking a break from your week to explore a new environment.)
The last time you went on a vacation, can you remember what you felt like when you returned? Were you relaxed and recharged?
It turns out this feeling of rejuvenation through travel is more important than we cut it out to be.
In the Living Fierce Club we live by the motto:
“Measure your day from success to success and build your success from vacation to vacation”.
Now what exactly does this mean? This means that as we spend our lives achieving each win, each goal, and each success we must also allot ourselves time to take well deserved breaks. In order to successfully tackle life we MUST be setting time aside to recharge, explore, and get out of our normal environments. Every vacation does not need to be an extravagant trip to Bali, although they 100% can be. It can even mean traveling an hour away for the day or going on a hike in a near by area.
Here’s why this is important…
1. We avoid burn out and increase productivity
Have you ever felt so depleted that you have a hard time staying motivated with complicated or even simple tasks? This feeling of burn out can destroy our willingness to stay on top of our to-do’s and the ability to efficiently get things done. The truth is..this feeling creeps up on us when we are not giving ourselves breaks. In order to avoid this we must be giving ourselves time to recharge. Travel and vacation is the perfect way to take a moment of space from our normal day to days, allowing us to charge our personal batteries. We then can return back to our normal lives and show up 100% for our jobs, families, friends, and ourselves.
2. Keeps you motivated through the reward system
Each time we achieve something we should always be rewarding ourselves. When we reward ourselves our brain releases a chemical called dopamine, essentially leading to reward-motivated behavior, making you feel good and happy. As a result, you become more compelled to do the task on days where you feel like giving up. Having rewards pushes you forward towards your next objective. This is the same with planning travel. In moments where you are feeling unmotivated, looking a head at your next adventurous plan can help fuel you through your day.
3. Boost creativity and gain new perspectives
Getting out of our normal day to day and seeing new things is an amazing way to boost our creativity. When we travel, we are being exposed to new environments, new ideas, new people, and new ways of thinking that broaden our mindsets and perspectives on situations and life. When we are doing the same thing every day, 365 days a year, our brains lack opportunity for new ideas, stunting our ability to expand our creativity and ways of thinking.
4. Relieves stress and improves mental health
Vacations are an amazing way to relieve stress and step away from the hustle and bustle of our daily lives. It has been proven that while on a vacation our cortisol levels are lowered, leaving us in a relaxed and calm state. U.S. News and World noted that vacations improve our mental health. These feelings of calm that arise and relieve stress, allow the body and mind to heal in ways that it couldn't if it were still under pressure.
So, this all seems like a no brainer right?
The thing is that even though we know all this, we still do not prioritize travel. Instead we more often view it as a luxury instead of a necessity.
I know what you’re thinking… “I don’t have the money for this!”.
But the truth most of the time people think they don’t have the money for travel when in reality they are simply not prioritizing and budgeting correctly. The same way you would put aside money for rent, or a mortgage, put aside money for travel. See it as an investment into your happiness, productivity, creativity and mental health.
If you feel as though you lack time, make sure you are planning in advance. Get that calendar out and start marking off your days. Try to have your next trip planned before your current one ends. If you have a demanding job, take day trips or weekend trips. Whatever you have to do, find a way that works for you and start prioritizing this time away.
The last point here being that while in a middle of a pandemic, it seems as though these breaks are becoming even more important to our health. With chaos surrounding us it is extremely important to make sure you are taking breaks and giving your mind that well deserved reset. Take time to put the phone down, turn off the news, unplug from work, and immerse yourself in nature or new surroundings.
Obviously with travel restrictions in place, we need to be a little more innovative with our idea of "vacation". Now is the perfect time to reimagine what travel means to us. Try exploring near by parks, take a hike, go to the beach, have a camp out in your backyard. Whatever it is, make sure you are setting up time to get out of your normal day to day. When we take this time off we will be able to come back and tackle life with our utmost attention, effort, and determination.
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